Mueller’s mysterious ways 1

Can this be true?

From TruePundit:

U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s sweeping investigation into President Donald Trump’s White House just expanded to President Barack Obama’s White House, True Pundit has learned.

Mueller’s probe has also expanded into the tenures of Eric Holder and Loretta Lynch in their official roles as U.S. attorney general during Obama’s two terms in the White House.

Mueller’s team — for the first time — has requested a number of DOJ records and emails related to Holder and Lynch, including additional records linked to Obama and Valerie Jarrett, who served as Obama’s senior advisor and controversial consigliere, according to federal law enforcement sources. The revelations could indicate Mueller is looking at Obama and his Justice Department’s role in attempts to secure FISA warrants to spy on the Trump campaign in 2015 and 2016.

Or perhaps Mueller is delving into the Uranium One debacle, even though Mueller himself is implicated in the growing scandal.

No! Surely not? A more plausible explanation comes next: Mueller is trying to find out what the DOJ has on him.

A cynical investigator would hypothesize Mueller could be getting an early and discreet look at Uranium One records to gauge any evidence implicating his personal exposure.

True Pundit looks on the bright side:

There are many areas of known and unknown corruption during Obama’s reign. With Obama’s White House now in play, Mueller could be playing a legal game of pin the tail on the scandal. With Holder involved, Mueller could be seeking records on one or more of many scandals and Lynch isn’t far behind either.

That would be good. Very good. But we’ll need to see it happening to be convinced that Democrat-friendly Robert Mueller is actually pursuing justice.

Posted under corruption, Crime, United States by Jillian Becker on Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Tagged with , , , , , ,

This post has 1 comment.

Permalink

The Obama administration’s collusion with Russia 1

Why is there an investigation going on into alleged collusion between President Trump and Russia for which there is no scrap of evidence, but no investigation into the collusion between Hillary Clinton and Russia for which there is ample evidence, and in which she was helped by numerous public employees at tax-payers’ expense, including the person appointed to head the investigation?

That question is no doubt being asked by millions of Americans, and it is asked by Doug Hagmann in an article at Canada Free Press. He provides a time-line of the story of the Clintons’ treachery, from which we have taken this extract:

September 6, 2005: Former U.S. President Bill Clinton and Canadian billionaire Frank Giustra appear together in Almaty, Kazakhstan. The stated purpose of their trip was allegedly humanitarian, where they were to help HIV/AIDS patients gain access to certain drug therapies. Interestingly, Kazakhstan, a nation of 15.4 million, did not have an HIV/AIDS problem …

Kazakstan, however, has rich natural resources … including uranium.

Interestingly, the Almaty trip was also organized, in part by Sergei Kurzin, who once worked for the former federal fugitive Marc Rich, who was pardoned by Clinton on his last day as President.

Giustra, at the time of that trip, was the head of UrAsia Energy Ltd. During this trip, Giustra reportedly met with Kazakhstan officials to securing uranium mining contracts.

While the Giustra-Clinton partnership began publicly in 2005 through the establishment of the Clinton-Giustra Sustainable Growth Initiative, Clinton and Giustra have a rich history as well that predates 2005 …

September 7, 2005: Hillary Clinton, former Senator for New York and then-member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, threatened to withhold aid to Kazakhstan unless and until the UrAsia mining deal went forward amid political bureaucracy inside Kasakhstan.

September 8, 2005: Giustra’s UrAsia Energy Ltd was awarded Kazakhstan mining rights from Kazatomprom, the atomic energy agency for Khazakhstan. UrAsia suddenly became the world’s largest uranium mining producer.

February 2006: Frank Giustra donates $31.3 million to the Clinton Foundation.

August 2006: FBI Director Robert Mueller, in conjunction with the CIA reportedly begins an investigation into uranium smuggling/corruption from the former Soviet Republics.

June 2007-June 2008: Uranium One begins to purchase U.S. mines, acquiring sites in multiple states in the United States, including Wyoming (representing 20% of U.S. uranium deposits).

August 2008: Then FBI Director Robert Mueller was notified of alleged corruption and bribery involving a Uranium One and Rosatom State Atomic Energy Corporation deal in the state of Wyoming and elsewhere.

February 3, 2009:Eric Holder becomes U.S. Attorney General

June 4, 2009: Rosatom State Atomic Energy Corporation (Rosatom) established in 2007, the regulatory body of the Russian nuclear complex and the body that controls the Russian nuclear arsenalsecures a 17% ownership stake in Uranium One, marking the beginning of an aggressive campaign to control the U.S. uranium market. The head of Roasatom is Sergei KirIyenko, former energy minister and then prime minister of Russia (the latter during the Clinton presidency).

Wikileaks Revelations: Diplomatic cables sent to Hillary Clinton in 2009 and during her tenure as Secretary of State confirmed that she knew of Moscow’s nuclear ambitions via Rosatom in Ukraine and Kazakhstan, and knew that Russian military intelligence (GRU) was directly behind these nuclear ambitions.

June 9, 2009: Kazakhstan government arrests head of Kazatomprom (former Clinton Chappaqua guest Mukhtar Dzhkishev) on charges related to Uranium One deal corruption. The reason? Putin wanted the uranium in Kazakhstan and put pressure on Kazakhstan’s dictator to keep his hands off the uranium. This prompted the arrest of  Dzhkishev and jeopardized the sale of Kazakhstan’s uranium to Rosatom.

The Clinton State Department intervened. Hillary Clinton used her position to threaten to withhold financial aid to Kazakhstan, which resulted in the Rosatom purchase to proceed.

June 12, 2009: Rod Rosenstein, U.S. Attorney for Maryland, reportedly begins an investigation into bribery and corruption regarding Uranium One and Rosatom deals. It is important and perhaps relevant to note the existence of the FBI informant William Campbell who was “outed” by U.S. intelligence and whose name was provided to the media in November 2017.

The reason for Rosenstein’s involvement is simple and relates to the existence of the government whistleblower (Mr. Campbell). The Russian commercial agent responsible for the sale and transportation of uranium from disassembled nuclear warheads from Russia to the U.S. is Tenex, a subsidiary of Rosatom. The U.S. arm of Tenex is known as Tenam USA, based in Bethesda, MD and headed by Vadim Mikerin. Mikerin was responsible for managing Rosatom/Tenex contracts with U.S. uranium purchasers, thus giving him leverage over U.S. companies. He used this leverage to extort and defraud U.S. contractors into paying highly inflated prices for uranium, enriching Kremlin officials and compromisimg the companies who paid the bribes. …

September 21, 2009: Robert Mueller, then-FBI Director, personally delivers a 10-gram sample of highly-enriched uranium to the Russian government at the behest of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

This was learned through Wikileaks via Twitter (on May 17, 2017) in reference to a State Department cable. The uranium was allegedly confiscated from smugglers in Georgia, although raising legitimate questions about the role of Mueller with the Clintons and Uranium One.

Notably, Wikileaks released the controversial cable on May 17, the same day that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein tapped Mueller as an “independent” counsel to investigate any supposed Trump-Russian ties.

Mid 2009 through Late 2010: Secretary of State, Hillary Rodham Clinton intervenes on multiple occasions on behalf of Uranium One/Rosatom and the inner workings of the transfer of the sale of U.S. uranium assets in her official capacity.

June 29, 2010: While Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State, Bill Clinton collected $500,000 (one-half million dollars) for a one-hour speech he delivered in Moscow, his first Moscow speech in five years. The speech was given at a seminar hosted by Renaissance Capital inMoscow, a Kremlin-controlled investment bank populated by former Russian intelligence agents with close ties to Putin.

October 22, 2010: The Committee on Foreign Investments (CFIUS) approves Rosatom-Uranium One merger. Hillary Clinton served as the titular head of CFIUS in her capacity as Secretary of State. Other committee members included the secretaries of the treasury, state, defense, homeland security, commerce and energy; the attorney general; and representatives from two White House offices (the United States Trade Representative and the Office of Science and Technology Policy). The President of the United States has the final approval of the merger and allowed it to proceed.

THE RESULT: “Uranium One and half of projected American uranium production were transferred to a private company controlled in turn by the Russian State Nuclear Agency.” – Peter Schweizer [wrote in his book Clinton Cash].

Of important (and recent) note is that the FBI informant with direct knowledge and evidence of corruption, bribery, and other related crimes never reported to CFIUS. … His vital information was intentionally withheld by those at the highest levels within U.S intelligence agencies and the top judiciary positions.

December 10, 2010: Rosatom completes its acquisition of Uranium One.

In 2013, Rosatom announced plans to take 100% control of Uranium One, a move that was hailed in Russia under the headline “Russia Nuclear Energy Conquers the World.”

It should be abundantly clear, from this rather abbreviated timeline alone, that U.S. government officials, including but not limited to Hillary Rodham Clinton as Secretary of State were instrumental in the selling of one of most precious natural resources to foreign interests for self-enrichment.

Such enrichment is estimated to exceed $145 million in quid-pro-quo contributions from foreign entities, including and especially those representing Russia, to the Clinton Foundation funneled through shell corporations.

Barack Hussein Obama had not only the power but the responsibility to stop this transfer in the interest of our national security but failed to do so.

Then U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, who was informed of bribery and corruption related to the multiple transactions in the sale of one of our most strategic assets, also failed to intervene. His successor, Loretta Lynch, also failed to launch any investigation into the foreign dealings between Bill and Hillary Clinton, the Clinton Foundation and foreign nationals in this matter.

Former FBI Director Robert Mueller, who is now tasked with investigating Russian collusion between Russian and Donald Trump and his campaign officials, apparently did nothing as well. Nor did Rod Rosenstein.

The story makes it plain that the FBI is a corrupt institution, all too easily used by a corrupt Leftist administration to act against the interests of the American people.

Which makes it necessary to ask, “Should the FBI be abolished?”

The question is asked and answered at The American Spectator by Steve Baldwin. He looks back over many years of FBI history and lists the agency’s activities that were not only criminal but shockingly evil. He makes a persuasive – no, more, a compelling case for its abolition. It is a long article, but a must-read.

What emerges from all this is that the Clintons and their gang and conspirators belong in prison. And the FBI belongs in – yes, the ashcan of history, but also – the archives of criminal gangs, as likely the biggest and most powerful in history.

Special counsel 1

Hillary Clinton has been appointed special counsel to investigate her collusion with Russia and her corrupt practices with the Clinton Foundation.

Okay, that’s not true. She hasn’t been.

But the idea is not absurd, if the appointment of Robert Mueller to investigate felonious and corrupt practices by persons connected with the 2016 presidential election is not absurd.

Bruce Bialosky writes at Townhall:

When the people of the United States were reintroduced to Robert Mueller, he was made known to us as a man of impeccable credentials and rock-solid integrity that would consider Russian involvement in the U.S. presidential campaign and alert the American people to any wrongdoing. It is now clear he is riddled with conflicts of interest and steeped in the situation himself. If he were that person with unimpeachable rectitude, he would step aside. …

First … most related to Mueller … is the sale of 20% of our native uranium supply to a Russian-controlled firm. When one speaks of a Russian-controlled firm, it goes without saying Putin has his hand in there somewhere. …

Peter Schweizer [in his book Clinton Cash] dealt with the sale of a large portion of our uranium supply to … a major adversary. …  The charge that the sale was improper was barely picked up by the press and then dropped as the press focused on the wild accusations being made that the Trump campaign colluded with the Russians which [collusion] catapulted him to the Oval Office.

New revelations have focused on whether there were illegalities and payoffs to the Clintons through money paid to President Clinton for speeches and multi-million dollar donations to the Clinton Foundation which were used to underwrite the Clinton lifestyle and keep their future campaign staff together and working on the Clinton behalf.

Is there really any question about it?

Certainly, the fact that the main character in the Uranium One deal, Frank Giustra, supplied his private plane to the Clinton’s for campaign events was itself an illegal act.

The Clintons would like you to believe that the agencies involved in approving the uranium deal were somehow as powerful or significant as the Secretary of State, the most important cabinet post. The Democrats want you to believe that Clinton really did not have sway on this decision. To contrast, her successor stopped the Keystone Pipeline single-handedly. This argument makes no sense. Also, none of the other participants had a private foundation receiving millions in donations from parties to the transaction.

Mueller was Director of the FBI … when this all happened.

How could he carry on his duties as head of the FBI and then be in charge of investigating FBI activities without it being a clear conflict? 

Next, there is the issue of James Comey (aka Mueller’s bosom buddy) whose actions during the election reek and yearn to be investigated. It is clear he politicized the FBI by his actions. It is clear he decided to hold that press conference where he usurped prosecutorial responsibility with warped logic and divinely created new standards that provided Clinton enough cover to continue her run for the presidency. In addition, paperwork shows he may have made his decision before considering all of the facts.

May have? Paperwork shows he did.

How could Mueller possibly consider this questionable activity of the agency he once ran for 12 years with anything but a prejudiced eye, attempting to protect an agency that clearly looks compromised because of political positioning?

Then there is the infamous Steele dossier. This is a doozy. The twisted arguments to cover the potentially criminal activity bewitches the imagination. The research, which was originally funded by a Republican billionaire to Fusion GPS, will be used as a cover while his money had nothing to do with the potentially illegal action. In fact, think about it, if Paul Singer paid for the research by Fusion GPS up until April, it would be highly inappropriate for Fusion to release that information to the DNC and HRC campaign without authorization by Singer. Yet those who are trying to confuse the situation assert the dossier was a continuum. That is nonsense.

Christopher Steele was hired during the period of the funding by the DNC and HRC campaign. The fact that Maggie Haberman of the NYT, an ardent non-supporter of Trump, would come forth and complain about being lied to by Fusion GPS and related entities for over a year speaks volumes.

Which brings into question why all the lies? Why does no person of consequence at the HRC campaign or DNC have any idea who spent millions to get this info? … HRC wanted to be president, but she did not know about this, the wiping of her hard drive or other important matters of her time at state or the campaign.  That’s a stretch, to put it mildly

Hillary Clinton is not competent. But she is cunningly crooked and unscrupulous. And she has done incalculable harm to millions of people in the Middle East. Her naive, smug, little-girl policies – as Secretary of State! – towards Libya, Syria and Iraq were the cause of untold numbers of deaths, and of multitudes being displaced and pouring into Europe, ultimately to destroy it. What has she thought and said that the world will remember? The attempt at wit with  “We came, we saw, he died” – of the grisly murder of the dictator of Libya, Muammar Qaddafi, from which Libya has still not recovered?  Well, the loss of Qaddafi is not to be lamented. But she slept through the similarly horrible murder of US Ambassador Chris Stephens and three other Americans, much to be lamented, in Benghazi; about which she infamously said when questioned by Congressmen, “What difference, at this point, does it make?Those two sentences are the utterances she will bequeath to posterity. Two nasty, stupid comments.

Was the infamous dossier a lynchpin for the rationale of Mueller’s hiring in the first place as it was supposedly prima facie evidence of Trump collusion? Now that is it is clear it was the Dems working with Steele and the Russians, it was only “opposition research” [according to the Dems]. [Yet] when Donald Jr. met with some Russian unknown, on the advice of a colleague, who supposedly had ties to the Kremlin (because this person would have some dirt on Clinton), the [Democratic] world nearly exploded even though it was supposedly for opposition research and provided nothing.

Somehow, someway, the dossier which is supposedly for opposition research ended up in the hands of the FBI run by Comey. …

And then there is the informant that has been sequestered by the FBI. Why? And why did they apparently meet with Steele and discuss hiring him?

Also, why has Congress requested documents from the FBI and been denied them for six months. Seems very much like an agency out of control.

Seems very much like an agency corrupted by the Obama presidency, one of the two sources of sepsis that has poisoned the entire body politic. The other – older, more persistent, most toxic – is the Clinton source. 

How is Mueller supposed to consider the activity of Comey and the FBI regarding this with any creditability or independence?

He cannot. And the writer gives him this special counsel: “Resign.”

We doubt he will.  But perhaps congressional Republicans will find a way to remove him from his appointment.

A special counsel to investigate Robert Mueller’s involvement in the Vast Left-Wing Conspiracy against Donald Trump might then be usefully appointed.  

The Conspiracy of the Golden Shower 1

In the beginning of the conspiracy was the dossier.

Yes, it was a conspiracy, and yes, it did begin with the dossier. Then came the tossing about of the dossier. A transparently fictitious and in places childishly silly dossier.

Mark Steyn keeps his eye on the dossier. Here is the greater part of his summing-up of the Clinton anti-Trump campaign:

It started in April 2016, when it became clear that Trump was going to win the Republican nomination. The Hillary campaign and the DNC gave millions of dollars to Marc Elias, a Clinton lawyer, who in turn hired Fusion GPS, who in turn hired former MI6 agent Christopher Steele. Why use Mr Elias as a cutout? Because Hillary and the DNC could then itemize the expense as “legal services” rather than list payments to Mr Steele, which would be in breach of federal law.

Mr Steele used to be head of “the Russia house”, to go all John le Carré on you. So he asked his contacts in Moscow to come up with some stuff on Trump, and they responded with some pretty thinnish material that Steele managed to stretch out to a total of about 33 pages. … The most “salacious” (in James Comey’s word) assertion of the dossier is that Trump likes getting urinated on by Russian hookers.

That was the “golden shower”.

Having met him, I regard this as most unlikely: He is a germaphobe who resents having to do all the unhygienic gladhanding required in American politics. I find it easier to imagine almost any other Republican bigshot enjoying the erotic frisson of micturition, if only from Chuck Schumer. But judge for yourself: You can read the dossier here.

At which point things took a strange and disturbing turn. Steele’s dossier was passed along to the FBI. It seems a reasonable inference, to put it as blandly as possible, that the dossier was used to justify the opening of what the Feds call an “FI” (Full Investigation), which in turn was used to justify a FISA order permitting the FBI to put Trump’s associates under surveillance. Indeed, it seems a reasonable inference that the dossier was created and supplied to friendly forces within the bureau in order to provide a pretext for an FI, without which surveillance of the Trump campaign would not be possible.

Persons in the FBI were corrupted by the Obama administration. The Obama administration consisted largely of a gang of far-left anti-Americans. Corrupted leaders of the the FBI used the force to serve far-left anti-American ends. Only in dictatorships are there police forces whose main business is persecuting the people in the interests of the dictator.

In October 2016, things took a stranger and more disturbing turn. Steele “reached an agreement with the FBI a few weeks before the election for the Bureau to pay him to continue his work”. In other words, the permanent bureaucracy and the ruling party were collaborating to get the goods on their political opponent, by illegally paying a foreign spy to interfere with the election.

Why would the most lavishly funded investigative agency on the planet need the services of a British subject and his modest consulting firm?

Not just for plausible deniability but also for plausible reliability: Hey, investigating Trump would never have occurred to us, but the former head of the Russia desk at MI6 thought we ought to know about this…

A month later, Trump … won the election. And within twenty-four hours [Clinton campaign manager Robby] Mook and [Clinton campaign chairman John] Podesta had begun “engineering the case” that the election “wasn’t entirely on the up-and-up”. On November 18th, Andrew Wood, formerly British Ambassador in Moscow, and John McCain, the Senator from Arizona and fierce Never Trumper, met at the Halifax International Security Forum in Nova Scotia. Sir Andrew told Senator McCain about the dossier and said he’d known Steele when they were both on Her Majesty’s service in Russia and that he was a splendid chap, very sound and awfully decent.

So Sir Andrew Wood got the dossier into [Republican] John McCain’s hands, and John McCain gave it to James Comey, head of the FBI:

One month after the election, on December 9th, McCain met with FBI Director Comey and handed over the dossier. It is not known if Comey replied, “Oh, this old thing? As a matter of fact, we used it as a pretext to get surveillance warrants on Trump …’

Do you sense the ground shifting here? At some point someone somewhere might well have genuinely believed they were asking Christopher Steele to find something on Trump that Hillary could use to destroy him in the media and win the election. Mr Steele failed to deliver. …

But there was enough of a pseudo-dossier, by the debased standards of the bloated US “intelligence community”, to be used as a pretext to get the rubber-stamp FISA court to approve 24/7 surveillance of everyone around Trump – and maybe that would turn up something to destroy him.

But, again, it didn’t. Every sentient creature knows that – because everyone understands that if they’d found anything they’d have leaked it.

So once again the worthless dossier was pressed into service, this time to bolster the case that the Russians had stolen the election from Hillary. During the stupid and anachronistic two-and-a-half-month electoral “transition”, the outgoing Administration worked round the clock to de-legitimize and cripple their successors. The Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, a dismal and deeply compromised individual, told Jim Comey to set up a meeting with Trump and present him with the dossier. Which he did. Supposedly, Comey felt that he needed to disclose to the President the existence of a report of his supposed sexual predilections … It is yet another reasonable inference that the only purpose of this meeting was to enable the leaking of the meeting – and thereby damage the incoming President: The briefing was arranged as cover for the leak thereof.

All this from one dodgy dossier compiled by an MI6 agent with deep ties to FSB operatives in Russia. 

Has any one foreigner so interfered in a US election as Christopher Steele? Hillary and her chums needed Steele for oppo research. The Deep State needed Steele as a cover for wiretapping the Trump team. The Never Trumpers needed Steele to mire the incoming President and hobble him from the get-go. And the outgoing Administration needed Steele to bolster their narrative that Trump and the Russians had colluded to steal the election.

In fact, Trump seems to have fewer “ties” to Russia than almost any other multinational businessman of comparable wealth, and certainly fewer ties than the corrupt Clintons.

Many things can be deduced from this scandal: Robert Mueller should retire, preferably somewhere far, far away. James Comey should be charged, convicted and jailed. So should senior figures in the Clinton campaign.

And those large sections of the “intelligence community” that have gone rogue and spend more time subverting their own government than any foreign enemies need to be overhauled from top to toe, or, more likely, put out of business entirely. …

Everyone [involved in the dossier story] was colluding with the Russians except Trump – Hillary, the DNC, Democrat lawyers, the FBI, all frantically pointing fingers at the only non-colluding guy in the room.

No man anywhere has ever been less in need of a “golden shower” than Donald J Trump. He is surrounded on all sides by powerful forces leaking on him incessantly.

*

At PowerLine, Scott Johnson provides a former FBI Special Agent’s view of the dossier story.

Why was the “dossier” ultimately so important for the anti-Trump conspiracy (if you think of a better way of putting it, let me know)? The reason, I think, is that the use of standard political smears against Trump had proven ineffective. Therefore it became necessary to take it all a step further and to attempt to make some superficially credible allegations of action against the national interest …

We know that that effort began some time in the late Spring or early Summer of 2016 because an application was made to the FISC in June/July. That application mentioned Trump by name – and was rejected. Why FISA? Because a Title III “wiretap” would have required an actual investigation based on a violation of a real US criminal law and a quite high and specific standard in the application for a court order.

Why, you might ask, was that application even made? Why not rely on the flow of info coming from NSA, which notoriously scoops up virtually all electronic communications? The answer is that Trump and all those close to him were US Persons (USPERs). The NSA targets foreign powers and individuals. If those foreign powers and individuals of concern are in contact with USPERs and, in the judgment of NSA, US counterintelligence (basically, FBI) should know about those USPERs, then NSA informs the FBI.

In my own career, outside FBI headquarters, I only saw a handful of NSA referrals of that sort. They were mostly general in nature. They could perhaps be used to initiate a Preliminary Inquiry (PI) to gain a bit more insight into the nature of the relationship between the USPER and the foreign power or individual — if we judged that advisable based on our own knowledge and experience — meaning that typically the NSA info would not rise to the level needed in order to say that there was “reason to believe” (i.e., for practical purposes, probable cause) that the USPER was an actual agent of a foreign power. That means: no Full Investigation (FI), therefore no FISA.

But in the anti-Trump conspiracy that’s exactly what was needed: FISA coverage, “wiretaps”. … They needed FISA and they needed it NOW. They …  really wanted … to get  conversations between Trump and his associates here in the US – all USPERs – not international conversations (those were either lacking or harmless).

Yes, NSA probably scoops up internal US communications of USPERs, too, but to use it without a FI and without a FISA order would be illegal. Therefore, the “dossier”. 

For the conspirators the significance of the “dossier” was that it provided supposed “reason to believe” that Trump or those close to him were “agents of a foreign power”, subject to blackmail or pressure by a foreign power, already cooperating with a foreign power. The ability to claim that most of this “information” was coming via friendly foreign intel services with contacts in Russia added a bit of verisimilitude.

A “dossier” that could provide that sort of “reason to believe” would justify a FI and then FISA coverage. And therefore access to Trump campaign related communications …

NB: Although they were claiming Trump collusion with Russia, what they were really targeting was campaign communications. By claiming that key people were foreign agents they could collect ALL their domestic communications with anybody.

This is why I believe that the dossier took on added importance after the initial denial of a FISA order. We know, or think we do, that the FBI wanted Steele to do additional research. The focus of that research, however, would have to be to establish “reason to believe” that Trump or persons close to his campaign were “agents of a foreign power”. Only that would get them the FISA coverage they wanted. Lacking those, FISA was the quick route, but it required “reason to believe” that Trump or persons close to his campaign were “agents of a foreign power”. Voila the “dossier” as it apparently featured in the successful FISA application in October, the height of the campaign. And then it came to be used in the attempt to nullify the election (the attempted “coup”?).

Despite all this, the left-slanted, Hillary-protecting mainstream media, and every spokesperson for the Democratic Party, continue now, day after day, to insist that Donald Trump, as presidential candidate, colluded with the Russian government to affect the 2016 election!

The biggest political scandal in American history 4

Why did Obama corruptly put the full power of his administration – his State Department, his Department of Justice, the intelligence services – behind the Clintons’ drive to get $145 billion (plus a few hundred thousand and a few pennies more) into their “Clinton Foundation” gofundme hoarde, by selling one fifth of US uranium to Russia?

What the heck did Obama gain by it?

And why, knowing how deeply guilty their president and secretary of state were of colluding with the Russian regime, did the Democratic Party launch a formal investigation into whether Donald Trump had colluded with the Russians, knowing full well he had not – though going to great lengths to fabricate some flimsy “evidence” that he had – when such an investigation was bound to turn up their own filthy racket? Stupidity? Obviously. Panic for cover-up? Certainly. Whopping chutzpah? That too.

Of course they never expected they’d have to take action to conceal the treasonous racket , because they were so sure that Hillary Clinton, for whom the foul plot was woven, would be president.

Oh, what a shock it was, and what agonizing fear gripped them when she lost the election!

Perhaps they imagined that if the people doing the investigation into the non-existent Trunp “collusion” were party to their own collusion, their secrets would be kept safe, the false case against Donald Trump brilliantly concocted without anyone suspecting that the real collusion had happened under the Obama presidency. As we said, stupid!

Andrew McCarthy writes at the National Review:

The Uranium One scandal is not only, or even principally, a Clinton scandal. It is an Obama-administration scandal. The Clintons were just doing what the Clintons do: cashing in on their “public service”. The Obama administration, with Secretary Clinton at the forefront but hardly alone, was knowingly compromising American national-security interests. The administration green-lighted the transfer of control over one-fifth of American uranium-mining capacity to Russia, a hostile regime — and specifically to Russia’s state-controlled nuclear-energy conglomerate, Rosatom. …

At the time the administration approved the transfer, it knew that Rosatom’s American subsidiary was engaged in a lucrative racketeering enterprise that had already committed felony extortion, fraud, and money-laundering offenses.

The Obama administration also knew that congressional Republicans were trying to stop the transfer. Consequently, the Justice Department concealed what it knew. DOJ allowed the racketeering enterprise to continue compromising the American uranium industry rather than commencing a prosecution that would have scotched the transfer. Prosecutors waited four years before quietly pleading the case out for a song, in violation of Justice Department charging guidelines. Meanwhile, the administration stonewalled Congress, reportedly threatening an informant who wanted to go public.  …

Naïvely viewing Russia as a “strategic partner” rather than a malevolent competitor, the Bush administration made a nuclear-cooperation agreement with the Kremlin in May 2008. …

Then Russia invaded Georgia.

 In 2009, notwithstanding this aggression (which continues to this day with Russia’s occupation of Abkhazia and South Ossetia), President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton signaled the new administration’s determination to “reset” relations with Moscow.

In this reset, renewed cooperation and commerce in nuclear energy would be central. There had been such cooperation and commerce since the Soviet Union imploded. In 1992, the administration of President George H. W. Bush agreed with the nascent Russian federation that U.S. nuclear providers would be permitted to purchase uranium from Russia’s disassembled nuclear warheads (after it had been down-blended from its highly enriched weapons-grade level).

The Russian commercial agent responsible for the sale and transportation of this uranium to the U.S. is the Kremlin-controlled company “Tenex” (formally, JSC Techsnabexport). Tenex is a subsidiary of Rosatom. Tenex (and by extension, Rosatom) have an American arm called “Tenam USA.” Tenam is based in Bethesda, Md. Around the time President Obama came to power, the Russian official in charge of Tenam was Vadim Mikerin.

The Obama administration reportedly issued a visa for Mikerin in 2010, but a racketeering investigation led by the FBI determined that he was already operating here in 2009. The Racketeering Scheme As Tenam’s general director, Mikerin was responsible for arranging and managing Rosatom/Tenex’s contracts with American uranium purchasers. This gave him tremendous leverage over the U.S. companies. With the assistance of several confederates, Mikerin used this leverage to extort and defraud the U.S. contractors into paying inflated prices for uranium. They then laundered the proceeds through shell companies and secret bank accounts in Latvia, Cyprus, Switzerland, and the Seychelle Islands — though sometimes transactions were handled in cash, with the skim divided into envelopes stuffed with thousands of dollars in cash.

The inflated payments served two purposes: They enriched Kremlin-connected energy officials in the U.S. and in Russia to the tune of millions of dollars; and they compromised the American companies that paid the bribes, rendering players in U.S. nuclear energy — a sector critical to national security — vulnerable to blackmail by Moscow. 

But Mikerin had a problem. To further the Kremlin’s push for nuclear-energy expansion, he had been seeking to retain a lobbyist — from whom he planned to extort kickbacks, just as he did with the U.S. energy companies. With the help of an associate connected to Russian organized-crime groups, Mikerin found his lobbyist. The man’s name has not been disclosed, but we know he is now represented by Victoria Toensing, a well-respected Washington lawyer, formerly a federal prosecutor and counsel to the Senate Intelligence Committee. When Mikerin solicited him in 2009, the lobbyist was uncomfortable, worried that the proposal would land him on the wrong side of the law. So he contacted the FBI and revealed what he knew. From then on, the Bureau and Justice Department permitted him to participate in the Russian racketeering scheme as a “confidential source” — and he is thus known as “CS-1” in affidavits the government, years later, presented to federal court in order to obtain search and arrest warrants.

At the time this unidentified man became an informant, the FBI was led by director Robert Mueller, who is now the special counsel investigating whether Trump colluded with Russia.

The investigation was centered in Maryland (Tenam’s home base). There, the U.S. attorney was Obama appointee Rod Rosenstein — now President Trump’s deputy attorney general, and the man who appointed Mueller as special counsel to investigate Trump.

Because of CS-1, the FBI was able to understand and monitor the racketeering enterprise almost from the start. By mid-May 2010, it could already prove the scheme and three separate extortionate payments Mikerin had squeezed out of the informant. Equally important: According to reporting by John Solomon and Alison Spann in the Hill, the informant learned through conversations with Mikerin and others that Russian nuclear officials were trying to ingratiate themselves with the Clintons. 

There is no doubt that this extraordinarily gainful ingratiation took place. …

In 2005, former President Clinton helped his Canadian billionaire friend and benefactor, Frank Giustra, obtain coveted uranium-mining rights from Kazakhstan’s dictator. The Kazakh deal enabled Giustra’s company (Ur-Asia Energy) to merge into Uranium One (a South African company), a $3.5 billion windfall.

Giustra and his partners thereafter contributed tens of millions of dollars to the Clinton Foundation.

Besides the valuable Kazakh reserves, Uranium One also controlled about a fifth of the uranium stock in the United States.

Alas, Putin, the neighborhood bully, also wanted the Kazakh uranium. He leaned on Kazakhstan’s dictator, who promptly arrested the official responsible for selling the uranium-mining rights to Giustra’s company. This put Uranium One’s stake in jeopardy of being seized by the Kazakh government.

As Uranium One’s stock plunged, its panicked executives turned to the State Department, where their friend Hillary Clinton was now in charge. State sprung into action, convening emergency meetings with the Kazakh regime. A few days later, it was announced that the crisis was resolved (translation: the shakedown was complete). Russia’s energy giant, Rosatom, would purchase 17 percent of Uranium One, and the Kazakh threat would disappear — and with it, the threat to the value of the Clinton donors’ holdings.

For Putin, though, that was just a start. He didn’t want a minority stake in Uranium One, he wanted control of the uranium. For that, Rosatom would need a controlling interest in Uranium One. That would be a tall order — not because of the Kazakh mining rights but because acquisition of Uranium One’s American reserves required U.S. government approval. Uranium is foundational to nuclear power and thus to American national security.

A foreign entity would not be able to acquire rights to American uranium without the approval of the Committee on Foreign Investment [CFIUS] in the United States.

CFIUS is composed of the leaders of 14 U.S. government agencies involved in national security and commerce. In 2010, these included not only Secretary of State Hillary Clinton … but Attorney General Eric Holder, whose Justice Department (and its lead agency, the FBI) were conducting the investigation of Rosatom’s ongoing U.S. racketeering, extortion, and money-laundering scheme.

In March 2010, to push the Obama “reset” agenda, Secretary Clinton traveled to Russia, where she met with Putin and Dimitri Medvedev, who was then keeping the president’s chair warm for Putin. Soon after, it emerged that Renaissance Capital, a regime-tied Russian bank, had offered Bill Clinton $500,000 to make a single speech — far more than the former president’s usual haul in what would become one of his biggest paydays ever. Renaissance was an aggressive promoter of Rosatom. ...

The exorbitant speech fee … is a pittance compared with the $145 million … donated to the Clinton Foundation by sources linked to the Uranium One deal.

[Obama] met  with Putin and Medvedev. You’ll be comforted, I’m sure, to learn that aides to the Clintons, those pillars of integrity, assure us that the topics of Rosatom and Uranium One never came up.

Meanwhile, congressional opposition to Russia’s potential acquisition of American uranium resources began to stir.

As Peter Schweizer noted in his essential book, Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich, four senior House members steeped in national-security issues — Peter King (R., N.Y.), Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R., Fla.), Spencer Bachus (R., Ala.), and Howard McKeon (R. Calif.) — voiced grave concerns, pointing out that Rosatom had helped Iran, America’s sworn enemy, build its Bushehr nuclear reactor. The members concluded that “the take-over of essential US nuclear resources by a government-owned Russian agency . . . would not advance the national security interests of the United States.” Republican senator John Barrasso objected to Kremlin control of uranium assets in his state of Wyoming, warning of Russia’s “disturbing record of supporting nuclear programs in countries that are openly hostile to the United States, specifically Iran and Venezuela”.

The House began moving a bill “expressing disfavor of the Congress” regarding Obama’s revival of the nuclear-cooperation agreement Bush had abandoned. Clearly, in this atmosphere, disclosure of the racketeering enterprise that Rosatom’s American subsidiary was, at that very moment, carrying out would have been the death knell of the asset transfer to Russia. It would also likely have ended the “reset” initiative in which Obama and Clinton were deeply invested — an agenda that contemplated Kremlin-friendly deals on nuclear-arms control and accommodation of the nuclear program of Russia’s ally, Iran.

So is the answer to “what was in it for Obama?” that he wanted friendly deals on nuclear arms control?

Obama wanted that? We don’t buy it.

But “accommodation of the nuclear program of Russia’s ally, Iran”? Now that is a possibility.

That was not going to be allowed to happen.

It appears that no disclosure of Russia’s racketeering and strong-arming was made to CFIUS or to Congress — not by Secretary Clinton, not by Attorney General Holder, and certainly not by President Obama.

In October 2010, CFIUS gave its blessing to Rosatom’s acquisition of Uranium One.

Even though the FBI had an informant collecting damning information, and had a prosecutable case against Mikerin by early 2010, the extortion racket against American energy companies was permitted to continue into the summer of 2014  … [after] Russia annexed Crimea. …

Furthermore –

The prosecution of Mikerin’s racketeering scheme had been so delayed that the Justice Department risked losing the ability to charge the 2009 felonies because of the five-year statute of limitations on most federal crimes.

Still, a lid needed to be kept on the case.

It would have made for an epic Obama administration scandal, and a body blow to Hillary Clinton’s presidential hopes, if in the midst of Russia’s 2014 aggression, public attention had been drawn to the failure, four years earlier, to prosecute a national-security case in order to protect Russia’s takeover of U.S. nuclear assets.

The Obama administration needed to make this case go away — without a public trial if at all possible. …

The Justice Department and FBI had little to say when Mikerin and his co-conspirators were arrested [for extortion, fraud, and money laundering]. They quietly negotiated guilty pleas that were announced with no fanfare just before Labor Day. It was arranged that Mikerin would be sentenced just before Christmas. All under the radar. How desperate was the Obama Justice Department to plead the case out? Here, Rosenstein and Holder will have some explaining to do.

Mikerin … was permitted to plead guilty to a single count of money-laundering conspiracy. …  Under federal law, that crime (at section 1956 of the penal code) carries a penalty of up to 20 years’ imprisonment — not only for conspiracy but for each act of money laundering. But Mikerin was not made to plead guilty to this charge. He was permitted to plead guilty to an offense charged under the catch-all federal conspiracy provision (section 371) that criminalizes agreements to commit any crime against the United States. Section 371 prescribes a sentence of zero to five years’ imprisonment.

The Justice Department instructs prosecutors that when Congress has given a federal offense its own conspiracy provision with a heightened punishment (as it has for money laundering, racketeering, narcotics trafficking, and other serious crimes), they may not charge a section 371 conspiracy. Section 371 is for less serious conspiracy cases. Using it for money laundering — which caps the sentence way below Congress’s intent for that behavior — subverts federal law and signals to the court that the prosecutor does not regard the offense as major. Yet, that is exactly what Rosenstein’s office did, in a plea agreement his prosecutors co-signed with attorneys from the Justice Department’s Fraud Section.  No RICO, no extortion, no fraud — and the plea agreement is careful not to mention any of the extortions in 2009 and 2010, before CFIUS approved Rosatom’s acquisition of U.S. uranium stock. Mikerin just had to plead guilty to a nominal “money laundering” conspiracy charge. This insulated him from a real money-laundering sentence. Thus, he got a term of just four years’ incarceration for a major national-security crime — which, of course, is why he took the plea deal and waived his right to appeal, sparing the Obama administration a full public airing of the facts.

Interestingly, as the plea agreement shows, the Obama DOJ’s Fraud Section was then run by Andrew Weissmann, who is now one of the top prosecutors in Robert Mueller’s ongoing special-counsel investigation of suspected Trump collusion with Russia.

There was still one other problem to tamp down. That was the informant — the lobbyist who alerted the FBI to the Russian racketeering enterprise back in 2009. He wanted to talk. Specifically, as his attorney, Ms. Toensing, explains, the informant wanted to tell Congress what he knows — about what the FBI and the Justice Department could already have proved in 2010 when CFIUS signed off on Russia’s acquisition of American nuclear material, and about what he’d learned of Russian efforts to curry favor with Bill and Hillary Clinton. But he was not allowed to talk. It turns out, the lawyer explains, that the FBI had induced him to sign a non-disclosure agreement. The Justice Department warned him that it was enforceable — even against disclosures to Congress.  …

In addition, when the informant was primed to file a federal civil lawsuit to recover his own losses from the scheme, he claims that the Justice Department threatened him with prosecution, warning that a lawsuit would violate the non-disclosure agreement. The Hill reports that it has obtained emails from a civil lawyer retained by the witness, which describe pressure exerted by the Justice Department to silence the informant. What a coincidence: That was in 2016, the stretch run of Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.

This stinks.

Will Attorney-General sessions nullify the non-disclosure agreement – which he could simply do? We wait to see.

Lou Dobbs of Fox Business News has said that this might turn out to be “The biggest political scandal in American history”.

When will the culprits be brought to trial?

Those of them engaged on the phony investigation into the “Trump-Russia collusion” need to be stopped now. Shades of the prison house are falling upon them.

And on the Clintons? And Eric Holder? And Barack Obama?

Will justice be done and be seen to be done?

Bitter disappointment? 6

If President Trump:

Grants amnesty to illegal aliens

Does not build the Wall

Does not reduce taxes for all

Does not get Congress to repeal Obamacare

Does not tear up the Iran deal

Does not crush ISIS

Does not continue to call Islamic terrorism by its name

Does not move the US embassy in Israel to its capital Jerusalem

Does not put an end to Kim Jong-un

Does not put a stop to the investigation of his non-existent collusion with Russia

Does not insist that his Department of Justice indict known felons of the Clinton Foundation

Ditto of the IRS

Does not stop the State Department continuing Obama policies

Allows himself to continue being putty in the hands of McMaster and Kelly

Does not protect free speech

The 63 million people who voted for him, the thousands who applaud him at his rallies, and all who have put their hopes in him, will be bitterly disappointed.

 

Ann Coulter on amnesty at Townhall:

Donald Trump is being told that amnesty for “Dreamers,” or DACA recipients, will only apply to a small, narrowly defined group of totally innocent, eminently deserving illegal immigrants, who were brought to this country “through no fault of their own” as “children.” (Children who are up to 36 years old.)

Every syllable of that claim is a lie, and I can prove it. …

In 2005 — nearly 20 years after the 1986 amnesty — the Ninth Circuit was still granting amnesty to hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens who claimed they had been unfairly denied because they were not in the country for the first amnesty. Seriously.

No matter how the law is written, as long as anyone is eligible for amnesty, everybody’s getting amnesty.

President Trump is the last president who will ever have a chance to make the right decision on immigration. After this, it’s over. The boat will have sailed.

If he succeeds, all the pussy-grabbing and Russia nonsense will burn off like a morning fog. He will be the president who saved the American nation, its character, its sovereignty, its core identity. But if he fails, Donald Trump will go down in history as the man who killed America.

Breitbart on the Wall:

President Donald Trump admitted that he wasn’t actually going to build a great new wall on the southern border but repair existing fences and build selective strategic border structures.

[Yet] “The WALL, which is already under construction in the form of new renovation of old and existing fences and walls, will continue to be built,” Trump wrote on Twitter on Thursday morning.

Politico on no tax relief for “the rich”:

President Donald Trump declared Wednesday that the rich won’t be getting richer under his administration’s tax plan and even signaled a willingness to raise taxes on the wealthy.

“The rich will not be gaining at all with this plan,” he told reporters ahead of a meeting with a bipartisan group of House members at the White House.

NBC reports on Obamacare repeal failure (so not the president’s fault?):

Obamacare stays. For now.

Senate Republicans failed to pass a pared-down Obamacare repeal bill early Friday on a vote of 49-51 that saw three of their own dramatically break ranks.

Three Republican senators — John McCain, Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski — and all Democrats voted against the bill, dealing a stinging defeat to Republicans and President Donald Trump who made repeal of Obamacare a cornerstone their campaigns.

The late-night debate capped the GOP’s months-long effort to fulfill a seven-year promise to repeal the Affordable Care Act.

ABC News reports on maintaining the Iran deal: 

The Trump administration is poised to extend sanctions relief to Iran, avoiding imminent action that could implode the landmark 2015 nuclear deal.

But the move expected Thursday comes as the White House seeks ways to find that Tehran is not complying with the agreement. President Donald Trump has repeatedly criticized the deal, but has yet to pull out of it.

Trump is working against a Thursday deadline to decide whether to extend the sanctions waivers, which were first issued by the Obama administration.

In exchange for Tehran rolling back its nuclear program, the U.S. and other world powers agreed to suspend wide-ranging oil, trade and financial sanctions that had choked the Iranian economy.

Administration officials say Trump is ready to extend the waivers and that no serious alternatives have been presented.

The American Center on Law and Justice reports on the spread of ISIS:

ISIS is spreading, just like they promised.

Six months ago we warned that “the need to defeat ISIS is not a problem isolated to Iraq and Syria. It is, indeed, an international concern.” As Iraqi President Fuad Masum observed in 2014, “the whole world is realizing that this is not an ordinary enemy with small ambitions. ISIS is a cancer that can spread very quickly.” And spreading it is.

ISIS is on the move and is expanding into Southeast Asia.  One U.S. intelligence official explained that ISIS “harbors global ambitions and seeks to expand its influence in Southeast Asia by cultivating a network of adherents and supporters”.

Breitbart deplores President Trump’s failure to use the word “Islamic” to describe Islamic terrorism:

On the sixteenth anniversary of the September 11, 2001, Islamic terrorist attacks, President Donald Trump did not once mention the terms “radical Islam” or “Islamic terrorism” during a commemoration ceremony at the Pentagon.

The Financial Times reports on President Trump’s failure to move the US embassy to Jerusalem:

Donald Trump has decided not to move the US embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, marking a reversal of one of the president’s core campaign pledges. Mr Trump issued a waiver to a congressional requirement to move the US embassy to Jerusalem. Congress in 1995 mandated that the US diplomatic mission in Israel be moved to Jerusalem, but Bill Clinton, George W Bush and Barack Obama all signed repeated six-month waivers postponing the move for national security reasons.

On regime change in North Korea:

Dr. Sebastian Gorka – Trump Not Interested In Regime Change In North Korea (video).

USA today reports that trump will not fire “special counsel” Robert Mueller:

President Trump said he does not intend to fire special counsel Robert Mueller, whose federal investigation into Russia’s election meddling he frequently denounces as a “witch hunt” or a “hoax.”

Breitbart reports on FBI investigations of the Clinton Foundation (on this one there seems to be some cause for hope, but it is not strong):

Fox News Special Report anchor Bret Baier reports that two sources with “intimate knowledge” of the Clinton Foundation FBI investigation say that an indictment is “likely” down the road in the case.

“I pressed again and again on this very issue, and these sources said, ‘Yes, the investigations will continue,’” if Hillary Clinton defeats Donald Trump on election day, Baier said Wednesday night. His sources added, as he said, “There is a lot of evidence.”

“And barring some obstruction in some way, they believe they’ll continue to likely an indictment,” Baier said.

Baier made the bombshell announcement in an appearance with his fellow anchor on Brit Hume’s program On The Record, after earlier on his own program breaking the news that the FBI was indeed investigating the Clinton Foundation and the investigation was expansive, wide-reaching, and has gone on for a year.

PowerLine comments on the DIJ’s decision not to prosecute Lois Lerner for her IRS crimes:

The Trump Justice Department has decided not to prosecute Lois Lerner for her leading role in the IRS targeting scandal. The Obama Justice Department made that call in 2015, but House Republicans asked the Trump administration to take a fresh look.

Having done so, the Justice Department today notified members of Congress that it will not alter the Obama administration’s decision.

Breitbart reports on Tillerson’s State Department continuing Obama’s policies:

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has presided over a department … eager to contradict statements out of the White House or other agencies of the executive government. Below are seven of the strangest, most contradictory, and often baffling statements and actions from the State Department and the nation’s top diplomat.

U.S. Denies Millions in Funding to Egypt over ‘Human Rights’ Concerns [offends President al-Sisi who opposes the Muslim Brotherhood and is regarded as a friend by President Trump].

State Department Welcomes Muslim Brotherhood-Linked Group [to the State Department]

Tillerson Soft on Russia, Saudi Arabia, Iran During Confirmation Hearing

Tillerson Signs Climate Change Provisions, Including Commitment to Paris Agreement [from which President Trump withdrew]. 

State Department Refusing to Withdraw Presence in Cuba After Sonic Attacks

Tillerson to North Korea Following Missile Test: ‘We Are Not Your Enemy’

Tillerson: “Trump and I Have Differences of Views on Iran Deal”

PJ Media reports that McMaster yells at Israeli defense officials and denies Hizbollah is a terrorist organization:

During the week of August 27, an Israeli delegation met with members of the National Security Council (NSC) at the White House to discuss the current threat to Israel by the terror group Hezbollah.

Israel believes this threat is currently dire. This meeting preceded a two-week long Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) exercise to rehearse for possible war with Hezbollah. The Jerusalem Post described this exercise, which commenced on September 4 and is ongoing, as the IDF’s largest in 20 years.

Hezbollah has been a U.S.-designated Foreign Terrorist Organization since 1997. However, National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster brought NSC Senior Director on Counter-Terrorism Mustafa Javed Ali to the White House meeting with Israel. Ali, a McMaster appointee, is described by a senior administration source as being “opposed to Hezbollah’s designation as a terrorist organization”. 

What then transpired at the meeting has been confirmed to PJ Media by several administration sources, by members of non-governmental organizations involved in national security, and by a source within the Israeli government.

The Israeli delegation demanded that Mustafa Javed Ali leave the room.

This demand was made despite the clear likelihood that Ali would later be privy to the meeting’s materials and discussion. As such, sources speculated that Israel intended the demand to serve as a message to President Trump that McMaster’s behavior has constituted a subversion of Trump’s stated Middle East policy. None of the several sources were aware if Trump had been made aware of the incident.

As has been widely reported, Trump’s Chief of Staff General Kelly has instituted tight restrictions on information and contacts reaching the president. Additionally, Kelly has been said to be working closely with General McMaster on issues related to the flow of information within the administration.

Friction between General McMaster and the Israeli delegation did not end with Israel’s demand that Ali leave the room.

Sources reported that McMaster went on to explicitly dismiss the Israelis’ specific concerns about Hezbollah.

In particular, the Israelis expressed concern that the “safe zone” currently being established within Syria — an idea that had been vociferously supported by Hezbollah’s sponsor, Iran — would immediately become a safe zone for Hezbollah to operate.

McMaster was said to “blow off” this major Israeli concern, and to be “yelling at the Israelis” during the meeting. …

I put the responsibility on Mr. Trump. With regard to radical Islam, he simply seems to have lost interest.

Yet senior administration sources are far less charitable about McMaster and his appointee Mustafa Javed Ali. … They described Ali as taking the breathtaking position that Hezbollah should not be a U.S.-designated foreign terrorist organizationThey described Ali as holding the same view regarding the Muslim Brotherhood.

They claimed Ali’s work within the NSC essentially amounts to her attempting to prevent the Trump administration from using any of the means at its disposal to target Hezbollah and the Muslim Brotherhood as organizations. …

These are recognizable as Obama-era policies – the “smart set” foreign policy strategies behind the Obama administration’s disastrous “Countering Violent Extremism” programs. This is the thinking that marched the Middle East to bloody catastrophe: a half-million dead in Syria.

Yet General McMaster appointed Ali as NSC Senior Director on Counter-Terrorism, and purged the NSC of voices supporting President Trump’s Mideast agenda. Then McMaster reportedly sat Ali in front of an Israeli delegation visiting the White House to share its concerns about Hezbollah.

Raheem Kassam on free speech and Trump being overMcMastered at Breitbart:

Many Americans don’t seem to appreciate as much as outside admirers do, that the United States is the only country in the world with a commitment to free speech enshrined in the nation’s Constitution. Many nations do not even have codified constitution of which to speak.

Which is why it is almost more egregious to the outsider than the American that such protections are under assault, not just on the streets of Berkeley or Charlottesville, but in your legislature — and soon in your Oval Office.

This afternoon, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders confirmedPresident Trump would “absolutely” be signing a resolution drafted by Republican and Democrat lawmakers “condemning” hatred.

“He and Senator Tim Scott talked about that and discussed that and agreed that that was the appropriate place to be,” Sanders said. “In terms of whether or not he’ll sign the joint resolution, absolutely, and he looks forward to doing so as soon as he receives it.”

But the resolution is manifestly a ruse — the first line of attack in a new wave of assaults against free speech in America.

Let’s examine what the motion, passed by both legislative chambers early this week, says.

The preamble, in addition to expressing “support for the Charlottesville community,” demands of the President that he rejects “White nationalists, White supremacists, the Ku Klux Klan, neo-Nazis, and other hate groups” and urges him and his cabinet to “use all available resources to address the threats posed by those groups”.

From the outset this is disingenuous and troublesome.

The President has already disavowed these groups, including Neo Nazis and the KKK. Why are elected members, alongside the White House, wasting time virtue signaling over it?

Perhaps because it backs POTUS into a corner, especially when you consider many establishment media organizations call his former Chief Strategist Stephen K. Bannon — who has mocked and derided ethno-nationalists — a “white nationalist” or “white supremacist”. This week, ESPN even let one of its hosts off with no more than a slapped wrist for suggesting the President himself was a “white supremacist”.

So by whose definitions are we going? And what exactly does “use all available resources” mean?

The President and his cabinet ostensibly have all resources available to them. The U.S. military, trillions of dollars, three and a half years of power. To what is the President subscribing? …

The U.S. Constitution is perfectly clear on this too. No matter how vile your views — as those of the KKK and Neo Nazi groups are — you still have a right to express them in America.

The five page document the President is now committed to signing refers to violence on the side of Neo Nazi protesters, but fails to mention Antifa, or any other leftist-inspired violence, including but not limited to the Bernie Sanders supporter who recently attempted to murder Republican congressmen.

It demands signatories “speak out against hate groups that espouse racism, extremism, xenophobia, anti-Semitism, and White supremacy” — laudable aims were it not for the fact that the political left has abused and debased these terms, effectively stripping them of all meaning.

Today, a “racist” is someone who believes in legal immigration. An “extremist” is someone who doesn’t believe in mass, state-funded abortion. A “xenophobe” is someone who takes pride in their nation. An “anti-Semite” is — curiously — someone who supports the State of Israel, and “white supremacy” now occupies the Oval Office. …

Speaking of Islamophobia, why has that been left out of this resolution? Will there be — as Islamic supremacists often demand — a special case and motion for Muslims alone, to go before the President later this year? Will the White House be equally excited to sign what would effectively be a blasphemy law?

Perhaps the most insidious part of this document comes right at the end, where the President will accede to ensuring “the heads of other Federal agencies… improve the reporting of hate crimes and… emphasize the importance of the collection, and… reporting to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, of hate crime data by State and local agencies”.

Given the precedent set in Europe for the monitoring and prosecution of so-called “hate crimes”, it should be of gravest concern that the White House has been so readily bounced into endorsing the idea of limiting speech and the freedom of assembly.

Has President Trump given up?

Does he not want a second term?

Have the Left and Islam won?

Is Trump “killing America”?

Is the Swamp swallowing Trump? (3) 2

Continuing from the two posts below, we now look at how powerful elements in the intelligence services defy and try to undermine President Trump.

We know that the former head of the FBI, James Comey, by his own confession leaked information through a friend to the leftist media with malice towards the president. (And for the latest revelation of James Comey’s corruption, see here.)

It is reported that the CIA is leaking its discontent with its new director – the president’s ally, Michael Pompeo – because he is trying to to stop the leaks and change their Obama-set agenda.

And this is from an editorial in Investor’s Business Daily:

The remarks made in recent weeks by two former spy chiefs go well beyond anything ever uttered by previous espionage leaders, calling into question the commander in chief’s competence and sanity. In politics, when considering such vituperative criticisms, it’s always wise to consider the source.

Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and former CIA Director John Brennan have both weighed in with scathing remarks about President Trump in recent days and weeks. To be blunt, Clapper and Brennan were political partisans of President Obama, and neither did exactly a bang-up job while in their posts.

Speaking on CNN to left-leaning anti-Trump host Don Lemon this week, Clapper said, “I really question his ability, his fitness to be in this office. And I also am beginning to wonder about his motivation for it. Maybe he is looking for a way out.”

“How much longer does the country have to, to borrow a phrase, endure this nightmare?” he asked, suggesting concern over Trump’s access to nuclear codes.

There’s an awful lot to unpack there.

For one, should a former intelligence chief who admitted to lying before Congress about the extent of National Security Agency spying on average Americans be passing judgment on any politician?

And should we trust the judgment of someone who, laughably, claimed that Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood was “largely secular,” as Clapper did, and who predicted during Libya’s civil war that Moammar Gadhafi would “prevail” in the end, just months before his dead body was dragged through the streets?

And yet, we’re supposed to take his criticisms of Trump seriously.

As for also suggesting that Trump is “looking for a way out”, that’s by now an old fantasy peddled and re-peddled by angry Obama-ites.

“It’s shocking that a former director of national intelligence takes the discredited ‘Trump wants out’ theme one step further at this late date,” as Paul Mirengoff of the PowerLine blog put it. “What does Clapper mean when he says Trump may be ‘looking for a way out’ by giving what Clapper considers over-the-top speeches? Does he think Trump, for whom winning means everything, wants to be impeached? That he wants to be institutionalized?”

Or, perhaps, is he just trying to sow more confusion, more anger, more inchoate hatred for the president among those who didn’t vote for him, thus obstructing Trump’s ability to govern?

We’d opt for the latter.

Then there’s former CIA chief John Brennan, who has also stepped out of his supposedly apolitical role as a spymaster to make highly charged political comments about Trump.

After Trump’s comments about Charlottesville, Brennan ripped into Trump for making “dangerous” and “ugly” comments.

He’s entitled to his opinion, of course. But it has long been a part of our tradition of government service that former officials serving in a nonpolitical capacity would leave the criticisms of other administrations to the elected politicians. To ignore this tradition runs the risk of tainting the professionalism of the agencies they once headed, and provides evidence that the heavily politicized, entrenched, progressive “deep state” that many Americans believe poses a danger to our republic really does exist.

By the way, Brennan in remarks made last July that can only be called highly questionable suggested that it’s “obligation of some executive branch officials” to refuse to fire Robert Mueller, who is heading up the open-ended investigation into the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia and its hacking of the 2016 election.

Let’s be clear: Trump, should he want to do so, would be absolutely within his rights as president to seek Mueller’s firing. Whether it would be politically wise to do so is a separate question.

And Brennan’s remarks are incredibly self-serving, since he is the one who initiated the investigation into the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia last summer, in the heat of the campaign. The Obama loyalist did so, apparently, thinking it would fatally damage Trump’s campaign.

“It was then-CIA Director John O. Brennan, a close confidant of Mr. Obama’s, who provided the information — what he termed the ‘basis’ — for the FBI to start the counterintelligence investigation last summer,” wrote Washington Times national security correspondent Rowan Scarborough last May. “Mr. Brennan served on the former president’s 2008 presidential campaign and in his White House.”

Brennan, by the way, also aided in making up the bogus talking points used by the Obama administration to lie about what happened in Benghazi, Libya, where four Americans, including U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens, were murdered. Whose interests was Brennan serving?

Far from being a disinterested intelligence official, Brennan is in fact a highly partisan political operative with a far-left background. By his own admission (it came out in a CIA polygraph test administered early in his career), he voted for Communist Party hack Gus Hall for president in 1980.

A mere youthful indiscretion? According to the authoritative Black Book Of Communism, Communist nations in the 20th century slaughtered more than 100 million people around the world. They did so in a (fortunately) failed attempt to impose that inhuman, totalitarian system on free people everywhere. Yet Brennan voted to have that same murderous, totalitarian system imposed on us here in the U.S. And was still given the keys to our nation’s secrets.

Anyone can criticize the president. That’s America. But not everyone should. Neither Clapper nor Brennan have distinguished themselves in recent years, either professionally or politically. America’s intelligence agencies were deeply dysfunctional during the Obama years.

By inserting themselves so dishonestly into a partisan political dispute, Clapper and Brennan have not only damaged the agencies they once headed, but the democracy they once claimed to serve. They serve as Exhibits A and B in why the swamp must be drained, and drained thoroughly.

Is the Swamp swallowing Trump? 1

Is the  Swamp swallowing President Trump?

Seems so.

Seems he’s being isolated in the White House. His enemies have put a wall round him. They’ve stopped him from reading Breitbart. They take him print-outs of the news they want him  to read. The only person they cannot stop getting close to him is his son Don. They are trying to stop Don taking Breitbart news to him. 

People who should be carrying out his orders are not doing so. They do what they want to do. And what they want to do is the opposite of what he wants them to do.

They have got rid of or blocked everyone who was on his side.

But is the stalwart redoubtable winner Donald Trump so easily held captive? So easily bent to others’ will? Surely not!  

Linda Goudsmit writes at Canada Free Press an open letter to President Trump from which we quote:

Mr. President, your government continues to be informed and advised by Obama legacy staffers who remain in government advancing Obama’s anti-American, pro-Islamic, pro-Iranian, and pro-Muslim Brotherhood agenda. …

Identifying your friends and identifying your enemies in your administration, the military, and among national security staffers is an urgent matter. … Any advisor or staffer who refuses to utter the words radical Islamic terror does not belong in your administration. If staffers embrace sharia law, promote Islam, are apologists for Islam, are members of the Muslim Brotherhood or CAIR and support Obama’s purging of materials that implicate Islam, they are your enemies and must be removed.

You are being surrounded by Obama leftovers who will continue to disinform you so that your decisions will tilt toward Obama’s failed globalist policies.

Mr. President you are being dragged into the swamp you were elected to drain.

H.R. McMaster was recommended for the position of National Security Advisor (NSA) director by #2 swamp creature John McCain. Under McMaster’s leadership the people who have the courage to speak out and expose the existential danger of Islam are being purged from the military and from the national security staff. Those who have the courage to support the initiatives of your America-first candidacy are being eliminated while the Obama globalist leftovers remain.

Trump loyalists Michael Flynn, K.T. McFarland, Ezra Cohen-Watnick, Derek Harvey, Rich Higgins, Adam Lovinger, Steve Bannon, and Sebastian Gorka are all gone. Obama loyalists Dina Habib-Powell, Allison Hooker, Fernando Cutz, Andrea Hall, Rear Admiral David Kriete, Jessica Cox, Stephanie Morrison, Heather King, and Robert Wilson all remain. McMaster’s indefensible defense of Obama loyalist Susan Rice allowed her to retain her security clearance. McMaster claimed Rice did nothing wrong unmasking the identities of Trump transition aides and leaking the transcripts of Mr. Trump’s phone conversations with foreign leaders. REALLY? …

Sixteen years [after 9/11) there is no excuse for illiteracy regarding Islam, yet the national security voices are still trying to deny the connection between Islam and terrorism.

And now former FBI director Robert Mueller is investigating you?? Mueller is another leftover whose past foretells his future. Mueller has been part of the intricate cover-up protecting the Muslim Brotherhood for years.

Judicial Watch has uncovered stunning documentary evidence that Robert Mueller worked with Islamist groups to purge anti-terrorism materials offensive to Muslims while he was FBI director. Offensive to Muslims? Is this the metric for our national security? Candidate Trump promised to reverse Obama’s suicidal policies – President Trump has hired personnel who continue to advance them. …

You and your America-first policies pose an existential threat to the globalist elite and that is why they are determined to destroy you and eliminate any Trump administration personnel who share your vision. H.R. McMaster is part of the insidious swamp battling against you. He is part of the reheated Obama leftovers who are hazardous to your presidency. Candidate Trump’s courageous Americanism and bold America-first policies require President Trump to find fresh ingredients – throw out the leftovers. H.R.McMaster and his gang need to hear: “You’re fired!”

The last and most difficult message I have for you is a personal one. Your daughter Ivanka and son-in-law Jared Kushner are loyal loving members of your family and your administration but you must never forget that they have been educated toward globalism by the prevailing re-education curriculum in American schools. You can be proud of their extraordinary achievements but must never forget that their prism is not your prism. They were raised on John Lennon’s “Imagine.” You were raised on the “Star Spangled Banner” – the difference is Huge.

And Daniel Greenfield writes at Front Page:

The foreign policy deck has been cleared of Islam realists. And it shows.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Sunday that Sebastian Gorka was “completely wrong” in his resignation letter’s assessment of the battle over Trump administration policy.

“Fox News Sunday” host Chris Wallace asked Tillerson about Gorka’s accusations, especially regarding the president’s recent speech on Afghanistan.

“Sebastian Gorka in his resignation letter wrote this about the Afghanistan speech: ‘the fact that those who drafted and approved the speech remove any mention of radical Islam or radical Islamic terrorism proves that a crucial element of the presidential campaign has been lost.’ Is he right?” Wallace asked.

“I think he’s completely wrong, Chris,” Tillerson said. “And I think it shows a lack of understanding of the president’s broader policy when it comes to protecting Americans at home and abroad from all acts of terrorism. The president has charged us to develop policies and tactics, both diplomatically and militarily, to attack terrorism in as many forms wherever it exists in the world and wherever it might present a threat to the homeland or to Americans anywhere.”

“This means that we have to develop techniques that are global in nature. All we want is to ensure that terrorists do not have the capability to organize and carry out attacks,” he added.

Are there any non-Islamic global terrorist threats? What are we fighting in Afghanistan except Islamic terrorism?

Are we at war with Mormons or the Amish in Afghanistan? Who are the Taliban again? Or the Haqqani Network? Or the Islamic State?

Best not to ask. See nothing. Hear nothing. Say nothing. It’s worked brilliantly since 9/11. I can imagine how different things might have been under Secretary of State [John] Bolton. But as Whittier said, “For all sad words of tongue and pen, The saddest are these, ‘It might have been’.”

And now the President’s Keepers are not allowing John Bolton anywhere near him.

Ryan Mauro writes at Clarion Project:

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson opposes designating the [Muslim] Brotherhood as a Foreign Terrorist Organization and is going to bat for Qatar and Turkey. National Security Adviser McMaster is also reportedly opposed, as would be expected from his staunch stance against using terminology like “radical Islam” and his endorsement of a book with the premise that only “militant Islamists” are our enemies, not non-violent Islamists.

Now, we have someone as the new Chief of Staff [John Kelly] who authorized the writing of a thank-you letter to CAIR.

A thank-you letter to an Islamic organization that supports Hamas and its terrorism, preaches the Islamization of America – and approves of the appointment of H. R. McMaster to his powerful position as the President’s chief advisor on national security (which in itself should be a warning to the President).

And this is from an article by Jeff Crouere at Canada Free Press:

President Donald Trump is attacked on a daily basis by his enemies in the media, the political establishment, and the deep state. He is under unrelenting assault, more so than any other U.S. President in recent history.

Usually, even a besieged President can count on support within the ranks of his top advisers. While they may disagree in private, top administration officials have an obligation to present a unified front to the American people. However, when a President starts getting attacked by a member of his own administration, it is time to fire that untrustworthy individual and demand loyalty of everyone else.

If the appointee is not fired, he should have the decency to resign if he cannot publicly support the President. A principled letter outlining the reasons for his resignation is what National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn should have delivered to President Trump.

Cohn, a former Democrat, was dissatisfied with the President’s balanced criticism of “both sides” in the aftermath of the riots in Charlottesville, Virginia. Instead of keeping his complaints private, Cohn gave a controversial and utterly unhelpful interview to the Financial Times blasting the President while inferring his own moral superiority. According to Cohn, “This administration can and must do better in consistently and unequivocally condemning these groups and do everything we can to heal the deep divisions that exist in our communities.”

Of course, Cohn was referring to the KKK, neo-Nazis and white supremacists who attended the initial Charlottesville rally. He is right, the groups must be vigorously denounced, which is why the President condemned them multiple times. How many more times must the President criticize the hateful beliefs of these groups before it satisfies Cohn and the liberal media?

What really upset Cohn and all of the other Trump critics is that the President also criticized the “Alt-Left” groups who participated in a counter-rally in Charlottesville.  In the Financial Times interview, Cohn laughably said “Citizens standing up for equality and freedom can never be equated with white supremacists, neo-Nazis, and the KKK.”

The “Alt-Left” protesters in Charlottesville included people who engaged in a variety of violent activities such as throwing bags of urine and feces and using pepper spray and bats to assault people. They also attacked innocent journalists, a photo journalist for a local TV station and a reporter for The Hill, who were trying to cover their activities.

The “Alt-Left” counter demonstrators in Charlottesville included anarchists, socialists and communists who subscribe to a deadly ideology that has caused the death of untold millions of people around the world. It is an ideology of evil that should be criticized by President Trump and everyone in his administration, including Gary Cohn.

Instead of telling the truth about the “Alt-Left” protesters, Cohn decided to launch a public attack against the President, who has been unfairly criticized by the liberal media since the day he entered the presidential race on June 16, 2015. …

These “Alt-Left” groups are spearheaded by the notorious band of thugs known as Antifa (anti-Fascist). While Cohn and his liberal colleagues in the media and the Beltway think the group is fighting for “freedom”, a growing number of Americans strenuously disagree. In fact, a recent White House petition demanding that the Pentagon label Antifa a terrorist group “on the grounds of principle, integrity, morality and safety” accumulated over 302,000 signatures in only eight days. …

As the President courageously declared, [Antifa’s] violent behavior undoubtedly contributed to the chaos and turmoil in Charlottesville. Sadly, Gary Cohn does not want to admit this reality for he prefers the illusion of political correctness.

Reportedly, in the aftermath of the President’s Charlottesville comments, Cohn was under intense pressure from his Wall Street friends to resign from the administration. He should have done the President and the country a big favor by succumbing to the pressure.

To be continued …

The Russian hacking that never happened 3

The Nation weekly journal is generally on the side of the Others: the Democrats, the socialists, the statists, the Islam-promoters, the politically correct, the “social justice warriors”.

So if THEY say that there was no Russian hacking of the DNC during the 2016 election year and can prove it – which it seems they can and have – then the conspiracy to spin a “narrative” that presidential candidate Donald Trump plotted with “the Russians” to keep Hillary Clinton out of the White House, is over.

We quote the meaty parts of the article by Patrick Lawrence at The Nation:

It is now a year since the Democratic National Committee’s mail system was compromised — a year since events in the spring and early summer of 2016 were identified as remote hacks and, in short order, attributed to Russians acting in behalf of Donald Trump. A great edifice has been erected during this time. President Trump, members of his family, and numerous people around him stand accused of various corruptions and extensive collusion with Russians. Half a dozen simultaneous investigations proceed into these matters. Last week news broke that Special Counsel Robert Mueller had convened a grand jury, which issued its first subpoenas on August 3. Allegations of treason are common; prominent political figures and many media cultivate a case for impeachment.

The president’s ability to conduct foreign policy, notably but not only with regard to Russia, is now crippled. Forced into a corner and having no choice, Trump just signed legislation imposing severe new sanctions on Russia and European companies working with it on pipeline projects vital to Russia’s energy sector. Striking this close to the core of another nation’s economy is customarily considered an act of war, we must not forget. In retaliation, Moscow has announced that the United States must cut its embassy staff by roughly two-thirds. All sides agree that relations between the United States and Russia are now as fragile as they were during some of the Cold War’s worst moments. To suggest that military conflict between two nuclear powers inches ever closer can no longer be dismissed as hyperbole.

All this was set in motion when the DNC’s mail server was first violated in the spring of 2016 and by subsequent assertions that Russians were behind that “hack” and another such operation, also described as a Russian hack, on July 5. These are the foundation stones of the edifice just outlined. The evolution of public discourse in the year since is worthy of scholarly study: Possibilities became allegations, and these became probabilities. Then the probabilities turned into certainties, and these evolved into what are now taken to be established truths. By my reckoning, it required a few days to a few weeks to advance from each of these stages to the next. This was accomplished via the indefensibly corrupt manipulations of language repeated incessantly in our leading media.

Lost in a year that often appeared to veer into our peculiarly American kind of hysteria is the absence of any credible evidence of what happened last year and who was responsible for it. It is tiresome to note, but none has been made available. Instead, we are urged to accept the word of institutions and senior officials with long records of deception. These officials profess “high confidence” in their “assessment” as to what happened in the spring and summer of last year—this standing as their authoritative judgment. Few have noticed since these evasive terms first appeared that an assessment is an opinion, nothing more, and to express high confidence is an upside-down way of admitting the absence of certain knowledge. This is how officials avoid putting their names on the assertions we are so strongly urged to accept — as the record shows many of them have done.

We come now to a moment of great gravity.

There has been a long effort to counter the official narrative we now call “Russiagate”.  This effort has so far focused on the key events noted above, leaving numerous others still to be addressed. Until recently, researchers undertaking this work faced critical shortcomings, and these are to be explained. But they have achieved significant new momentum in the past several weeks, and what they have done now yields very consequential fruit. Forensic investigators, intelligence analysts, system designers, program architects, and computer scientists of long experience and strongly credentialed are now producing evidence disproving the official version of key events last year. Their work is intricate and continues at a kinetic pace as we speak. But its certain results so far are two, simply stated, and freighted with implications:

  • There was no hack of the Democratic National Committee’s system on July 5 last year — not by the Russians, not by anyone else. Hard science now demonstrates it was a leak — a download executed locally with a memory key or a similarly portable data-storage device. In short, it was an inside job by someone with access to the DNC’s system. This casts serious doubt on the initial “hack,” as alleged, that led to the very consequential publication of a large store of documents on WikiLeaks last summer.
  • Forensic investigations of documents made public two weeks prior to the July 5 leak by the person or entity known as Guccifer 2.0 show that they were fraudulent: Before Guccifer posted them they were adulterated by cutting and pasting them into a blank template that had Russian as its default language. Guccifer took responsibility on June 15 for an intrusion the DNC reported on June 14 and professed to be a WikiLeaks source—claims essential to the official narrative implicating Russia in what was soon cast as an extensive hacking operation. To put the point simply, forensic science now devastates this narrative.

This article is based on an examination of the documents these forensic experts and intelligence analysts have produced, notably the key papers written over the past several weeks, as well as detailed interviews with many of those conducting investigations and now drawing conclusions from them. …

 

Qualified experts working independently of one another began to examine the DNC case immediately after the July 2016 events. Prominent among these is a group comprising former intelligence officers, almost all of whom previously occupied senior positions. Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS), founded in 2003, now has 30 members, including a few associates with backgrounds in national-security fields other than intelligence. The chief researchers active on the DNC case are four: William Binney, formerly the NSA’s technical director for world geopolitical and military analysis and designer of many agency programs now in use; Kirk Wiebe, formerly a senior analyst at the NSA’s SIGINT Automation Research Center; Edward Loomis, formerly technical director in the NSA’s Office of Signal Processing; and Ray McGovern, an intelligence analyst for nearly three decades and formerly chief of the CIA’s Soviet Foreign Policy Branch. Most of these men have decades of experience in matters concerning Russian intelligence and the related technologies. …

Until recently there was a serious hindrance to the VIPS’s work, and I have just suggested it. The group lacked access to positive data. It had no lump of cyber-material to place on its lab table and analyze, because no official agency had provided any. …

Based on the knowledge of former officials such as Binney, the group knew that (1) if there was a hack and (2) if Russia was responsible for it, the NSA would have to have evidence of both. Binney and others surmised that the agency and associated institutions were hiding the absence of evidence behind the claim that they had to maintain secrecy to protect NSA programs. … [but] “Everything that they say must remain classified is already well-known,” Binney said …

Research into the DNC case took a fateful turn in early July, when forensic investigators who had been working independently began to share findings and form loose collaborations wherein each could build on the work of others. In this a small, new website called www.disobedientmedia.com proved an important catalyst. Two independent researchers selected it, Snowden-like, as the medium through which to disclose their findings. One of these is known as Forensicator and the other as Adam Carter. On July 9, Adam Carter sent Elizabeth Vos, a co-founder of Disobedient Media, a paper by the Forensicator that split the DNC case open like a coconut.

By this time Binney and the other technical-side people at VIPS had begun working with a man named Skip Folden. Folden was an IT executive at IBM for 33 years, serving 25 years as the IT program manager in the United States. He has also consulted for Pentagon officials, the FBI, and the Justice Department. Folden is effectively the VIPS group’s liaison to Forensicator, Adam Carter, and other investigators, but neither Folden nor anyone else knows the identity of either Forensicator or Adam Carter. … Unanimously, however, all the analysts and forensics investigators interviewed for this column say Forensicator’s advanced expertise, evident in the work he has done, is unassailable. They hold a similarly high opinion of Adam Carter’s work.

Forensicator is working with the documents published by Guccifer 2.0, focusing for now on the July 5 intrusion into the DNC server. The contents of Guccifer’s files are known — they were published last September — and are not Forensicator’s concern. His work is with the metadata on those files. These data did not come to him via any clandestine means. Forensicator simply has access to them that others did not have. It is this access that prompts Kirk Wiebe and others to suggest that Forensicator may be someone with exceptional talent and training inside an agency such as the FBI. “Forensicator unlocked and then analyzed what had been the locked files Guccifer supposedly took from the DNC server,” Skip Folden explained in an interview. “To do this he would have to have ‘access privilege’, meaning a key.” …

Forensicator’s first decisive findings, made public in the paper dated July 9, concerned the volume of the supposedly hacked material and what is called the transfer rate — the time a remote hack would require. The metadata established several facts in this regard with granular precision: On the evening of July 5, 2016, 1,976 megabytes of data were downloaded from the DNC’s server. The operation took 87 seconds. This yields a transfer rate of 22.7 megabytes per second.

These statistics are matters of record and essential to disproving the hack theory. No Internet service provider, such as a hacker would have had to use in mid-2016, was capable of downloading data at this speed. Compounding this contradiction, Guccifer claimed to have run his hack from Romania, which, for numerous reasons technically called delivery overheads, would slow down the speed of a hack even further from maximum achievable speeds.

What is the maximum achievable speed? Forensicator recently ran a test download of a comparable data volume (and using a server speed not available in 2016) 40 miles from his computer via a server 20 miles away and came up with a speed of 11.8 megabytes per second — half what the DNC operation would need were it a hack. Other investigators have built on this finding. Folden and Edward Loomis say a survey published August 3, 2016, by www.speedtest.net/reports is highly reliable and use it as their thumbnail index. It indicated that the highest average ISP speeds of first-half 2016 were achieved by Xfinity and Cox Communications. These speeds averaged 15.6 megabytes per second and 14.7 megabytes per second, respectively. Peak speeds at higher rates were recorded intermittently but still did not reach the required 22.7 megabytes per second.

“A speed of 22.7 megabytes is simply unobtainable, especially if we are talking about a transoceanic data transfer,” Folden said. “Based on the data we now have, what we’ve been calling a hack is impossible.” Last week Forensicator reported on a speed test he conducted more recently. It tightens the case considerably. “Transfer rates of 23 MB/s (Mega Bytes per second) are not just highly unlikely, but effectively impossible to accomplish when communicating over the Internet at any significant distance,” he wrote. “Further, local copy speeds are measured, demonstrating that 23 MB/s is a typical transfer rate when using a USB–2 flash device (thumb drive).”

Time stamps in the metadata provide further evidence of what happened on July 5. The stamps recording the download indicate that it occurred in the Eastern Daylight Time Zone at approximately 6:45 pm. This confirms that the person entering the DNC system was working somewhere on the East Coast of the United States. In theory the operation could have been conducted from Bangor or Miami or anywhere in between — but not Russia, Romania, or anywhere else outside the EDT zone. Combined with Forensicator’s findings on the transfer rate, the time stamps constitute more evidence that the download was conducted locally, since delivery overheads — conversion of data into packets, addressing, sequencing times, error checks, and the like — degrade all data transfers conducted via the Internet, more or less according to the distance involved.

In addition, there is the adulteration of the documents Guccifer 2.0 posted on June 15, when he made his first appearance. This came to light when researchers penetrated what Folden calls Guccifer’s top layer of metadata and analyzed what was in the layers beneath. They found that the first five files Guccifer made public had each been run, via ordinary cut-and-paste, through a single template that effectively immersed them in what could plausibly be cast as Russian fingerprints. They were not: The Russian markings were artificially inserted prior to posting.“It’s clear,” another forensics investigator self-identified as HET, wrote in a report on this question, “that metadata was deliberately altered and documents were deliberately pasted into a Russianified [W]ord document with Russian language settings and style headings.

To be noted in this connection: The list of the CIA’s cyber-tools WikiLeaks began to release in March and labeled Vault 7 includes one called Marble that is capable of obfuscating the origin of documents in false-flag operations and leaving markings that point to whatever the CIA wants to point to. (The tool can also “de-obfuscate” what it has obfuscated.) It is not known whether this tool was deployed in the Guccifer case, but it is there for such a use. …

VIPS has assembled a chronology that imposes a persuasive logic on the complex succession of events just reviewed. It is this:

  • On June 12 last year, Julian Assange announced that WikiLeaks had and would publish documents pertinent to Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.
  • On June 14, CrowdStrike, a cyber-security firm hired by the DNC, announced, without providing evidence, that it had found malware on DNC servers and had evidence that Russians were responsible for planting it.
  • On June 15, Guccifer 2.0 first appeared, took responsibility for the “hack” reported on June 14 and claimed to be a WikiLeaks source. It then posted the adulterated documents just described.
  • On July 5, Guccifer again claimed he had remotely hacked DNC servers, and the operation was instantly described as another intrusion attributable to Russia. Virtually no media questioned this account.

It does not require too much thought to read into this sequence. With his June 12 announcement, Assange effectively put the DNC on notice that it had a little time, probably not much, to act preemptively against the imminent publication of damaging documents. Did the DNC quickly conjure Guccifer from thin air to create a cyber-saboteur whose fingers point to Russia? There is no evidence of this one way or the other, but emphatically it is legitimate to pose the question in the context of the VIPS chronology. WikiLeaks began publishing on July 22. By that time, the case alleging Russian interference in the 2016 elections process was taking firm root. In short order Assange would be written down as a “Russian agent”.

By any balanced reckoning, the official case purporting to assign a systematic hacking effort to Russia, the events of mid-June and July 5 last year being the foundation of this case, is shabby to the point taxpayers should ask for their money back. The Intelligence Community Assessment [ICA], the supposedly definitive report featuring the “high confidence” dodge, was greeted as farcically flimsy when issued January 6. Ray McGovern calls it a disgrace to the intelligence profession. It is spotlessly free of evidence, front to back, pertaining to any events in which Russia is implicated. James Clapper, the former director of national intelligence, admitted in May that “hand-picked” analysts from three agencies (not the 17 previously reported) drafted the ICA. There is a way to understand “hand-picked” that is less obvious than meets the eye: The report was sequestered from rigorous agency-wide reviews. This is the way these people have spoken to us for the past year.

Behind the ICA lie other indefensible realities. The FBI has never examined the DNC’s computer servers — an omission that is beyond preposterous. It has instead relied on the reports produced by Crowdstrike, a firm that drips with conflicting interests well beyond the fact that it is in the DNC’s employ. Dmitri Alperovitch, its co-founder and chief technology officer, is on the record as vigorously anti-Russian. He is a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council, which suffers the same prejudice. Problems such as this are many.

In effect, the new forensic evidence considered here lands in a vacuum. We now enter a period when an official reply should be forthcoming. What the forensic people are now producing constitutes evidence, however one may view it, and it is the first scientifically derived evidence we have into any of the events in which Russia has been implicated. … The cost of duplicity has rarely been so high.

How has the Democratic Part reacted to the revelation, in a usually supportive magazine, that they have been proved to have lied?

Flat denial, and accusation that the revelation is itself  a “conspiracy  theory”:

[The Nation’s] Editor’s note: After publication, the Democratic National Committee contacted The Nation with a response, writing, “U.S. intelligence agencies have concluded the Russian government hacked the DNC in an attempt to interfere in the election. Any suggestion otherwise is false and is just another conspiracy theory like those pushed by Trump and his administration. It’s unfortunate that The Nation has decided to join the conspiracy theorists to push this narrative.” 

We await with keen interest – animated we confess by more than a little Schadenfreude – the reaction of: the Mainstream Media, Hillary Clinton, Chuck Schumer, Nancy Pelosi, Maxine Waters, Robert Mueller, James Comey, Julian Assange, Guccifer 2.o, Vladimir Putin, Uncle Tom Cobley and all.

Raging mutiny 1

There is a civil war raging in America – a “cold civil war”.

The always interesting political analyst David P. Goldman, aka Spengler, writes at the Asia Times:

The distinguished political scientist Angelo Codevilla coined the ominous term “cold civil war” to describe America’s precarious condition, adding, “Statesmanship’s first task is to prevent it from turning hot.”

The attempted massacre this week of Republican Congressmen and their staff by a deranged partisan of Sen. Bernie Sanders turned up the heat a notch, but it would be mistaken to attribute much importance to this dreadful outburst of left-wing rage. The augury of American fracture will not be street violence, but a constitutional crisis implicating virtually the whole of America’s governing caste. The shock troops in the cold civil war are not gunmen but lawyers.

Here we interrupt an argument that we very largely agree with, to cavil: Lawyers acting as shock troops in this cold civil war, and the politicians who employ them, are themselves making “a dreadful outburst of left-wing rage”, albeit with words and not guns.

A considerable portion of America’s permanent bureaucracy, including elements of its intelligence community, is engaged in an illegal and unconstitutional mutiny against the elected commander-in-chief, President Donald Trump. Most of the Democratic Party and a fair sampling of the Republican Establishment want to force Trump out of office, and to this end undertook an entrapment scheme to entice the president and his staff into actions which might be construed after the fact as obstruction of justice.

By means yet undisclosed, the mutineers forced Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn from office and now seek to bring down the president for allegedly obstructing an investigation of Gen. Flynn that arose in the first place from the entrapment scheme.

By no coincidence is Gen. Flynn the central character in this scenario. … The CIA really is out to get him:

Flynn’s Defense Intelligence Agency produced a now-notorious 2012 report warning that chaos in Syria’s civil war enabled the rise of a new Caliphate movement, namely ISIS. … Flynn humiliated the bungling CIA and exposed the incompetence and deception of the Obama administration, and got fired for it. …

The mainstream media makes no effort to disguise its hatred for Trump and insinuates in countless ways that the president fired former FBI director James Comey in order to protect Gen. Flynn from a legitimate investigation. I do not believe this to be the case; I think it more likely that Comey showed insufficient zeal in uncovering the pattern of press leaks and other sabotage which the mutineers employed against the president.

Faced with a mutiny fed by illegal actions (leaking classified information is a felony that carries a 10-year prison sentence), the president requires a Pitbull for a counterintelligence chief. Comey, who in 2005 earned $6 million as general counsel for the giant defense contractor Lockheed Martin, is more of a Pomeranian. …

If it is proven that Russian cyber-spies hacked the email account of Democratic National Committee Chairman John Podesta and handed embarrassing information to Wikileaks, we will know that Russia has done what all intelligence agencies have done for centuries: leak embarrassing political information to the press.

Western intelligence services leak information about Putin’s alleged personal fortune and personal life and skullduggery to the media, as well as information about the dodgy connections of Chinese officials and their offspring to business.

Podesta and his gang at the DNC used unethical and perhaps illegal means to sandbag the campaign of Sen. Sanders, leaks about which embarrassed Hillary Clinton. Sanders, knowing on which side his bread is buttered, declined to make an issue of the sandbagging, allowing Trump’s enemies to transform what should have been an investigation of corruption in the Democratic Party into a fairy-tale about Russian spies stealing an American election with implied collusion by the Trump campaign.

The Trump-Russia collusion story is nonsense, as its disseminators know better than anyone else. The object of the exercise is not to support the innuendo, but to launch an investigation which can provoke the White House into responses that might be construed as illegal.

The intelligence leaks involved in framing the story alone are probably sufficient grounds to put several dozen senior officials in federal prison for double-digit terms. That consideration gauges the scale of the problem: the mutineers have committed multiple felonies, and their downside should the mutiny go wrong is not ignominious retirement but hard time at Leavenworth.

Oh, may it be so! It is a consummation devoutly to be wished.

For the moment, the mutineers have the momentum. The Trump administration continues to run on a skeleton staff, with the vast majority of key positions still unoccupied. If my surmise is correct, it was unable to persuade the director of the FBI, the nation’s chief watchdog, to undertake vigorous countermeasures against the mutiny, for example, a comprehensive screening of electronic communications by the reporters who received leaks of classified materials. …

The White House and in particular the National Security Council … remain riddled with Obama Administration holdovers, forcing Trump to rely on a close circle of trusted advisers. That limits the president’s ability to reach out for allies against the mutineers.

The installation of former FBI director Robert Mueller as Special Counsel … also constrains the counterintelligence operations of the White House. If senior intelligence officials claim to be engaged in counterintelligence investigations against Russian interference in US elections, is it obstruction of justice to investigate their illegal contacts with the media?

The mutineers also can count on the support of Establishment worthies like Sen. John McCain (R-Arizona) and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina), for whom Trump’s election was an intolerable humiliation. Trump ran against the Bush wing of the Republican Party as much as he ran against the Democrats. …

Trump’s one great advantage in all of this is that he has done nothing wrong. He did not obstruct justice because there is no crime. The mutineers’ only hope is to provoke him to take actions which might be construed as obstruction of justice in an investigation with no crime and no victim. Still, it is a moment of great danger for the American Republic.

The mutiny has burned its bridges on the beach, and its perpetrators will risk everything to make it succeed. Whatever the outcome, the legitimacy of a political system designed to be litigious and oppositional will be called into question, and the polarization of American opinion will become more rather than less extreme.

More physical violence cannot be ruled out. The mutineers must lose the cold civil war, if only after inflicting crippling damage on the country. Then they face long years in jail (with a bit of luck and impartial justice from Trump appointed judges). The chances they will then turn to – or at least encourage – violence, are surely high. The Left will not surrender easily. It worked too long, too hard for victory, got it, and thought it had secured power for ever. It cannot let go without a no-holds-barred fight. It is mostly screaming biting and scratching now, but will almost certainly use guns and knives and all the weapons of mutiny that it can before it is forcibly crushed.

 

(Hat-tip for the Spengler article to our contributing commenter, liz)

Older Posts »