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[Dec 25, 2019] If the British were the ones to organise an independence referendum in Crimea, they would probably push as many people as possible into postal voting and reduce the number of polling stations as part of this strategy.

Dec 25, 2019 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

Jen December 23, 2019 at 2:23 pm

If the British were the ones to organise an independence referendum in Crimea, they would probably push as many people as possible into postal voting and reduce the number of polling stations as part of this strategy.

Postal vote fraud seems to be an ongoing problem in the UK as detailed a 2016 report on electoral fraud by Sir Eric Pickles:
https://www.gov.uk/government/news/sir-eric-pickles-publishes-report-into-tackling-electoral-fraud

[Dec 24, 2019] When is a CIA asset not an asset?

Dec 24, 2019 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

timbers , December 23, 2019 at 8:21 am

"80% sure that Mifsud is dead". What has become of the Russiagate professor? InsideOver (Furzy Mouse).

When is a CIA asset not an asset?

When the asset is made up out of thin air.

Somebody should make a movie out of this. Yes, Ghost Writer comes close and I highly recommend it if you've not seen it. But this takes it a big set forward.

Of course, the director will have to be especially attentive to character development. That could be difficult unless it's thought thru.

Polar Socialist , December 23, 2019 at 9:13 am

Cue the book and the movie: Our Man in Havana.

While not strictly speaking CIA, still a good match for a whole network of assets made out of thin air, vacuum cleaner parts and unchecked hubris.

Baby Gerald , December 23, 2019 at 3:31 pm

Top recommendation, Polar Socialist. Alec Guinness by way of Graham Greene makes for an excellent combination to poke fun at the whole world of state-sponsored spycraft.

DJG , December 23, 2019 at 1:13 pm

timbers: The story posted today is bizarre indeed. So the university consortium (Agrigento doesn't have its own university and the plan is to continue to sponsor a branch of the University of Palermo) wants a leader and ends up with Mifsud?

From Italian Wikipedia, entry Agrigento:
Agrigento, oltre ad essere sede di varie scuole medie superiori (alle quali sono iscritti anche studenti provenienti dalla provincia), ospita una sede distaccata dell'Università degli Studi di Palermo. Il polo universitario della provincia di Agrigento nell'anno accademico 2008/2009 contava 3.613 studenti iscritti, così suddivisi nelle 6 facoltà attivate nella sede decentrata

Mifsud, head of a small branch of a major university? Odd. And then he starts grifting.

Yet Agrigento is the home turf of Andrea Camilleri and, supposedly, one of the models for his city of Vigàta. This story is definitely something for Inspector Montalbano.

Background: Il Giornale was founded by Indro Montanelli, who was a "classic" Italian conservative. He was notoriously stubborn. Kneecapping didn't stop him. One of the products of Il Giornale is Marco Travaglio, who founded Il Fatto Quotidiano. So the source is legitimate. I can't find an Italian version of the article, which is strange.

But the oddities of the obviously dodgy Mifsud and the hapless Papadopoulos are just part of the whole saga of the current palace coup.

No wonder Nancy Pelosi can't figure out to send the charges to the Senate.

integer , December 23, 2019 at 8:06 pm

Link Campus University is a spook university:

George Papadopoulos says Mueller report 'shows that I was clearly set up' AP

In March 2016, Papadopoulos first met Mr. Mifsud impromptu at Link Campus University, a for-profit college in Rome that instructs NATO intelligence personnel.

And from Wikipedia :

Link Campus instructs NATO intelligence personnel[2] and the US intelligence and law enforcement officials are also involved with Link.

The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) have sent their officers to lecture at Link.

Regarding "the mysterious audio file sent to the editors of Adnkronos and Il Corriere della Sera", that was found to be fake by the "expert in forensic sciences, one of the most important in Italy working in the field", it is interesting to note that NATO-aligned propaganda outlet Bellingcat claims the voice in the recording is authentic (i.e. Mifsud).

Bellingcat deciding to "investigate" something is always a giant red flag.

[Dec 23, 2019] Adam Schiff Has 'No Sympathy' For FBI Victim Carter Page; Page Responds

Dec 23, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Adam Schiff Has 'No Sympathy' For FBI Victim Carter Page; Page Responds by Tyler Durden Sun, 12/22/2019 - 13:00 0 SHARES

Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) says it's hard to feel sympathetic for former Trump campaign aide Carter Page, despite the fact that he was spied on by the FBI after the agency fabricated evidence to obtain a surveillance warrant from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court.

After the FISA court denied their request, FBI attorney Kevin Clinesmith fabricated evidence to exclude the fact that Page was a CIA source, with "positive assessment," despite the fact that the CIA informed Clinesmith of Page's prior work for the agency.

Schiff, however, has no love for Page despite DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz finding 16 significant 'errors' in the FBI's FISA applications used to surveil Page.

"I have to say, you know, Carter Page came before our Committee and for hours of his testimony, denied things that we knew were true, later had to admit them during his testimony ," Schiff told PBS News ' Margaret Hoover. " It's hard to be sympathetic to someone who isn't honest with you when he comes and testifies under oath . It's also hard to be sympathetic when you have someone who has admitted to being an adviser to the Kremlin ."

Hoover countered, noting "But then was also informing the CIA," to which Schiff replies "Yes, yes."

"Which we didn't know about," replied Hoover.

" Who was both targeted by the KGB but also talking to the United States and its agencies and that should have been included , made clear, and it wasn't, according to the inspector general," Schiff responded.

. @RepAdamSchiff is unsympathetic to Carter Page, telling @FiringLineShow that Page "denied things that we knew were true" in testimony, admitted to being an advisor to the Kremlin & "was apparently both targeted by the KGB, but also talking to the United States and its agencies." pic.twitter.com/GkjdGQZWLV

-- Firing Line with Margaret Hoover (@FiringLineShow) December 20, 2019

After Schiff's comments were published, Page responded on Twitter: "There have been various allegations of dishonesty regarding FBI lawyer Clinesmith. On information, belief and firsthand experience since 2017, I have actually found @RepAdamSchiff to be even more untrustworthy and dangerous with his misuse of @DNC lies. "

There have been various allegations of dishonesty regarding FBI lawyer Clinesmith. On information, belief and firsthand experience since 2017, I have actually found @RepAdamSchiff to be even more untrustworthy and dangerous with his misuse of @DNC lies: https://t.co/kMkRYFceGs

-- Carter Page, Ph.D. (@carterwpage) December 21, 2019

Greenwald weighs in:

If you don't feel sympathy for someone who was wrongly smeared for years as being a traitor, and who was spied on by his own government due to FBI lying & subterfuge, then you're not only unqualified to wield power but probably also a sociopath.

In other words: Adam Schiff. https://t.co/HGoroBIWv8

-- Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) December 22, 2019

[Dec 22, 2019] On the conspiracy front: Apparently Mifsud is dead, so say some Italian journalists. Has he been epsteined too?

Dec 22, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

blue peacock , 20 December 2019 at 06:41 PM

The big question: Has Durham convened a grand jury or is he just planing another report?

On the conspiracy front: Apparently Mifsud is dead, so say some Italian journalists. Has he been epsteined too?

Then there is the Intercept story that Adm. Rogers has been voluntarily cooperating with Durham.

In any case, I'm really curious if Durham's playing Sherlock Holmes and uncovering the various threads of this fascinating story of alleged meddling by law enforcement & intelligence agencies in several countries in a presidential election and the framing of an opposition presidential campaign and then president as a Manchurian Candidate.

No doubt Hollywood material if Durham lays it all out. Could beat All the Presidents Men!

Factotum said in reply to blue peacock... , 21 December 2019 at 12:48 AM
Sara Carter has the current story about Jospeh Mifsud alleged second reported demise, after his allleged first demise reported a few years ago, as the Russiagate story was just breaking. Second demise now that Russiagate story is concluding.

With this new Italian twist ,this should it be called Mifsud:The Second Coming - writen as an opera buffo, in three acts: https://saraacarter.com/italian-prosecutors-believe-that-joseph-mifsud-the-man-who-started-russiagate-is-dead/

Papadopolus reports of Mifsud's death are greatly exaggerated. And the curtain will soon be going up on his third act. Could this be the CIA disinformation coup crew working overtime?

I guess we wait to get the real story from CNN.
(Sarcasm)

[Dec 22, 2019] Putin's niece

Dec 22, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Patrick Armstrong , 21 December 2019 at 09:08 AM

Speaking of "Putin's niece", this, from the Daily Beast is a reminder of how all this crap was spun. Worth a read given what we all know now.
https://www.thedailybeast.com/putins-niece-catfished-george-papadopoulos-offered-kremlin-meeting

[Dec 22, 2019] The Long, Dark History of Russia's Murder, Inc. Up next: The bright, sunny history of the CIA

Notable quotes:
"... The Long, Dark History of Russia's Murder, Inc. New York Review of Books ..."
Dec 22, 2019 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

Stormcrow , December 21, 2019 at 11:54 am

The Long, Dark History of Russia's Murder, Inc. New York Review of Books

Up next: The bright, sunny history of the CIA

Carolinian , December 21, 2019 at 1:27 pm

Speaking of that.

https://www.counterpunch.org/2019/12/20/gladio-the-story-of-a-conspiracy/

Acacia , December 22, 2019 at 12:15 am

No surprise. NYRB has had a b*ner for Muh Russia since the early days of the hysteria.

[Dec 20, 2019] Valuable but speculative information on the background of the Papadopoulos angle to RussiaGate

Dec 20, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

evilempire , Dec 19 2019 22:57 utc | 32

valuable but speculative information on the background of the Papadopoulos angle
to RussiaGate. It is intriguing to say the least.

[Dec 19, 2019] Horowitz put the telescope to his blind eye, its an old deep state trick that Lord Nelson used in an illegal war that the British mythologize about

Dec 19, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

uncle tungsten , Dec 19 2019 6:17 utc | 81

evilempire #40

Horowitz put the telescope to his blind eye, its an old deep state trick that Lord Nelson used in an illegal war that the British mythologize about. IMO Horowitz is a whitewash man and there most likely will be questions that Durham will be asking Priestap IF that is the Giuliani plan. Wont hold my breath though. Trump seems to be acting MAD as hell but then so do wrestlers in their fake as fake can be.

[Dec 19, 2019] Priestap has testified that he inherited operation crossfire hurricane. But Horowitz's finding that there was no bias in opening the investigation was almost exclusively based on finding no bias in Priestap

Dec 19, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

evilempire , Dec 18 2019 23:48 utc | 40

There is one glaring contradiction that I did not see addressed in the Horowitz hearing. Priestap has testified that he inherited (page 14 of the pdf) operation crossfire hurricane. If he inherited the investigation then how could he have played any role in opening crossfire hurricane? Yet in the FISA report, Horowitz's finding that there was no bias in opening the investigation was almost exclusively based on finding no bias in Priestap. I have not seen this contradiction addressed anywhere.

[Dec 19, 2019] Senate hearings give impression that the whole sordid, nasty conspiracy seems on the verge of being exposed, maybe as high as Obama himself, although he is just a puppet himself

Dec 19, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

evilempire , Dec 18 2019 22:32 utc | 28

If anyone was watching The Horowitz hearing in the senate today it would be hard to conclude that RussiaGate and Ukrainegate will not have serious consequences going forward.

The whole sordid, nasty conspiracy seems on the verge of being exposed, maybe as high as Obama himself, although he is just a puppet himself, and indictments are sure to follow. I don't see how anyone could think that this will not be catastrophic for the democratic party.

[Dec 17, 2019] History Doesn t Repeat, But It Often Rhymes: Wilson in UK was subjected to the similar attack by rogue elements in MI5 as Trump in the USA

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... an inquiry by cabinet secretary Lord Hunt in 1996 concluded that "a few, a very few, malcontents in MI5" had "spread damaging malicious stories". ..."
"... Well, if a cabinet secretary says that it must be true. MI5, not MI6 - I think MI5's the heavy mob - but I just wondered if our spooks had passed these tricks on to the lads who put the Steele dossier about. ..."
Dec 14, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

English Outsider

Massive win, Colonel, that as far as I know nobody predicted. Not the polls, not the political blogs. But I didn't follow it that closely so that's just a general impression.

My man, Nigel Farage, got squeezed mercilessly. I was looking around the BBC site to find out how mercilessly when I came across a picture of the bete noir of my father's time, Harold Wilson. Wilson was convinced that MI something was out to get him - bugged his office, spread smear stories about him around the press, even a possible coup.

The odd rumour of all this had spread to my corner of the English provinces and I'd always wondered if there was anything in it. So I clicked on the BBC article -

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/stories-49939123

- and came across this -

" .. A 1987 inquiry concluded the allegations of a security service plot against Wilson were untrue. However, an inquiry by cabinet secretary Lord Hunt in 1996 concluded that "a few, a very few, malcontents in MI5" had "spread damaging malicious stories".

Well, if a cabinet secretary says that it must be true. MI5, not MI6 - I think MI5's the heavy mob - but I just wondered if our spooks had passed these tricks on to the lads who put the Steele dossier about.

On another security matter I note with concern above - "Those are Jacobite tribesmen at the top. Some of my ancestors were such as they." I thought so. '15 and '45 caused us a lot of trouble and just in case the tradition remained in your family I'm opening a file. We're very happy with our present Queen, thank you, and we don't want you replacing her with some Stuart relic you might happen to have dug up.

Though I suppose it would only be poetic justice. We've just had a go at toppling your President so why shouldn't you return the compliment and topple Her Majesty.

14 December 2019 at 07:07 AM

[Dec 15, 2019] Former CIA Spook Eric Holder Just Revealed That The Deep State Is Running Scared by Greg Hunter

We will see... I am skeptical about idea that Brennan will be indicted.
But this article supports the idea that impeachment was a counterattack of Brannan faction of CIA and Clinton mafia against Barr and Trump.
Notable quotes:
"... Former CIA officer and counter-intelligence expert Kevin Shipp says that former Obama Administration Attorney General (AG) Eric Holder gave a big Deep State panic signal when he wrote in an Op-Ed last week in the Washington Post trashing current AG William Barr and his top prosecutor John Durham ..."
"... We have to understand it was Eric Holder that Barack Obama used to target the heads of corporations that spoke out publicly about Barack Obama. We know Holder was held in 'Contempt of Congress.' He spied on AP reporters, ran guns to drug cartels and blacked out the information. He spied on over a hundred journalists, and on and on we go... ..."
"... when Holder comes out and puts out this bombshell in the Washington Post, which is another indication that indictments are coming. John Brennan, former Obama Administration CIA Director, is going to be at the top of the list. " ..."
"... during the entire Trump Presidency, the mainstream media (MSM) has operated as a propaganda arm of the Deep State and the Democrats ..."
"... Shipp says the hoax of Russia collusion and the impeachment sham of President Trump is distracting us from other very big problems such as the extreme debt the country and the world is facing . Shipp says, ..."
Dec 15, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Via Greg Hunter's USAWatchdog.com,

Former CIA officer and counter-intelligence expert Kevin Shipp says that former Obama Administration Attorney General (AG) Eric Holder gave a big Deep State panic signal when he wrote in an Op-Ed last week in the Washington Post trashing current AG William Barr and his top prosecutor John Durham. Shipp explains,

"This is very significant. We all remember that Holder was Obama's right hand man. Eric Holder was Barack Obama's enforcer. The fact that Holder comes out this quickly after the Inspector General (IG) Horowitz Report comes out... and makes this veiled threat against Durham's reputation. The fact that Eric Holder came out and made this statement is a clear indication to me they are running scared.

We have to understand it was Eric Holder that Barack Obama used to target the heads of corporations that spoke out publicly about Barack Obama. We know Holder was held in 'Contempt of Congress.' He spied on AP reporters, ran guns to drug cartels and blacked out the information. He spied on over a hundred journalists, and on and on we go...

They (Deep State) are convinced there are going to be indictments. Secondly, there is AG Barr's outrage over (IG) Horowitz's report and what it did not do. He made statements that there was spying and actions by government officials that need to be criminally looked into. Barr's outrage over this shows me that there are going to be indictments, and that he is taking this seriously. Again, when Holder comes out and puts out this bombshell in the Washington Post, which is another indication that indictments are coming. John Brennan, former Obama Administration CIA Director, is going to be at the top of the list. "

Shipp says during the entire Trump Presidency, the mainstream media (MSM) has operated as a propaganda arm of the Deep State and the Democrats . Shipp contends,

"They put these stories out intentionally because they are creating their own story, and that is what the propaganda mainstream media does. It creates its own story...

They want to frame their latest story that there really wasn't any spying on Trump. That's what FISA warrants and applications are all about. They are all about spying ."

Shipp thinks this will be a big nail in the coffin of the MSM. Shipp says, "The mainstream media will never come back from this..."

"...because finally, through shows like this and others, the real information is coming out as to what the mainstream media has done . At the top of that list is the New York Times, the Washington Post, CNN and MSNBC...

What they did is they created the Russia collusion story as if it was reality, as if it was real. That is part of the procedure in doing this. Then, they invented the evidence, and that was the Steele Dossier. They portrayed this as evidence to create this false narrative. Then they sent this story out to each outlet, and all repeat the same story over and over and over again knowing the more they repeat it, the more people were going to believe it. Then, the FBI leaked information to the mainstream media. The FBI took that information leaked to the media and used their stories as evidence. Brennan leaked the dossier to the mainstream media as part of this whole machine."

Shipp says the hoax of Russia collusion and the impeachment sham of President Trump is distracting us from other very big problems such as the extreme debt the country and the world is facing . Shipp says,

"Trump inherited a financial monster that was not his doing. When he was sworn into office, it already existed. It is very serious, and I think now or very soon the U.S. government will not be able to afford the interest on the national debt, much less paying off the debt itself."

It is reported that central banks are buying record amounts of gold, and even Goldman Sachs is telling its clients to buy the yellow metal. Shipp says,

" This is a solid indicator that we are headed for the financial rapids with Goldman Sachs especially. Goldman Sachs is a global bank, and it's one of the main banks in the United States. The fact that Sachs and others are building up gold reserves is a clear indication that they expect a financial downturn, to put it mildly, that is coming. "

Join Greg Hunter as he goes One-on-One with former CIA Officer and whistleblower Kevin Shipp.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/bEzLeqnSbf0

To Donate to USAWatchdog.com Click Here

_triplesix_ , 1 minute ago link

Wake me when someone goes to jail.

jm , 2 minutes ago link

I kinda think that everyone is holding off to see if Trump gets re-elected.

If he does then there will be indictments, jail time, and a real cleaning of the house.

The guys in the middle of this investigation depose the "liberal" old guard and offer sacrifices to their own "conservative" god of filth. Same Mammon, just a different order of worship.

If he doesn't get re-elected then the guys that are investigating this can just slink back into the current slime and survive in some basic way.

I have seen this dynamic when companies merge as equals. Everybody is afraid to act because the stakes are so high. It's a chess game played by ruthless cowards.

[Dec 14, 2019] We Just Got a Rare Look at National Security Surveillance. It Was Ugly

NYT fails to state that the most plausible scenario was that CIA send Page to join Trump campaign, then to establish contacts with Russians and after that obtain FICA warrants in a typical false flag operation manner. Essentially Trump campaign was entrapped.
Dec 14, 2019 | www.msn.com

First, when agents initially sought permission for the wiretap, F.B.I. officials scoured information from confidential informants and selectively presented portions that supported their suspicions that Mr. Page might be a conduit between Russia and the Trump campaign's onetime chairman, Paul Manafort.

But officials did not disclose information that undercut that allegation -- such as the fact that Mr. Page had told an informant in August 2016 that he "never met" or "said one word" to Mr. Manafort, who had never returned Mr. Page's emails. Even if the investigators did not necessarily believe Mr. Page, the court should have been told what he had said.

Second, as the initial court order was nearing its expiration and law-enforcement officials prepared to ask the surveillance court to renew it, the F.B.I. had uncovered information that cast doubt on some of its original assertions. But law enforcement officials never reported that new information to the court.

Specifically, the application included allegations about Mr. Page contained in a dossier compiled by Christopher Steele, a former British intelligence agent whose research was funded by Democrats. In January 2017, the F.B.I. interviewed Mr. Steele's own primary source, and he contradicted what Mr. Steele had written in the dossier.

The source for Mr. Steele may, of course, have been lying. But either way, officials should have flagged the disconnect for the court. Instead, the F.B.I. reported that its agents had met with the source to "further corroborate" the dossier and found him to be "truthful and cooperative," leaving a misleading impression in renewal applications.

Finally, the report stressed Mr. Page's long history of meeting with Russian intelligence officials. But he had also said that he had a relationship with the C.I.A., and it turns out that he had for years told the agency about those meetings -- including one that was cited in the wiretap application as a reason to be suspicious of him.

That relationship could have mitigated some suspicions about his history. But the F.B.I. never got to the bottom of it, and the court filings said nothing about Mr. Page's dealings with the C.I.A.

The inspector general's report contains many more examples of errors and omissions. Mr. Horowitz largely blamed lower-level F.B.I. agents charged with preparing the evidence, but he also faulted high-level supervisors for permitting a culture in which the inaccuracies took place.

[Dec 14, 2019] FBI EXPOSED: Lindsey Graham DETAILS Massive FBI Bias Against President Trump

Dec 14, 2019 | www.youtube.com

FOX 10 Phoenix 722K subscribers The U.S. attorney who is conducting a wide-ranging investigation of the origins of the Trump-Russia probe released a rare statement Monday saying he disagrees with conclusions of the so-called FISA report -- after DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz found in that review that the probe's launch largely complied with DOJ and FBI policies. "Based on the evidence collected to date, and while our investigation is ongoing, last month we advised the Inspector General that we do not agree with some of the report's conclusions as to predication and how the FBI case was opened," U.S. Attorney John Durham said in a statement. Horowitz released his report Monday saying his investigators found no intentional misconduct or political bias surrounding efforts to launch that 2016 probe and to seek a highly controversial Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant to monitor former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page in the early months of the investigation. Still, it found that there were "significant concerns with how certain aspects of the investigation were conducted and supervised." "I have the utmost respect for the mission of the Office of Inspector General and the comprehensive work that went into the report prepared by Mr. Horowitz and his staff," Durham said. "However, our investigation is not limited to developing information from within component parts of the Justice Department. Our investigation has included developing information from other persons and entities, both in the U.S. and outside of the U.S." As Horowitz has conducted his review of DOJ actions during the Russia probe, Durham, the U.S. attorney for Connecticut, has also been conducting a wider inquiry into alleged misconduct and alleged improper government surveillance on the Trump campaign during the 2016 presidential election. Fox News reported in October that Durham's ongoing probe has transitioned into a full-fledged criminal investigation. Meanwhile, Attorney General William Barr ripped the FBI's "intrusive" investigation after the release of Horowitz's review, saying it was launched based on the "thinnest of suspicions." "The Inspector General's report now makes clear that the FBI launched an intrusive investigation of a U.S. presidential campaign on the thinnest of suspicions that, in my view, were insufficient to justify the steps taken," Barr said in a statement. Barr expressed frustration that the FBI continued investigating the Trump campaign, even as "exculpatory" information came to the light.


Matthew McKay , 2 days ago

When the FBI lies to a court it's called an "Irregularity" When you or I lie to a court, it's called "Perjury" and we go to jail.

Are See , 2 days ago

The history of FBI and DOJ lying and legal abuse is much older than Trump. Read Sidney Powell's LICENSED TO LIE. Been going on since at least the Enron prosecutions. And judges are just as much to blame.

Terry R , 2 days ago

This is what we get for having so many lawyers in office.

Guitarguts63 , 2 days ago

16 minutes and 30 seconds in should be labeled as treason

Liam Daniels , 2 days ago

The evidence is glaring. Indictments need to be handed out or else this is a mockery of justice

Geena Gador , 2 days ago

Talk is cheap. DO something to bring justice to the perpetrators.

sethgabel , 2 days ago

Page and Strzok conversation is more like insurgency than pillow talk.

SWFL Motorsports Fan , 2 days ago

Thank God for: Lindsey Graham, Ted Cruz, Doug Collins, Jim Jordan, and Louie Gohmert to represent our country in this mess to shed light on whats been going on. Drain the swamp in Washington!

Wynette Greer , 2 days ago

The CIA are just as corrupt as the FBI , they have even more power to abuse !

Lillie Holmes , 2 days ago

WOW all the investigations they did on Trump was just to set him up, James Comey should be arrested

Karlyn Pinson , 2 days ago

HOROWITZ'S IS A DEEP STATE SWAMP RAT. FIRE HIM

Arlene Duran , 2 days ago

CNN should be sued and barred from all angles of media. Dangerous very very dangerous situation.

Michael Carr , 2 days ago

And the tax payers of the United States spent 40 million dollars investigating Trump because of the Steele Dossier. Terrible, just awful.

Crystal kellim , 1 day ago

Why aren't Lisa page and stroke in cuffs by NOW, this is conspiracy, treasonous behavior.... biased and they think they are above Americans.

[Dec 14, 2019] Meadows reacts to IG report: 'Doesn't get any more damning than this'

Dec 14, 2019 | www.youtube.com

Sean Nolan , 4 days ago

The dems slandered Barr and Durham but not Horowitz, now we know why .

Tim Burton , 4 days ago

Graham running cover for the Deep-State and directing us to low-level offenders NOT obama/hillary/DNC and their FAILED CoupD'etat's

SwapPart, LLC , 4 days ago

Horowitz is just afraid of being added to the Clinton's body count.

William Bailey , 4 days ago

Well folks there you have it. The deep state investigated themselves and found no evidence of wrongdoing.

Rice Family , 4 days ago (edited)

It's insane to say there were "17 material omissions, miss-representations (lies) and errors" - but no evidence of bias. This is like accidentally shooting someone 17 times.

[Dec 14, 2019] Full Interview: Barr Criticizes Inspector General Report On The Russia Investigation

Highly recommended!
Clapper and Brennan will be shaking in their boots after watching Barr's interview: done in "bad faith" = SEDITION !!!! Deep State operatives...ie, Brennan, Clapper, Comey, Stork, Lisa, McCabe, should be held accountable. Obama should probably be impeached.
The hard fact is, that the top of the FBI knew, in advance, that the "dossier" was just bs invented by Russian liars, for money, to be used as political lies for kilary's campaign. It Wasn't evidence and Comey knew far in advance of crossfire hurricane. I can't see less than 20 years in comey's future. That same includes barak, brennan and clapper, who were all informed, willing accomplices in this crime.
10:30 Whoever in FBI that intentionally misled the court using the Steele dossier knowing that the dossier was "total rubbish" as Barr states, needs to be inditing immediately. Why we are continuing to investigate instead of inditimg while continuing to investigate. Until these people are held accountable I don't think our country will begin to heal and media and others apologize to the country for the damage they have done.
7:49 - "Comey refused to sign back up for his security clearance, and therefore couldn't be questioned about classified matters." Well now, isn't that interesting. Haven't heard that one before.
Dec 14, 2019 | www.youtube.com

In an exclusive interview, Attorney General William Barr spoke to NBC News' Pete Williams about the findings on the Justice Department Inspector General's report on the Russia investigation and his criticisms of the FBI.


grabir01 , 3 days ago

It appears that none of AG Barr's answers were what Pete Williams wanted to hear.

Gary Ellis , 2 days ago

I sincerely hope that the Durham investigation brings people to justice for what they have done to our country.

greg j , 2 days ago

The man just admitted "this may be the biggest conspiracy in U.S Political History." Ouch!

Jeremy Elice , 3 days ago

Shame we didn't get to see Pete William's face during Barr's answer accusing "an irresponsible press of fanning the flames."

JOHN DRUMHELLER , 2 days ago

Here's the adult in the room. Look out children.

Hart , 1 day ago

This is like if Watergate was on steroids and then some. Everyone involved should be prosecuted including the person who bought the dossier

Russell McAfee , 1 day ago (edited)

The FBI never got the actual DNC server. Crowdstrike has it. The FBI got a 'forensic copy'

Richard McLeod , 1 day ago

The FBI has now been proven to be corrupt at its' highest levels.

King Eris , 1 day ago

I could listen to AG Barr talk for hours. He's so calm and professional.

Noble Victory , 1 day ago

Barr is so intelligent and just. He's smoothe like the way he plays the Bagpipes. Pretty amazing! 🇺🇸👍

Nolan Gleason , 3 days ago

Death to the swamp

ctafrance , 1 day ago

The press is hopelessly corrupt. If we didn't know it already, this interview proves it.

Roman King , 1 day ago (edited)

I'm So glade we have a competent attorney General pushing back on the massive disinformation narrative that comes from Giant News outlets of which are used to being unchallenged, unchecked by today's "journalistic standards"

Clarion Call , 2 days ago

I so respect and admire this man's brain and logical thinking. His vocabulary is great as well.

wkcw1 , 2 days ago

NBC realizing they need to take a bath on this whole thing. Probably a bit too late now.

barbandrob1 , 1 day ago

Barr just basically clarified and justified Fox news reporting over the last 2 years.. Thanks NBC

Faris Hamarneh , 3 days ago

I love Barr's nonchalant style. But this is real big and heads are going to roll

Craig Bigelow , 2 days ago

Obama spied on Trump. Obama should have known about the FISA warrant!

Luis Santiago , 1 day ago

so this guy really asked Bahr"why not open an investigation even with little evidence?" because is a violation of civil liberties to invade the privacy of law abiding citizens. You need compelling evidence for something so huge

macfan128 , 1 day ago

17:44 "Why should the Attorney General care that the FBI was spying on a presidential candidate?" LOLOLOLOL Our media is a jooooooooke.

David , 3 days ago

NBC did a straight up interview??? This is shocking. Who told them that they could start doing journalism again?

Bill the Cat , 2 days ago

Clapper and Brennan will be shaking in their boots after watching Barr's interview.

Alan Sullivan , 1 day ago

Horowitz should be instructed to edit or update his Report to discuss The Question of Bias and Evidence of Bias. He has clearly misguided Americans with his choice of words and has omitted important facts underpinning bias.

MegaTrucker65 , 1 day ago

I haven't looked into Ukraine YET.

Gamer John3:18 , 1 day ago

AG Barr is an outstanding role model, a man of integrity and wisdom, calm in a raging political storm. I have full confidence he will make those who fabricated evidence and hid exculpatory evidence finally face justice. AG Barr for President 2024!

Yo Mama , 2 days ago

Barr is a straight shooter and I love it. It sounds like we will get to the real truth eventually through Durhams investigation I just hope it doesnt take another year to get to the prosecutions.


Direbear Coat , 1 day ago

So, I watched the interview... The video is called, "Full Interview: Barr Criticizes Inspector General Report On The Russia Investigation." Not once did I hear him criticize the I.G.'s report. In fact, A.G. Barr clarified that the I.G.'s report was limited in scope because of the limitations put on the I.G. He said that the report was appropriate.

Wolverines Fight , 1 day ago

It's scary to see how powerful the corruption of the Democratic Party has grown. It represents a serious threat to all our personal freedom. The Democratic Party has to be stopped.

Benny .Burmeister Jørgensen , 3 days ago

Ok after watching this interview its quite clear that Barr and Durham is going after these criminals and people are going to jail. Maybe there is hope for US yet becuase this dane consider US atm a banana republic. Spying on political candidates? Forging documents? You FBI behaving like Stalins secret police. Lets see what happen.

Mike Dorsey , 1 day ago

God Bless Bill Barr. I'm glad there's still some adults in government that will speak their mind intelligently, rationally and unabashedly.

protochris , 1 day ago

This guy is brilliant; he's clearly exposing the FBI and the barking dogs on the alphabet networks.

Dan Kuo , 1 day ago

Amazing for the AG to go in deep into enemy territory at the heart of the opposition media to lay out a case for the criminal activities that undermined our country prior to and after the 2016 election. The deep state is trembling at the prospect of being held accountable after all the facts are laid out to the american people that these activities cannot be brushed aside or swept under the carpet if we are to continue as a country.

Jbyrd Texas , 2 days ago

The corrupt media is trying to act like they have not been involved in this treasonous scam since the beginning working directly with the treasonous cabal. The media has been lying and pushing fake news for 3 years calling Trump a Russia agent and called him treasonous. I knew the whole time that they were lying there was evidence from day one that this was all lies and if I can see that from the public then they can definitely see that from the inside they are purposefully lying.

Stephan Coutts , 1 day ago

I dare anyone on here to research Barr's History back to his involvement in the assignation of JFK, the cover up, defending Nixon, Epstein, and many other illegal and immoral activities. After reviewing the evidence, I walked away believing that Barr is trying to cover up his tracks so he does do jail time. No need to reply. Either take my dare or not. God Bless America and ALL her people, Stephan

Worlds Best Metal Detectorist , 2 days ago

The public are sick of waiting . I find myself skipping through a half hour news show in 5 minutes flat looking for arrests ,whereas before I was rivited to every minute of the half hour show but it goes on and on and at the there is Nothiing .The Democrats are the masters , it's obvious . If they break the law they get off scott free . If you are republican wave bye bye , you will be in jail for years . America is not the free and fair country it is all cracked up to be . It is corrupted by the democrats who have peoiple in high places that thwart real justice.

Right Thinking , 3 days ago

Mifsud approached George! Who was Mifsud working for (western asset) and why did he approach George? He’s the one who offered George dirt on Hill. Then invited him to meet the fake “niece”, of Putin, in England! What about this information? Someone set George up to make this happen outside the US, because of EO 12333. It had to happen outside the US so they could go to the fisa court!

dethtrk Jones , 3 days ago

I dont trust Christopher Wrey. He keeps slow-walking all the FBI documents and declassifications. He also fights judicial watch and judges that rule in their favor and continue not giving over what is ordered! This last judge was ready to hold him in contempt for refusing to cooperate with court ordered documents.

Brad Brown , 2 days ago

Why did the FBI continue to investigate Trump after January when the case collapsed? To try and find a way to impeach Trump. Remember the Washington Post headlined article right after the inauguration "The effort to impeach President Donald John Trump is already underway." The FBI "insurance" policy was essential!

[Dec 14, 2019] FISA Court Falls Under Congressional Scrutiny Following IG Report

Notable quotes:
"... And in the case of Carter Page, the FISA judges initially denied a warrant to surveil the former Trump aide until the agency padded the application with the wildly unverified Steele Report , lying about Steele's credibility, and then fabricating evidence to specifically say Page was not an "operational contact" for the CIA , when in fact he was - and had a "positive assessment." ..."
"... Let's not forget that FISA court judge Rudolph Contreras recused himself from overseeing the case of former national security adviser Michael Flynn due to his personal friendship with former FBI counterintelligence agent Peter Strzok. ..."
"... And the only reason Contreras did so was because his friendship with Strzok was revealed in their anti-Trump text messages found by the Inspector General. ..."
Dec 13, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

The shadowy Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA court) and the processes behind obtaining a warrant from it has fallen under harsh scrutiny by lawmakers following the release of the DOJ Inspector General's report which found that the FBI was able to easily mislead the judges to surveil Trump adviser Carter Page.

FISA Judge Rudolph Contreras, who recused himself from the Mike Flynn case after his friendship with former FBI agent Peter Strzok was revealed in text messages.

"The goal is to make sure this doesn't happen again, so you tighten up the system right," said Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-SC), adding: "Quite frankly, I'm looking at the FISA court itself. ... I'm looking for the court to tell the public, 'Hey, we're upset about this too,' and, you know, take some corrective steps."

Graham said his committee will look into legislation to introduce more "checks and balances" to the FISA process, according to The Hill .

When asked if he thought there would be bipartisan support for FISA reform, Sen. Dick Durban (D-IL) said "I hope so," adding "This was a real wake-up call that three different teams can screw this up at the FBI."

The renewed interest comes after five hours of partisan barb trading during a Judiciary hearing Wednesday with Horowitz that resulted in one clear bipartisan interest: overhauling the FISA court.

"One of the only points I've heard with bipartisan agreement today is a renewed interest in reforming the FISA process," said Sen. Christopher Coons (D-Del.). - The Hill

Created under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978, the FISA court is made up of 11 judges who are chosen by the chief justice of the Supreme Court to serve seven-year terms. They are responsible for approving warrant applications for intelligence gathering purposes and national security operations, which - as The Hill notes, "more often than not, they sign off."

And in the case of Carter Page, the FISA judges initially denied a warrant to surveil the former Trump aide until the agency padded the application with the wildly unverified Steele Report , lying about Steele's credibility, and then fabricating evidence to specifically say Page was not an "operational contact" for the CIA , when in fact he was - and had a "positive assessment."

Last year the government filed 1,117 FISA warrant applications, including 1,081 for electronic monitoring. The court signed off on 1,079 according to a DOJ report.

That said, reform may come slowly.

But the timeline for any legislative reforms is unclear. Congress already faces a mid-March deadline to extend expiring surveillance authorities under the USA Freedom Act.

Durbin suggested the discussions could merge, while Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), a longtime privacy advocate, appeared skeptical that Republicans would ultimately get on board with broader changes to surveillance powers.

"Why after YEARS of blocking bipartisan FISA reforms are senior Republicans suddenly interested in it? There is no question that we need to improve transparency, accountability and oversight of the FISA process," Wyden tweeted. - The Hill

Still, the IG report appears to have 'enlightened' some GOP lawmakers who previously resisted the notion of reining in FISA courts . Several GOP senators gave credit to their libertarian-minded colleagues on the hill, who have pushed for surveillance reform after accurately predicting the potential for abuse.

Those who have long-advocated for reform include GOP Sens. Thom Tillis (N.C.) and Ben Sasse (Neb.), according to Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT).

"I wish Mike Lee weren't sitting here two people from me right now, because as a national security hawk I've argued with Mike Lee in the 4 1/2 or five years that I've been in the Senate that stuff just like this couldn't possibly happen at the FBI and at the Department of Justice," said Sasse during the Horowitz testimony, who added that the IG's findings marked a "massive crisis of public trust" since we should know about FISA applications that aren ' t as high-profile as Page's.

Horowitz reported a total of 17 "significant inaccuracies and omissions" in the applications to monitor Page , taking particular issue with applications to renew the FISA warrant and chastising the FBI for a lack of satisfactory explanations for those mistakes.

Horowitz stressed that he would not have submitted the follow-up applications as they were drafted by the FBI . Kevin Clinesmith, an FBI lawyer, altered an email related to the warrant renewal application, according to Horowitz's report.

" [The] applications made it appear as though the evidence supporting probable cause was stronger than was actually the case ," Horowitz said. " We also found basic, fundamental and serious errors during the completion of the FBl's factual accuracy reviews. "

Horowitz also found that there were errors that "represent serious performance failures by the supervisory and non-supervisory agents with responsibility over the FISA applications." - The Hill

Let's not forget that FISA court judge Rudolph Contreras recused himself from overseeing the case of former national security adviser Michael Flynn due to his personal friendship with former FBI counterintelligence agent Peter Strzok.

And the only reason Contreras did so was because his friendship with Strzok was revealed in their anti-Trump text messages found by the Inspector General.

[Dec 13, 2019] The Inspector General's Report on 2016 FBI Spying Reveals a Scandal of Historic Magnitude: Not Only for the FBI but Also the U.S. Media by Glenn Greenwald

Notable quotes:
"... a single American ..."
Dec 12, 2019 | theintercept.com
Just as was true when the Mueller investigation closed without a single American being charged with criminally conspiring with Russia over the 2016 election, Wednesday's issuance of the long-waited report from the Department of Justice's Inspector General reveals that years of major claims and narratives from the U.S. media were utter frauds .

Before evaluating the media component of this scandal, the FBI's gross abuse of its power – its serial deceit – is so grave and manifest that it requires little effort to demonstrate it. In sum, the IG Report documents multiple instances in which the FBI – in order to convince a FISA court to allow it spy on former Trump campaign operative Carter Page during the 2016 election – manipulated documents, concealed crucial exonerating evidence, and touted what it knew were unreliable if not outright false claims.

If you don't consider FBI lying, concealment of evidence, and manipulation of documents in order to spy on a U.S. citizen in the middle of a presidential campaign to be a major scandal, what is? But none of this is aberrational: the FBI still has its headquarters in a building named after J. Edgar Hoover – who constantly blackmailed elected officials with dossiers and tried to blackmail Martin Luther King into killing himself – because that's what these security state agencies are. They are out-of-control, virtually unlimited police state factions that lie, abuse their spying and law enforcement powers, and subvert democracy and civic and political freedoms as a matter of course.

In this case, no rational person should allow standard partisan bickering to distort or hide this severe FBI corruption. The IG Report leaves no doubt about it. It's brimming with proof of FBI subterfuge and deceit, all in service of persuading a FISA court of something that was not true: that U.S. citizen and former Trump campaign official Carter Page was an agent of the Russian government and therefore needed to have his communications surveilled.

[Dec 12, 2019] Now that we know Carter Page was working for the CIA as an informant in 2016, is it reasonable to speculate that Page was planted in the Trump campaign by the CIA?

Dec 12, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Jon Carter , Dec 11 2019 18:59 utc | 17

Now that we know Carter Page was working for the CIA as an informant in 2016, is it reasonable to speculate that Page was planted in the Trump campaign by the CIA?

[Dec 12, 2019] The FBI - Pushed By John Brennan - Lied To The Court Seven Times To Spy On The Trump Campaign

Highly recommended!
And behind Brennan we can can see the Nobel Peace Price winner.
Notable quotes:
"... A major role in directing the plot has fallen to Obama's consigliere John Brennan, the current director of the CIA. ..."
"... One part of the still ongoing deligitimization campaign was the FBI investigation of alleged Russian connections of four members of the Trump election campaign. ..."
"... The FBI agents and lawyers intentionally lied to the court. Their violations were not mistakes. All 51 of them were in favor of further spying on members of the Trump campaign and on everyone they communicated with. ..."
"... The FBI has used the Steele dossier to gain further FISA application even after it had talked with Steele's 'primary source' (who probably was the later 'buzzed' Sergei Skripal ) and after it had learned that the allegations in the dossier were no more than unconfirmed rumors. ..."
"... That the dossier was mere dreck was quite obvious to any sober person who read it when it was first published ..."
"... That summer, GCHQ's then head, Robert Hannigan, flew to the US to personally brief CIA chief John Brennan. The matter was deemed so important that it was handled at "director level", face-to-face between the two agency chiefs. ..."
"... (This is a Moon of Alabama fundraiser week. Please consider to support our work .) ..."
"... Occam's razor: CIA-MI6, with approval of US Deep State (Clintons, Bush, McCain, Brennan, Mueller, etc.), meddled to elect Trump and pointed fingers at Russia to initiate a new McCarthyism. ..."
"... "Sergey Lavrov: In my opinion, Congress sounds rather obsessed with destroying our relations. It continues pursuing the policy started by the Obama administration. As I mentioned, we are used to this kind of attack. We know how to respond to them. I assure you that neither Nord Stream-2 nor Turkish Stream will be halted." ..."
"... ... the current anti-Russian idiocy was started by Obama's team and was designed for Clinton to escalate ... ..."
"... It's Kissinger's WSJ Op-Ed of August 2014 that provides the answer. In this Op-Ed, Kissinger calls for a restored US Empire that is essentially Trump's MAGA. Kissinger is writing immediately after the Donbas rebels have won. The Russians refused to heed Kissinger's advice (to back down) and it has become apparent that Russia's joining the West is no longer an inevitability as the US elite had assumed. ..."
"... Good chance Steele had little to do with writing the Dossier. "Simpson-Ohr Dossier", anyone? Steele was needed as a credible looking intelligence officer with Russia ties and a past working relationship with US Intel, as cover to sell to FBI, FISA Court, and the public (meeting with Isikoff, Yahoo News story). ..."
"... Glenn Simpson and wife Mary Jacoby had written articles for the WSJ in 2007 and 2008 with a script and language similar to the Dossier. Devin Nunes seems to believe this scenario, and it is discussed in detail in books by Dan Bongino and Lee Smith, among others. ..."
"... physchoh @ 60; The difference, at least in my mind, is that, the "Russia did it" meme, is the weakest of all cases against DJT. Corbyn, on the other hand, may actually be hurt by the bogus charges. IMO, what this shows is coordination between the elites to bring down a progressive in the UK, who fancies public control over major finances instead of private concerns. ..."
"... So Horowitz was technically correct when he did not find bias. What he might have been reluctant to spell out is that he did find malice. ..."
Dec 11, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

On January 6 2017 this author concluded :

When Hillary Clinton was defeated in the U.S. presidential election the relevant powers launched a campaign to delegitimize the President elect Donald Trump.

The ultimate aim of the cabal is to kick him out of office and have a reliable replacement, like the Vice-President elect Pence, take over. Should that not be possible it is hoped that the delegitimization will make it impossible for Trump to change major policy trajectories especially in foreign policy. A main issue here is the reorientation of the U.S. military complex and its NATO proxies from the war of terror towards a direct confrontation with main powers like Russia and China.

...

A major role in directing the plot has fallen to Obama's consigliere John Brennan, the current director of the CIA.

One part of the still ongoing deligitimization campaign was the FBI investigation of alleged Russian connections of four members of the Trump election campaign.

The Inspector General of the U.S. Justice Department Michael Horowitz has investigated the FBI operation against the election campaign of Donald Trump. Yesterday he published his report, Review of Four FISA Applications and Other Aspects of the FBI's Crossfire Hurricane Investigation (pdf). It is 480 pages long and quite thorough but unfortunately very limited in its scope.

Horowitz finds that the FBI was within the law when it opened the investigation but that the FBI's applications to the FISA court, which decides if the FBI can spy on someone's communications, were based on lies and utterly flawed.

Your host unfortunately lacked the time so far to read more than the executive summary. But others have pointed out some essential findings.

Matt Taibbi remarks :

The Guardian headline reads: " DOJ Internal watchdog report clears FBI of illegal surveillance of Trump adviser ."

If the report released Monday by Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz constitutes a "clearing" of the FBI, never clear me of anything. ...

Much of the press is concentrating on Horowitz's conclusion that there was no evidence of "political bias or improper motivation" in the FBI's probe of Donald Trump's Russia contacts, an investigation Horowitz says the bureau had "authorized purpose" to conduct.

...

However, Horowitz describes at great length an FBI whose "serious" procedural problems and omissions of "significant information" in pursuit of surveillance authority all fell in the direction of expanding the unprecedented investigation of a presidential candidate (later, a president).

...

There are too many to list in one column, but the Horowitz report show years of breathless headlines were wrong. Some key points:

The so-called "Steele dossier" was, actually, crucial to the FBI's decision to seek secret surveillance of Page. ...

...

The "Steele dossier" was "Internet rumor," and corroboration for the pee tape story was "zero." ...

John Solomon finds :

Appendix 1 identifies the total violations by the FBI of the so-called Woods Procedures, the process by which the bureau verifies information and assures the FISA court its evidence is true.

The Appendix identifies a total of 51 Woods procedure violations from the FISA application the FBI submitted to the court authorizing surveillance of former Trump campaign aide Carter Page starting in October 2016.

A whopping nine of those violations fell into the category called: "Supporting document shows that the factual assertion is inaccurate."

For those who don't speak IG parlance, it means the FBI made nine false assertions to the FISA court. In short, what the bureau said was contradicted by the evidence in its official file.

The FBI agents and lawyers intentionally lied to the court. Their violations were not mistakes. All 51 of them were in favor of further spying on members of the Trump campaign and on everyone they communicated with.

The FBI has used the Steele dossier to gain further FISA application even after it had talked with Steele's 'primary source' (who probably was the later 'buzzed' Sergei Skripal ) and after it had learned that the allegations in the dossier were no more than unconfirmed rumors.

That the dossier was mere dreck was quite obvious to any sober person who read it when it was first published . Here is what we wrote about it at that time:

The anonymous former British operator hears from an anonymous compatriot that two anonymous sources, asserted to have access to inner Russian circles, claimed to have heard somewhere that something happened in the Kremlin.

They assert that Trump was supported and directed by Putin himself five years ago while even a year ago no one would have bet a penny on Trump gaining any political significant position or even the presidency.

There is a lot more of such nonsense in these new Hitler diaries. It is bonkers from a to z.

Those who thought otherwise should question their judgment.

It is now claimed that the FBI is exculpated because the Horowitz report did not find "political bias or improper motivation". But that omits the fact that at least four high ranking people in the FBI and Justice Department who were involved in the case were found to be politically biased and were removed from their positions.

It also omits that the scope of Horowitz's investigation was limited to the Justice Department. He was not able to investigate the CIA and its former director John Brennan who was alleging Russia-Trump connections months before the FBI investigation started:

Contrary to a general impression that the FBI launched the Trump-Russia conspiracy probe, Brennan pushed it to the bureau – breaking with CIA tradition by intruding into domestic politics: the 2016 presidential election. He also supplied suggestive but ultimately false information to counterintelligence investigators and other U.S. officials.

The current CIA director Gina Haspel was CIA station chief in London during that time and while several of the entrapment attempts of Trump campaign staff by the FBI investigation happened. Horowitz spoke with neither of them.

Peter Van Buren concludes :

The current Horowitz Report, read alongside his previous report on how the FBI played inside the 2016 election vis-a-vis Clinton, should leave no doubt that the Bureau tried to influence the election of a president and then delegitimize him when he won. It wasn't the Russians; it was us.

That is correct, but the whole conspiracy was even deeper. It was not the FBI which initiated the case.

My hunch is still that the FBI investigation was a case of parallel construction which is often used to build a legitimate case after a suspicion was found by illegitimate means. In this case it was John Brennan who in early 2016 contacted the head of the British GCHQ electronic interception service and asked him to spy on the Trump campaign. GHCQ then claimed that something was found that was deemed suspicious :

That summer, GCHQ's then head, Robert Hannigan, flew to the US to personally brief CIA chief John Brennan. The matter was deemed so important that it was handled at "director level", face-to-face between the two agency chiefs.

The FBI was tipped off on the issue and on July 31 2016 started an investigation to construct a parallel legal case. It send out British and U.S. agents to entrap Trump campaign members. It used the obviously fake Steele dossier to gain FISA court judgments that allowed it to spy on the campaign. Downing Street was informed throughout the whole affair. A day after Trump's inauguration the UK's then Prime Minister Theresa May fired GHCQ chief Robert Hannigan.

One still open question is to what extend then President Barack Obama was involved in the affair.

There is another ongoing investigation by U.S. Prosecutor John Durham. That investigation is not limited to the Justice Department but will involve all agencies and domestic as well as foreign sources. Durham has the legal rights to declassify whatever is needed and he can indict persons should he find that they committed a crime. His report will hopefully go much deeper than the already horrendous stuff Horowitz delivered.

(This is a Moon of Alabama fundraiser week. Please consider to support our work .)

Posted by b on December 11, 2019 at 16:16 UTC | Permalink


Antoinetta III , Dec 11 2019 16:27 utc | 1

Do we have any idea when the Durham report will be coming out?

Antoinetta III

casey , Dec 11 2019 16:30 utc | 2
Anyone taking bets on Durham/Barr making indictments in this mess? My guess is a whole lot of horse trading is going on behind the scenes now, as in, "I'll trade you a censure for all potential indictments going down the memory hole."
Kabobyak , Dec 11 2019 16:54 utc | 3
Typical dog and pony show which will change nothing relating to interventionist foreign policy and the new cold war with Russia. Too many saw benefits from the corruption in Ukraine to dig deep there; the Bidens were just the most blatant, Lindsey Graham and others from both parties were involved so don't expect much from the Senate hearings. The bipartisan major goals are a fait accompli; universal acceptance that Russia worked to undermine our elections (and to destroy our "Democracy") and are thus an enemy we must fight, and it's universally accepted by all that we MUST provide Ukraine with Javelin missiles and other lethal aid to fight "Russian Aggression" (with little mention that even Obama balked at that reckless option). All of these proceedings are great distractions, but the weapons of war will not be diminished.
c1ue , Dec 11 2019 17:08 utc | 4
@Kabobyak #3

Very possibly, but the Afghanistan papers have made an impact on some people: American Conservative editor is outraged, including militating against his children serving in the military and taxpayers funding it

jayc , Dec 11 2019 17:10 utc | 5
Another candidate for Steele's "primary source" is Stefan Halper. Svetlana Lhokova suggested that this past Sunday.
Jackrabbit , Dec 11 2019 17:12 utc | 6
Unfortuneately, few will question the findings of these investigations or consider the possibility that the investigations themselves are misdirection/cover-up.

Repeating my comment from yesterday on the Open Thread :

IMO the Lavrov-Pompeo presser is notable mostly for Lavrov's discussion of Russiagate (about 6 minutes in).

Lavrov tells us that the Russian's repeatedly sought to clarify their noninterference by publishing correspondence - which the Trump Administration didn't respond to. And he actual mentions McCarthyism!

Wait, wot?

Yeah, during the worst of the Russiagate accusations, Trump wouldn't do things that would've helped to prove that Russiagate was a farce!!

So, during the election, Trump called on Putin to publish Hillary's emails (the very act of making such a request is likely illegal because at the time it was known that her emails contained highly classified info) but he wouldn't accept Russia's publication of exculpatory info about Russiagate?!?!

This would cause cognitive dissonance galore in an Americans that hear it - so one can be sure that it will not be reported.

Occam's razor: CIA-MI6, with approval of US Deep State (Clintons, Bush, McCain, Brennan, Mueller, etc.), meddled to elect Trump and pointed fingers at Russia to initiate a new McCarthyism.

Meanwhile in bizarroland (aka USA), Barr says Russiagate is a fantasy based on FBI "bad faith" - yet Pompeo still presses on with the "Russia meddled" bullshit.

!!

james , Dec 11 2019 17:24 utc | 7
thanks b... i like your example in the comment - ''those who thought otherwise should question their judgment''.. good example!

i am a bit concerned like @ 2 casey, that most of this is going to go down the memory hole and there will be that made in america stamp on it - ''no accountability''... i wish i was wrong, but getting worked up at the idea anyone is going to be held accountable for any actions of the usa, or the insiders playing the usa, is clearly a fools game at this point.. all i mostly see is the needed collapse and waiting for that to happen..

Kabobyak , Dec 11 2019 17:27 utc | 8
@c1ue #4

Thanks for that, there are definitely cracks in the armor and we should promote that narrative as you do in your link. Tulsi Gabbard has also expanded the awareness, hopefully she will make the upcoming debates despite strong efforts to silence her. I'll try more to focus on the positive!

james , Dec 11 2019 17:27 utc | 9
@ 6 jr.. there is a press release on all what was said here for anyone interested..

lavrov quote and etc. etc.. "We suggested to our colleagues that in order to dispel all suspicions that are baseless, let us publish this closed-channel correspondence starting from October 2016 till November 2017 so it would all become very clear to many people. However, regrettably, this administration refused to do so. But I'd like to repeat once again we are prepared to do that, and to publish the correspondence that took place through that channel would clear many matters up, I believe. Nevertheless, we hope that the turbulence that appeared out of thin air will die down, just like in 1950s McCarthyism came to naught, and there'll be an opportunity to go back to a more constructive cooperation."

evilempire , Dec 11 2019 17:44 utc | 10
I continue to believe that the FBI and Horowitz perjured themselves in the FISA report. To correct a mistake in a previous post I made, I believe they lied when the claimed the Steele Dossier was not a predicate for opening crossfire hurricane. How can the Steele dossier not be instrumental in the opening of the investigation when bruce ohr's wife nellie ohr was working at fusion gps when bruce ohr met with steele to discuss the dirty dossier.

In other words, the FBI was concocting Operation Crossfire Hurricane prior to the time they had any knowledge of the phony Papadopoulus predicate that the russians were proferring the clinton emails to the trump campaign.

The FISA report claim that Operation Crossfire Hurricane was predicated solely on the Papadopolous allegations is therefore a lie. There was, in fact, no real predicate for Operation Crossfire Hurricane. The predications cited were all fictions and inventions fabricated in a conspiracy between MI6(the FFC or

friendly foreign country cited in the Horowitz report), the DOJ and the FBI. Operation Crossfire Hurricane was a massive Psyop from its inception.

Jackrabbit , Dec 11 2019 18:19 utc | 12
james @9

What major publications have picked up this info from the State Dept PR? Which of them are questioning why Trump didn't agree to let the Russians publish the exonerating information? And how many of those are linking this strange fact to other strange facts and thus raising troubling questions about the 2016 election?

<> <> <> <> <> <>

It's not just that Trump refused to publish exculpatory material. Anyone that's been reading my comments (and/or my blog) knows that Trump also:

- hired Manafort - whose work for pro-Russian candidates in Ukraine had drawn the ire of CIA - despite Manafort's having no recent experience with US elections;

- helped Pelosi to be elected Speaker of the House by inviting her to attend a White House meeting about his border wall (along with Chuck Schumer) prior to the House vote to elect a Speaker.

- initiated Ukrainegate by talking with Ukraine's President about investigating an announced candidate - he didn't have to do this(!) he could've let subordinates work behind the scenes .

And then there's a set of suspicious activity that is difficult to explain, such as: ...

- Kissinger's having called for MAGA in August 2014 (Trump announced his campaign 10 months later and he was the ONLY MAGA candidate and the ONLY populist in the Republican primary) ;

- London as a nexus for the US 2016 campaign (Cambridge Analytica; GPS Fusion; Halper, etc.) ;

- Hillary's making mistakes in the 2016 campaign that no seasoned politician would make;

- the settling of scores via entrapments of Flynn, Manafort, and Wikileaks/Assange (painted as a hostile intelligence agency and Russian agent).

All of these and more support the conclusion that CIA-MI6 elected MAGA Trump and initiated Russiagate.

!!

Piotr Berman , Dec 11 2019 18:28 utc | 13
The anonymous former British operator hears from an anonymous asserted compatriot what two anonymous sources, asserted to have access to inner Russian circles, claim to have heard somewhere that something happened in the Kremlin. <-- Perhaps it is too much to add that the entire conversation happen in a pub, like an eyewitness account of a trout caught by an angler that was larger than a tiger shark [the trout was so large, not the angler].

Really?? , Dec 11 2019 18:31 utc | 14
James #11

I am a great fan of Dmitri Orlov and have just read a large portion of his linked post.

What I do not see Orlov doing is taking into account--in his takedown of "scientific" models---evidence of global warming/change such as *actual* observations of *actual, current* phenomena that are being measured today, such as the condition of the world's coral reefs; the rate of melting of permafrost and release of methane gas; the melting of Greenland (and other) glaciers and release of fresh water into the oceans; acidification of oceans; and quite a lot of evidence for sea level rise, such as saltwater intrusion into freshwater swamps, aquifers, etc.

karlof1 , Dec 11 2019 18:38 utc | 15
More can be gleaned by the manner in which BigLie Media spin the investigation's results. At The Hill , Jonathon Turley makes that clear in the first paragraph:

"The analysis of the report by Justice Department inspector general Michael Horowitz greatly depends, as is often the case, on which cable news channel you watch. Indeed, many people might be excused for concluding that Horowitz spent 476 pages to primarily conclude one thing, which is that the Justice Department acted within its guidelines in starting its investigation into the 2016 campaign of President Trump."

The further he goes the worse it gets for the Ds. And he's 100% correct about the biases present in reporting about the Report. Remarks made by Lavrov at the presser were likely done prior to anyone from Russia's delegation having digested any of the Report. What I found important was the following revelation by Lavrov:

"Let me remind you that at the time of the first statements on this topic, which was on the eve of the 2016 US presidential election, we used the communications channel that linked back then Moscow and the Obama administration in Washington to ask our US partners on numerous occasions whether these allegations that emerged in October 2016 and persisted until Donald Trump's inauguration could be addressed. The reply never came. There was no response whatsoever to all our proposals when we said: look, if you suspect us, let's sit down and talk, just put your facts on the table. All this continued after President Trump's inauguration and the appointment of a new administration. We proposed releasing the correspondence through this closed communications channel for the period from October 2016 until January 2017 in order to dispel all this groundless suspicion. This would have clarified the situation for many. Unfortunately, this time it was the current administration that refused to do so. Let me reiterate that we are ready to disclose to the public the exchanges we had through this channel . I think that this would set many things straight. Nevertheless we expect the turbulence that appeared out of thin air to calm down little by little, just as McCarthyism waned in the 1950s, so that we can place our cooperation on a more constructive footing." [My Emphasis]

Lavrov on Mueller Report: "It contains no confirmation of any collusion." End of story. But we do have all this compiled evidence within our communications we're ready to publish is the USA

agrees.

The Fairness and Accuracy In Reporting (FAIR) organization has yet to publish anything about the report. However, Matt Taibbi often writes for that outlet, so his reporting at Rolling Stone ought to be seen as a proxy FAIR report.

Michael Droy , Dec 11 2019 18:42 utc | 16
Great stuff as ever. How useful is it that Skripal is Unavailable but not Dead? For example does it affect redaction of material linked to him?
Jon Carter , Dec 11 2019 18:59 utc | 17
Now that we know Carter Page was working for the CIA as an informant in 2016, is it reasonable to speculate that Page was planted in the Trump campaign by the CIA?
GeorgeV , Dec 11 2019 19:11 utc | 18
The Inspector General of the Department of Justice, Micheal Horowitz's report on the move to delegitimize the election of Donald Trump to the Presidency is clear proof of the massive rot that lies at the heart of the US' political system. If this matter is whitewashed over by the MSM, then one more step will have been taken to a violent and bloody revolution in the US of A.
JR , Dec 11 2019 19:41 utc | 20
By now Steele's credibility is zero. Time to revisit Steele's involvement with the debunked "Russia bought the soccer World Champion games", the Litvinenko polonium poisening and the Skripal novichok poisening. The timing of the Skripal matter deserves some scrutiny in relation to Skripal possibly being Steele's source for the infamous Trump dossier. There might be a motive hidden there.
Jackrabbit , Dec 11 2019 19:44 utc | 21
Jon Carter @17:
... is it reasonable to speculate that Page was planted in the Trump campaign by the CIA?

And then there's Simon Bracey Lane in the Sanders campaign as described here: British Spies Infiltrated Bernie Sanders' Campaign?

Plus we have the strange goings-on of Halper and Mifsud as well as Gina Haspel in London also.

!!

uncle tungsten , Dec 11 2019 20:04 utc | 22
karlof1 #15

Thank you for posting Lavrov's words. Between those words and the IG report the kabuki farce is revealed. Why was Trump ignoring the Russian offer you might ask. Because it suited him to have this nonsense dominate the news cycle, you might conclude. Trump and Comey and Brennan deserve each other.

Lavrov's words condemn the three of them.

S , Dec 11 2019 20:25 utc | 24
Twitter account @Techno_Fog lists MSM shills who assured the public the FISA warrant on Page was not based on Steele dossier (h/t Zero Hedge).
james , Dec 11 2019 20:26 utc | 25
just like 9-11... this is an inside job... does anyone really think the truth is going to come to light in any of it?? i'm still with @ 2 caseys view...
karlof1 , Dec 11 2019 20:48 utc | 27
uncle tungsten @22--

Thanks for your reply! Yes, agreed, and I'd add Obama and Clinton. Lavrov also held another presser at the conclusion of his visit that provides additional info not covered in the first. The following is one I thought important:

"Question: The day before, US Congress agreed on a draft military budget, which includes possible sanctions against Nord Stream-2 and Turkish Stream. Have you covered this topic? The Congress sounds very determined. How seriously will the new restrictions affect the completion of our projects?

"Sergey Lavrov: In my opinion, Congress sounds rather obsessed with destroying our relations. It continues pursuing the policy started by the Obama administration. As I mentioned, we are used to this kind of attack. We know how to respond to them. I assure you that neither Nord Stream-2 nor Turkish Stream will be halted."

I must emphatically agree with Lavrov's opinion and was very pleased he answered forthrightly. What seems quite clear is the current anti-Russian idiocy was started by Obama's team and was designed for Clinton to escalate, with bipartisan Congressional backing. That she lost didn't stop the anti-Russian wheel from being turned. So, logic tells us to discover the reason for Obama to alter policy. Over the years I've written here why I think that was done--to continue the #1 policy goal of attaining Full Spectrum Dominance over the planet and its people regardless of its impossibility given the Sino-Russo Alliance made reality by that policy goal. That a supermajority in Congress remain deluded is clearly a huge problem, and those continuing to vote for the War Budget need to be removed.

ben , Dec 11 2019 21:03 utc | 28
b posted, in part;"When Hillary Clinton was defeated in the U.S. presidential election the relevant powers launched a campaign to delegitimize the President elect Donald Trump."

It doesn't take HRC and her resident scum-bag sycophants to deligitimize DJT, his sorry life-style, and his past record do that quite nicely, IMO.

karlof1 , Dec 11 2019 21:07 utc | 29
This tweet sums up things nicely in ways BigLie Media won't:

With only 9% approval, it ought to be easy to toss out most Congresscritters, excepting that part of the Senate not up for reelection.

ben , Dec 11 2019 21:18 utc | 30
Jrabbit @ 12 said; "All of these and more support the conclusion that CIA-MI6 elected MAGA Trump and initiated Russiagate."

YEP!!!!!

Paul Damascene , Dec 11 2019 21:24 utc | 32

Karlof1 @ 29--

Are you aware of any means by which a member of congress or of a congressional committee can be impeached or otherwise censured for the misconduct of official duties? That would at least be Schiff...

Posted by: Paul Damascene | Dec 11 2019 21:24 utc | 32

james , Dec 11 2019 21:25 utc | 33
@ 31 john.. i didn't know i had to read the orlov article to say what i did to you!! your post @11 never make any internet link to orlov... what am i missing? does this mean i can only speak with you after i have read another orlov article? lol...
james , Dec 11 2019 21:27 utc | 34
i see it now.. my comment still stands though... people seem especially pugnacious today..
William Gruff , Dec 11 2019 21:27 utc | 35
"It doesn't take HRC and her resident scum-bag sycophants to deligitimize DJT, his sorry life-style, and his past record do that quite nicely, IMO." --ben @28

Ah, but that would be legitimate deligitimization, like attacking his actual policies. Those are rocks that would break the Democrats' own windows as well as Trump's.

karlof1 , Dec 11 2019 21:30 utc | 36
29 Cont'd--

And Congress continues to alienate allies :

"So far on Dec 11:

1. Senate Foreign Relations Comm passed Turkey sanctions bill

2. Pentagon Chief warned Turkey moving away NATO

3. U.S. lawmakers introduce legislation to curb Turkey's nuclear weapon obtainment"

Finally, the pretense of being nice to Turkey has come to an end. It will now intensify its looking East, and pursue its national interests. IMO, the Eastern Med's energy issues will now become a major headache.

ben , Dec 11 2019 21:40 utc | 37
karlof @ 29: The head Dems know their pushing the " Russia did it"meme is weak, but the PTB

insist on it, to keep the MIC funds flowing.

The "no-brainer" charges should be; "Obstruction" and "Emoluments" violations. Charges the public can grasp.

What happens if you, or any average person, ignores a summons to appear? They are arrested.

Funneling govt. funds for personal gain is a violation of law, if you are POTUS.

These are violations average Americans can grasp, not the current circus of he said, she said, going on in D.C. lately.

Guess my point is, this hearings are built to fail, because most of our so-called leaders like things the way they are. The rape of the workings classes will continue.

karlof1 , Dec 11 2019 21:41 utc | 38
Paul Damascene @32--

Yes. The impeachment process is the same as for Trump. Censuring is much easier but doubt it will occur as too many are deserving. We're seeing the reason Congressional elections are held every two years--vote 'em out if they're no good!

Jackrabbit , Dec 11 2019 22:01 utc | 40
karlof1 @27:

... the current anti-Russian idiocy was started by Obama's team and was designed for Clinton to escalate ...

I don't agree that the baton would be passed to Clinton. The Deep State uses the two-party system as a device. It's not tied to partisan concerns. If the Deep State and the establishment really wanted Clinton elected, they would've made that happen. Few expected Trump to win and few would've been outraged if he had lost. Yet he won. Against all odds. Furthermore, Clinton wasn't the MAGA candidate as called for by Kissinger - Trump was. And he was from the beginning of his candidacy.

Russiagate was based on suspicions of a populist that was compromised by Russia. Hillary has too much baggage to play populist or nationalist - including Bill's involvement with Epstein.

Also, you're forgetting the set ups of Manafort, Flynn, and Wikileaks/Assange - which were important parts of Russiagate and also a convenient way of settling scores. These set-ups required the Russiagate-tainted candidate (Trump) to win.

And Trump's beating Hillary makes him the classic come-from-behind hero - giving Trump a certain legitimacy that an establishment candidate wouldn't have. That's important when contemplating taking the country to war in the near future.

It's strange to me that people can think that Hillary was the 'chosen candidate', and be OK with that but find a possible selection of a different candidate (Trump, as it turns out) to be outrageous and inconceivable.

=

... with bipartisan Congressional backing . That she lost didn't stop the anti-Russian wheel from being turned.

Since the Deep State and the Establishment desired an effort to restore the Empire, they would turn to whomever could most effectively accomplish that task.

Once again: It didn't have to be Hillary that was selected. In fact, for many reasons (that I've previously expressed) Hillary would have been a poor choice.

=

So, logic tells us to discover the reason for Obama to alter policy. Over the years I've written here why I think that was done--to continue the #1 policy goal of attaining Full Spectrum Dominance over the planet and its people ...

FSD is US Mil policy, not a political goal. It states that US Mil will strive to have superiority in weapons and capability in every sphere of combat.

Politically, FSD is just one of several means to an end. IMO that end is the maintenance and expansion of the Anglo-Zionist Empire (aka New World Order).

Also, your dominance theory doesn't answer the question of WHY NOW? (more on that below)

... regardless of its impossibility given the Sino-Russo Alliance ...

Firstly, US Deep State believes that it is possible. And I personally don't buy the notion that Russia and China are fated to prevail. If that were obvious, then the moa bar would have no patrons.

Secondly (and again), WHY NOW? The Sino-Russo Alliance was long in the making. Why did USA suddenly take note?

It's Kissinger's WSJ Op-Ed of August 2014 that provides the answer. In this Op-Ed, Kissinger calls for a restored US Empire that is essentially Trump's MAGA. Kissinger is writing immediately after the Donbas rebels have won. The Russians refused to heed Kissinger's advice (to back down) and it has become apparent that Russia's joining the West is no longer an inevitability as the US elite had assumed.

<> <> <> <> <> <>

I've written many times of Kissinger's Op-Ed and of indications that the Deep State selected MAGA Trump to be President while also initiating a new McCarthyism. Why is it STILL so difficult to believe a theory that makes so much sense?

!!

karlof1 , Dec 11 2019 22:08 utc | 41
ben @37--

Yes, the status quo is very generous to the Current Oligarchy and its tools, but not so for the vast public majority which is clamoring for change. IMO, much can be learned from the UK election tomorrow, of which there's been very little discussion here despite its importance. I suggest following the very important developments from the past few days at Criag Murray's Twitter and at his website , the linked article being a scoop of sorts.

Also harder to follow but important as well are ballot initiatives within the states. This site has current listing . I just looked over those for California where there are a few good ones, but the threshold for signatures is getting higher, close to one million are now needed in CA.

Cortes , Dec 11 2019 22:34 utc | 43
Lavrov's comments about the offers to open up normally closed communications really only highlight two obvious issues:
AshenLight , Dec 11 2019 22:38 utc | 44
@ Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 11 2019 21:07 utc | 29
With only 9% approval, it ought to be easy to toss out most Congresscritters, excepting that part of the Senate not up for reelection.

You'd think so, but somehow the numbers pretty much reverse when these same people consider their own rep, and the incumbency reelection rate is shockingly high (haven't looked recently but IIRC it has hovered around 90% for decades). Apparently it is amazingly easy to convince the masses that their guy is the one good apple in the bunch.

karlof1 , Dec 11 2019 22:39 utc | 45
Jon Schwartz reminds me why I don't stop and peruse magazine stands anymore. Seeing the words and this picture would've sparked lots of unpleasant language:

"The best part of Michelle Obama explaining she shares the same values as George W. Bush is she was being interviewed on network TV by Bush's daughter. There's nothing more American than our ruling class making us watch them discuss how great they all are."

And the escalation wasn't rigged for Clinton to initiate--yeah, sure, whatever the rabbit says.

steven t johnson , Dec 11 2019 22:42 utc | 46
Until there is some comparison of how the FISA court usually works, none of this chatter means a thing. Violations of Woods procedures and assertions not supported by documents are SOP. The FISA court is always a joke.

Delgeitimizing Trump, reversing the election, all simple-minded drviel, as only nitwits see Trump as anything but the loser.

Jackrabbit , Dec 11 2019 23:08 utc | 48
Jen, that's a really interesting post. Thanks.

Skripal knows something that US-UK either 1) don't want the Russians to know OR 2) don't want ANYONE to know.

What could that be? 1) That Steele dossier is bullshit? We know that. 2) That Steele dossier was meant to be bullshit ? Well, that raises a whole host of questions, doesn't it?

!!

Kabobyak , Dec 12 2019 0:45 utc | 51
Good chance Steele had little to do with writing the Dossier. "Simpson-Ohr Dossier", anyone? Steele was needed as a credible looking intelligence officer with Russia ties and a past working relationship with US Intel, as cover to sell to FBI, FISA Court, and the public (meeting with Isikoff, Yahoo News story).

Glenn Simpson and wife Mary Jacoby had written articles for the WSJ in 2007 and 2008 with a script and language similar to the Dossier. Devin Nunes seems to believe this scenario, and it is discussed in detail in books by Dan Bongino and Lee Smith, among others.

daffyDuct , Dec 12 2019 2:26 utc | 56
c1ue @4

The Afghanistan report outlines a *massive fraud*. $14 billion/month, 90% of the world's opium, no "progress", oh, and lying to Congress for two decades.

ben , Dec 12 2019 3:24 utc | 59
OT, but this seems to be going around..Eh?

https://thegrayzone.com/2019/12/11/jeremy-corbyn-faces-russiagate-smear-campaign-before-uk-vote/#more-17822

ben , Dec 12 2019 4:47 utc | 62
physchoh @ 60; The difference, at least in my mind, is that, the "Russia did it" meme, is the weakest of all cases against DJT. Corbyn, on the other hand, may actually be hurt by the bogus charges. IMO, what this shows is coordination between the elites to bring down a progressive in the UK, who fancies public control over major finances instead of private concerns.
Piotr Berman , Dec 12 2019 5:03 utc | 63
Fox News, now: Biden blames staff, says nobody 'warned' him son's Ukraine job could raise conflict. In a TV comedy Seinfeld, one of the main characters, George, is a compulsive liar with a knack of getting in trouble. Sometimes he has a job. Final scene of one of those jobs:
evilempire , Dec 12 2019 5:34 utc | 64
I have theory about why Horowitz did not bias in the FBI. The definition of bias is to harbor a deeply negative feeling that clouds one's judgement about a person or subject. However, the conspirators' judgement was not clouded in this case. Their negative feelings focused their intent to destroy the object of

their feeling. The precise term for this is malice.

So Horowitz was technically correct when he did not find bias. What he might have been reluctant to spell out is that he did find malice.

Perimetr , Dec 12 2019 6:03 utc | 65
Re Really?? | Dec 11 2019 18:31 utc | 14 and AshenLight | Dec 11 2019 19:36 utc | 19

I agree with you. Orlov is a brilliant, insightful analyst, who is also very funny. But he is off the mark with his dismissal of global warming and also with his endorsement of nuclear power. The immense amounts of waste from uranium mining all the way to hundreds of thousands of tons of high-level waste in spent fuel pools pose a huge threat to current and future generations . . . like the next 3000 generations of humans (and all other forms of life) that will have to deal with this. Mankind has never built anything that has lasted a fraction of the 100,000 years required for the isolation of high-level wastes from the biosphere. Take a look at Into Eternity which is a great documentary on the disposal of nuclear waste in Finland.

Orlov's analysis is superficial, unfortunately, in these areas.

[Dec 11, 2019] Why Brennan and his team have all lawyered up

Dec 11, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

LEEPERMAX , 2 minutes ago link

BOTH the AG and federal prosecutor Durham REJECT the findings. Durham has the ability to conduct a criminal investigation that Horowitz did not. Given this, the IG found evidence to criminally refer FBI officials and campaign spies.

-- GEORGE PAPADOPOULOS (@GEORGEPAPA19) DECEMBER 9, 2019

Remember: the Durham probe became a CRIMINAL investigation as soon as he left Rome with information on Mifsud. IG said he wasn't working for the FBI. Leaves only one other option: CIA, and why Brennan and his team have all lawyered up. Bye bye, Brennan.

-- GEORGE PAPADOPOULOS (@GEORGEPAPA19) DECEMBER 9, 2019

[Dec 11, 2019] Not Steele dossier, but FBI/CIA/MI6 operation of George Papadopoulos entrapment was the real star of Russiagate

This is selective quotes from anti-Trump of neocon author. The general tone of the article is completely different from presented quotes.
Notable quotes:
"... ..."This was an overthrow of government, this was an attempted overthrow -- and a lot of people were in on it," Trump declared , while Barr insisted , in a more lawyerly fashion, "The Inspector General's report now makes clear that the FBI launched an intrusive investigation of a U.S. presidential campaign on the thinnest of suspicions that, in my view, were insufficient to justify the steps taken." ..."
Dec 11, 2019 | www.theatlantic.com

The report confirmed that the Russia investigation originated, as has been previously reported, with the Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos bragging to an Australian diplomat about Russia possessing "dirt" on Hillary Clinton, which the IG determined "was sufficient to predicate the investigation." The widespread conservative belief that the investigation began because of the dubious claims in the Steele dossier was false. "Steele's reports played no role" in the opening of the Russia investigation, the report found, because FBI officials were not "aware of Steele's election reporting until weeks later."

...The IG also "did not find any records" that Joseph Mifsud, the professor who told Papadopoulos the Russians had obtained "dirt" on Clinton, was an FBI informant sent to entrap him.

...Page "did not play a role in the decision to open" the Russia investigation, and that Strzok was "was not the sole, or even the highest-level, decision maker as to any of those matters."

...the IG did determine that the Page FISA application was "inaccurate, incomplete, or unsupported by appropriate documentation," which misled the court as to the credibility of the FBI's evidence when seeking authority to surveil Page.

..."This was an overthrow of government, this was an attempted overthrow -- and a lot of people were in on it," Trump declared , while Barr insisted , in a more lawyerly fashion, "The Inspector General's report now makes clear that the FBI launched an intrusive investigation of a U.S. presidential campaign on the thinnest of suspicions that, in my view, were insufficient to justify the steps taken."

Adam Serwer is a staff writer at The Atlantic , where he covers politics.

[Dec 10, 2019] Horowitz Report Is Triumph For FISA Abuse 'Whistleblower' Devin Nunes WSJ's Kim Strassel

Dec 10, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

12/10/2019

In her usual succinct and clarifying manner, The Wall Street Journal's Kimberley Strassel took to Twitter overnight to summarize the farcical findings within the Horowitz Report (and Barr and Durham's responses).

In sixteen short tweets , Strassel destroyed the spin while elucidating the key findings of the Horowitz report (emphasis ours):

Yup, IG said FBI hit threshold for opening an investigation. But also goes out of its way to note what a "low threshold" this is.

Durham's statement made clear he will provide more info for Americans to make a judgment on reasonableness.

The report is triumph for former House Intel Chair Devin Nunes, who first blew the whistle on FISA abuse. The report confirms all the elements of the February 2018 Nunes memo, which said dossier was as an "essential" part of applications, and FBI withheld info from FISA court

Conversely, the report is an excoriation of Adam Schiff and his "memo" of Feb 2018.

That doc stated that "FBI and DOJ officials did NOT abuse the [FISA] process" or "omit material information."

Also claimed FBI didn't much rely on dossier.

In fact, IG report says dossier played "central and essential role" in getting FISA warrants.

Schiff had access to same documents as Nunes, yet chose to misinform the public. This is the guy who just ran impeachment proceedings.

The Report is a devastating indictment of Steele, Fusion GPS and the "dossier."

Report finds that about the only thing FBI ever corroborated in that doc were publicly available times, places, title names. Ouch.

IG finds 17 separate problems with FISA court submissions, including FBI's overstatement of Steele's credentials. Also the failure to provide court with exculpatory evidence and issues with Steele's sources and additional info it got about Steele's credibility.

Every one of these "issues" is a story all on its own.

Example: The FBI had tapes of Page and Papadopoulos making statements that were inconsistent with FBI's own collusion theories. They did not provide these to the FISA court.

Another example: FBI later got info from professional contacts with Steele who said he suffered from "lack of self awareness, poor judgement" and "pursued people" with "no intelligence value." FBI also did not tell the court about these credibility concerns.

And this: FBI failed to tell Court that Page was approved as an "operational contact" for another U.S. agency, and "candidly" reported his interactions with a Russian intel officer. FBI instead used that Russian interaction against Page, with no exculpatory detail.

Overall, IG was so concerned by these "extensive compliance failures" that is has now initiated additional "oversight" to assess how FBI in general complies with "policies that seek to protect the civil liberties of U.S. persons."

The Report also expressed concerns about FBI's failure to present any of these issues to DOJ higher ups; its ongoing contacts with Steele after he was fired for talking to media; and its use of spies against the campaign without any DOJ input.

Remember Comey telling us it was no big deal who paid for dossier?

Turns out it was a big deal in FBI/DOJ, where one lawyer (Stuart Evans) expressed "concerns" it had been funded by Clinton/DNC. Because of his "consistent inquiries" we go that convoluted footnote.

IG also slaps FBI for using what was supposed to be a baseline briefing for the Trump campaign of foreign intelligence threats as a surreptitious opportunity to investigate Flynn .

Strassel's last point is perhaps the most important for those on the left claiming "vindication"...

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When IG says he found no "documentary" evidence of bias, he means just that: He didn't find smoking gun email that says "let's take out Trump."

And it isn't his job to guess at the motivations of FBI employees.

Instead... He straightforwardly lays out facts.

Those facts produce a pattern of FBI playing the FISA Court--overstating some info, omitting other info, cherrypicking details.

Americans can look at totality and make their own judgment as to "why" FBI behaved in such a manner.

Finally, intriguing just how many people at the FBI don't remember anything about anything. Highly convenient.

[Dec 10, 2019] FBI Didn't Tell Surveillance Court That Carter Page Was Operational Contact For CIA With Positive Assessment

Dec 10, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

FBI Didn't Tell Surveillance Court That Carter Page Was "Operational Contact" For CIA With "Positive Assessment" by Tyler Durden Tue, 12/10/2019 - 07:55 0 SHARES

Authored by Chuck Ross via National Interest,

The FBI failed to inform surveillance court judges that Carter Page was an "operational contact" for the CIA for years , and that an employee at the spy agency gave the former Trump aide a "positive assessment," according to a Justice Department report released Monday.

The finding is included in a list of seven of the FBI's "significant inaccuracies and omissions" in applications for Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrants against Page, a longtime energy consultant who joined the Trump campaign in March 2016.

(emphasis ours)

The report said the FBI "omitted" information it obtained from another U.S. government agency about its prior relationship with Page.

The agency approved Page as an "operational contact" from 2008 to 2013, according to the report.

"Page had provided information to the other agency concerning his prior contacts with certain Russian intelligence officers, one of which overlapped with facts asserted in the FISA application," the report stated.

Page told the Daily Caller News Foundation he believes the agency in question is the CIA. Page has previously said he provided information to the CIA and FBI before becoming ensnared in the bureau's investigation of the Trump campaign.

The report stated an employee with the CIA assessed Page "candidly" described contact he had with a Russian intelligence officer in 2014. But the FBI cited Page's contact with the officer to assert in its FISA applications that there was probable cause to believe that Page was working as a Russian agent.

The IG faulted the FBI for failing to disclose to FISA judges that Page was an operational contact for the CIA for five years, and that "Page had disclosed to the other agency contacts that he had with Intelligence Officer 1 and certain other individuals."

The report also stated that the FBI omitted that "the other agency's employee had given a positive assessment of Page's candor."

The IG said the FBI's failure to disclose Page's relationship with the CIA "was particularly concerning" because an FBI attorney had specifically asked an FBI case agent whether Page had a current or prior relationship with the other federal agency.

***

[editor's note: Not only that, an FBI employee - undoubtedly 'resistance' lawyer Kevin Clinesmith , altered an email to specifically state that Page was "not a source" for the CIA . ]

The FBI agent falsely asserted Page's relationship was "outside scope" of the investigation because it dated back to when Page lived in Moscow from 2004 to 2007.

"This representation, however, was contrary to information that the other agency had provided to the FBI in August 2016, which stated that Page was approved as an 'operational contact' of the other agency from 2008 to 2013 (after Page had left Moscow)," the IG report stated.

The report also said Page's CIA contacts considered him to have been candid about his interactions with a suspected Russian intelligence officer who was later indicted for acting as an unregistered agent of Russia.


Occams_Razor_Trader_Part_Deux , 8 minutes ago link

I sometimes think Page was a plant- he's vigorously defended Trump and slammed the CIA and the hoax of the spying- but that could all be a ruse.

In my mind the jury is still out.

Papadopolous on the other hand- was clearly used, honey pot and all.

SnatchnGrab , 13 minutes ago link

Is the phrase ""significant inaccuracies and omissions" code for LYING?

Asking for a friend.

Old Hippie Patriot , 29 minutes ago link

The entire "Russian collusion" investigation is another example of the Feds manufacturing false evidence. Mitsud, supposedly a Russian agent, was actually an asset of US intelligence. Ever since the foisting of the 17th Amendment, which destroyed the veto of the several states of Washington excesses and corruptions, Washington D.C. has been the only REAL enemy that the people have ever had.

Teamtc321 , 42 minutes ago link

Rudy is going to take a huge Trump Dump, right on the heads of the Libtards this week....... Open wide Retards..........

=============

Breaking: Ukrainian Official Reveals Six Criminal Cases Opened in Ukraine Involving the Bidens

Trump told the waiting reporters that his personal attorney former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani "found plenty" of "good information" during his recent trip to Ukraine and Europe.

Trump then added that he believes Giuliani wants to present a report to the Attorney General William Barr and to Congress. Trump added Giuliani has not told him what he found.

Giuliani reportedly traveled to Budapest and Ukraine this past week to meet with several Ukrainian officials about corruption.

OAN reporter Chanel Rion has been traveling with Rudy Giuliani and reporting on his investigations in Hungary and Kiev, Ukraine.

In her report released on Sunday night Chanel Rion mentioned that Ukrainian officials showed her six criminal cases involving the Bidens, Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden.

https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2019/12/breaking-ukrainian-official-reveals-six-criminal-cases-opened-in-ukraine-involving-the-bidens/

Charlie_Martel , 48 minutes ago link

The CIA-FBI put a lot of "assets" into and around Trump's 2016 campaign to rig the election for Hillary.

simpson seers , 1 hour ago link

FBI employee - undoubtedly 'resistance' lawyer Kevin Clinesmith , altered an email to specifically state that Page was "not a source" for the CIA . ]

if it's murican and it's mouth is open it's lying.......it's been a tradition since 1776.....

two hoots , 1 hour ago link

A more powerful force is at work here, the agencies are their tools, operators. We need to get our heads out of the weeds if we are to identify the source. Whatever it is, it is likely internal, thought a higher cause and convincing as CIA, FBI have bought in?

enough of this , 1 hour ago link

DOJ IG Horowitz delivered up another costly whitewash, just like he did with his investigation of the FBI's handling of Clinton's emails.

https://www.investmentwatchblog.com/doj-inspector-general-michael-horowitz-does-it-again-with-another-whitewash/

Drop-Hammer , 1 hour ago link

I read the linked article. Quite fascinating that Hillary and her minions were treated with kid gloves (and nothing at all about Obama, Lynch, Holder, Jarrett, et al) and extended every courtesy and soft-pedal, yet Roger Stone and Paul Manafort were greeted with platoons of FBI ninjas and armored vehicles in early morning raids akin to those in Stalinist Russia.

Equinox7 , 1 hour ago link

The FBI didn't tell the FISA court a lot of things. The FBI failed to tell the FISA court the interview with Papadopoulos revealed there to be absolutely NO Russian collusion. The FBI deliberately withheld exculpatory evidence that would have freed General Flynn and ended the investigations.

Instead, the FBI covered up the truth with omissions and lies. That what I call bias.

Call it willful blindness by omission, but I prefer to call it a criminal act and sedition against a President.

tedstr , 1 hour ago link

This guy is an Annapolis grad and CIA contact and they destroyed him. Hes gonna get very rich with lawsuits now. The thing that amazes me no one is talking about.........motivation. All of these major and minor infractions add up to one thing.....an orchestrated attempt to frame and over throw the President.\ of the United States

[Dec 10, 2019] FISA Report Reveals Clinton Meddled In 2016 Election

Notable quotes:
"... If Russia spending $100,000 on Facebook ads constitutes election interference, and Donald Trump asking Ukraine to investigate the Bidens is too - then Hillary Clinton takes the cake when it comes to influence campaigns designed to harm a political opponent. ..."
"... The article suggests that former Trump campaign aide Carter Page "has opened up private communications with senior Russian officials - including talks about the possible lifting of economic sanctions if the Republican nominee becomes president." ..."
"... Steele told us that in September [of 2016] her and Simpson gave an "off-the-record" briefing to a small number of journalists about his reporting, " reads page 165 of the FISA report, which says that Steele "acknowledged that Yahoo News was identified in one of the court filings in the foreign litigation as being present. " ..."
"... Put another way, Hillary Clinton paid Christopher Steele to feed information to the MSM in order to harm Donald Trump right before the 2016 election . Granted, there were intermediaries; the Clinton campaign paid law firm Perkins Coie, which paid Fusion GPS, which paid Steele. And if asked, we're guessing Clinton would claim she had no idea this happened - which simply isn't plausible given the stakes. Whatever the case - the act of Simpson paying Steele to peddle fiction to the media for the purpose of harming Trump, by itself , constitutes blatant election meddling by every standard set by the left over the past three years. ..."
Dec 10, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

If Russia spending $100,000 on Facebook ads constitutes election interference, and Donald Trump asking Ukraine to investigate the Bidens is too - then Hillary Clinton takes the cake when it comes to influence campaigns designed to harm a political opponent.

Contained within Monday's FISA report by the DOJ Inspector General is the revelation that Fusion GPS, the firm paid by the Clinton campaign to produce the Steele dossier, " was paying Steele to discuss his reporting with the media. " ( P. 369 and elsewhere)

(h/t @wakeywakey16 )

And when did Steele talk with the media - which got him fired as an FBI source ? Perhaps most notably was Yahoo News journalist Michael Isikoff , who says he was invited by Fusion GPS to meet a "secret source" at a Washington restaurant . That secret source was none other than Christopher Steele , who fed Isikoff information from his now-discredited dossier - and which appeared in a September 23, 2016 article roughly six weeks before the election - which likely had orders of magnitude greater visibility and impact coming from a widely-read, MSM source vs. $100,000 in Russian Facebook ads.

The article suggests that former Trump campaign aide Carter Page "has opened up private communications with senior Russian officials - including talks about the possible lifting of economic sanctions if the Republican nominee becomes president."

This claim was found by special counsel Robert Mueller report to be false . Moreover, the FBI knew about it in December, 2016, when DOJ #4 Bruce Ohr told the agency as much.

Steele told us that in September [of 2016] her and Simpson gave an "off-the-record" briefing to a small number of journalists about his reporting, " reads page 165 of the FISA report, which says that Steele "acknowledged that Yahoo News was identified in one of the court filings in the foreign litigation as being present. "

Put another way, Hillary Clinton paid Christopher Steele to feed information to the MSM in order to harm Donald Trump right before the 2016 election . Granted, there were intermediaries; the Clinton campaign paid law firm Perkins Coie, which paid Fusion GPS, which paid Steele. And if asked, we're guessing Clinton would claim she had no idea this happened - which simply isn't plausible given the stakes. Whatever the case - the act of Simpson paying Steele to peddle fiction to the media for the purpose of harming Trump, by itself , constitutes blatant election meddling by every standard set by the left over the past three years.

We're sure Hillary can explain that if and when she jumps into the 2020 race.

[Dec 10, 2019] Carter Page Pressed on CIA Links by Lee Rogers

Jul 28, 2018 | www.tigerdroppings.com

Carter Page is a very shady individual. He was in Navy intelligence, did work at the Council on Foreign Relations, conveniently did lots of business in Russia and likes wearing goofy ass hats.

Several days ago, I wrote a piece asking if Carter Page was an asset of the Central Intelligence Agency. Page as many of you know has been a central figure in this conspiracy to frame Donald Trump as a Russian intelligence asset. Page was a former adviser to the Trump campaign who had an extensive business history in Russia. The FBI used the fake #pissgate dossier financed by Hillary Clinton and manufactured by Christopher Steele as the primary piece of evidence to request a warrant from the secret FISA court. This was effectively used to spy on Page and by proxy the Trump campaign.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/Q-cMrftQFz0?feature=oembed

Page interview begins at 14:35.

What's interesting is that just a few days after writing my piece, Page appeared on Sean Hannity's show for an interview. Hannity specifically pressed him on if he had ever worked for American intelligence. Page's answers were cryptic. He admitted to having some type of communications with American intelligence and would not flat out deny being an asset. As in previous interviews, he came off as an untrustworthy individual who appears to be hiding many secrets.

One of the more interesting things he talked about was how in 2016, he was invited to speak in Russia by Shlomo Weber . He delivered his speech while he was still advising the Trump campaign. This was already public information but it seems to be a lesser known fact that not many people have zeroed in on.

... This event allowed Christopher Steele to manufacture some of the garbage that ended up in the #pissgate dossier.

Weber is an academic who works at the New Economic School in Moscow, Russia. He previously spent a great deal of time in Israel and earned his PhD at Hebrew University. He also somehow has both American and Canadian citizenship. These facts alone raise a number of alarm bells. It would not be a surprise if he was connected to the Israeli Mossad.

And check out how Page's speech was described when it took place.

ABC News :

Page's visit itself was perhaps more notable than the content of his speech. It was unclear why Page, a relatively little-known analyst, had been invited suddenly to speak at the same event offered to the serving U.S. president. Interest in Page's trip was high among Russian media, which was in large attendance at the event.

Shlomo Weber, the director of the New Economic School, said he could not remember if he had invited Page before or after he was appointed adviser to Trump. Weber said he hoped Page would "broaden his students' horizons."

"Being Trump's adviser certainly doesn't disqualify him," from speaking, Weber said.

There was also speculation that Page might meet with officials from the Russian government during his visit. Asked at the event directly whether he would meet with officials from Putin's presidential administration and the foreign ministry, Page laughed and refused to answer.

... The speech allowed Steele to claim that Page had met with various Russian government officials while he was in Moscow. And this was a big part of what the FBI used to request the warrant to spy on Page and by proxy the Trump campaign as a whole.

I would say that all of this makes the theories about Page being a CIA asset planted inside the Trump campaign even more credible. It certainly helps explain why he hasn't been arrested and why he keeps talking to the media.

... Hannity pressed Page on being a CIA asset is reason enough for us to continue covering it.

[Dec 10, 2019] Carter Page: "I worked for the CIA"

Notable quotes:
"... I believe this is the first time he has admitted he worked for the CIA. He said it's all going to come out. ..."
"... So, if you go look at his emails, he knew there was a FISA against him. He was emailing Comey and the FBI. ..."
Dec 10, 2019 | www.tigerdroppings.com

Carter Page: "I worked for the CIA" Posted on 12/9/19 at 8:40 pm 9 1

I believe this is the first time he has admitted he worked for the CIA. He said it's all going to come out.

So, if you go look at his emails, he knew there was a FISA against him. He was emailing Comey and the FBI.

I really think someone told him he was being spied on. He is one of the ones that gave a heads up to Trump.

?Austere Scholar Monsieur ?
@MonsieurAmerica
THE APEX ASSET:

Targeted asset
@carterwpage
force-fed the FBI via FISA intercepted emails EXCULPATORY evidence in his case and INCULPATORY evidence in the James Wolfe trial.

Page doesn't just have HISTORY with "other Agency", he's OPERATIONAL.

[Dec 10, 2019] Carter Page may have just let slip that he's an FBI and CIA informant by Bill Palmer

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... In other words, Carter Page just admitted that he's supplied information about his Russian interactions to the FBI and CIA. That means that at one point, at least, he was a de facto informant. When did that begin? Was it in 2013, after the U.S. busted the Russian spy ring that had sucked him in? Was that why he wasn't prosecuted? How long did he remain an FBI informant? Was he one during the Trump campaign? Is he still one? Is that why he acts in interviews as if he has no fear of getting in trouble, even as he willingly incriminates himself with his answers? ..."
"... This casts new light one another already-documented piece of information about Carter Page: the FBI obtained a FISA warrant on him back in the summer of 2016 ( Washington Post ), not long after he went to work for the Donald Trump campaign. Usually a FISA warrant is aimed at spying on that person. But if Page was already a willing FBI informant, it's possible the warrant was obtained so the FBI could surveil the conversations Page was having with the rest of the Trump campaign. ..."
Apr 21, 2017 | www.palmerreport.com

CNN is confirming today what a wide barrage of evidence has long pointed to: that Russia tried to use Donald Trump's campaign adviser Carter Page to infiltrate the campaign from within ( link ). But while that's not really news in and of itself, the real story here may be what Page just told CNN in response – because he may have just given away everything .

It's already been established that a Russian spy ring tried to turn Carter Page into an asset back in 2013. Page went as far as giving the Russians some unspecified documents ( NY Times ). When the spy ring was busted, authorities in the U.S. notably took no known legal action against Page. It's led some to speculate that perhaps they turned Page into an informant right then and there. The response Page gave to CNN for its story today sounds a lot like he's confirming as much:

"My assumption throughout the last 26 years I've been going [to Russia] has always been that any Russian person might share information with the Russian government as I have similarly done with the CIA, the FBI and other government agencies in the past."

In other words, Carter Page just admitted that he's supplied information about his Russian interactions to the FBI and CIA. That means that at one point, at least, he was a de facto informant. When did that begin? Was it in 2013, after the U.S. busted the Russian spy ring that had sucked him in? Was that why he wasn't prosecuted? How long did he remain an FBI informant? Was he one during the Trump campaign? Is he still one? Is that why he acts in interviews as if he has no fear of getting in trouble, even as he willingly incriminates himself with his answers?

This casts new light one another already-documented piece of information about Carter Page: the FBI obtained a FISA warrant on him back in the summer of 2016 ( Washington Post ), not long after he went to work for the Donald Trump campaign. Usually a FISA warrant is aimed at spying on that person. But if Page was already a willing FBI informant, it's possible the warrant was obtained so the FBI could surveil the conversations Page was having with the rest of the Trump campaign.

Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report

Contribute to Palmer Report

[Dec 10, 2019] Tucker: Media proclaims FBI is innocent

So CIA agent Carter Page joins Trump campaign and then do several "improper" moves like travel to Moscow and contracts with Russian officials things in order to create a pretext for FBI investigation. Which of course was promptly started. This is called false flag operation.
From comments: "He wasn’t a victim, he was an asset. When actors portray a victim, they are ACTING!!!"
Notable quotes:
"... "The media's the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that's power. Because they control the minds of the masses". - the esteemed Malcolm X. ..."
"... Seth Rich downloaded the emails on a potable drive. Was he Russian? ..."
"... DNC/ FBI/ CIA/ CNN/ NBC have merged into the 5 headed serpent. ..."
"... Roger Stone got some minor facts wrong and is facing jail time, Brennan and Comey outright lied to Congress, when are they going to jail? ..."
"... "June 2017, CIA told FBI lawyer Kevin Clinesmith that Carter Page was working for them (the CIA)." Clinesmith then changed that notification so he could submit the last (FISA) renewal. ..."
"... "Lets hope Carter Page spends the rest of his life sueing everyone..." lol Thats the meanest thing ive ever heard you say! O:) ..."
Dec 10, 2019 | www.youtube.com

Greg Wootton , 4 hours ago

John Brennan lied to Congress, why is he not behind bars?

der Jakob 🇺🇸 , 5 hours ago

Falsifying documents is a crime

Robin John , 5 hours ago

I will believe the swamp is draining when the arrests begin.

Electric Eclectic , 5 hours ago

There are so many crooked actors and actresses hired by the MSM it is just pathetic. They are not reporters, they are there only to put on a show for the masses.

Christopher , 5 hours ago

"The media's the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that's power. Because they control the minds of the masses". - the esteemed Malcolm X.

Patton Was Right , 5 hours ago

"WE DEFEATED THE WRONG ENEMY!" Now we are paying the price

2legit B , 5 hours ago

Seth Rich downloaded the emails on a potable drive. Was he Russian?

LB Helms , 4 hours ago

DNC/ FBI/ CIA/ CNN/ NBC have merged into the 5 headed serpent.

Mr.762 , 4 hours ago

The FBI and CIA need to be dismantled!

Silly Goose , 5 hours ago

Roger Stone got some minor facts wrong and is facing jail time, Brennan and Comey outright lied to Congress, when are they going to jail?

reminaya , 4 hours ago

"June 2017, CIA told FBI lawyer Kevin Clinesmith that Carter Page was working for them (the CIA)." Clinesmith then changed that notification so he could submit the last (FISA) renewal.

Theta Kongpancake , 4 hours ago

5:55 - "Lets hope Carter Page spends the rest of his life sueing everyone..." lol Thats the meanest thing ive ever heard you say! O:)

Christopher Wojciechowski , 2 hours ago

The FBI was never innocent. They're guilty as hell and heads need to roll over.


Blue -eyed , 2 hours ago

Allowing ONE person to decide if crimes where done by the most powerful people in america for decades. Horowitz was bought one way or another.

Joe Montano , 4 hours ago

1:52 - This is what a paid shill looks like. If the money is good, they'll read whatever is on the prompter. Years from now when they're demonized by the corrupt media they'll scratch their head and ask... What happened to integrity in our country???

lrm21 , 46 minutes ago

High crimes and misdemeanors. Where is John Brennan?

P MA , 2 hours ago

If you asked me 20 years ago wether I would be watching Fox News to get the most rational point of view in politics, I would have said you were crazy. Another great job Tucker! In my opinion, you’re one of the best news men of our current time; questioning needless wars, and calling out politicians, gvmnt officials and your counterparts at other news desks with rational arguments. Well done sir!

ita-glo jgv , 41 minutes ago

Personally seen these types of things/cases in lower levels, police chiefs and officials, judges, prosecutors, mayor, FBI, and so on. Not surprisingly it happens elsewhere. ...But very disappointed of it all.

cat nerp , 4 hours ago

Politics is like religion. Facts mean very little before the over powering light of belief

TaggsR85 , 1 hour ago

How does Horowitz believe this wasn’t politically motivated? What was the motivation to lie to surveillance to be put on carter page?

VAMPYRE ANGELUS , 4 hours ago

fbi is the mafia with badges..

Bruce Lee , 4 hours ago

The FBI has too much power. It’s not about a few bad apples, it’s what can happen with a few bad apples.

Duncan McCockiner , 33 minutes ago

If I were an American citizen, I'd be very concerned about the utter incompetence of the FBI that the IG report exposed. The dems don't seem to be bothered by this at all. Go figure.

Patrick Ryan , 1 hour ago

The Establishment has played this game many times before .. remember PM Harold Wilson was put up as a Russian Agent .. sure they won that game but NOT this time .. they fear President Trump because the have nothing over him .

Richard Ralph Roehl , 5 hours ago

NOTHING will happen. There will be no indictments of any major deep-$tate players.

tamimerkaz , 2 hours ago

The Democ-rats and the media (I repeat myself) are shamelessly LYING through their teeth to the American People. There was NO Russian collision—it's a HOAX made by LOSERS who can't accept their loss in 2016 so they were up to smear the winner, President Trump, by all means, possible including Illegal surveillance, fraud and manipulation—ABUSE of government power for political prosecution.

Cherrie Dee , 5 hours ago

Steele dossier......fake evidence bought and payed for by the democrats and presented to the FISA court by James Comey...........FELONY FELONY FELONY!......this one can’t be talked away!

Scott Thompson , 4 hours ago

Tucker, thank you for being a constant drumbeat for the criminal activity undertaken by the FBI and CIA to ultimately unseat a duly elected President. No rest until they are held accountable.

Aisha Mohammed , 52 minutes ago

How could the FBI be innocent? We saw the emails. We saw them cover up for Bill Gates, Clinton, Epstein, Brunel, and all the others. We saw how they protected these abusers of children. We saw how they worked to overthrow a sitting president. We saw how they protected the Awan’s and Huma.

BC Stud , 4 hours ago

THE FIX WAS IN - People are saying that Nellie Orr the Russian Expert is best friends with the IG's Horowitz wife - So nice - Bruce your husband is a lap dog and works for the FBI . People should be outraged as the cover up continues . Just like OJ - they have 10 times the evidence that would convict anyone else - have them charged , arrested , tried and jailed . Different rules for corrupt politicians and their friends in law enforcement .

2 Cent , 5 hours ago

Michael Cohen In prison, Papadopulos went to prison, Flynn is going to prison, Roger Stone is going to prison, Manafort is in prison and Devin Nunes and Rudy Giuliani are under investigation.....Lock them up, lock them up!!!!

Jessica Greene , 4 hours ago

CIA tells FBI who in turn uses their corrupt media to spread the lies as truth. The less intelligent among us believe them as gospel and thus we get "Russian Collusion, or Quid Pro Quo, or Iraq has weapons of mass destruction " and on and on.....

Susan Byers , 2 hours ago

Carter Page is scarcely a victim, he was a CIA informant. He was a plant. He was an excuse to do surveillance EVERYONE.

Jennifer Griffin , 2 hours ago

Ukraine and Barisma may be corrupt, but after reading the summary of this report, this country better not be calling any country corrupt. The USA is following Rome. Soon it will die.

kenh2o , 4 hours ago

FBI is totally corrupted by it's unchecked power, these deep states have the guts to repeatedly use FALSE Information again & again to spy on the opposition political party presidential candidate campaign. The Fake News medias continue to cover for them, it is sickening!

Rick Atkins , 5 hours ago

The FBI based on the IG report are either criminally liable for deceiving FISA courts, or the most inept, bumbling criminal investigation agency ever. Looks like both to me. Any FBI agent or employee who knew the FBI was breaking the law, and remained silent needs to be fired immediately and prosecuted along with the principals, for aiding and abetting criminal activity. This sounds like RICO violations.

Daryl Leckt , 34 minutes ago (edited)

if Carter Page didn't run the 2016 "Trump Election Campaign Committee of Moscow" from the ROSNEFT bureau offices inside the Kremlin, where did Carter Page run the "Trump Election Campaign Committee of Moscow" ?

BrianC6234 , 2 hours ago

Horowitz needs to stop being a wuss and tell the whole truth. His report is a big lie. The whole thing was a political attack. It started with John McCain and he handed it off to Obama and Crooked Hillary. There was no reason at all to investigate Trump. Is the IG part of the deep state? Democrats are acting like this report is good news for them.

Pal VB , 1 hour ago (edited)

Steele was not the author of the fake dossier, DNC FusionGPS Glen Simpson was, and Steele used as cover. Coming in the Durham findings. 17 FBI "mistakes" in a row all against Trump? No bias? B S.

Me King , 4 hours ago

How Trump has "conned" the American tax payer: This is just a few of his fraud actions!He set up a foundation to benefit the military, then him and his family pocketed our money.He started a Fake University, then stole the money from the American people.He cheated on his wives, then paid them to keep quiet so it wouldn't damage his chances in the election.He stiffed 100's of worker's he hired and then made up an excuse y they didn't get paid

Maclain Hunter , 2 hours ago

If Donald Trump was a Russian spy it would’ve been the deepest cover of any secret agent ever....he came here after his lgb training as a young man and became a celebrity for 30 years before finally putting his dastardly plan to go from pageant owner to president into action! If that were anywhere close to true the Russians did so much work I think they earned the 4-8 years in the White House! I know that at this point I’d rather have Vladimir Putin as President than any of the top democrats!

The World Through My Mind , 1 hour ago

Folks..All this soap opera is just a smoke screen to hide what is really important and is happening right now at this very minute. The Federal Reserve Banking cartel is pumping 100s of billions of dollars into insolvent banks again like they did in 2008. This time it is more and we taxpayers will again foot the bill. The banks are getting this money called REPO loans. Watch your cash everyone as the Federal Reserve has only 1 product and that is printing money( debt) that they will use to steal your assets and future.

lenchienlon , 3 hours ago

There are many opinions about the Horowitz report. As with a prior report Horowitz lays out damning evidence and then draws exactly the wrong conclusion. Why does he have to draw ANY CONCLUSIONS? His job is to present the facts and the evidence and to let "We the People' draw conclusions. Reminds me of Comey declaring that Hillary's actions were irresponsible but not criminal. Why? She didn't act with intent. She was just incompetent! Tucker is absolutely right! What does it matter what their motive was? Like Clinton, they behaved in a criminal fashion.

[Dec 09, 2019] Everything was nice and proper: No political bias by the FBI. No "mole" in the White House. No abuse of FBI powers. This was an attempted overthrow of the President

Dec 09, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

slightlyskeptical , 3 minutes ago link

"The report concludes that despite nearly everybody investigating President Trump hating him - and that evidence was fabricated by at least one FBI attorney, and that they misrepresented Christopher Steele's credentials, none of their bias 'tainted' the investigation , and the underlying process was sound."

Who investigating major criminal acts actually likes the perp? It was such a juvenile argument from day 1.

I bet the truth is stretched a bit in just about every subpoena issued, not just FISA ones. It is the nature of things, since you are trying to obtain evidence of crimes that are currently unproven but suspected. As such all subpoena's are issued based on the perception of guilt and not any actual proof of that guilt. This was a non-starter from the beginning.

Cassandra.Hermes , 4 minutes ago link

Steele said he had visited Ivanka Trump at Trump Tower and had been "friendly" with her for "some years". He described their relationship as "personal". The former British government spy had even given her a "family tartan from Scotland" as a present, the report quoted him as saying.

spiderman5968 , 5 minutes ago link

Horowitz's report is mostly meaningless.

It all comes down to the Barr/Durham investigation and indictments that follow.

Will they indict the top dogs (Comey, Clapper, Clinton, Brennan, Rosenstein, Obama, Strokz, Page, Ohr, McCabe, Yates, Priestap, etc.) and make the long-needed changes to Fed Gov't or indict just a bunch of low-level "Fall Guys" in the alphabet agencies to try to make the public release some steam and then drop it all like a hot potato and keep the Deep State intact.???

If REAL justice isn't served up at that point gov't as we know it will collapse as America descends into anarchy and lawlessness.

The political class and mainstream media needs to be purged and the U.S. Constitution fully restored.

morethan1 , 1 minute ago link

Unfortunately, NOTHING will happen. I've seen this movie before.

teolawki , 7 minutes ago link

Not 'tainted' by political bias. Bullfuckingshit!

As I stated not that long ago. You cannot have a corrupt FBI without a corrupt DOJ. And you cannot have a corrupt agency without a corrupt IG. Period. Remember the IRS IG clearing Lois Lerner? Hmmm?

JoeTurner , 11 minutes ago link

https://twitter.com/JackPosobiec/status/1204144525578518528

General Flynn had to be targeted by Deep State because he was the ultimate whistleblower

PopeRatzo , 12 minutes ago link

The only crimes committed were by the Trump campaign and administration. Try to pay attention. Do you need a list of Trump associates who are either in jail or have been convicted and are on their way to jail?

Meanwhile, Hillary's laughing it up with Howard Stern.

It must suck to be you.

JoeTurner , 12 minutes ago link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ipI-uHKizbg&feature=youtu.be

Wow, even fake news NBC is pooping themselves over FISA mishandling. I predict whiplash with how fast the fake news, drive-by media throws Comey, Clapper and Brennan under the bus to protect Hillary and Obongo.

Ophiuchus , 9 minutes ago link

Don't bet on anyone taking a fall. All animals are equal, but some animals, especially pigs, are more equal than others.

[Dec 09, 2019] The Press Should Not Be Shielding FBI Malfeasance by John Kiriakou

Nov 27, 2019 | consortiumnews.com

The Washington Post and others just adhered to the Justice Department's own policy of protecting their own while wrecking the lives of those who have the guts to stand up to them.

By John Kiriakou
Special to Consortium News

T he Washington Post and other media outlets last week reported that a former FBI attorney allegedly altered a document related to the FBI's 2016 surveillance of Carter Page, a Trump campaign adviser. FBI Inspector General Michael Horowitz apparently concluded that the conduct "did not affect the overall validity of the surveillance application," which was made with the secret FISA court.

Carter Page, target of the surveillance. (MSNBC, Wikimedia Commons)

The Post article, as well as articles in The New York Times , at CNN , and in other outlets, downplayed the behavior as having had "no effect" on the FBI's surveillance of Page, ignoring the fact that tampering with a federal document is a felony. That's consistent with the Justice Department's own policy of protecting their own while wrecking the lives of those who have the guts to stand up to them.

Publishing Excuses

Look at The Washington Post's original account of the inspector general's findings. The FBI attorney was just a "low-level employee" who has already "been forced out of the Bureau." The altered document "did not affect the overall validity of the surveillance application." The employee "erroneously indicated he had documentation to back up a claim he had made in discussions with the Justice Department about the factual basis for the application. He then altered an email to back up that erroneous claim."

Let's straighten a few things outs.

First, the employee was not "low-level." Attorneys enter the FBI at the GS-11 level. That's a starting salary of $69,581. On Day One of his career, the attorney would actually be a mid-level employee. Furthermore, "low-level employees" are not assigned to sensitive operations involving counterintelligence against a major-party presidential campaign. Hand-picked senior employees get that honor.

Second, even if the altered document didn't affect the FISA warrant application, the statement is irrelevant. The attorney committed a felony, plain and simple.

Third, the media says that the attorney "erroneously indicated" that he could back up the document. But that, too, was a felony. It's called "making a false statement" and it's punishable by up to five years in prison.

To make matters worse, there is no indication from the Justice Department that this attorney will be prosecuted. "He's already resigned," The Washington Post tells us, as if that's supposed to make everything OK. Why is the mainstream media shielding FBI malfeasance? For FBI crimes? Because the victim is the Trump campaign, and we're not supposed to like the Trump campaign. It's all about Russia, Russia, Russia, remember? If the evidence doesn't show that, you just change the evidence.

... ... ...

John Kiriakou is a former CIA counterterrorism officer and a former senior investigator with the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. John became the sixth whistleblower indicted by the Obama administration under the Espionage Act -- a law designed to punish spies. He served 23 months in prison as a result of his attempts to oppose the Bush administration's torture program.


Brian James , December 1, 2019 at 21:08

March 2015 Trevor Aaronson: How this FBI strategy is actually creating US-based terrorists

There's an organization responsible for more terrorism plots in the United States than al-Qaeda, al-Shabaab and ISIS combined: The FBI. How? Why? In an eye-opening talk, investigative journalist Trevor Aaronson reveals a disturbing FBI practice that breeds terrorist plots by exploiting Muslim-Americans with mental health problems.

ted(dot)com/talks/trevor_aaronson_how_this_fbi_strategy_is_actually_creating_us_based_terrorists

JWalters , December 1, 2019 at 20:15

Our justice system and corporate news system are corrupt, i.e. criminal, as Mr. Kiriakou courageously reports. Further, this corruption is clearly coordinated. So who is directing it? The crimes of Israel are routinely ignored by the entire corporate media, acting as a functional monopoly. That is a clear clue. And as CN articles routinely document, the corporate news also acts in unison to promote more war in the Middle East. Watergate taught us to follow the money. Today the bank that financed the establishment of Israel is profiting from the Golan Heights oil fields stolen by Israel. Also, led by Sheldon Adelson and Haim Saban, Israeli money dominates both political parties in America, dwarfing whatever minuscule efforts Russia may have made. The situation is, as Mr. Kiriakou notes, serious indeed.

Tim Jones , November 30, 2019 at 22:09

I've been thinking how much power William Barr could wield? Will he have an alligator mouth and a humming bird ass? Or is he going to deliver justice and clean house? Little hand slaps- and admonishments, or the fair application of the law. A good man or woman would risk all to right the ship of state and others will just retire with a book deal and a consulting job. Which is it Bill?

Tyler , November 30, 2019 at 03:57

Once again, a complete lack of accountability has allowed those entrusted with power over We the People run amok, destroying lives and with them the very foundations of what it means to participate in a democracy where the rule of law spikes to everyone. They have committed violence not only to their victims but also to their very credibility. Those who refuse to accede to their will are no longer violating the will of We the People but instead committing an act of courage. This is what the rot of empire looks like up close.

Nathan Mulcahy , November 29, 2019 at 13:58

Thank you John Kiriakou, for your ourage and sacrifice.

There is one misnomer in the article. Mainstream papers are neither"press" of organs of journalism. They are stenographers, or "presstitutes", if you so prefer.

Mark McCarty , November 29, 2019 at 11:01

This article focuses on one agent who altered a document involved in the FISA application targeting Carter Page. But the entire application was corrupt. The signatories attested under oath that the evidence presented – most prominently, sections of the Steele dossier mentioning Carter Page – had been verified. Yet they had not verified it, and the allegations were lies. The applicants indicated their belief that Page was acting as a Russian agent – yet Page had cooperated with the FBI in recent years to enable conviction of true Russian spies – a fact which the application left out. Also left out was the fact that the dossier was funded by the DNC and Clinton campaign as oppo research. The evident intent of the warrant was to spy not just on Page, but on other members of the Trump campaign who had contact with him – the "2 hop" rule. So, on the basis of "evidence" that anyone with half an ounce of sense could see was highly dubious and, in any case, wholly unverified – and concocted by political opponents – the FBI gained the right to spy on the Trump campaign.

If the people responsible for this are not indicted, then ANY political campaign in future can be spied on by the Deep State once some defamatory lies have been concocted by the campaign's opponents. This must not stand. Horowitz may look the other way on this, but I doubt Durham will.

lou e , December 1, 2019 at 19:11

The principle of 'follow the money' in government institutions like this usually leads to the conclusion that you are being screwed with your own tax dollars

John Mann , November 29, 2019 at 11:00

Interesting that Albury tells us that "Of the variables at their disposal, I was deemed to be a 'Greater Security Threat'" and that this was "misguided and inappropriate" – in other words, completely false.

What is interesting is that when Max Blumenthal was arrested he was described as "armed and dangerous" even though this was clearly untrue.

They have a way of getting at people who say things they don't like – presumably based on a particular hatred of them.

Robyn , November 29, 2019 at 02:09

I can add nothing to this article but I am pleased to be able to record my boundless admiration for John Kiriakou, Terry Albury, and all the others CN readers are sadly familiar with – heroes all. They stand head and shoulders above the cowards and hypocrites who turn a blind eye or play a role in persecuting their honest colleagues.

Sam F , November 28, 2019 at 20:51

Thank you, Mr. Kiriakou, and Mr. Albury for your efforts; indeed the fight for "honesty in government" is daunting. I do not expect to be happy while fighting corruption, but feel strongly that it is necessary. The greatest difficulty is the realization that almost everyone betrays the public-interest activist, in envy or hope of personal gain. Your stories encourage those able to take action.

Hank , November 29, 2019 at 11:07

Money and power attract the type of people who should NOT be entrusted with it.

Sam F , November 29, 2019 at 16:56

Exactly, Hank; and those lowest characters float to the top in an unregulated market economy. And of course the rich and economic power generally have seized control of our government, because the founders could not have foreseen the need to protect the institutions of democracy (all three federal branches and mass media) from economic power.

The federal government needs major repairs, but the tools of democracy are no longer available to the People.

robert e williamson jr , November 28, 2019 at 19:35

What is witnessed here is what happens when the rule of law does not prevail. The classic "double standard" appears. Things have been this way since at least since WWII.

In the past the slow pace of communications, that transfer of critical information of the highest levels, dictated by the speeds and flexibility of the communication technology available at the time enabled members of the intelligence community to more easily control their data.

Things have changed with that technology and I believe we are witnessing what happens when those who play fast and loose with the rules make mistakes now. Yep, they get found out and it doesn't take long. The up side is we tend now not to forget the lies told just days ago when "the forces of light" counters the "party line" and exposes the lies.

I also believe the chaos we are witnessing is the result of a lack of unity among the media. A media that has lost the trappings of being a worthy agent providing the TRUTH to American at large but has instead succumbed to the pressure to make big money.

We get truth more efficiently from independent media who worry more about content that the bottom line, while the MSM has sunk to the low standards of the "oldest profession".

Thanks to all who care enough to pursue the truth and make it available for the rest of us.

Sally , November 28, 2019 at 16:39

Walk a mile in Assange's shoes back and forth in a cell fit for no sentient being it makes me want to throw up

GMCasey , November 28, 2019 at 12:24

Having both literary and American history studies in college, I am now finding that the more I learn -- the less I know. It's almost as if the many governmental agencies are over flowing with mini Humpty Dumpties, on increasingly higher walls -- -- -- and I am dreading the fall of all those walls and the Humpty types. I am left with the bizarre words of the 1920s writer Gertrude Stein and what she said about the city of Oakland. It almost seems as if America has become that city of Oakland, where Stein once wrote that," there is no there -- there."

Maybe the many power seekers and takers are merely a throwback to the once upon a time king -- –Gerorge. Although, we seem to be in a curious wormhole -- at least Consortium News has made a readable path. Thank you.

Tomonthebeach , November 28, 2019 at 11:27

Life is unfair. We choose the people with whom we associate and the actions in which we engage on their behalf. There is no question that this situation involved inappropriate, even punitive, actions by government officials. However, the assumption that Page is an innocent in all this is likewise dubious. He had his agenda and his objectives, while self-promoting, remain cloudy.

The old adage about what happens when you lie down with dogs seem to apply in this case.

incontinent reader , November 29, 2019 at 08:26

Tomonthebeach- I don't understand your comment. Are you suggesting that it is likely that Page is guilty? Could you provide reasons and proof? And when you say this is what happens when you lie down with dogs, do you mean that by joining the Trump campaign he called upon himself all the illegal actions of the FBI, and should have expected to be set up?

And if you've read it, Mr. Kiriakou's article highlights systemic illegality and injustice at the FBI, including attacking all those who question it and fight for their rights. Maybe it is more appropriate to refer to the Bureau as the dogs in your adage.

Roger Owens , November 29, 2019 at 09:24

Page's guilt or innocence is totally irrelevant. Falsifying evidence is a felony. Falsifying evidence for a FISA warrant against a presidential candidate is a major crime which, left unpunished, encourages further outrages against out legal system, bu the very watchdogs set to protect it.

Jeff Harrison , November 29, 2019 at 11:20

It's not clear to me what you're thinking. Carter Page has never been charged with, much less convicted of illegal behavior. He was illegally surveilled by the FBI based on false testimony – the very epitome of the 9th commandment – Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor. Yet you think he should get fleas. Last time I checked, in this country you're supposed to be able to do anything you want as long as you don't break the law.

Dan Kuhn , November 29, 2019 at 12:51

So it is just fine with you that a lawyer working with the FBI altered documents to the FISA Court in order to frame Carter Page. It is fine with you that he walks free. The fact that the MSM in the USA agrees with you shows just how sad the state of the union actually is . And Americans are so gung ho on fighting corruption in other countries, especially those they are currently demonizing. Talk about sick countries.

michael , November 29, 2019 at 16:42

Am I to infer that the FBI are "fleas"? Possibly the type carrying the Black Plague?
A basic tenet of American Law used to be the presumption of innocence for the accused. These cases John Kiriakou presents, and his own as well, provide evidence that the Intelligence Agencies are now Judge, Jury and Executioner of those who cross them. A Police State amok.

Tony , November 28, 2019 at 08:57

Is the FBI still doing the sort of things that it did when Hoover was in charge?

Hank , November 29, 2019 at 11:08

Can a bird fly?

Georgia , November 30, 2019 at 11:32

Worse. Now they have no problem trying to "fix" Presidential elections to install the Candidate they are in bed with– in 2016 that was Hillary Clinton who committed numerous Felonies that FBI Head James Comey et al both covered up and let the evidence be destroyed by here and her lackeys & they also now have attempted to frame a duly elected President that they did not support and who beat "their" candidate with a phony "Russia Collusion" hoax/fraud–

So it is easy to argue that Hoover was actually a piker compared to the miscreants and serious felons "running" the FBI (and their buddies at the CIA .) today the fact that if you are "inside" with these criminals you don't get prosecuted is amazing to watch– the DOJ and FBI are little more than criminal organizations now to anyone paying attention– perjury, frame jobs, political hatchet work etc. -- people need to wake up that the KGB was actually less of a problem for the people in the USSR because they were all aware of what was up– most in the USA due to the complicit Mainslime Media have no clue that the country has devolved into a banana Republic run by criminals -- the FBI "Lab" was actually just fabricating evidence for many years framing people at the request of Field Agents–this is now a PROVEN FACT there is no dispute the "Lab" did this for well over a decade, even in Death Penalty cases they were doing this .– almost no one knows about it of course, the country is a sad joke–

The fact Hillary Clinton can even be given consideration as a possible "Candidate" again is amazing given what she has pulled and what she has done to the country thru her frauds and machinations, Ma Barker was born at the wrong time she could be in the running for Federal Office these days even with her final life "resume" .

AnneR , November 28, 2019 at 08:17

Thank you Mr Kiriakou for this further confirmation of the lies and obfuscations, the intrinsically duplicitous and hypocritical nature of all aspects of our government (and I do believe that it is all facets), their ever-ramifying, largely secret agencies (that apparently answer to no one, certainly no one in the lower 90% of the population whose taxes actually fund all of it) and the ruling elites who control it all to their sole benefit, of course.

One is – again – confronted with the ongoing, starkly hypocritical difference in "treatment" and publicity between the so-called White House "whistleblower" on Trump's phone call with Zelensky and real whistleblowers such as Mr Allbury as presented in the MSM. The former (really just a "leaker" of second-hand chit-chat) is lauded by the Dems who were more than willing to denounce, charge and incarcerate genuine whistleblowers, like Mr Allbury, Chelsea Manning and others. who made apparent the really existing war crimes, law-breaking, racism, lies and other malfeasant actions of these agencies of the ruling elites and *their* government stooges.

The rank hypocrisy of government, of their masters, of the secret agencies *and* the judiciary at all levels is nauseating beyond belief. And its drenched Russo-phobic, Cold War, Warmongering, "we're the planet's rulers" worldview underlies all of it.

Piotr Berman , November 28, 2019 at 00:16

[Inspector general, Michael E. Horowitz decided that] The altered document "did not affect the overall validity of the surveillance application."

This is actually quite possible if FICA reads only the requests and ignores the justification. Inspector general, Michael E. Horowitz presumably has enough experience to make that judgement.

[Dec 04, 2019] Barr rejects key finding in report on Russia probe: that the FBI had enough intelligence to initiate an investigation into the Trump campaign in July 2016.

Dec 04, 2019 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

"Barr rejects key finding in report on Russia probe: report" [ The Hill ].

"People familiar with the matter told The Post that Barr said he does not agree with the report's finding that the FBI had enough intelligence to initiate an investigation into the Trump campaign in July 2016.

The long-awaited report from Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz is expected to be made public in a week. But a draft is being discussed behind the scenes, and the attorney general reportedly is not persuaded that the FBI investigation was justified.

The draft report is now being finalized and shown to the witnesses and offices investigated by Horowitz.

People familiar with the matter told the newspaper that Barr believes information from other agencies such as the CIA could change Horowitz's finding that the investigation was warranted."

[Dec 04, 2019] CrowdStrikeOut: Mueller's Own Report Undercuts Its Core Russia Meddling Claims

The possibility of CrowdStrike central role in creation of Russiagate might be one reason that Congressional Democrats (and Republicans) were trying to swipe under the carpet the part of Trump conversation where he asked Zelenski to help to recover server images CrowdStrike shipped to Ukraine.
Another question is that now it is possible that one of CrowdStrike employees or Alperovich himself played the role of Gussifer 2.0
Notable quotes:
"... There is strong reason to doubt Mueller's suggestion that an alleged Russian cutout called Guccifer 2.0 supplied the stolen emails to Assange. ..."
"... Mueller's decision not to interview Assange – a central figure who claims Russia was not behind the hack – suggests an unwillingness to explore avenues of evidence on fundamental questions. ..."
"... the government allowed CrowdStrike and the Democratic Party's legal counsel to submit redacted records, meaning CrowdStrike and not the government decided what could be revealed or not regarding evidence of hacking. ..."
"... John Brennan, then director of the CIA, played a seminal and overlooked role in all facets of what became Mueller's investigation: the suspicions that triggered the initial collusion probe; the allegations of Russian interference; and the intelligence assessment that purported to validate the interference allegations that Brennan himself helped generate. Yet Brennan has since revealed himself to be, like CrowdStrike and Steele, hardly a neutral party -- in fact a partisan with a deep animus toward Trump. ..."
Jul 09, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Which brings me to the newest piece to drop, CrowdStrikeOut: Mueller's Own Report Undercuts Its Core Russia Meddling Claims .

Most of the material in this article will be familiar to regular readers of SST because I wrote about it first. Here are the key conclusions:

I encourage you to read the piece. It is well written and provides an excellent overview of critical events in the flawed investigation.

[Dec 02, 2019] British aerial attacks using poisining gas against Red Army in Russia in August 1919

British elite is capable to commit any crimes imaginable perusing its goals.
Notable quotes:
"... "The 'chemical incident' has likely been faked. It suspiciously happened just a few days after U.S. President Trump had announced the he wanted the U.S. military to leave Syria. A year earlier a similar incident was claimed to have happened after a similar announcement by Trump. The U.S. had responded to the 2017 incident by bombing an empty Syrian airfield." ..."
Apr 19, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Ghost Ship | Apr 19, 2018 3:07:17 AM | 15

OT but very relevant to the Skripal/Douma incidents.

The Guardian has an article today headlined " The taboo on chemical weapons has lasted a century – it must be preserved " which is a bare-faced lie as the Guardian should know because the British used chemical weapons against the Russian in August, 1919, less than a century ago, and the Japanese, among America's closest allies used them against the Chinese in World War 2.

The strongest case for Churchill as a chemical warfare enthusiast involves Russia, and was made by Giles Milton in The Guardian on 1 September 2013, which prompted this article. Milton wrote that in 1919, scientists at the governmental laboratories at Porton in Wiltshire developed a far more devastating weapon: the top secret "M Device," an exploding shell containing a highly toxic gas called diphenylaminechloroarsine [DM].

The man in charge of developing it, Major General Charles Foulkes, called it "the most effective chemical weapon ever devised." Trials at Porton suggested that it was indeed a terrible new weapon. Uncontrollable vomiting, coughing up blood and instant, crippling fatigue were the most common reactions. The overall head of chemical warfare production, Sir Keith Price, was convinced its use would lead to the rapid collapse of the Bolshevik regime. "If you got home only once with the gas you would find no more Bolshies this side of Vologda."

A staggering 50,000 M Devices were shipped to Russia: British aerial attacks using them began on 27 August 1919 .Bolshevik soldiers were seen fleeing in panic as the green chemical gas drifted towards them. Those caught in the cloud vomited blood, then collapsed unconscious. The attacks continued throughout September on many Bolshevik-held villages. But the weapons proved less effective than Churchill had hoped, partly because of the damp autumn weather. By September, the attacks were halted then stopped.

The rest of the article defends Churchill against claims that he wanted to use "poison gas" in India and Iraq against tribesmen by suggesting that he meant tear gas but equally he could have been referring to mustard gas which "only" killed about 2.5% of the 165,000 WW1 soldiers it was used against but that was with a level of medical care I doubt Indian or Iraqi tribesmen could even begin to dream off.

Peter AU 1 , Apr 19, 2018 4:20:05 AM | 23

"The 'chemical incident' has likely been faked. It suspiciously happened just a few days after U.S. President Trump had announced the he wanted the U.S. military to leave Syria. A year earlier a similar incident was claimed to have happened after a similar announcement by Trump. The U.S. had responded to the 2017 incident by bombing an empty Syrian airfield."

Watching reports coming out of Syria in real time, I thought it was a genuine strike. Same as I thought the JK build up was the real thing and also the 59 missiles a year ago. Once the dust, smoke, and the fog of war had cleared, it became apparent that this, was yet again a choreographed move, same as the missiles on Shayrat airfield.

I may well be wrong, as I do not go along with group think here, but this strike seems a preemptive move by Trump to prevent a push for for US military action in Syria that will take us to WWIII.

[Nov 27, 2019] Obama-Holdover Heading Russia-Probe Office Under Investigation For Illegally Leaked Classified Document by Christopher Hull

Notable quotes:
"... According to a Nov. 21 report by independent journalist Sara Carter, U.S. Attorney John Durham is questioning personnel in the Pentagon's Office of Net Assessment (ONA). ONA awarded about $1 million in contracts to FBI informant Stefan Halper, who appears to have played a key role in alleged U.S. intelligence agency spying on 2016 Trump campaign advisers Carter Page and George Papadopoulos. ..."
"... In addition, however, a court filing indicates that ONA's director, James H. Baker, "is believed to be the person who illegally leaked the transcript of Mr. Flynn's calls" to The Washington Post. ..."
"... The filing adds that Baker "was Halper's 'handler'" at ONA. Moreover, according to the court filing, the tasks assigned to "known long-time operative for the CIA/FBI" Halper "seem to have included slandering Mr. Flynn with accusations of having an affair with a young professor (a British national of Russian descent)." ..."
"... The filing notes that Flynn's defense team has requested phone records for then-Director of National Intelligence James Clapper , likewise in order to confirm contacts with Ignatius. The filing singles out records for Jan. 10, 2017, when, according to the filing, "Clapper told Ignatius in words to the effect of 'take the kill shot on Flynn.'" ..."
"... The Pentagon's current inspector general has already found that Baker's office "did not maintain documentation of the work performed by Professor Halper or any communication that ONA personnel had with Professor Halper." As a result, according to the inspector general, ONA staff "could not provide sufficient documentation that Professor Halper conducted all of his work in accordance with applicable laws and regulations." ..."
"... Acting Pentagon Inspector General Glenn A. Fine in November 2017 started an investigation into charges that Baker retaliated against a whistleblower who red-flagged "rigged" contracts, including Halper's. Another $11 million in contracts under scrutiny went to the Long Term Strategy Group (LTSG), which is run by a schoolmate of Chelsea Clinton, whom she has referred to as her "best friend." ..."
"... The House Judiciary and Oversight committees -- which interviewed almost two dozen witnesses -- concluded in December 2018 that the Obama Justice Department treated Trump and Clinton unequally, affording Clinton and her associates extraordinary accommodations, while potentially abusing surveillance powers to investigate Trump's associates. ..."
Nov 27, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Christopher Hull via The Epoch Times,

The Obama holdover heading the Pentagon office reportedly under investigation by the U.S. attorney who is conducting the criminal probe of the Trump -- Russia investigation was accused of leaking a classified document, in a recent court filing for retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn.

The connection hasn't been previously reported.

According to a Nov. 21 report by independent journalist Sara Carter, U.S. Attorney John Durham is questioning personnel in the Pentagon's Office of Net Assessment (ONA). ONA awarded about $1 million in contracts to FBI informant Stefan Halper, who appears to have played a key role in alleged U.S. intelligence agency spying on 2016 Trump campaign advisers Carter Page and George Papadopoulos.

In addition, however, a court filing indicates that ONA's director, James H. Baker, "is believed to be the person who illegally leaked the transcript of Mr. Flynn's calls" to The Washington Post. Specifically, the filing states, "ONA Director Baker regularly lunched with Washington Post Reporter David Ignatius."

The filing adds that Baker "was Halper's 'handler'" at ONA. Moreover, according to the court filing, the tasks assigned to "known long-time operative for the CIA/FBI" Halper "seem to have included slandering Mr. Flynn with accusations of having an affair with a young professor (a British national of Russian descent)."

Baker didn't respond to a request for comment by The Epoch Times as of press time.

The filing notes that Flynn's defense team has requested phone records for then-Director of National Intelligence James Clapper , likewise in order to confirm contacts with Ignatius. The filing singles out records for Jan. 10, 2017, when, according to the filing, "Clapper told Ignatius in words to the effect of 'take the kill shot on Flynn.'"

Clapper didn't respond to a request for comment by The Epoch Times as of press time.

The Pentagon's current inspector general has already found that Baker's office "did not maintain documentation of the work performed by Professor Halper or any communication that ONA personnel had with Professor Halper." As a result, according to the inspector general, ONA staff "could not provide sufficient documentation that Professor Halper conducted all of his work in accordance with applicable laws and regulations."

Acting Pentagon Inspector General Glenn A. Fine in November 2017 started an investigation into charges that Baker retaliated against a whistleblower who red-flagged "rigged" contracts, including Halper's. Another $11 million in contracts under scrutiny went to the Long Term Strategy Group (LTSG), which is run by a schoolmate of Chelsea Clinton, whom she has referred to as her "best friend."

According to the whistleblower's attorney, "Baker's interest was his awareness of the LTSG-Clinton connection; his presumptive desire to exploit that to his advantage in the event of a Clinton election win; and the fact that contractors like LTSG served as a lucrative landing pad for ONA retirees."

The attorney charged that Baker's claims about the whistleblower were "demonstrably false," calling Baker "partisan and highly vindictive."

At the time, Richard Perle, Ronald Reagan's former Assistant Secretary of Defense, called Baker "a shallow and manipulative character that should have gone with the change in administration." Perle further charged that the whistleblower "clearly was the target, for political reasons, of an effort to push him out of government," saying "he's a Trump loyalist, and it was launched and sustained by an Obama holdover."

That inquiry is being carried out by the inspector general's Investigations of Senior Officials Directorate.

Raising additional questions, a 2016 report further revealed that the ONA had failed to produce the top-secret net assessments the office was established to conduct for more than 10 years, even with a yearly budget approaching $20 million.

Baker was named as ONA director on May 14, 2015, during the Obama administration. A contemporaneous report called his appointment "part of a wave of new Pentagon personnel moves in recent days, senior-level officials who will outlast President Obama's final term in office." Baker replaced Andrew W. Marshall, nicknamed "Yoda" for his "wizened appearance, fanatical following in defense circles, and enigmatic nature." Obama Defense Secretary Ash Carter, in selecting Baker, "passed over several of Marshall's acolytes who were in the running for the position."

The House Judiciary and Oversight committees -- which interviewed almost two dozen witnesses -- concluded in December 2018 that the Obama Justice Department treated Trump and Clinton unequally, affording Clinton and her associates extraordinary accommodations, while potentially abusing surveillance powers to investigate Trump's associates.

Jacqueline Deal, president of LTSG, wrote in an email to The Epoch Times: "My colleagues and I began performing work in support of the Office of Net Assessment during the George W. Bush administration, over a decade before the office's current director was appointed. None of the awards received by LTSG from the Department of Defense resulted directly or indirectly from the actions or influence of Secretary [Hillary] Clinton. Any statement or implication otherwise is false."


my new username , 2 minutes ago link

The Bush and Clinton families are joined at their corrupt hips.

The ONA is a CIA slush fund.

KuriousKat , 1 hour ago link

Baker replaced Andrew W. Marshall, nicknamed “Yoda” for his “wizened appearance, fanatical following in defense circles, and enigmatic nature.” Obama Defense Secretary Ash Carter, in selecting Baker, “passed over several of Marshall’s acolytes who were in the running for the position.”

Holy ****...The replacement head of the Highlands Group..he may as well be that white bearded guy in the matrix.. Hes the director of the MIC CIA NSA. ..the whole ball of wax..puts it all together...only he is not Yoda like before him..like putting a restaurant fast food manager in charge of the manhattan project. I know those acolytes must be really pissed..and probably a potential source of leaks.

http://www.clearnfo.com/cia-nsa-google/

steelframe7 , 1 hour ago link

Investigations my eye! This has been going on since Moby **** was a minnow.

McCabe has been out there making money while under criminal referral.. That investigation is DONE and still nothing happens.

The public information available on at least 50 of these double dealers is enough to send them all up the river as of a few YEARS ago...but we have to have more investigations...that's so they can figure out how to cover it all up.

Fire these creeps. Hire Sidney Powell.. They'll be swinging inside of six months.

[Nov 23, 2019] Durham Probe Expands To Pentagon Office That Contracted FBI Spy Stephan Halper

Nov 23, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Sara Carter via SaraACarter.com,

Justice Department prosecutor U.S. Attorney John Durham is questioning personnel connected to the Pentagon's Office of Net Assessment, which awarded multiple contracts to FBI informant Stephan Halper. Halper, who was informing the bureau on Trump campaign advisors, is a central figure in the FBI's original investigation into President Donald Trump's 2016 campaign, SaraACarter.com has learned.

These latest developments reveal the expansive nature of what is now a Justice Department criminal probe into the FBI's investigation into the Trump campaign. The revelation also comes on the heels of DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz's report regarding the bureau's investigation into the Trump campaign and Russia. Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-SC, announced to Fox News' Sean Hannity Wednesday night the lengthy investigative report will be released to the public on Dec., 9.

DOJ Attorney General William Barr, who appointed Durham, is conducting a separate investigation alongside Horowitz's probe. Both investigations are examining how U.S. intelligence agencies began investigating now debunked ties between Russia and Trump campaign personnel in the 2016 presidential election.

Multiple sources confirmed to this news site that Durham has spoken extensively with sources working in the Office of Net Assessment, as well as outside contractors, that were paid through Pentagon office.

Department of Justice officials declined to comment on Durham's probe.

In 2016, Halper was an integral part of the FBI's investigation into short-term Trump campaign volunteer, Carter Page and George Papadopolous . Halper first made contact with Page at his seminar in July 2016. Page, who was already on the FBI's radar, was accused at the time of being sympathetic to Russia. Halper stayed in contact with Page until September 2017.

During that time, the FBI sought and obtained a warrant from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) to spy on Page and used Halper to collect information on him, according to sources. It is further alleged that Halper may have secretly recorded his conversations with Page and Papadopolous. Some congressional officials believe that if recordings exist they were kept from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, and would be exculpatory evidence that would've exonerated Page from the FISA warrant and allegations that Papadopolous was attempting to seek any help from the Russians with regard to Hillary Clinton's emails.

In an interview with Papadopolous earlier this year, he told this reporter that he was shocked when Halper insinuated to him that Russia was helping the Trump campaign. Papadopolous said that he told him, "he didn't have any idea what the hell he was talking about that would be treason and I have nothing to do with that."

Grassley's Office Gets Pentagon Docs

Moreover, this news site has learned that the Pentagon has finally sent Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley's committee the information it requested in July, regarding Halper's contracts and the Office of Net Assessment. Grassley sent the request in a letter to Department of Defense Acting Secretary Mark Esper, after a Pentagon Inspector General investigation discovered that the office failed to conduct appropriate oversight of the contracts. Grassley urged Esper for the information.

According to the DoD Inspector General's report the Office of Net Assessment (ONA) Contracting Officer's Representatives (CORs) "did not maintain documentation of the work performed by Professor Halper or any communication that ONA personnel had with Professor Halper; therefore, ONA CORs could not provide sufficient documentation that Professor Halper conducted all of his work in accordance with applicable laws and regulations. We determined that while the ONA CORs established a file to maintain documents, they did not maintain sufficient documentation to comply with all the FAR requirements related to having a complete COR."

Although, Grassley stated that he wanted the information no later than July 25, the Pentagon delivered the information only last week.

Grassley's office didn't elaborate on what information was given to the committee but confirmed that it was in the process of reviewing hundreds of pages of documents.

"The committee is currently reviewing information received recently from the Pentagon, in response to Grassley's request," said Taylor Foy, a spokesman for the committee. Foy confirmed Grassley is continuing to investigate the matter.

Pentagon officials did not immediately respond to calls and emails. ( SaraACarter.com will update this story if they so chose to respond. )

The Pentagon Audit

Grassley's July letter stated that "shockingly, the audit found that these types of discrepancies were not unique to contracts with Professor Halper, which indicates ONA must take immediate steps to shore up its management and oversight of the contracting process."

"Accordingly, no later than July 25, 2019, please explain to the Committee the steps DoD has taken to address the recommendations that DoD IG made with respect to ONA's contracting procedures and produce to the Committee all records related to Professor Halper's contracts with DoD," Grassley's letter stated. "In addition, I request that ONA provide a briefing to my Committee staff regarding the Halper contracts."

The 74-year old professor, has rarely spoken out publicly since being outed by The Washington Post, and other news organizations, as one of the informants for the bureau who spied on the Trump campaign. He spent a career developing top-level government connections–not just through academia, as he did in Great Britain through the Cambridge Security Initiative, but through his connections in both the CIA and British MI-6. He is expected to be speaking this month at the seminar, he helped found, according to The Daily Caller.

"The results of this audit are disappointing and illustrate a systemic failure to manage and oversee the contracting process," stated the Senator in the letter sent July, 12 to the DOD. "Time and again, DoD's challenges with contract management and oversight are put on display. It is far past time the largest, most critical agency in this country steps up and takes immediate action to increase its efforts to stop waste, fraud and abuse of taxpayer dollars."

The Office of Net Assessment came under fire in 2016, when Bill Gertz, a columnist for The Washington Times, revealed that it failed to produce the top-secret net assessments the office was established to do for more than a decade, despite its then nearly $20 million annual budget.

In August, a Pentagon Inspector General report revealed that the office failed to document the research Halper had conducted for the Pentagon in four separate studies worth roughly $1 million. The inspector general's report revealed that loose contracting practices at the office and failed oversight was to blame.

[Nov 04, 2019] Was MI6 aware of Steele's work investigating Trump's Russian connections from the start of the time Steele was doing that work?

Nov 04, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

English Outsider , 03 November 2019 at 04:05 PM

Mr Johnson - an amateur's question but it's a question that was relevant as soon as Mr Steele's work became public knowledge. Was MI6 aware of Steele's work investigating Trump's Russian connections from the start of the time Steele was doing that work?

The Washington Post article contains these assertions -

"In 2009, after more than two decades in public service, Steele turned to the private sector and founded a London-based consulting firm, Orbis Business Intelligence, drawing on the reputation and network he developed doing intelligence work."

"Steele brought far more: He was able to tap a network of human sources cultivated over decades of Russia work. He moved quickly, reaching out to Russian contacts and others he referred to as "collectors" who had other sources -- some of whom had no idea their comments would be passed along to Steele."

Earlier on SST the question was raised of whether Steele had used contacts made earlier during his official work. The view was that he could not do that as a retired Intelligence Officer - else any such retired Officer could launch into private business using MI6 networks freely for their own profit and possibly putting those networks at risk.

The Washington Post article is carefully written. Possibly to lend credibility to Steele's work it claims MI6 networks were used in assembling that work. That claim may not be true but if it is not true it throws into doubt the veracity of other claims in the article. If it is true it casts into doubt the veracity of the account of the meeting with Sir Richard Dearlove.

In any case, whether it's true that Steele used official networks or not, Steele's former employers must have kept a close eye on what Steele was doing collecting his information. They would not want a former Intelligence Officer working in much the same field without knowing what he was doing. There must therefore have been liaison with UK Intelligence from the start of Steele's investigation. There was in any case a good deal of contact between Steele and his former colleagues -

"In an interview, Dearlove said Steele became the "go-to person on Russia in the commercial sector" following his retirement from the Secret Intelligence Service."

Steele was therefore not a private enquiry agent retiring into business on retirement and seeing nothing of his former colleagues. He remained in close contact with them. Very close, one would imagine, if he was still using official networks as the article claims. Close in any case because he was a "go-to person."

So this section is bogus - "In the early fall, he and Burrows turned to Dearlove, their former MI6 boss, for advice. Sitting in winged chairs at the Garrick Club, one of London's most venerable private establishments, under oil paintings of famed British playwrights, the two men shared their worries about what was happening in the United States. They asked for his guidance about how to handle their obligations to their client and the public, Dearlove recalled."

Nonsense. Steele had been liaising with, or at least being supervised by, his former employers as soon as he started this assignment. Any problems or moral issues and those former employers would have been aware of it. To suggest that the meeting with Dearlove was the first time MI6 had heard of the affair is clearly misleading.

So this question - "Was MI6 aware of Steele's work investigating Trump's Russian connections from the start of the time Steele was doing that work?" must be answered with a "yes".

That work was extremely sensitive. It was nothing less than investigating an American Presidential candidate. Therefore some official in MI6 authorised that work from the start. Which leads to the question, at what level would that authorisation have been given?

blue peacock , 03 November 2019 at 05:58 PM
"Which leads to the question, at what level would that authorisation have been given?"

EO

If the scheme in the US was run by Brennan, Clapper & Comey, possibly with the knowledge and even at the instruction of Obama, then it would lead to a presumption that it was authorized at the highest level. Of course to also keep it under wraps, Brennan would have been in communication with his counterpart in the UK and maybe even enlisted him in his Trump Task Force.

Factotum , 03 November 2019 at 06:32 PM
Did Mueller find "nothing" on Trump and Russia because Mueller and friends did not want anyone else snooping into what had already been going on with the IC and Trump?

[Nov 03, 2019] Growing Indicators of Brennan's CIA Trump Task Force by Larry C Johnson - Sic Semper Tyrannis

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... The Task Force also could carry out other covert actions, such as information operations. A nice sounding euphemism for propaganda, and computer network operations. There has been some informed speculation that Guccifer 2.0 was a creation of this Task Force. ..."
Nov 03, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Growing Indicators of Brennan's CIA Trump Task Force by Larry C Johnson Larry Johnson-5x7

The average American has no idea how alarming is the news that former CIA Director John Brennan reportedly created and staffed a CIA Task Force in early 2016 that was named, Trump Task Force, and given the mission of spying on and carrying out covert actions against the campaign of candidate Donald Trump.

This was not a simple gathering of a small number of disgruntled Democrats working at the CIA who got together like a book club to grouse and complain about the brash real estate guy from New York. It was a specially designed covert action to try to destroy Donald Trump.

A "Task Force" is a special bureaucratic creation that provides a vehicle for bring case officers and analysts together, along with admin support, for a limited term project. But it also can be expanded to include personnel from other agencies, such as the FBI, DIA and NSA. Task Forces have been used since the inception of the CIA in 1947. Here's a recently declassified memo outlining the considerations in the creation of a task force in 1958. The author, L.K. White, talks about the need for a coordinating Headquarters element and an Operational unit "in the field", i.e. deployed around the world.

A Task Force operates independent of the CIA " Mission Centers " (that's the jargon for the current CIA organization chart).

So what did John Brennan do? I am told by an knowledgeable source that Brennan created a Trump Task Force in early 2016. It was an invitation only Task Force. Specific case officers (i.e., men and women who recruit and handle spies overseas), analysts and admin personnel were recruited. Not everyone invited accepted the offer. But many did.

This was not a CIA only operation. Personnel from the FBI also were assigned to the Task Force. We have some clues that Christopher Steele's FBi handler, Michael Gaeta, may have been detailed to the Trump Task Force ( see here ).

So what kind of things would this Task Force do? The case officers would work with foreign intelligence services such as MI-6, the Italians, the Ukrainians and the Australians on identifying intelligence collection priorities. Task Force members could task NSA to do targeted collection. They also would have the ability to engage in covert action, such as targeting George Papadopoulos. Joseph Mifsud may be able to shed light on the CIA officers who met with him, briefed on operational objectives regarding Papadopoulos and helped arrange monitored meetings. I think it is highly likely that the honey pot that met with George Papadopoulos, a woman named Azra Turk, was part of the CIA Trump Task Force.

The Task Force also could carry out other covert actions, such as information operations. A nice sounding euphemism for propaganda, and computer network operations. There has been some informed speculation that Guccifer 2.0 was a creation of this Task Force.

In light of what we have learned about the alleged CIA whistleblower, Eric Ciaramella, there should be a serious investigation to determine if he was a part of this Task Force or, at minimum, reporting to them.

When I described this to one friend, a retired CIA Chief of Station, his first response was, "My God, that's illegal." We then reminisced about another illegal operation carried out under the auspices of the CIA Central American Task Force back in the 1980s. That became known to Americans as the Iran Contra scandal.

I sure hope that John Durham and his team are looking at this angle. If true it marks a new and damning indictment of the corruption of the CIA. Rather than spying on genuine foreign threats, this Task Force played a critical role in creating and feeding the meme that Donald Trump was a tool of the Russians and a puppet of Putin.

[Sep 28, 2019] Christopher Steele's connection to Ukraine

Sep 28, 2019 | economistsview.typepad.com

JohnH -> JohnH... , September 26, 2019 at 01:02 PM

Christopher Steele's connection to Ukraine:

"During the Ukraine cries in 2014-15, Chris Steele had a number of commercial clients who were asking him for reports on what was going on in Russia, what was going on in Ukraine, what was going on between them." --Victoria Nuland.
https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2018/02/04/former_assistant_secretary_of_state_victoria_nuland_christopher_steele_also_shared_information_with_state_department.html

By commercial clients, you should read oligarchs who were still in business because they had sworn fealty to the US owned regime.

JohnH -> JohnH... , September 26, 2019 at 07:09 PM
More information on Hunter Biden. He served on the President's Advisory Council of the National Democratic Institute (NDI), a subsidiary of the National Endowment for Democracy, which was set up after Congress banned the CIA from pursuing regime change. A lot of the coordination and assistance for the Ukraine coup probably passed through that 'non-profit.' Joe Biden was Obama's point person, and Hunter Biden was probably Joe's eyes, ears, and gopher at NDI.

Immediately after the coup, Hunter was appointed to the board of the strategically critical Burisma energy company, Ukraine's largest producer of natural gas. From what I have seen, the US likes to have its assets sit on the Board of strategically critically energy companies.

And is Ukraine ever strategically important!!! Apart from the fact the Russian pipelines pass through the country, "Ukraine has an estimated 42 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of technically recoverable shale gas reserves, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), ranking its deposits as the fourth largest in Europe."
https://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php/Ukraine_and_fracking

Again, Hunter Biden's appointment would not have been by chance. He would have been put there to once again to be Joe Biden's eyes, ears, and gopher.

As a side benefit, Hunter Biden would have been in an excellent position, both from his work at NDI and at Burisma, to meet the movers and shakers in post-coup Ukraine and coordinate disinformation campaigns as needed. The Ukrainians would have been eager to help as the solvency of the country depended on US loans.

So are we about to witness the first color revolution on US soil? Could be

[Sep 27, 2019] Christopher Steele's connection to Ukraine

Notable quotes:
"... "During the Ukraine cries in 2014-15, Chris Steele had a number of commercial clients who were asking him for reports on what was going on in Russia, what was going on in Ukraine, what was going on between them." --Victoria Nuland. ..."
"... More information on Hunter Biden. He served on the President's Advisory Council of the National Democratic Institute (NDI), a subsidiary of the National Endowment for Democracy, which was set up after Congress banned the CIA from pursuing regime change. A lot of the coordination and assistance for the Ukraine coup probably passed through that 'non-profit.' Joe Biden was Obama's point person, and Hunter Biden was probably Joe's eyes, ears, and gopher at NDI. ..."
"... As a side benefit, Hunter Biden would have been in an excellent position, both from his work at NDI and at Burisma, to meet the movers and shakers in post-coup Ukraine and coordinate disinformation campaigns as needed. The Ukrainians would have been eager to help as the solvency of the country depended on US loans. ..."
Sep 27, 2019 | economistsview.typepad.com

JohnH -> JohnH... , September 26, 2019 at 01:02 PM

Christopher Steele's connection to Ukraine:

"During the Ukraine cries in 2014-15, Chris Steele had a number of commercial clients who were asking him for reports on what was going on in Russia, what was going on in Ukraine, what was going on between them." --Victoria Nuland.

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2018/02/04/former_assistant_secretary_of_state_victoria_nuland_christopher_steele_also_shared_information_with_state_department.html

By commercial clients, you should read oligarchs who were still in business because they had sworn fealty to the US owned regime.

JohnH -> JohnH... , September 26, 2019 at 07:09 PM
More information on Hunter Biden. He served on the President's Advisory Council of the National Democratic Institute (NDI), a subsidiary of the National Endowment for Democracy, which was set up after Congress banned the CIA from pursuing regime change. A lot of the coordination and assistance for the Ukraine coup probably passed through that 'non-profit.' Joe Biden was Obama's point person, and Hunter Biden was probably Joe's eyes, ears, and gopher at NDI.

Immediately after the coup, Hunter was appointed to the board of the strategically critical Burisma energy company, Ukraine's largest producer of natural gas. From what I have seen, the US likes to have its assets sit on the Board of strategically critically energy companies.

And is Ukraine ever strategically important!!! Apart from the fact the Russian pipelines pass through the country, "Ukraine has an estimated 42 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of technically recoverable shale gas reserves, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), ranking its deposits as the fourth largest in Europe."
https://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php/Ukraine_and_fracking

Again, Hunter Biden's appointment would not have been by chance. He would have been put there to once again to be Joe Biden's eyes, ears, and gopher.

As a side benefit, Hunter Biden would have been in an excellent position, both from his work at NDI and at Burisma, to meet the movers and shakers in post-coup Ukraine and coordinate disinformation campaigns as needed. The Ukrainians would have been eager to help as the solvency of the country depended on US loans.

So are we about to witness the first color revolution on US soil? Could be

[Sep 18, 2019] DOJ Sued For Records Of FBI Agent Who Helped Circulate Steele Dossier

Looks like Cheney protégé Victoria Nuland played an important role in Steele dossier saga.
I wonder why female neocons are so nasty. Is this this suppressed "Inferiority complex" or what ?
Notable quotes:
"... A Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit was filed against the US Justice Department on Wednesday by legal watchdog group Judicial Watch , ..."
"... According to August 2018 testimony by the DOJ's former #4 official Bruce Ohr, dossier author Christopher Steele gave two memos from his salacious, Clinton-funded opposition research to Gaeta. ..."
"... According to the Epoch Times ..."
"... For this visit, the FBI sought permission from the office of Nuland, the assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs. Nuland, who had been the recipient of many of Steele's reports, gave permission for the more formal meeting. On July 5, 2016, Gaeta traveled to London and met with Steele at the offices of Steele's firm, Orbis. ..."
"... Victoria Nuland???? Oh, waits, that Nuland. The qwm who orchestrated the Ukraine mess. Now I've got it, whew, thought I was losing my memory there for a bit. ..."
Sep 18, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

A Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit was filed against the US Justice Department on Wednesday by legal watchdog group Judicial Watch , seeking records concerning FBI Special Agent Michael Gaeta - an agency Legal Attaché in Rome who helped circulate the infamous Steele Dossier.

George Papadopoulos @GeorgePapa19

Expect the name Michael Gaeta to become a household name very soon regarding spygate.

The JW lawsuit seeks:

According to August 2018 testimony by the DOJ's former #4 official Bruce Ohr, dossier author Christopher Steele gave two memos from his salacious, Clinton-funded opposition research to Gaeta.

In the July 30 meeting, Chris Steele also mentioned something about the doping -- you know, one of the doping scandals. And he also mentioned, I believe -- and, again, this is based on my review of my notes -- that he had provided Mr. Gaeta with two reports "

The only thing I recall him mentioning is that he had provided two of his reports to Special Agent Gaeta.

According to the Epoch Times , Gaeta was authorized by former Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland to meet with Steele at his London office in order to obtain dossier materials.

The purpose of the London visit was clear. Steele was personally handing the first memo in his dossier to Gaeta for ultimate transmission back to the FBI and the State Department.

For this visit, the FBI sought permission from the office of Nuland, the assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs. Nuland, who had been the recipient of many of Steele's reports, gave permission for the more formal meeting. On July 5, 2016, Gaeta traveled to London and met with Steele at the offices of Steele's firm, Orbis.

The FBI's scramble to vet the dossier's claims are well known. According to an April, 2017 NYT report , the FBI agreed to pay Steele $50,000 for "solid corroboration" of his claims . Steele was apparently unable to produce satisfactory evidence - and was not paid for his efforts :

Mr. Steele met his F.B.I. contact in Rome in early October, bringing a stack of new intelligence reports. One, dated Sept. 14, said that Mr. Putin was facing "fallout" over his apparent involvement in the D.N.C. hack and was receiving "conflicting advice" on what to do.

The agent said that if Mr. Steele could get solid corroboration of his reports, the F.B.I. would pay him $50,000 for his efforts, according to two people familiar with the offer. Ultimately, he was not paid . - NYT

Still, the FBI used the dossier to obtain the FISA warrant on former Trump campaign aide Carter Page - while the document itself was heavily shopped around to various media outlets . The late Sen. John McCain provided a copy to Former FBI Director James Comey, who already had a version, and briefed President Trump on the salacious document. Comey's briefing to Trump was then used by CNN and BuzzFeed to justify reporting on and publishing the dossier following the election.

" The FBI is covering up its role in the Russiagate hoax ," said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. "Judicial Watch has had to fight the FBI 'tooth and nail' for every scrap of information about the illicit targeting of President Trump."


Herp and Derp , 1 minute ago link

Great news that Ted is finally (after 30+ years of discussion) introducing a term limits amendment.

Along with term limits for legislature, we need to kill the deep state as well. The government needs to be reduced significantly. I say we go back to spoils. If a federal role is needed, then it must be hired/re-hired by the whitehouse. Every FBI agent, etc. Trump has proven that most current direct appointments are waste of money and unnecessary.

Limits restricting ex-politicians and military from lobbying, but also partners and nepotism need to be codified and restricted for politician families.

LEEPERMAX , 2 minutes ago link

Whether it's MARK MEADOWS, DOUG COLLINS, JIM JORDAN, LINDSEY GRAHAM or any of the others, I've come to the conclusion that the ONLY PERSON seriously taking on those who were involved in THE ATTEMPTED COUP TO TAKE DOWN TRUMP is TOM FITTON of JUDICIAL WATCH.

The U.S. is a Captured Operation

tunetopper , 5 minutes ago link

Misfud was in Rome too. The Most Venerable Order of the Hospital St John - present sovereign, Queen Elizabeth II. Was he a bailiff or a knight, question...?

Swamidon , 8 minutes ago link

Talk talk talk, its cheap, and boring with the same criminals appearing over and over, but no action ever taken and the Traitors don't look very nervous. Why doesn't Trump issue an Executive Order to direct employees of the DOJ and the FBI etc., to fully cooperate with investigators?

I am Groot , 15 minutes ago link

Time to fire Director Deep State Wray and dismantle the FBI, President Trump ! They are 100% corrupt !

CheapBastard , 13 minutes ago link

He's a huge disappointment.

NoDebt , 6 minutes ago link

Agreed. This guy Wray has been slow-walking and standing in the way of anything happening at every turn. I am convinced he is absolutely there to protect the FBI and nothing else. He is definitely acting like a "company man".

And, I'm not gonna give Trump any more free passes for what seems to be a lot of BAD picks in his appointments. In this respect I think it's where Trump has been the most disappointing.

White Nat , 21 minutes ago link

Hope Judicial Watch files a FOIA request for weiner's laptop.

gilhgvc , 23 minutes ago link

correction: BARR,TRUMP and the REPUBLICANS are ALLOWING the FBI to cover up

New_Meat , 24 minutes ago link

Nuland?

Victoria Nuland???? Oh, waits, that Nuland. The qwm who orchestrated the Ukraine mess. Now I've got it, whew, thought I was losing my memory there for a bit.

but who is Evelyn Farkas? Gotta' think on that one.

f'noldbastard , 43 minutes ago link

They may respond sometime in 2025

Gringo Viejo , 44 minutes ago link

The FBI was founded by a cross dressing, closet homosexual with a gambling "jones" who was blackmailed by the Mafia.

And it was expected to improve with age?

JoeTurner , 45 minutes ago link

Is Steele still alive? He seems like a major liability

chunga , 33 minutes ago link

Christopher Wray is another beauty right up there with Stiff Sessions.

Secret Weapon , 46 minutes ago link

The FBI has become America's Gestapo.

chunga , 43 minutes ago link

Their top experts have been studying the malfunctioning Epstein cameras for about three weeks now.

Demologos , 26 minutes ago link

The FBI has their TOP men studying it, TOP men!

chunga , 10 minutes ago link

When NYPD busted Weiner Comey sent his black hats to seize the laptop.

While under an international spotlight Barr recused himself from the Epstein matter and Wray did nothing.

[Sep 15, 2019] How the UK Security Services neutralised the country s leading liberal newspaper by Matt Kennard and Mark Curtis

Highly recommended!
Essentially neoliberal MSM were hijacked. Which was easy to do. The current anti-Russian campaign is conducted under the direct guidance of MI6 and similar agencies
Notable quotes:
"... committee minutes note the secretary saying: "The Guardian was obliged to seek advice under the terms of the DA notice code." The minutes add: "This failure to seek advice was a key source of concern and considerable efforts had been made to address it." ..."
"... These "considerable efforts" included a D-Notice sent out by the committee on 7 June 2013 – the day after The Guardian published the first documents – to all major UK media editors, saying they should refrain from publishing information that would "jeopardise both national security and possibly UK personnel". It was marked "private and confidential: not for publication, broadcast or use on social media". ..."
"... "The FT [Financial Times] and The Times did not mention it [the initial Snowden revelations] and the Telegraph published only a short". It continued by noting that only The Independent "followed up the substantive allegations". It added, "The BBC has also chosen to largely ignore the story." ..."
"... The British security services had carried out more than a "symbolic act". It was both a show of strength and a clear threat. The Guardian was then the only major newspaper that could be relied upon by whistleblowers in the US and British security bodies to receive and cover their exposures, a situation which posed a challenge to security agencies. ..."
"... The increasingly aggressive overtures made to The Guardian worked. The committee chair noted that after GCHQ had overseen the smashing up of the newspaper's laptops "engagement with The Guardian had continued to strengthen". ..."
"... But the most important part of this charm and threat offensive was getting The Guardian to agree to take a seat on the D-Notice Committee itself. The committee minutes are explicit on this, noting that "the process had culminated by [sic] the appointment of Paul Johnson (deputy editor Guardian News and Media) as a DPBAC [i.e. D-Notice Committee] member". ..."
"... The Guardian's deputy editor went directly from the corporation's basement with an angle-grinder to sitting on the D-Notice Committee alongside the security service officials who had tried to stop his paper publishing. ..."
"... In November 2016, The Guardian published an unprecedented "exclusive" with Andrew Parker, the head of MI5, Britain's domestic security service. The article noted that this was the "first newspaper interview given by an incumbent MI5 chief in the service's 107-year history". It was co-written by deputy editor Paul Johnson, who had never written about the security services before and who was still sitting on the D-Notice Committee. This was not mentioned in the article. ..."
"... The MI5 chief was given copious space to make claims about the national security threat posed by an "increasingly aggressive" Russia. Johnson and his co-author noted, "Parker said he was talking to The Guardian rather than any other newspaper despite the publication of the Snowden files." ..."
"... Just two weeks before the interview with MI6's chief was published, The Guardian itself reported on the high court stating that it would "hear an application for a judicial review of the Crown Prosecution Service's decision not to charge MI6's former counterterrorism director, Sir Mark Allen, over the abduction of Abdel Hakim Belhaj and his pregnant wife who were transferred to Libya in a joint CIA-MI6 operation in 2004". ..."
"... The security services were probably feeding The Guardian these "exclusives" as part of the process of bringing it onside and neutralising the only independent newspaper with the resources to receive and cover a leak such as Snowden's. They were possibly acting to prevent any revelations of this kind happening again. ..."
"... The Guardian's coverage of anti-Semitism in Labour has been suspiciously extensive, compared to the known extent of the problem in the party, and its focus on Corbyn personally suggests that the issue is being used politically. While anti-Semitism does exist in the Labour Party, evidence suggests it is at relatively low levels. Since September 2015, when Corbyn became Labour leader, 0.06% of the Labour membership has been investigated for anti-Semitic comments or posts. In 2016, an independent inquiry commissioned by Labour concluded that the party "is not overrun by anti-Semitism, Islamophobia or other forms of racism. Further, it is the party that initiated every single United Kingdom race equality law." ..."
"... A former Guardian journalist similarly told us: "It is significant that exclusive stories recently about British collusion in torture and policy towards the interrogation of terror suspects and other detainees have been passed to other papers including The Times rather than The Guardian." ..."
"... The Guardian had gone in six short years from being the natural outlet to place stories exposing wrongdoing by the security state to a platform trusted by the security state to amplify its information operations. A once relatively independent media platform has been largely neutralised by UK security services fearful of being exposed further. Which begs the question: where does the next Snowden go? DM ..."
Jan 01, 2019 | dailymaverick.co.za

The Guardian, Britain's leading liberal newspaper with a global reputation for independent and critical journalism, has been successfully targeted by security agencies to neutralise its adversarial reporting of the 'security state', according to newly released documents and evidence from former and current Guardian journalists.

The UK security services targeted The Guardian after the newspaper started publishing the contents of secret US government documents leaked by National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden in June 2013.

Snowden's bombshell revelations continued for months and were the largest-ever leak of classified material covering the NSA and its UK equivalent, the Government Communications Headquarters. They revealed programmes of mass surveillance operated by both agencies.

According to minutes of meetings of the UK's Defence and Security Media Advisory Committee, the revelations caused alarm in the British security services and Ministry of Defence.

" This event was very concerning because at the outset The Guardian avoided engaging with the [committee] before publishing the first tranche of information," state minutes of a 7 November 2013 meeting at the MOD.

The DSMA Committee, more commonly known as the D-Notice Committee, is run by the MOD, where it meets every six months. A small number of journalists are also invited to sit on the committee. Its stated purpose is to "prevent inadvertent public disclosure of information that would compromise UK military and intelligence operations". It can issue "notices" to the media to encourage them not to publish certain information.

The committee is currently chaired by the MOD's director-general of security policy Dominic Wilson, who was previously director of security and intelligence in the British Cabinet Office. Its secretary is Brigadier Geoffrey Dodds OBE, who describes himself as an "accomplished, senior ex-military commander with extensive experience of operational level leadership".

The D-Notice system describes itself as voluntary , placing no obligations on the media to comply with any notice issued. This means there should have been no need for the Guardian to consult the MOD before publishing the Snowden documents.

Yet committee minutes note the secretary saying: "The Guardian was obliged to seek advice under the terms of the DA notice code." The minutes add: "This failure to seek advice was a key source of concern and considerable efforts had been made to address it."

' Considerable efforts'

These "considerable efforts" included a D-Notice sent out by the committee on 7 June 2013 – the day after The Guardian published the first documents – to all major UK media editors, saying they should refrain from publishing information that would "jeopardise both national security and possibly UK personnel". It was marked "private and confidential: not for publication, broadcast or use on social media".

Clearly the committee did not want its issuing of the notice to be publicised, and it was nearly successful. Only the right-wing blog Guido Fawkes made it public.

At the time, according to the committee minutes , the "intelligence agencies in particular had continued to ask for more advisories [i.e. D-Notices] to be sent out". Such D-Notices were clearly seen by the intelligence services not so much as a tool to advise the media but rather a way to threaten it not to publish further Snowden revelations.

One night, amidst the first Snowden stories being published, the D-Notice Committee's then-secretary Air Vice-Marshal Andrew Vallance personally called Alan Rusbridger, then editor of The Guardian. Vallance "made clear his concern that The Guardian had failed to consult him in advance before telling the world", according to a Guardian journalist who interviewed Rusbridger.

Later in the year, Prime Minister David Cameron again used the D-Notice system as a threat to the media.

" I don't want to have to use injunctions or D-Notices or the other tougher measures," he said in a statement to MPs. "I think it's much better to appeal to newspapers' sense of social responsibility. But if they don't demonstrate some social responsibility it would be very difficult for government to stand back and not to act."

The threats worked. The Press Gazette reported at the time that "The FT [Financial Times] and The Times did not mention it [the initial Snowden revelations] and the Telegraph published only a short". It continued by noting that only The Independent "followed up the substantive allegations". It added, "The BBC has also chosen to largely ignore the story."

The Guardian, however, remained uncowed.

According to the committee minutes , the fact The Guardian would not stop publishing "undoubtedly raised questions in some minds about the system's future usefulness". If the D-Notice system could not prevent The Guardian publishing GCHQ's most sensitive secrets, what was it good for?

It was time to rein in The Guardian and make sure this never happened again.

GCHQ and laptops

The security services ratcheted up their "considerable efforts" to deal with the exposures. On 20 July 2013, GCHQ officials entered The Guardian's offices at King's Cross in London, six weeks after the first Snowden-related article had been published. At the request of the government and security services, Guardian deputy editor Paul Johnson, along with two others, spent three hours destroying the laptops containing the Snowden documents.

The Guardian staffers, according to one of the newspaper's reporters, brought "angle-grinders, dremels – drills with revolving bits – and masks". The reporter added, "The spy agency provided one piece of hi-tech equipment, a 'degausser', which destroys magnetic fields and erases data."

Johnson claims that the destruction of the computers was "purely a symbolic act", adding that "the government and GCHQ knew, because we had told them, that the material had been taken to the US to be shared with the New York Times. The reporting would go on. The episode hadn't changed anything."

Yet the episode did change something. As the D-Notice Committee minutes for November 2013 outlined: "Towards the end of July [as the computers were being destroyed], The Guardian had begun to seek and accept D-Notice advice not to publish certain highly sensitive details and since then the dialogue [with the committee] had been reasonable and improving."

The British security services had carried out more than a "symbolic act". It was both a show of strength and a clear threat. The Guardian was then the only major newspaper that could be relied upon by whistleblowers in the US and British security bodies to receive and cover their exposures, a situation which posed a challenge to security agencies.

The increasingly aggressive overtures made to The Guardian worked. The committee chair noted that after GCHQ had overseen the smashing up of the newspaper's laptops "engagement with The Guardian had continued to strengthen".

Moreover, he added , there were now "regular dialogues between the secretary and deputy secretaries and Guardian journalists". Rusbridger later testified to the Home Affairs Committee that Air Vice-Marshal Vallance of the D-Notice committee and himself "collaborated" in the aftermath of the Snowden affair and that Vallance had even "been at The Guardian offices to talk to all our reporters".

But the most important part of this charm and threat offensive was getting The Guardian to agree to take a seat on the D-Notice Committee itself. The committee minutes are explicit on this, noting that "the process had culminated by [sic] the appointment of Paul Johnson (deputy editor Guardian News and Media) as a DPBAC [i.e. D-Notice Committee] member".

At some point in 2013 or early 2014, Johnson – the same deputy editor who had smashed up his newspaper's computers under the watchful gaze of British intelligence agents – was approached to take up a seat on the committee. Johnson attended his first meeting in May 2014 and was to remain on it until October 2018 .

The Guardian's deputy editor went directly from the corporation's basement with an angle-grinder to sitting on the D-Notice Committee alongside the security service officials who had tried to stop his paper publishing.

A new editor

Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger withstood intense pressure not to publish some of the Snowden revelations but agreed to Johnson taking a seat on the D-Notice Committee as a tactical sop to the security services. Throughout his tenure, The Guardian continued to publish some stories critical of the security services.

But in March 2015, the situation changed when the Guardian appointed a new editor, Katharine Viner, who had less experience than Rusbridger of dealing with the security services. Viner had started out on fashion and entertainment magazine Cosmopolitan and had no history in national security reporting. According to insiders, she showed much less leadership during the Snowden affair than Janine Gibson in the US (Gibson was another candidate to be Rusbridger's successor).

Viner was then editor-in-chief of Guardian Australia, which was launched just two weeks before the first Snowden revelations were published. Australia and New Zealand comprise two-fifths of the so-called "Five Eyes" surveillance alliance exposed by Snowden.

This was an opportunity for the security services. It appears that their seduction began the following year.

In November 2016, The Guardian published an unprecedented "exclusive" with Andrew Parker, the head of MI5, Britain's domestic security service. The article noted that this was the "first newspaper interview given by an incumbent MI5 chief in the service's 107-year history". It was co-written by deputy editor Paul Johnson, who had never written about the security services before and who was still sitting on the D-Notice Committee. This was not mentioned in the article.

The MI5 chief was given copious space to make claims about the national security threat posed by an "increasingly aggressive" Russia. Johnson and his co-author noted, "Parker said he was talking to The Guardian rather than any other newspaper despite the publication of the Snowden files."

Parker told the two reporters, "We recognise that in a changing world we have to change too. We have a responsibility to talk about our work and explain it."

Four months after the MI5 interview, in March 2017, the Guardian published another unprecedented "exclusive", this time with Alex Younger, the sitting chief of MI6, Britain's external intelligence agency. This exclusive was awarded by the Secret Intelligence Service to The Guardian's investigations editor, Nick Hopkins, who had been appointed 14 months previously.

The interview was the first Younger had given to a national newspaper and was again softball. Titled "MI6 returns to 'tapping up' in an effort to recruit black and Asian officers", it focused almost entirely on the intelligence service's stated desire to recruit from ethnic minority communities.

" Simply, we have to attract the best of modern Britain," Younger told Hopkins. "Every community from every part of Britain should feel they have what it takes, no matter what their background or status."

Just two weeks before the interview with MI6's chief was published, The Guardian itself reported on the high court stating that it would "hear an application for a judicial review of the Crown Prosecution Service's decision not to charge MI6's former counterterrorism director, Sir Mark Allen, over the abduction of Abdel Hakim Belhaj and his pregnant wife who were transferred to Libya in a joint CIA-MI6 operation in 2004".

None of this featured in The Guardian article, which did, however, cover discussions of whether the James Bond actor Daniel Craig would qualify for the intelligence service. "He would not get into MI6," Younger told Hopkins.

More recently, in August 2019, The Guardian was awarded yet another exclusive, this time with Metropolitan police assistant commissioner Neil Basu, Britain's most senior counter-terrorism officer. This was Basu's " first major interview since taking up his post" the previous year and resulted in a three-part series of articles, one of which was entitled "Met police examine Vladimir Putin's role in Salisbury attack".

The security services were probably feeding The Guardian these "exclusives" as part of the process of bringing it onside and neutralising the only independent newspaper with the resources to receive and cover a leak such as Snowden's. They were possibly acting to prevent any revelations of this kind happening again.

What, if any, private conversations have taken place between Viner and the security services during her tenure as editor are not known. But in 2018, when Paul Johnson eventually left the D-Notice Committee, its chair, the MOD's Dominic Wilson, praised Johnson who, he said, had been "instrumental in re-establishing links with The Guardian".

Decline in critical reporting

Amidst these spoon-fed intelligence exclusives, Viner also oversaw the breakup of The Guardian's celebrated investigative team, whose muck-racking journalists were told to apply for other jobs outside of investigations.

One well-placed source told the Press Gazette at the time that journalists on the investigations team "have not felt backed by senior editors over the last year", and that "some also feel the company has become more risk-averse in the same period".

In the period since Snowden, The Guardian has lost many of its top investigative reporters who had covered national security issues, notably Shiv Malik, Nick Davies, David Leigh, Richard Norton-Taylor, Ewen MacAskill and Ian Cobain. The few journalists who were replaced were succeeded by less experienced reporters with apparently less commitment to exposing the security state. The current defence and security editor, Dan Sabbagh, started at The Guardian as head of media and technology and has no history of covering national security.

" It seems they've got rid of everyone who seemed to cover the security services and military in an adversarial way," one current Guardian journalist told us.

Indeed, during the last two years of Rusbridger's editorship, The Guardian published about 110 articles per year tagged as MI6 on its website. Since Viner took over, the average per year has halved and is decreasing year by year.

" Effective scrutiny of the security and intelligence agencies -- epitomised by the Snowden scoops but also many other stories -- appears to have been abandoned," a former Guardian journalist told us. The former reporter added that, in recent years, it "sometimes seems The Guardian is worried about upsetting the spooks."

A second former Guardian journalist added: "The Guardian no longer seems to have such a challenging relationship with the intelligence services, and is perhaps seeking to mend fences since Snowden. This is concerning, because spooks are always manipulative and not always to be trusted."

While some articles critical of the security services still do appear in the paper, its "scoops" increasingly focus on issues more acceptable to them. Since the Snowden affair, The Guardian does not appear to have published any articles based on an intelligence or security services source that was not officially sanctioned to speak.

The Guardian has, by contrast, published a steady stream of exclusives on the major official enemy of the security services, Russia, exposing Putin, his friends and the work of its intelligence services and military.

In the Panama Papers leak in April 2016, which revealed how companies and individuals around the world were using an offshore law firm to avoid paying tax, The Guardian's front-page launch scoop was authored by Luke Harding, who has received many security service tips focused on the "Russia threat", and was titled "Revealed: the $2bn offshore trail that leads to Vladimir Putin".

Three sentences into the piece, however, Harding notes that "the president's name does not appear in any of the records" although he insists that "the data reveals a pattern – his friends have earned millions from deals that seemingly could not have been secured without his patronage".

There was a much bigger story in the Panama Papers which The Guardian chose to downplay by leaving it to the following day. This concerned the father of the then Prime Minister, David Cameron, who "ran an offshore fund that avoided ever having to pay tax in Britain by hiring a small army of Bahamas residents – including a part-time bishop – to sign its paperwork".

We understand there was some argument between journalists about not leading with the Cameron story as the launch splash. Putin's friends were eventually deemed more important than the Prime Minister of the country where the paper published.

Getting Julian Assange

The Guardian also appears to have been engaged in a campaign against the WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange, who had been a collaborator during the early WikiLeaks revelations in 2010.

One 2017 story came from investigative reporter Carole Cadwalladr, who writes for The Guardian's sister paper The Observer, titled "When Nigel Farage met Julian Assange". This concerned the visit of former UKIP leader Nigel Farage to the Ecuadorian embassy in March 2017, organised by the radio station LBC, for whom Farage worked as a presenter. Farage's producer at LBC accompanied Farage at the meeting, but this was not mentioned by Cadwalladr.

Rather, she posited that this meeting was "potentially a channel of communication" between WikiLeaks, Farage and Donald Trump, who were all said to be closely linked to Russia, adding that these actors were in a "political alignment" and that " WikiLeaks is, in many ways, the swirling vortex at the centre of everything".

Yet Cadwalladr's one official on-the-record source for this speculation was a "highly placed contact with links to US intelligence", who told her, "When the heat is turned up and all electronic communication, you have to assume, is being intensely monitored, then those are the times when intelligence communication falls back on human couriers. Where you have individuals passing information in ways and places that cannot be monitored."

It seems likely this was innuendo being fed to The Observer by an intelligence-linked individual to promote disinformation to undermine Assange.

In 2018, however, The Guardian's attempted vilification of Assange was significantly stepped up. A new string of articles began on 18 May 2018 with one alleging Assange's "long-standing relationship with RT", the Russian state broadcaster. The series, which has been closely documented elsewhere, lasted for several months, consistently alleging with little or the most minimal circumstantial evidence that Assange had ties to Russia or the Kremlin.

One story, co-authored again by Luke Harding, claimed that "Russian diplomats held secret talks in London with people close to Julian Assange to assess whether they could help him flee the UK, The Guardian has learned". The former consul in the Ecuadorian embassy in London at this time, Fidel Narvaez, vigorously denies the existence of any such "escape plot" involving Russia and is involved in a complaint process with The Guardian for insinuating he coordinated such a plot.

This apparent mini-campaign ran until November 2018, culminating in a front-page splash , based on anonymous sources, claiming that Assange had three secret meetings at the Ecuadorian embassy with Trump's former campaign manager Paul Manafort.

This "scoop" failed all tests of journalistic credibility since it would have been impossible for anyone to have entered the highly secured Ecuadorian embassy three times with no proof. WikiLeaks and others have strongly argued that the story was manufactured and it is telling that The Guardian has since failed to refer to it in its subsequent articles on the Assange case. The Guardian, however, has still not retracted or apologised for the story which remains on its website.

The "exclusive" appeared just two weeks after Paul Johnson had been congratulated for "re-establishing links" between The Guardian and the security services.

The string of Guardian articles, along with the vilification and smear stories about Assange elsewhere in the British media, helped create the conditions for a deal between Ecuador, the UK and the US to expel Assange from the embassy in April. Assange now sits in Belmarsh maximum-security prison where he faces extradition to the US, and life in prison there, on charges under the Espionage Act.

Acting for the establishment

Another major focus of The Guardian's energies under Viner's editorship has been to attack the leader of the UK Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn.

The context is that Corbyn appears to have recently been a target of the security services. In 2015, soon after he was elected Labour leader, the Sunday Times reported a serving general warning that "there would be a direct challenge from the army and mass resignations if Corbyn became prime minister". The source told the newspaper: "The Army just wouldn't stand for it. The general staff would not allow a prime minister to jeopardise the security of this country and I think people would use whatever means possible, fair or foul, to prevent that."

On 20 May 2017, a little over two weeks before the 2017 General Election, the Daily Telegraph was fed the story that "MI5 opened a file on Jeremy Corbyn amid concerns over his links to the IRA". It formed part of a Telegraph investigation claiming to reveal "Mr Corbyn's full links to the IRA" and was sourced to an individual "close to" the MI5 investigation, who said "a file had been opened on him by the early nineties".

The Metropolitan Police Special Branch was also said to be monitoring Corbyn in the same period.

Then, on the very eve of the General Election, the Telegraph gave space to an article from Sir Richard Dearlove, the former director of MI6, under a headline: "Jeremy Corbyn is a danger to this nation. At MI6, which I once led, he wouldn't clear the security vetting."

Further, in September 2018, two anonymous senior government sources told The Times that Corbyn had been "summoned" for a "'facts of life' talk on terror" by MI5 chief Andrew Parker.

Just two weeks after news of this private meeting was leaked by the government, the Daily Mail reported another leak, this time revealing that "Jeremy Corbyn's most influential House of Commons adviser has been barred from entering Ukraine on the grounds that he is a national security threat because of his alleged links to Vladimir Putin's 'global propaganda network'."

The article concerned Andrew Murray, who had been working in Corbyn's office for a year but had still not received a security pass to enter the UK parliament. The Mail reported, based on what it called "a senior parliamentary source", that Murray's application had encountered "vetting problems".

Murray later heavily suggested that the security services had leaked the story to the Mail. "Call me sceptical if you must, but I do not see journalistic enterprise behind the Mail's sudden capacity to tease obscure information out of the [Ukrainian security service]," he wrote in the New Statesman. He added, "Someone else is doing the hard work – possibly someone being paid by the taxpayer. I doubt if their job description is preventing the election of a Corbyn government, but who knows?"

Murray told us he was approached by the New Statesman after the story about him being banned from Ukraine was leaked. "However," he added, "I wouldn't dream of suggesting anything like that to The Guardian, since I do not know any journalists still working there who I could trust."

The Guardian itself has run a remarkable number of news and comment articles criticising Corbyn since he was elected in 2015 and the paper's clearly hostile stance has been widely noted .

Given its appeal to traditional Labour supporters, the paper has probably done more to undermine Corbyn than any other. In particular, its massive coverage of alleged widespread anti-Semitism in the Labour Party has helped to disparage Corbyn more than other smears carried in the media.

The Guardian and The Observer have published hundreds of articles on "Labour anti-Semitism" and, since the beginning of this year, carried over 50 such articles with headlines clearly negative to Corbyn. Typical headlines have included " The Observer view: Labour leadership is complicit in anti-Semitism ", " Jeremy Corbyn is either blind to anti-Semitism – or he just doesn't care ", and " Labour's anti-Semitism problem is institutional. It needs investigation ".

The Guardian's coverage of anti-Semitism in Labour has been suspiciously extensive, compared to the known extent of the problem in the party, and its focus on Corbyn personally suggests that the issue is being used politically. While anti-Semitism does exist in the Labour Party, evidence suggests it is at relatively low levels. Since September 2015, when Corbyn became Labour leader, 0.06% of the Labour membership has been investigated for anti-Semitic comments or posts. In 2016, an independent inquiry commissioned by Labour concluded that the party "is not overrun by anti-Semitism, Islamophobia or other forms of racism. Further, it is the party that initiated every single United Kingdom race equality law."

Analysis of two YouGov surveys, conducted in 2015 and 2017, shows that anti-Semitic views held by Labour voters declined substantially in the first two years of Corbyn's tenure and that such views were significantly more common among Conservative voters.

Despite this, since January 2016, The Guardian has published 1,215 stories mentioning Labour and anti-Semitism, an average of around one per day, according to a search on Factiva, the database of newspaper articles. In the same period, The Guardian published just 194 articles mentioning the Conservative Party's much more serious problem with Islamophobia. A YouGov poll in 2019, for example, found that nearly half of the Tory Party membership would prefer not to have a Muslim prime minister.

At the same time, some stories which paint Corbyn's critics in a negative light have been suppressed by The Guardian. According to someone with knowledge of the matter, The Guardian declined to publish the results of a months-long critical investigation by one of its reporters into a prominent anti-Corbyn Labour MP, citing only vague legal issues.

In July 2016, one of this article's authors emailed a Guardian editor asking if he could pitch an investigation about the first attempt by the right-wing of the Labour Party to remove Corbyn, informing The Guardian of very good inside sources on those behind the attempt and their real plans. The approach was rejected as being of no interest before a pitch was even sent.

A reliable publication?

On 20 May 2019, The Times newspaper reported on a Freedom of Information request made by the Rendition Project, a group of academic experts working on torture and rendition issues, which showed that the MOD had been "developing a secret policy on torture that allows ministers to sign off intelligence-sharing that could lead to the abuse of detainees".

This might traditionally have been a Guardian story, not something for the Rupert Murdoch-owned Times. According to one civil society source, however, many groups working in this field no longer trust The Guardian.

A former Guardian journalist similarly told us: "It is significant that exclusive stories recently about British collusion in torture and policy towards the interrogation of terror suspects and other detainees have been passed to other papers including The Times rather than The Guardian."

The Times published its scoop under a strong headline , "Torture: Britain breaks law in Ministry of Defence secret policy". However, before the article was published, the MOD fed The Guardian the same documents The Times were about to splash with, believing it could soften the impact of the revelations by telling its side of the story.

The Guardian posted its own article just before The Times, with a headline that would have pleased the government: "MoD says revised torture guidance does not lower standards".

Its lead paragraph was a simple summary of the MOD's position: "The Ministry of Defence has insisted that newly emerged departmental guidance on the sharing of intelligence derived from torture with allies, remains in line with practices agreed in the aftermath of a series of scandals following the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq." However, an inspection of the documents showed this was clearly disinformation.

The Guardian had gone in six short years from being the natural outlet to place stories exposing wrongdoing by the security state to a platform trusted by the security state to amplify its information operations. A once relatively independent media platform has been largely neutralised by UK security services fearful of being exposed further. Which begs the question: where does the next Snowden go? DM

The Guardian did not respond to a request for comment.

Daily Maverick will formally launch Declassified – a new UK-focused investigation and analysis organisation run by the authors of this article – in November 2019.

Matt Kennard is an investigative journalist and co-founder of Declassified . He was previously director of the Centre for Investigative Journalism in London, and before that a reporter for the Financial Times in the US and UK. He is the author of two books, Irregular Army and The Racket .

Mark Curtis is a leading UK foreign policy analyst, journalist and the author of six books including Web of Deceit: Britain's Real Role in the World and Secret Affairs: Britain's Collusion with Radical Islam .

[Sep 11, 2019] John Brennan's and Jim Clappers' Last Gasp by Larry C Johnson

Highly recommended!
The fact that Smolenkov purchased house on his name excludes his "extraction" to the USA. He probably legally emigrated amazing some serious money in Russia
Notable quotes:
"... [Smolenkov] follows Ushakov back to Moscow, where he is a mid-level paper pusher doing administrative support for Ushakov. The CIA gets copies of Putin's itineraries that Smolenkov photographs. He is a big hit, but ultimately produces nothing of vital importance because all truly sensitive information is hand carried by principles, and never seen by administrative staff. Moreover Ushakov advises on international relations, and would not be privy to anything dealing with intelligence. Ushakov, as a long-serving Ambassador to the US, would be asked by Putin to opine on US politics. Smolenkov has access to Ushakov's post-meeting verbal comments, which he turns over to the CIA. ..."
"... The initial reports of the Steele Dossier appeared in June 2016. This coincided with John Brennan ordering Moscow Station to turn up the heat on Smolenkov to gain access to what Putin is thinking. But Smolenkov has no real direct access. Instead, he starts fabricating and/or exaggerating his access to convince his CIA handler that he is on the job and worth every penny he is being paid by US taxpayers. ..."
"... The information Smolenkov creates is passed to his CIA handler via the secure communications channel set up when he was signed up as a spy. But these reports are not handled in the normal way that sensitive human intelligence is treated at CIA Headquarters. Instead, the material is accepted at face value and not vetted to confirm its accuracy. My intel friend, citing a knowledgeable source, indicates that Smolenkov was not polygraphed. ..."
"... This raised red flags in the CIA Counterintelligence staff, especially when Brennan starts briefing the President using the information provided by Smolenkov. Brennan responds by locking most of the CIA's Russian experts out of the loop. Later, Brennan does the same thing with the National Intelligence Council, locking out the National Intelligence Officers who would normally oversee the production of a National Intelligence Assessment. In short, Brennan cooked the books using Smolenkov's intelligence, which had it been subjected to normal checks and balances would never have passed muster. It's Brennan's leaks to the press that eventually prompt the CIA to pull the plug on Smolenkov. ..."
"... The dossier attributed to Steele, it has seemed to me, showed every sign of being the proverbial 'camel produced by a committee.' ..."
"... Although I know that fabricating evidence and corrupting judicial proceedings is part of its supposed author's 'stock in trade', I think it is unclear whether he contributed all that much to the dossier. ..."
"... His prime role, I think, was to contribute a veneer of intelligence respectability to a farrago the actual origins of which could not be acknowledged, so it could be used in support of FISA applications and in briefings to journalists. ..."
"... Although it had started much earlier, the moving into 'high gear' of the conspiracy behind 'Russiagate, of which the dossier was one manifestation, and the phone 'digital forensics' produced by 'Crowdstrike' and the former GCHQ person Matt Tait another, were I think essentially panicky 'firefighting' operations. ..."
"... Part of this involved turning the conspiracy to prevent Trump being elected into a conspiracy to destabilise his Presidency and ensure he did not carry through on any of his 'anti-Borgist' agenda. ..."
Sep 11, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

A flood of news in the last 24 hours regarding Russiagate. I am referring specifically to reports that the CIA ex-filtrated Oleg Smolenkov, a mid-level Russian Foreign Ministry bureaucrat who reportedly hooked himself on the coat-tails of Yuri Ushakov, who was Ambassador to the US from 1999 through 2008. He was recruited by the CIA (i.e., asked to collect information and pass it to the U.S. Government via his or her case officer) at sometime during this period. Smolenkov is being portrayed as a supposedly "sensitive" source. But if you read either the Washington Post or New York Times accounts of this event there is not a lot of meat on this hamburger.

Regardless of the quality of his reporting, Smolenkov is the kind of recruited source that looks good on paper and helps a CIA case officer get promoted but adds little to actual U.S. intelligence on Russia. If you understood the CIA culture you would immediately recognize that a case officer (CIA terminology for the operations officer tasked with identifying and recruiting human sources) gets rewarded by recruiting persons who ostensibly will have access to information the CIA has identified as a priority target. In this case, we're talking about possible access to Vladimir Putin.

If you take time to read both articles you will quickly see that the real purpose of this "information operation" is to paint Donald Trump as a security threat that must be stopped. This is conveniently timed to assist Jerry Nadler's mission impossible to secure Trump's impeachment. But I think there is another dynamic at play--these competing explanations for what prompted the exfiltration of this CIA asset say more about the incompetence of Barack Obama and his intel chiefs. John Brennan and Jim Clapper in particular.

A former intelligence officer and friend summarized the various press accounts as the follows and offered his own insights in a note I received this morning:

[Smolenkov] follows Ushakov back to Moscow, where he is a mid-level paper pusher doing administrative support for Ushakov. The CIA gets copies of Putin's itineraries that Smolenkov photographs. He is a big hit, but ultimately produces nothing of vital importance because all truly sensitive information is hand carried by principles, and never seen by administrative staff. Moreover Ushakov advises on international relations, and would not be privy to anything dealing with intelligence. Ushakov, as a long-serving Ambassador to the US, would be asked by Putin to opine on US politics. Smolenkov has access to Ushakov's post-meeting verbal comments, which he turns over to the CIA.

The initial reports of the Steele Dossier appeared in June 2016. This coincided with John Brennan ordering Moscow Station to turn up the heat on Smolenkov to gain access to what Putin is thinking. But Smolenkov has no real direct access. Instead, he starts fabricating and/or exaggerating his access to convince his CIA handler that he is on the job and worth every penny he is being paid by US taxpayers.

The information Smolenkov creates is passed to his CIA handler via the secure communications channel set up when he was signed up as a spy. But these reports are not handled in the normal way that sensitive human intelligence is treated at CIA Headquarters. Instead, the material is accepted at face value and not vetted to confirm its accuracy. My intel friend, citing a knowledgeable source, indicates that Smolenkov was not polygraphed.

This raised red flags in the CIA Counterintelligence staff, especially when Brennan starts briefing the President using the information provided by Smolenkov. Brennan responds by locking most of the CIA's Russian experts out of the loop. Later, Brennan does the same thing with the National Intelligence Council, locking out the National Intelligence Officers who would normally oversee the production of a National Intelligence Assessment. In short, Brennan cooked the books using Smolenkov's intelligence, which had it been subjected to normal checks and balances would never have passed muster. It's Brennan's leaks to the press that eventually prompt the CIA to pull the plug on Smolenkov.

There is public evidence that Brennan not only cooked the books but that the leaks of this supposedly "sensitive" intelligence occurred when he was Director and lying Jim Clapper was Director of National Intelligence. If Oleg Smolenkov was really such a terrific source of intel, then where are the reports? It is one thing to keep such reports close hold when the source is still in place. But he has been out of danger for more than two years. Those reports should have been shared with the Senate and House Intelligence committees. If there was actual solid intelligence in those reports that corroborated the Steele Dossier, then that information would have been leaked and widely circulated. This is Sherlock Holmes dog that did not bark.Then we have the odd fact that this guy's name is all over the press and he is buying real estate in true name. What the hell!! If the CIA genuinely believed that Mr. Smolenkov was in danger he would not be walking around doing real estate deals in true name. In fact, the sources for both the Washington Post and NY Times pieces push the propaganda that Smolenkov is a sure fire target for a Russian retaliatory hit. Really? Then why publish his name and confirm his location.

That leaves me with the alternative explanation--Smolenkov is a propaganda prop and is being trotted out by Brennan to try to provide public pressure to prevent the disclosure of intelligence that will show that the CIA and the NSA were coordinating and operating with British intelligence to entrap and smear Donald Trump and members of his campaign.

I want you to take a close look at the two pieces on this exfiltration (i.e., Washington Post and NY Times) and note the significant differences

REASON FOR THE EXFILTRATION :

Let's start with the Washington Post:

The exfiltration took place sometime after an Oval Office meeting in May 2017, when President Trump revealed highly classified counterterrorism information to the Russian foreign minister and ambassador, said the current and former officials, speaking on the condition of anonymity to discuss the sensitive operation.

What was the information that Trump revealed? He was discussing intel that Israel passed regarding ISIS in Syria. (See the Washington Post story here .) Why would he talk to the Russians about that? Because every day, at least once a day, U.S. and Russian military authorities are sharing intelligence with one another in a phone call that originates from the U.S. Combined Air Operations Center (aka CAOC) at the Al Udeid Air Force Base in Qatar. Trump's conversation not only was appropriate but fully within his right to do so as Commander-in-Chief.

What the hell does this have to do with a sensitive source in Moscow? NOTHING!! Red Herring.

The NY Times account is more detailed and damning of Obama instead of Trump:

But when intelligence officials revealed the severity of Russia's election interference with unusual detail later that year, the news media picked up on details about the C.I.A.'s Kremlin sources.

C.I.A. officials worried about safety made the arduous decision in late 2016 to offer to extract the source from Russia. The situation grew more tense when the informant at first refused, citing family concerns -- prompting consternation at C.I.A. headquarters and sowing doubts among some American counterintelligence officials about the informant's trustworthiness. But the C.I.A. pressed again months later after more media inquiries. This time, the informant agreed. . . .

The decision to extract the informant was driven "in part" because of concerns that Mr. Trump and his administration had mishandled delicate intelligence, CNN reported. But former intelligence officials said there was no public evidence that Mr. Trump directly endangered the source, and other current American officials insisted that media scrutiny of the agency's sources alone was the impetus for the extraction. . . .

But the government had indicated that the source existed long before Mr. Trump took office, first in formally accusing Russia of interference in October 2016 and then when intelligence officials declassified parts of their assessment about the interference campaign for public release in January 2017. News agencies, including NBC, began reporting around that time about Mr. Putin's involvement in the election sabotage and on the C.I.A.'s possible sources for the assessment.

Trump played no role whatsoever in releasing information that allegedly compromised this so-called "golden boy" of Russian intelligence. The NY Times account makes it very clear that the release of information while Obama was President, not Trump, is what put the source in danger. Who leaked that information?

WHAT DID THE SOURCE KNOW AND WHAT DID HE TELL US?

But how valuable was this source really? What did he provide that was so enlightening? On this point the New York Times and Washington Post are more in sync.

First the NY Times:

The Moscow informant was instrumental to the C.I.A.'s most explosive conclusion about Russia's interference campaign: that President Vladimir V. Putin ordered and orchestrated it himself . As the American government's best insight into the thinking of and orders from Mr. Putin, the source was also key to the C.I.A.'s assessment that he affirmatively favored Donald J. Trump's election and personally ordered the hacking of the Democratic National Committee .

The Washington Post provides a more fulsome account:

U.S. officials had been concerned that Russian sources could be at risk of exposure as early as the fall of 2016, when the Obama administration first confirmed that Russia had stolen and publicly disclosed emails from the Democratic National Committee and the account of Hillary Clinton's campaign chairman, John Podesta.

In October 2016, the Department of Homeland Security and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence said in a joint statement that intelligence agencies were "confident that the Russian Government directed" the hacking campaign. . . .

In January 2017, the Obama administration published a detailed assessment that unambiguously laid the blame on the Kremlin, concluding that "Putin ordered an influence campaign" and that Russia's goal was to undermine faith in the U.S. democratic process and harm Clinton's chances of winning.

"That's a pretty remarkable intelligence community product -- much more specific than what you normally see," one U.S. official said. "It's very expected that potential U.S. intelligence assets in Russia would be under a higher level of scrutiny by their own intelligence services."

Sounds official. But there is no actual forensic or documentary evidence (by that I mean actual corroborating intelligence reports) to back up these claims by our oxymoronically christened intelligence community.

Vladimir Putin ordered the hack? Where is the report? It is either in a piece of intercepted electronics communication and/or in a report derived from information provided by Mr. Smolenkov. Where is it? Why has that not been shared in public? Don't have to worry about exposing the source now. He is already in the open. What did he report? Answer--no direct evidence.

Then there is the lie that the Russians hacked the DNC. They did not. Bill Binney, a former Technical Director of the NSA, and I have written on this subject previously ( see here ) and there is no truth to this claim. Let me put it simply--if the DNC had been hacked by the Russians using spearphising (this is claimed in the Robert Mueller report) then the NSA would have collected those messages and would be able to show they were transferred to the Russians. That did not happen.

This kind of chaotic leaking about an old intel op is symptomatic of panic. CIA is already officially denying key parts of the story. My money is on John Brennan and Jim Clapper as the likely impetus for these reports. They are hoping to paint Trump as a national security threat and distract from the upcoming revelations from the DOJ Inspector General report on the FISA warrants and, more threatening, the decisions that Prosecutor John Durham will take in deciding to indict those who attempted to launch a coup against Donald Trump, a legitimately elected President of the United States.


blue peacock , 10 September 2019 at 02:34 PM

I'm always skeptical of NY Times and WaPo and CNN reporting on anything national security related. It seems there is always an axe to grind.

I don't know why folks believe these media outlets have any credibility.

Larry Johnson -> blue peacock... , 10 September 2019 at 03:16 PM
Important to focus on the fact they are telling different and even contradictory stories. That's confusion on the part of the deep state.
Ana said in reply to Larry Johnson ... , 11 September 2019 at 10:00 AM
... And what helps us to decode the plot!
turcopolier -> blue peacock... , 11 September 2019 at 09:47 AM
BP

As I told LJ yesterday while he was writing this piece I have a slightly different theory of this matter. It is true that CIA suffered for a long time from a dearth of talent in the business of recruiting and running foreign clandestine HUMINT assets. This was caused by a focus by several CIA Directors on technical collection means rather than espionage. This policy drove many skilled case officers into retirement but the situation has much improved in the last decade and it must be remembered that an agency only needs a few skilled case officers with the right access to human targets to acquire some very fine and useful well placed foreign agents (spies). IMO it is likely that CIA has/had several well placed Russian assets in Moscow of whom Smolenkov was probably the least useful and the most expendable. It may well be that Brennan was using the chicken feed provided by Smolenkov to fuel the conspiracy run by him and Clapper against Trump's campaign and presidency, but Brennan left office and then the CIA under other management was faced with the problem of a Russian government which was told in the US press by implication that either the US had deep penetrations of Russian diplomatic and intelligence communications or that there were deep penetration moles in Moscow. that being the case it seems likely to me that the Russians would have been beating the bushes looking for the moles. In that situation the CIA may have decided to exfiltrate Smolenkov and his wife while leaving enough clues along the way that would have indicated that he might have been THE MOLE. People do not need a lot of encouragement to accept thoughts that they want to believe. A point in favor of this theory is that once CIA had him in the States they quickly lost interest in him, terminated their relationship with him and paid him his back pay and showed him the door. No new identity, no resettlement, he was given none of that. Finding himself alone in a strange land, Smolenkov then bought a house in the suburbs of Washington in HIS OWN NAME. Say what? That would not have happened if CIA had maintained some sort of relationship with him. And then... someone in CIA leaked the story of the exfiltration as movie plot to "a former senior intelligence officer" who gives sit to Sciutto at CNN. Why would they do that? IMO they would have though that having the story appear in the media would reinfocer Smolenkov's importance in Russian minds. Well, pilgrims, Clapper fits the bill as the "former blah, blah". He is an employee of CNN. CNN hates Trump and they quickly broadcast the story far and away. Unfortunately for CNN the story immediately began to disintegrate even in the eyes of the NY Times. The Smolenkov/Brennan affair will undoubtedly be part of the road that leads to doom for Brennan and Clapper but the possible CIA story is equally interesting.

ambrit , 10 September 2019 at 03:51 PM
Sir;
The fact that Mr. Smolenkov is out and about in his new home in the West shows that he is a small fish. As you say, if he was really in danger, he would be living somewhere in the West now under a new name and maybe a new face. The fact that his 'handlers' allow this lax security to happen is a sign of how unimportant he is. Unless, my inner cynic prompts, he is destined to become one of the "honoured dead," perhaps by a false flag 'liquidation.'
How low will Clapper and Brennan et. al. go?
Thanks for keeping this matter front and centre.
Fred , 10 September 2019 at 04:22 PM
So the son of Our Man in Havana went to Moscow. It would make a decent movies if it weren't for the damage Brennan and company have done to us. Obama, of course, knew nothing......
Diana C , 10 September 2019 at 04:49 PM
I have lost hope that anyone--especially Brennan and Clapper--will be held accountable for their attempt to "launch a coup" (as you put it).

Since their coup attempt ultimately failed, most people will be wanting just to move on.

As an unimportant citizen liveing in a fly-over state, I feel very angry that my tax dollars were wasted on these many government hearings and enormously expensive investigations rather than on actually on governing and improving the governing of our country.

The least we should be able to expect is that people who live off our tax dollars should be held accountable for all that wasted expense and for the lack of actual governing going on in The House and The Senate. So many problems that need the attention of our elected representative and Senators were ignored while elected representatives and representatives got to capture the spotlight and try to become "media stars" while accomplishing nothing.

I also feel terrible that men have been sent to prison for seemingly nothing and have their lives ruined for nothing but the chance of some to grand stand and claim they are really doing the jobs they were sent to do. So many people with no real sense of honor or of what is right and what is wrong.

Thanks, Larry. You have been consistently one of the good guys. (And I bet you are happy now that Yosemite Sam Bolton is no longer advising the POTUS.)

fredw , 10 September 2019 at 06:09 PM
"The fact that his 'handlers' allow this lax security to happen is a sign of how unimportant he is."

It indicates to me that he and any handlers believe that the Russians are OK with it. That could be for various reasons. But relying on Russian tolerance because he is a "small fish" seems incredibly trusting. Neither fled agents nor their handlers are known for their trusting natures. They have had some reasons stronger than that for their unconcern. Whether those reasons will survive publicity remains to be seen.

Oscar , 10 September 2019 at 06:31 PM
Are those CIA agents as stupid, naive & incompetent as you paint them to be?
If that's the case our country is in real danger! You are. Pro Trump
and, you are basically defending him, but Putin do own Donald Trump,whether you like it or not!
turcopolier -> Oscar ... , 11 September 2019 at 08:56 AM
Oscar
What is the evidence for "Putin do own Trump?"Is it Trump's attempts to conduct foreign policy relationships with Russia? That is his job.
JohnH , 10 September 2019 at 08:16 PM
My question is: why did they push this report now? Any way you cut it, the Times and Post are just providing some trivia and drivel. Without substance, they can accomplish nothing and substance has been what's been missing all along.

I doubt that Democrats, having been burned once, are eager to explore Brennan's smoke and mirrors again. It's never been a big concern to voters. And unless Brennan & Co. can do better than this superficial stuff, voters are never going to be concerned.

Maybe the Times and Post just felt sorry for Brennan, who's been off barking at the moon for years now.

Factotum , 10 September 2019 at 08:40 PM
Have a cup of Ovomaltine.
Rhondda , 10 September 2019 at 08:48 PM
...Smolenkov is a propaganda prop and is being trotted out by Brennan to try to provide public pressure to prevent the disclosure of intelligence that will show that the CIA and the NSA were coordinating and operating with British intelligence to entrap and smear Donald Trump and members of his campaign...

Well said. Thank you for following this closely and shining the light! You are an amazing American patriot, Mr. Larry C. Johnson. A glass in your honor!

plantman , 10 September 2019 at 09:13 PM
I think AG Barr might have cut these guys (Brennan and Clapper) some slack and let them off the hook, but NOW, what can he do but prosecute??

Brennan has shown that he is going to persevere with his fallacious attacks on Trump come hell or high water.

He needs to be stopped and brought to justice...

[email protected] -> plantman... , 11 September 2019 at 08:51 AM
Haha! Dream on. Barr IS CIA...remember his role back in the Slick WIlly days in Mena Arkansas?
Roy G , 10 September 2019 at 11:27 PM
IMO this scenario is the most plausible, Thanks for the sanity check. That said, given the desperation by these Sorcerer's Apprentices, I would be on the lookout for Mr. Smolenkov lest he be 'Skirpal-ed' in the coming weeks.
anon , 10 September 2019 at 11:36 PM
This whole story convinces now more than ever before that there is a high level spy/mole in the us administration and intelligence community.The only question is it spying for russia or china or both.Just a beautiful thing to watch.Those knickers,must surely be in a knot by now.
Even rocketman had a giggle.
Jim Ticehurst , 10 September 2019 at 11:52 PM
How many CIA Assets have been exposed..Tortured and Murdered During The Barrack Obama Reign...In May..2014 HE Paid a Surprise Visit to Afghanastan..His White House Bureau Chief Sent out an email to Reporters with a List of Who would meet With President Obama..It Contained the NAME of the CIA...Chief of Station in Kabul...Now that is REAL MESSY..
turcopolier , 11 September 2019 at 08:59 AM
[email protected]

Is there any basis for any of your assertions or are you just running your mouth?

David Habakkuk , 11 September 2019 at 10:37 AM
Larry,

Having been away from base, I have not been able to comment on some very fascinating recent posts.

Both your recent pieces, and Robert Willman's most helpful update on the state of play relating to the unraveling of the frame-up against Michael Flynn, have provided a lot to chew over.

Among other things, they have made me think further about the 302s recording the interviews with Bruce Ohr produced by Joseph Pientka – a character about whom I think we need to know more.

On reflection, I think that the picture that emerges of Ohr as an incurious and gullible nitwit, swallowing whole bucket loads of 'horse manure' fed him by Christopher Steele and Glenn Simpson, may be a carefully – indeed maybe cunningly – crafted fiction.

The interpretation your former intelligence officer friend puts on the Smolenkov affair, and also some of what Sidney Powell has to say in the ''Motion to Compel' on behalf of Flynn, both 'mesh' with what I have long suspected.

The dossier attributed to Steele, it has seemed to me, showed every sign of being the proverbial 'camel produced by a committee.'

Although I know that fabricating evidence and corrupting judicial proceedings is part of its supposed author's 'stock in trade', I think it is unclear whether he contributed all that much to the dossier.

His prime role, I think, was to contribute a veneer of intelligence respectability to a farrago the actual origins of which could not be acknowledged, so it could be used in support of FISA applications and in briefings to journalists.

Although it had started much earlier, the moving into 'high gear' of the conspiracy behind 'Russiagate, of which the dossier was one manifestation, and the phone 'digital forensics' produced by 'Crowdstrike' and the former GCHQ person Matt Tait another, were I think essentially panicky 'firefighting' operations.

They are likely to have been responses, first, to the realisation that material leaked from the DNC was going to be published by WikiLeaks, and then the discovery, probably significantly later, that the source was Seth Rich, and his subsequent murder.

Although the operation to divert responsibility to the Russians which then became necessary was strikingly successful, it did not have the expected result of saving Hillary Clinton from defeat.

What I then think may have emerged was a two-pronged strategy.

Part of this involved turning the conspiracy to prevent Trump being elected into a conspiracy to destabilise his Presidency and ensure he did not carry through on any of his 'anti-Borgist' agenda.

In different ways, both the framing of Flynn, and the final memorandum in the dossier, dated 13 December 2016, were part of this strategy.

Also required however was another 'insurance policy' – which was what the Bruce Ohr 302s were intended to provide.

The purpose of this was to have 'evidence' in place, should the first prong of the strategy run into problems, to sustain the case that people in the FBI and DOJ, and Bruce and Nellie Ohr in particular, were not co-conspirators with Steele and Simpson, but their gullible dupes.

This brings me to an irony. Some people have tried to replace the 'narrative' in which Steele was an heroic exposer of a Russian plot to destroy American democracy by an alternative in which he was the gullible 'patsy' of just such a plot.

In fact there is one strand, and one strand only, in the dossier which smells strongly to me of FSB-orchestrated disinformation.

Some of the material on Russian cyber operations, including critically the suggestions about the involvement of Aleksej Gubarev and his company XBT which provoked legal action by these against BuzzFeed and Steele, look to me as though they could come from sources in the FSB.

But, if this is so, the likely conduit is not through Steele, but from FSB to FBI cyber people.

How precisely this worked is unclear, but I cannot quite get rid of the suspicion that Major Dmitri Dokuchaev just might be serving out his sentence for treason in a comfortable flat somewhere above the Black Sea. Indeed, I can imagine a lecture to FSB trainees on how to make 'patsies' of people like the Ohrs.

If this is so, however, it mat also be the case that these are attempting to make 'patsies' of Steele and Simpson.

[Sep 11, 2019] There is the possibility that CIA extracted a minor source to divert attention from someone or someones who remain(s) in place.

Notable quotes:
"... So, this fully-spun story, apparently a mix of fact and fiction, arises at this moment to prop up the Russia-leaked-email hoax? ..."
"... If that's the case, does that mean this story's "authors" release it now to keep at least part of the Russia hoax alive as the Flynn case plods toward charges being dropped or because the Concord case is turning into a cluster f*k? Maybe someone is worried about the DNC-insider-leaked-email story breaking out? We need to talk about Rich? ..."
"... if I am wrong in supposing that a senior Chekist would never, as a question of policy, have been allowed a passport for foreign travel for him and his family. ..."
"... If Oleg Smolenkov reported allegedly "valuable" insider information about Russia's interference in US elections, as they say first hand, then why did Mueller's investigation fail? ..."
"... The New York Times story resurrects the Russia collusion hoax. This time the proof comes from Oleg Smolenkov. The story is identical to what the Steele dossier claimed: Putin personally directed a campaign to interfere in the US presidential elections. ..."
"... Every part of Steele narrative has already been shown to be a hoax and a fabrication. What proves that the Steele dossier is a work of fiction is that it is written from a fly-on-the-wall point of view. Only a person who was sitting in the same room with Putin when he had secret meetings could have written it. So how many moles did the West have sitting on Putin's desk? It seems like the CIA mole and Steele's secret source are one and the same source. But if Oleg Smolenkov was CIA's most tightly guarded secret, how did the information end up in Steele's dossier? ..."
"... Larry Johnson just posted about this on SST, and his take seems much more plausible: Desperation on the part of Clapper and his cabal as the chickens are coming home to roost. This story is chock full of holes, and the media hackery is disintegrating under its own weight. ..."
"... Perhaps someone should advise Smolenskov to stay away from park benches after eating seafood and to not touch doorknob's etc. ..."
"... "For those curious about what's going on with this bizarre Russia 'spy' story: Burr/Durham know Steele was fed obvious disinformation, they know who originated it, they know who peddled it, and it's just a matter of rounding up the whole network." ..."
"... In his third entry, he poses the following question: "So the only two unanswered questions about this particular pre-emptive leak campaign from the usual Russia hoax suspects are 1) why now, and 2) what specific event or official revelation are they trying to get ahead of?" ..."
"... Why the CIA would allow such a spy, once extradited, to live under his real name is beyond me. ..."
"... Because this man has nothing to do with "spies", "secrets" and "special services". He is an ordinary civilian, a former official from Russia. Many Russian ex- lives in abroad, including high-ranking persons. Smolenkov of course had no access to any "secrets", and had no access to entourage of the Russian president. ..."
"... That's the end of Smolenkov's anonymous quiet comfortable lifesyle. It doesn't send out a very reassuring message - that the CIA can publicly expose someone it considers a very useful asset. There must be a good reason why they threw Smolenkov under the bus in that way. ..."
"... It must be a very nice house. A 3-ish acre lot in that neighborhood has an assessment of $140k for the land. But the assessment for improvements for this house is over $900k while others in the neighborhood are more in the $600k range. I was looking at the aerial photos and trying to pick out what seem to be other nice houses, including ones with swimming pools which this one lacks, and which also have big garages (this one has 4 car garage apparently), but couldn't find a neighbor above an assessment in the $600k's. ..."
"... The only way that he's the 'source' of the Steele fiction is if the whole thing was in the style of LeCarre's "The Tailor of Panama" where everyone is lying and inflating what they know and people at the top are paying out good money for this because it suits their little power games. But any Moscow tailor with a couple of important customers would be positioned to run that scam as well as an aide to an aide to a foreign minister. ..."
"... My personal guess, he made his money by the more typical corruption in Russia, which means he was working for an oligarch. He lost his job, possibly during one of Putin's anti-corruption cleanup campaigns. He decided to move to DC with his oligarch money because he'd served 10 years in the embassy there and he liked the area. He is buying property in his own name because he's not part of any sort of witness/spy protection program and nobody in the USG is setting him up with a fake identity. ..."
"... Sergei Skripal was not just an turncoat for UK he also worked for Estonian intelligence. It seems to me the poisoning fits better as an Estonian job, to keep relations in Europe with Russia in very bad shape. It's easy to say that the Russians wouldn't be so incompetent, also goes for the UK, which could have come up with something more compelling if they pre planned it as false flag. ..."
"... Joe Mifsud and Claire Smith of MI6, Glenn Simpson of Fusion GPS, especially FBI special agent Joseph Pientka plus that BIG shot FBI agent (who's name I forget) are the names to remember. Why aren't Misud and Smith extradited to face inquiry? ..."
"... So what is emerging? is Mueller due in court to prosecute the Russian ad agency that has fully shirt fronted him? Is Flynn business about to upend a steaming pot of turds over Mueller and other heads. Is Seth Rich about to be posthumously knighted by some New York monarch for his role in smashing the HRC cart in public? Or is Julian Assange about to be put through more torture for being a journalist and publisher? ..."
Sep 11, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

b , Sep 10 2019 18:01 utc | 2

Pat Lang has this interesting take :
All

And then there is the possibility that CIA extracted a minor source to divert attention from someone or someones who remain(s) in place. The open purchase of a house in the outer suburbs of Washington by the extracted would seem to support the possibility that this is all a diversion. The narrative continues that "a former senior intelligence official" told Sciutto, an Obama man, at CNN of all this. Clapper is "a former senior intelligence official" and a CNN "contributor" (employee) is he not? He is dumb enough to have had this story planted on him.

Double games, triple games ... Spies are so confusing ...

james , Sep 10 2019 18:14 utc | 3

thanks b... i agree about your comment on pls comment - double / triple and etc games can be played with spies... what seems clear to me is that some in the cia-msm want to frame trump.. this one feel apart fairly quickly... the frame up of russia over skripal has never been addressed by the usa.. in fact, most folks - using ew as an example - are still drinking the russia done it koolaid 24/7..
james , Sep 10 2019 18:14 utc | 3 casey , Sep 10 2019 18:18 utc | 4
So, this fully-spun story, apparently a mix of fact and fiction, arises at this moment to prop up the Russia-leaked-email hoax?

If that's the case, does that mean this story's "authors" release it now to keep at least part of the Russia hoax alive as the Flynn case plods toward charges being dropped or because the Concord case is turning into a cluster f*k? Maybe someone is worried about the DNC-insider-leaked-email story breaking out? We need to talk about Rich?

Funny about Lang and his crew. So much practical experience and yet they would make an interesting case study of extreme psychological compartmentalization as a means of denial.

Hoarsewhisperer , Sep 10 2019 18:19 utc | 5
Lucky Oleg & Antonina. In Oz a 760 square metre house used be known as having an area of 81 squares (8,172 square feet. In well-maintained condition such a 3-storey house anywhere in Oz would cost between A$2.5 million and A$3.5 million. Being in AmeriKKA Oleg's house probably has a basement too. That's another $150,000 minimum if it's damp-proof and ventilated.
karlof1 , Sep 10 2019 18:24 utc | 6
Nice networking by 4 BigLie Media outlets to make certain Russia knows where this man and his family reside. Maybe it's for an Outlaw US Empire sequel to MI-6's Novochock BigLie to be sprung as the election heats up. If I were the Smolenskovs, I'd demand an immediate identity change, sell ASAP and move to Idaho.
Michael Droy , Sep 10 2019 18:31 utc | 7
If Skripal could live safely under his own name I guess this guy could too. It just makes it easier for the US to get him in their own time. I don't really see this guy served any purpose until he was outed. Just a late effort to pretend that Russiagate had any credibility.
Montreal , Sep 10 2019 18:32 utc | 8
I wish that there was a resident Russian on this site, as there is on Craig Murray's.

That person could then tell me if I am wrong in supposing that a senior Chekist would never, as a question of policy, have been allowed a passport for foreign travel for him and his family.

Sergei , Sep 10 2019 18:33 utc | 9
If Oleg Smolenkov reported allegedly "valuable" insider information about Russia's interference in US elections, as they say first hand, then why did Mueller's investigation fail?
Petri Krohn , Sep 10 2019 18:57 utc | 10
WAS SMOLENKOV A SOURCE FOR THE STEELE DOSSIER?

The New York Times story resurrects the Russia collusion hoax. This time the proof comes from Oleg Smolenkov. The story is identical to what the Steele dossier claimed: Putin personally directed a campaign to interfere in the US presidential elections.

Every part of Steele narrative has already been shown to be a hoax and a fabrication. What proves that the Steele dossier is a work of fiction is that it is written from a fly-on-the-wall point of view. Only a person who was sitting in the same room with Putin when he had secret meetings could have written it. So how many moles did the West have sitting on Putin's desk? It seems like the CIA mole and Steele's secret source are one and the same source. But if Oleg Smolenkov was CIA's most tightly guarded secret, how did the information end up in Steele's dossier?

Roy G , Sep 10 2019 19:10 utc | 11
Larry Johnson just posted about this on SST, and his take seems much more plausible: Desperation on the part of Clapper and his cabal as the chickens are coming home to roost. This story is chock full of holes, and the media hackery is disintegrating under its own weight.
Arioch , Sep 10 2019 19:19 utc | 12
> Obama administration .... Russia had stolen .... Democratic National Committee and ..... John Podesta.

So we have to allege that Podesta's laptop between naked underage girls photos had list of CIA secret agents in Russian government? What else rid it contain and where did Podesta stole those lists?

Same question about Paki-managed DNC server. Was managing CIA agents in foreign governments outsourced to DNC or what?

"Once in the lifetime of yer townfolk! F..en circus! Imbecile clowns! Degenerate tamers! Deformed strongmen! Dysfunctional acrobats! Don't miss out!"

Qua , Sep 10 2019 19:21 utc | 13
Perhaps someone should advise Smolenskov to stay away from park benches after eating seafood and to not touch doorknob's etc.
Uncle $cam , Sep 10 2019 19:24 utc | 14
Speaking of outed Spy's..."Undercover" -- Valerie Plame for Congress "When elephants fight, it's the grass that suffers"
Gigi , Sep 10 2019 19:26 utc | 15
@2
Diversion is one of the three possibilities that I can think of:

1) clan wars within US special services, particularly in view of the 2020 elections.

2) diversion (as suggested by col. Pat Lang)

3) preparation of the ground to make this guy a "sacrificial lamb" like Scripal, to avoid any new rapprochement between the US and Russia after the end of the Muller report.

(comment originally posted at http://smoothiex12.blogspot.com/2019/09/he-was-never-qualified-to-start-with.html#disqus_thread )

james , Sep 10 2019 19:35 utc | 16
@11 roy g.. this is what i said @3 "what seems clear to me is that some in the cia-msm want to frame trump.. this one feel apart fairly quickly..." for others who want to read larry johnsons latest at sst here...

@4 casey - last line.. ditto my thoughts..

karlof1 , Sep 10 2019 19:39 utc | 17
Interesting Tweet thread by a Sean M Davis has 5 entries and almost 1000 retweets beginning with this:

"For those curious about what's going on with this bizarre Russia 'spy' story: Burr/Durham know Steele was fed obvious disinformation, they know who originated it, they know who peddled it, and it's just a matter of rounding up the whole network."

In his third entry, he poses the following question: "So the only two unanswered questions about this particular pre-emptive leak campaign from the usual Russia hoax suspects are 1) why now, and 2) what specific event or official revelation are they trying to get ahead of?"

The easy answer is the story itself is enough of a distraction as the 1000 retweets show.

Clueless Joe , Sep 10 2019 19:44 utc | 18
I tend to agree with Larry Johnson (at Pat Lang's) that this guy wasn't that useful back then. He might have become more useful, had he stayed at the Kremlin and rose further up the ladder, granted; or Obama's top guys assumed he wouldn't and it wasn't an issue to risk to burn him.
Clueless Joe , Sep 10 2019 19:44 utc | 18
I tend to agree with Larry Johnson (at Pat Lang's) that this guy wasn't that useful back then. He might have become more useful, had he stayed at the Kremlin and rose further up the ladder, granted; or Obama's top guys assumed he wouldn't and it wasn't an issue to risk to burn him.
librul , Sep 10 2019 19:54 utc | 19
Is someone brewing up some fresh Novichok nerve agent as we speak?

Don't touch those doorknobs, Oleg!

for future reference: this post was for amusement purposes only

alaff , Sep 10 2019 19:57 utc | 20
This whole story is entirely in the spirit of Hollywood comics. I had a good laugh when I saw the news about the "valuable spy successfully extracted from Russia".

Here are some reasons why this is fake/disinformation:

1) The news was published by CNN. I think there's no need to explain whether it is worth taking seriously the "sensations" published by news outlets with a reputation like CNN.

2) Sorry, but you must be a complete idiot (in the medical sense) to openly declare in the media that you had a "very valuable spy" in the immediate circle of the president of the Russian Federation (or any other country). Just because in this way you, by your own hands, are giving your opponent the reason to "strengthen control", conduct checks and identify those [other] people who might be able to work for you for a long time and be useful. When this really takes place in real life (the presence of a spy of the highest rank, close to the head of state), then this becomes public only after many years/decades, when the 'Top Secret' stamp is removed from the documents, you know.

3) V.Putin is a former intelligence officer. To put it mildly, it is very naive to assume that the presence of an "American spy" (close to Putin) would not be known to a person with Putin's experience/knowledge/capacity.

4) To be a spy, a member of the inner circle of the President of Russia (or any other country) and not to be exposed, one need to have extraordinary abilities and competencies. This is the highest class. In recent years, it seems only the lazy one did not notice and did not note the monstrous degradation of the American political class. These people do not know how to behave in a civilized society, do not have the traditions and culture of diplomacy and communication. The situation is similar in the American defense industry. With this level of decline in the competence of the American elite (political, military, etc.), to assume that they have such a ultra-high-class spy is at least very strange.

5) The fact that the "valuable spy" in the inner circle of the Russian president is pure CNN fiction is confirmed in practice. What I mean:

6) Serious Russian experts unequivocally spoke out that all this was fake and that Smolenkov certainly could not be a spy. In particular, Armen Gasparyan, one of the leading Russian political scientists, historian, writer (incidentally, who wrote several books on intelligence), spoke quite fully about this in his recent commentary .

Why the CIA would allow such a spy, once extradited, to live under his real name is beyond me.

Because this man has nothing to do with "spies", "secrets" and "special services". He is an ordinary civilian, a former official from Russia. Many Russian ex- lives in abroad, including high-ranking persons. Smolenkov of course had no access to any "secrets", and had no access to entourage of the Russian president.

An attempt to present Smolenkov as a "valuable spy" from exactly the same series as the clumsy attempt by the British government to introduce two Russian civilians (Ruslan Boshirov and Alexander Petrov) as "GRU agents". It is hardly reasonable to take this seriously.

However, all this is just my personal opinion.

Brendan , Sep 10 2019 20:05 utc | 21
That's the end of Smolenkov's anonymous quiet comfortable lifesyle. It doesn't send out a very reassuring message - that the CIA can publicly expose someone it considers a very useful asset. There must be a good reason why they threw Smolenkov under the bus in that way.
Mao Cheng Ji , Sep 10 2019 20:33 utc | 22
$925K for a 8k sqft house on 1.2 hectares? Sounds like a bargain. Not a very nice neighborhood, perhaps?
Sorghum , Sep 10 2019 20:52 utc | 23
This guy could not possibly be what the CIS and media are presenting to be. Living under his own name in Virginia? Could it be any simpler to find him? The Russians do have search engines, too.

B may be right that this is a double or triple play, but find it hard to see the benefits to pretending to have had a deep mole in the Kremlin. I also find it implausible that any Russsian diplomat who has been stationed in DC would not be viewed as potentially compromised. It would be relatively simple to feed him bullshit and see what filters into DC.

Margaret , Sep 10 2019 20:59 utc | 24
Many thoughtful comments here. My take, as a fan of Le Carre and Mad Magazine's Spy vs Spy cartoon, is that USA's spy was discovered and turned. He was dismissed, employed somewhere close by, and fed chicken feed for his CIA masters. When they realized he was a failure, the CIA got him and his family out with the possible object of turning him into a propaganda subject. Of course he would have to die first, but CIA could make it look like the Russians did it.
Smiley , Sep 10 2019 21:05 utc | 25
I'm generally interested in how spies are referred to in corporate media stories.

For instance, we were told constantly that Skirpal was a 'Russian Spy'. This ran contrary to the normal usage, which would have referred to a British Spy within the Russian government as a 'British Spy'. If that signaled a general change in language, then Solemenkov, would also be referred to as a Russian Spy and not as an American Spy. He shares with Skirpal having a Russian nationality, while he was spying for the Americans. Of course, when the propagandists are going for an emotional reaction, they can be relied on to use whichever helps tilt the story in their direction.

Smiley , Sep 10 2019 21:07 utc | 26
Historically, spy agencies aren't really known for their great humanity in pulling out a spy who is in a useful position just because they fear for that spy's safety. The more common course of action for Spy Bosses is to keep the spy in place, keep pushing for more, more, more information from the spy, before perhaps holding a brief moment of silence over their spy ending up in prison.
S , Sep 10 2019 21:18 utc | 27
@karlof1 #6:
Maybe it's for an Outlaw US Empire sequel to MI-6's Novochock BigLie to be sprung as the election heats up.

That's what I thought as well. Why would the MSM hype a spy other than establishing his persona in the public eye, to be followed by some event later? Either he's a double agent and they will kill him and blame it on Russia, or he is not a double agent and they will use him to announce some "strong evidence" of Trump–Russia connection.

Sabine , Sep 10 2019 21:57 utc | 28
so when can we expect the US / Russia to finally save us all from ourselfs?

fuck are you guys not tired of this bullshit kabuki theatre that you get fed daily in order to keep you amused and busy?

William Gruff , Sep 10 2019 22:09 utc | 29
Part of the intention of this farce is to give the CIA and the CIA News Network (CNN) the opportunity to pretend that they are not knotted together like mating dogs (I leave it up to the reader to guess which one is the bitch).
Madeira , Sep 10 2019 22:11 utc | 30
A theory:

1. Smolenkov was the source of the Steele Report, in other words he received a substantial payment to come up with fictional "dirt" on Trump.

2. With all the publicity about the Steele report, Brennan/Obama/etc. were scared (and with good reason) that the Russians would figure out that Smolenkov was the source and would then make a grand show of his confessing to how he had made everything up at the request of US/UK intelligence agencies.

3. Therefore he was extricated for a very good reason (if you are Obama/Brennan, that is).

4. His extrication is now being used as an anti-Trump weapon, but also as a pre-emptive measure to reduce the fallout if (or when) reports emerge that Smolenkov was the source for Steele.

Peter AU 1 , Sep 10 2019 22:33 utc | 31
Be interesting to know what was occurring if Smolenkov was the source for the Steele report. Whatever information he was sending, that he just left on holidays makes me think Russian intel were on the ball and had started feeding him a bit of disinformation.
karlof1 , Sep 10 2019 22:35 utc | 32
Sabine @28--

I don't expect the US--and by US I mean the Current Oligarchy--to save anyone, while Russia is very busy trying to save its current and future populace--the differences being quite extreme. Since the US isn't intent on saving anyone, it wants to ensure its populace thinks other governments act the same way toward their populaces so the US populace doesn't get any ideas about saving itself from its own viscous government. Busting that narrative is what keeps us busy--There IS an alternative.

Smiley , Sep 10 2019 22:41 utc | 33
From digging around on the property site (from the link).

It must be a very nice house. A 3-ish acre lot in that neighborhood has an assessment of $140k for the land. But the assessment for improvements for this house is over $900k while others in the neighborhood are more in the $600k range. I was looking at the aerial photos and trying to pick out what seem to be other nice houses, including ones with swimming pools which this one lacks, and which also have big garages (this one has 4 car garage apparently), but couldn't find a neighbor above an assessment in the $600k's.

The neighborhood as a whole has had its valuations decline in the 2018 biannual assessment. Not sure why, but maybe the neighborhood of 20 year old mansions isn't as hot as some newer developments. The last previous lowering of assessment values occurred during the Great-Not-A-Depression in the 2008 revaluations. Note, the land is not considered to have lower values, but all of the homes on the street have had the assessments of the improvements on the property lowered in the last reassessments.

Hard to tell much about the selling price from neighboring properties. Many of the neighbors bought their homes direct from the construction company back in the early years of the century. So not too many direct compares for homes bought in 2018.

Smiley , Sep 10 2019 22:54 utc | 34
A point that appears to have missed by several is that an aide to an aide to the foreign minister is not likely to have access to Putin's super-top-secret plans to use a few thousand dollars worth of utube and twit ads to change the course of multi-billion dollar American election, nor would he have access to information that might be used to blackmail a potential foreign leader. Both would be closely held secrets and apparently way above his pay grade. Often the FM wouldn't know of either, and both operations would be compartmentalized into a close team Putin can trust.

The only way that he's the 'source' of the Steele fiction is if the whole thing was in the style of LeCarre's "The Tailor of Panama" where everyone is lying and inflating what they know and people at the top are paying out good money for this because it suits their little power games. But any Moscow tailor with a couple of important customers would be positioned to run that scam as well as an aide to an aide to a foreign minister.

My personal guess, he made his money by the more typical corruption in Russia, which means he was working for an oligarch. He lost his job, possibly during one of Putin's anti-corruption cleanup campaigns. He decided to move to DC with his oligarch money because he'd served 10 years in the embassy there and he liked the area. He is buying property in his own name because he's not part of any sort of witness/spy protection program and nobody in the USG is setting him up with a fake identity.

Turner , Sep 10 2019 23:02 utc | 35
Does anyone really believe that the Kremlin takes as the truth what they hear on CNN?
karlof1 , Sep 10 2019 23:11 utc | 36
Smiley @33&34--

House likely bought by CIA and annual upkeep--taxes etc.--also paid by them.

MoA's investigators have fairly well established that Skripal was the most likely contributor to the Steele Dossier given the overall web of established connections--that was most certainly an MI-6 operation in league with DNC/HRC officials, not CIA, although CIA was involved in Russiagate Cover-up.

In examining Russia's foreign policy, where were the compromises generated by this alleged spy? Aside from the UNSC vote debacle on Libya, I see nothing but a string of successes, although the Ukraine Coup wasn't debauched. IMO, Outlaw US Empire policy toward Russia has failed spectacularly, and it is within the US government where I'd expect to find well placed spies.

james , Sep 10 2019 23:15 utc | 37
@35 turner.. no.. and no one here at moa believes anything out of the western msm either... see @ 29 william gruff comment for more meaningful lingo on the set up..
Uncle $cam , Sep 10 2019 23:21 utc | 38
Does anyone really believe that the Kremlin takes as the truth what they hear on CNN?

ha! Emphatically, Yes, most Mericans, think they think that.. Because most Mericans think everyone but Merican's are stupid.

Smiley , Sep 10 2019 23:21 utc | 39
Here's a tough problem for a counter-intelligence agent. Find the source of info for a fictional report.

Normally, after a link, one avenue of investigation would be to check who had access to the leaked information. But, if the report is completely fictional, then there is no list of people who had access to information that didn't exist. Everyone or no one had equal access to the non-existent information. The Tailor of Moscow had the same access to the non-existent information as did Putin's closest personal aide. Who done it?

willie , Sep 10 2019 23:30 utc | 40
Headline in le Figaro:

Ingérence russe :la CIA disposait d'une source haut-placée au Kremlin.
Russian collusion: CIA had high placed source at the Kremlin.

A lot of commentators see the incongruence of this title and make jokes about it. Really, when a superpower becomes a source of jokes and ridicule, than the end might be nigh.

Jackrabbit , Sep 11 2019 0:30 utc | 41
Evidence-free accusations of Russian meddling. Now with extra sauce.

<> <> <> <> <> <>

We don't really know WHY this spy was extracted. Anyone that believes that Russiagate was deliberately planned as part of the new Cold War is not surprised at yet another attempt to strengthen the nonexistent case for Russian meddling.

JasonT , Sep 11 2019 0:44 utc | 42
smiley @34 seems to have the most logical take on this.
GoldmanKropotkin , Sep 11 2019 0:47 utc | 43
The first report in US Press about Putin personally involved was on Dec 14 2016.
Two senior officials with direct access to the information say new intelligence shows that Putin personally directed how hacked material from Democrats was leaked and otherwise used. The intelligence came from diplomatic sources and spies working for U.S. allies, the officials said.

Putin's objectives were multifaceted, a high-level intelligence source told NBC News. What began as a "vendetta" against Hillary Clinton morphed into an effort to show corruption in American politics and to "split off key American allies by creating the image that [other countries] couldn't depend on the U.S. to be a credible global leader anymore," the official said.

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/u-s-officials-putin-personally-involved-u-s-election-hack-n696146

Notice the source is spies working for US Allies. Remember that the NSA did not sign off on the Russian interference/hacking because they were concerned that too much critical info rested on intelligence from a single foreign country.

Sergei Skripal was not just an turncoat for UK he also worked for Estonian intelligence. It seems to me the poisoning fits better as an Estonian job, to keep relations in Europe with Russia in very bad shape. It's easy to say that the Russians wouldn't be so incompetent, also goes for the UK, which could have come up with something more compelling if they pre planned it as false flag.

Notice how we have some sources saying concern grew after the Trump Putin meeting, where supposedly Trump gave Israeli intelligence to Putin on Syria, I think they were concerned Trump would have no problem revealing a spy for another government, much like he was free with foreign intelligence.

I don't think the exfiltration was the real source but someone to sacrifice, to protect the real source, who is working for Estonian intelligence. To me this seems like it is possibly Anton Vaino, Chief of Staff of the Kremlin since August 2016, Deputy Chief of Staff of Kremlin before that. This is not to say his info is accurate, but is in line with the foreign policy of Estonia to alienate everyone with Russia.

Yeah, Right , Sep 11 2019 0:57 utc | 44
Just out of curiousity, if what has been reported is true then what reason would Mueller have to exclude this from his report? The dude is proof of the Russia-did-it!! narrative. Check.The dude has already been extracted. Check. The Russians must have already noticed that he has done a runner. Check.

What would stop Mueller from producing a one-paragraph report that starts with: "we know the following to be true because for the last decade everything that Putin did was being relayed to us by an aide to the foreign policy advisor to the Kremlin, since extracted and now living in the USA".

I mean, bit of a slam-dunk, don't you think?

uncle tungsten , Sep 11 2019 3:00 utc | 45
I call it a red herring, and I bet this sucker has been fully set up. Publicly listed address and all the indicators are that he is held in reserve to throw to the dogs whenever the action gets too close to the mongrel perpetrators.

Joe Mifsud and Claire Smith of MI6, Glenn Simpson of Fusion GPS, especially FBI special agent Joseph Pientka plus that BIG shot FBI agent (who's name I forget) are the names to remember. Why aren't Misud and Smith extradited to face inquiry?

So what is emerging? is Mueller due in court to prosecute the Russian ad agency that has fully shirt fronted him? Is Flynn business about to upend a steaming pot of turds over Mueller and other heads. Is Seth Rich about to be posthumously knighted by some New York monarch for his role in smashing the HRC cart in public? Or is Julian Assange about to be put through more torture for being a journalist and publisher?

This poor Russian sod is a patsy for the vicious deep state game that now needs to prey on him and deliver his carcass to the howling mob and so distract them again. This Friday's quiet press releases might hold a clue.

snake , Sep 11 2019 3:47 utc | 46
plausible

maybe

where is the diversion.. lots of activity in Afghanistan and Golan today.. Turkey is moving into N. Syria.. Venezuela.. where is the diversion/

dltravers , Sep 11 2019 3:51 utc | 47
This guy will probably be making the rounds on CNN and cable news promoting the Steele dossier and the Russian collusion hoax as its complete disintegration is now fully evident. Offer up some turds on a plate, dress it up with a pinch a parsley and the truth will be avoided.

The whole 2 year media storm of lies on Russian collusion will be avoided by offering up another turd on a plate. This guy will pull down a few million and the media will never admit their false reporting.

Jen , Sep 11 2019 4:54 utc | 48
It would seem that a great deal has certainly changed at the CIA since 2003 when Valerie Plame was revealed as a spy by a newspaper journalist who was given the information about her during a phone conversation with someone close to the White House at the time, apparently to punish her ambassador husband Joseph Wilson for going to Niger to verify if that country had exported uranium to Saddam Hussein's Iraq. Then there was shock and anger at the time that the cover of a CIA operative had been blown.

Now the CIA doesn't even bother to give Smolenkov and his family new identities and biographies to explain their living in Washington DC, and even co-operates with the outgoing Obama administration in 2016 in risking the exposure of one of its own to try to stop Donald Trump from ensconcing himself in the White House.

Something certainly has changed in the culture of the CIA: while it was always a political animal, it is becoming an extremely ideological one as well.

Sunny Runny Burger , Sep 11 2019 5:40 utc | 49
The idea that this could be a fake spy is interesting.

Sabine wrote:

fuck are you guys not tired of this bullshit kabuki theatre that you get fed daily in order to keep you amused and busy?

Only speaking for myself I ignore almost all of it (and actively treat it as propaganda, deception, and manipulation) and take a lot of breaks. I test the waters (or sewage) from time to time but I don't expect much and have no right to expect anything either.

However despite such sentiments the last decade seems like it has been an improvement although too many people (and probably me as well) are searching for "replacements" to failures when maybe there shouldn't be any: any false choice requires at least two wrong answers but there could be any number .

az , Sep 11 2019 9:16 utc | 51
In Bulgaria is a spy scandal too.
Reschetnikov is banned for ten years to visit Bulgaria. A reporter from NYT has tried to interview him before steps are take in Bulgaria to investigate the case. The officials say the Russians wanted to divert Bulgaria to the asia-project and that money-laundering was used to finance subversive activities. The case started on 9.09 2019. Today the parliament heard the statements of the agencies. Nothing new they sayed
az , Sep 11 2019 9:20 utc | 52
I think the Nato-gang want to have a military war in the black sea. Turkey did not close the Bosporus for the Russians, so they lost the war in Syria.
Josh , Sep 11 2019 10:53 utc | 53
Sounds fishy, the whole thing. Of course, when everyone is lying about everything while they are pretending to fight with each other, it may well get a bit convoluted. CIA outing thrir own dude on their own propaganda outlet is quite strange though. Also, their dude just trotting about using his real name (in a publicly listed mansion no less),... ehh... Who knows...
Josh , Sep 11 2019 11:05 utc | 54
Of course, they could be trying to 'put him on the spot' to use him for yet another propaganda push (whether he wants to play along, or not). But, again, the whole thing seems a bit strange.
milomilo , Sep 11 2019 11:30 utc | 55
i would caution people here on patrick lang's views on this issue. remember he is an existensialist american "patriot" who stop at nothing and will approve of any warcrime to held up the mighty american empire. Look at patrick lang's history , he is ex intelligence and thus never left the "services" even when he is "retired".

Pat lang's hate toward those who criticize american empire is legendary.. just look at his own comments on SST.

another one to watch is patrick lang's friend called TTG which also US intelligence and it is not unknown for this guy to post or inject nonsense narrative on SST especially on intelligence matters concerning russia.

The posts that seems clean of US narrative lies seem to come from Publius Tacitus and Walrus. But then again never take off your mandatory antipropaganda shield especially on SST owned by ex spook who love the american empire and military trashing of the world

Sunny Runny Burger , Sep 11 2019 12:34 utc | 56
The following rumor (through sputniknews.com) is sort of educational even if it should turn out to not be true (its Boolean value is essentially irrelevant which is interesting as a separate matter as well): Trump mistrusts spies etc .
donkeytale , Sep 11 2019 12:41 utc | 57
Sabine - are you guys not tired of this bullshit kabuli theatre

No, we are tirelessly...chasing our own tails...endlessly drinking one exclusive flavour of koolaid...The Infotainment Sickness Unto Death...

cirsium , Sep 11 2019 14:25 utc | 58
@Jen, 48

It wasn't just shock. Scooter Libby, Cheney's (?) Chief of Staff, broke a federal law when he exposed Valerie Palme as a CIA operative. He served part of a prison sentence for this. Joseph Wilson verified that Saddam Hussein did not buy yellow cake. After his report was ignored, he wrote an article about his findings. I remember reading it in the International Herald Tribune. It put the WMD narrative in doubt.

[Sep 11, 2019] We don't really know WHY this spy was extracted. Anyone that believes that Russiagate was deliberately planned as part of the new Cold War is not surprised at yet another attempt to strengthen the nonexistent case for Russian meddling.

OK, lets' assume that neoliberal MSM are not lying. Then why Mueller did not include him in his report? He was already in the USA since June 2017. It is unclear when he was fired by russians.
Also as Smolenkov for a long time lived in the USA he knew very well what the USA wants and could lie with impunity trying to earn more money. In a way similar personality as Skripal.
Is the idea to create the second Skripals-style false poisoning hysteria to help to sustain RussiaGate?
Notable quotes:
"... The only way that he's the 'source' of the Steele fiction is if the whole thing was in the style of LeCarre's "The Tailor of Panama" where everyone is lying and inflating what they know and people at the top are paying out good money for this because it suits their little power games. But any Moscow tailor with a couple of important customers would be positioned to run that scam as well as an aide to an aide to a foreign minister. ..."
"... My personal guess, he made his money by the more typical corruption in Russia, which means he was working for an oligarch. He lost his job, possibly during one of Putin's anti-corruption cleanup campaigns. He decided to move to DC with his oligarch money because he'd served 10 years in the embassy there and he liked the area. He is buying property in his own name because he's not part of any sort of witness/spy protection program and nobody in the USG is setting him up with a fake identity. ..."
"... MoA's investigators have fairly well established that Skripal was the most likely contributor to the Steele Dossier given the overall web of established connections--that was most certainly an MI-6 operation in league with DNC/HRC officials, not CIA, although CIA was involved in Russiagate Cover-up. ..."
"... In examining Russia's foreign policy, where were the compromises generated by this alleged spy? Aside from the UNSC vote debacle on Libya ..."
"... A lot of commentators see the incongruence of this title and make jokes about it. Really,when a superpower becomes a source of jokes and ridicule, than the end might be nigh. ..."
"... We don't really know WHY this spy was extracted. Anyone that believes that Russiagate was deliberately planned as part of the new Cold War is not surprised at yet another attempt to strengthen the nonexistent case for Russian meddling. ..."
"... The first report in US Press about Putin personally involved was on Dec 14 2016 ..."
"... I don't think the exfiltration was the real source but someone to sacrifice, to protect the real source, who is working for Estonian intelligence. To me this seems like it is possibly Anton Vaino, Chief of Staff of the Kremlin since August 2016, Deputy Chief of Staff of Kremlin before that. This is not to say his info is accurate, but is in line with the foreign policy of Estonia to alienate everyone with Russia. ..."
"... Just out of curiosity, if what has been reported is true then what reason would Mueller have to exclude this from his report? The dude is proof of the Russia-did-it!! narrative. Check. The dude has already been extracted. Check. The Russians must have already noticed that he has done a runner. Check. ..."
"... What would stop Mueller from producing a one-paragraph report that starts with: "we know the following to be true because for the last decade everything that Putin did was being relayed to us by an aide to the foreign policy advisor to the Kremlin, since extracted and now living in the USA". ..."
"... Well, I just think Putin had more important things to think about than the charade that is now the US electoral process. Probably he felt (I'm guessing of course) that the whole Russiagate scenario was a desperate move to throw a curtain over the demise of American democracy that served his, Putin's, purposes very well because it kept the idiots busy while he shored up the badly leaking ship of his own state. ..."
"... And I go with Smiley@34 - no spy of even mediocre caliber would agree to being placed in such an exposed position under his own name, for crying out loud! ..."
"... It doesn't make sense that he would leave himself exposed if either in Russia or in the US he had undercover connections of this sort. Just doesn't make sense. But that he was the best the US operatives could come up with right now simply speaks to further deterioration of US ability to field persuasive stories. ..."
"... Putin hasn't had to worry about vendettas or showing corruption in American politics. Take a reliable poll. Who in the US thinks our politics ISN'T corrupt? ..."
"... We didn't need Putin, mastermind though he is, to 'create an image' of American unreliability. Was it Putin who reneged on so many treaties? Was it Putin who antagonized the Koreas? Was it Putin who set up the trade war with China? Was it Putin who threatened and sanctioned Russia, Iran, Venezuela? ..."
"... What can the Russians do to get ahead of the narrative on the likely impending demise of Smolenkov by novichok or polonium poisoning? ..."
"... The concern is about the three hundred million other Americans who are at least partially captured by the false narratives pumped out non-stop from their Plato's Cave displays. Is there anything that the Russians can do now to inoculate some Americans against the hard sell they will be facing when the corporate mass media ( Mighty Wurlitzer ) cranks up the multi-channel marketing campaign for the United States' own Skripal farce? ..."
Sep 11, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org
Smiley , Sep 10 2019 22:54 utc | 34

A point that appears to have missed by several is that an aide to an aide to the foreign minister is not likely to have access to Putin's super-top-secret plans to use a few thousand dollars worth of utube and twit ads to change the course of multi-billion dollar American election, nor would he have access to information that might be used to blackmail a potential foreign leader.

Both would be closely held secrets and apparently way above his pay grade. Often the FM wouldn't know of either, and both operations would be compartmentalized into a close team Putin can trust.

The only way that he's the 'source' of the Steele fiction is if the whole thing was in the style of LeCarre's "The Tailor of Panama" where everyone is lying and inflating what they know and people at the top are paying out good money for this because it suits their little power games. But any Moscow tailor with a couple of important customers would be positioned to run that scam as well as an aide to an aide to a foreign minister.

My personal guess, he made his money by the more typical corruption in Russia, which means he was working for an oligarch. He lost his job, possibly during one of Putin's anti-corruption cleanup campaigns. He decided to move to DC with his oligarch money because he'd served 10 years in the embassy there and he liked the area. He is buying property in his own name because he's not part of any sort of witness/spy protection program and nobody in the USG is setting him up with a fake identity.


karlof1 , Sep 10 2019 23:11 utc | 36

Smiley @33&34--

House likely bought by CIA and annual upkeep--taxes etc.--also paid by them.

MoA's investigators have fairly well established that Skripal was the most likely contributor to the Steele Dossier given the overall web of established connections--that was most certainly an MI-6 operation in league with DNC/HRC officials, not CIA, although CIA was involved in Russiagate Cover-up.

In examining Russia's foreign policy, where were the compromises generated by this alleged spy? Aside from the UNSC vote debacle on Libya, I see nothing but a string of successes, although the Ukraine Coup wasn't debauched. IMO, Outlaw US Empire policy toward Russia has failed spectacularly, and it is within the US government where I'd expect to find well placed spies.

Smiley , Sep 10 2019 23:21 utc | 39
Here's a tough problem for a counter-intelligence agent. Find the source of info for a fictional report.

Normally, after a link, one avenue of investigation would be to check who had access to the leaked information. But, if the report is completely fictional, then there is no list of people who had access to information that didn't exist. Everyone or no one had equal access to the non-existent information.

The Tailor of Moscow had the same access to the non-existent information as did Putin's closest personal aide. Who done it?

willie , Sep 10 2019 23:30 utc | 40
Headline in le Figaro: Ingérence russe :la CIA disposait d'une source haut-placée au Kremlin (Russian collusion: CIA had high placed source at the Kremlin.)

A lot of commentators see the incongruence of this title and make jokes about it. Really,when a superpower becomes a source of jokes and ridicule, than the end might be nigh.

Jackrabbit , Sep 11 2019 0:30 utc | 41
Evidence-free accusations of Russian meddling. Now with extra sauce.

<> <> <> <> <> <>

We don't really know WHY this spy was extracted. Anyone that believes that Russiagate was deliberately planned as part of the new Cold War is not surprised at yet another attempt to strengthen the nonexistent case for Russian meddling.

GoldmanKropotkin , Sep 11 2019 0:47 utc | 43
The first report in US Press about Putin personally involved was on Dec 14 2016.
Two senior officials with direct access to the information say new intelligence shows that Putin personally directed how hacked material from Democrats was leaked and otherwise used. The intelligence came from diplomatic sources and spies working for U.S. allies, the officials said.

Putin's objectives were multifaceted, a high-level intelligence source told NBC News. What began as a "vendetta" against Hillary Clinton morphed into an effort to show corruption in American politics and to "split off key American allies by creating the image that [other countries] couldn't depend on the U.S. to be a credible global leader anymore," the official said.

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/u-s-officials-putin-personally-involved-u-s-election-hack-n696146

Notice the source is spies working for US Allies. Remember that the NSA did not sign off on the Russian interference/hacking because they were concerned that too much critical info rested on intelligence from a single foreign country.

Sergei Skripal was not just an turncoat for UK he also worked for Estonian intelligence. It seems to me the poisoning fits better as an Estonian job, to keep relations in Europe with Russia in very bad shape. It's easy to say that the Russians wouldn't be so incompetent, also goes for the UK, which could have come up with something more compelling if they pre planned it as false flag.

Notice how we have some sources saying concern grew after the Trump Putin meeting, where supposedly Trump gave Isreali intelligence to Putin on Syria, I think they were concerned Trump would have no problem revealing a spy for another government, much like he was free with foreign intelligence.

I don't think the exfiltration was the real source but someone to sacrifice, to protect the real source, who is working for Estonian intelligence. To me this seems like it is possibly Anton Vaino, Chief of Staff of the Kremlin since August 2016, Deputy Chief of Staff of Kremlin before that. This is not to say his info is accurate, but is in line with the foreign policy of Estonia to alienate everyone with Russia.

Yeah, Right , Sep 11 2019 0:57 utc | 44
Just out of curiosity, if what has been reported is true then what reason would Mueller have to exclude this from his report? The dude is proof of the Russia-did-it!! narrative. Check. The dude has already been extracted. Check. The Russians must have already noticed that he has done a runner. Check.

What would stop Mueller from producing a one-paragraph report that starts with: "we know the following to be true because for the last decade everything that Putin did was being relayed to us by an aide to the foreign policy advisor to the Kremlin, since extracted and now living in the USA".

I mean, bit of a slam-dunk, don't you think?

juliania , Sep 11 2019 14:57 utc | 58

Well, I just think Putin had more important things to think about than the charade that is now the US electoral process. Probably he felt (I'm guessing of course) that the whole Russiagate scenario was a desperate move to throw a curtain over the demise of American democracy that served his, Putin's, purposes very well because it kept the idiots busy while he shored up the badly leaking ship of his own state.

And I go with Smiley@34 - no spy of even mediocre caliber would agree to being placed in such an exposed position under his own name, for crying out loud!

This was a guy who had big money stashed away, wanted to be in a place where rich guys are held in high esteem, planned his exit from a no-longer-friendly-to-rich-folk environment (if you had money in Russia these days, you should use it for the good of the country).

It doesn't make sense that he would leave himself exposed if either in Russia or in the US he had undercover connections of this sort. Just doesn't make sense. But that he was the best the US operatives could come up with right now simply speaks to further deterioration of US ability to field persuasive stories.

And this gave me some amusement:

Putin's objectives were multifaceted, a high-level intelligence source told NBC News. What began as a "vendetta" against Hillary Clinton morphed into an effort to show corruption in American politics and to "split off key American allies by creating the image that [other countries] couldn't depend on the U.S. to be a credible global leader anymore," the official said. [Quote from Goldman Kropotkin@43]

Putin hasn't had to worry about vendettas or showing corruption in American politics. Take a reliable poll. Who in the US thinks our politics ISN'T corrupt?

juliania , Sep 11 2019 15:11 utc | 59
We didn't need Putin, mastermind though he is, to 'create an image' of American unreliability. Was it Putin who reneged on so many treaties? Was it Putin who antagonized the Koreas? Was it Putin who set up the trade war with China? Was it Putin who threatened and sanctioned Russia, Iran, Venezuela?

We, our leaders, masterminded it all. Sorry, Mr. Putin - you lose that enviable title. We own it.

William Gruff , Sep 11 2019 15:50 utc | 60

What can the Russians do to get ahead of the narrative on the likely impending demise of Smolenkov by novichok or polonium poisoning?

I know some here might say "Everyone would know it is a false flag if Smolenkov gets assassinated!" and that is certainly true if by "everyone" one means the regular readers here and at a few other analysis sites that are not controlled by the empire.

The concern is about the three hundred million other Americans who are at least partially captured by the false narratives pumped out non-stop from their Plato's Cave displays. Is there anything that the Russians can do now to inoculate some Americans against the hard sell they will be facing when the corporate mass media ( Mighty Wurlitzer ) cranks up the multi-channel marketing campaign for the United States' own Skripal farce?

[Sep 11, 2019] On possible Oleg Smolenkov connection to Steele dossier

Sep 10, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

librul , Sep 10 2019 19:54 utc | 19

Is someone brewing up some fresh Novichok nerve agent as we speak?

Don't touch those doorknobs, Oleg!

for future reference: this post was for amusement purposes only

[Sep 11, 2019] DOJ Inspector General Expected To Conclude Carter Page FISA Warrants Illegally Obtained Jim Jordan

Notable quotes:
"... Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz will likely find that all four Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrants against 2016 Trump campaign aide Carter Page were obtained illegally , according to Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH), top Republican on the House Oversight and Reform Committee. ..."
"... " I am reviewing the conduct of the investigation and trying to get my arms around all the aspects of the counterintelligence investigation that was conducted during the summer of 2016, " said Barr. ..."
"... Jordan also noted that he wants Horowitz to testify about his reports on former FBI Director James Comey, and asked "When is somebody going to jail for wrongdoing that took place in the Trump-Russia investigation or even the Clinton investigation?" ..."
Sep 11, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz will likely find that all four Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrants against 2016 Trump campaign aide Carter Page were obtained illegally , according to Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH), top Republican on the House Oversight and Reform Committee.

" I think he will ," said Jordan during an discussion with Fox News 's Sean Hannity and Gregg Jarrett Monday night. In April , Attorney General William Barr assembled a team of DOJ investigators to review controversial counterintelligence decisions made by DOJ and FBI officials made during the 2016 US election.

" I am reviewing the conduct of the investigation and trying to get my arms around all the aspects of the counterintelligence investigation that was conducted during the summer of 2016, " said Barr.

"That's great news he's looking into how this whole thing started back in 2016," said Rep. Jordan at the time. " That's something that has been really important to us. It's what we've been calling for. "

The investigation into alleged FISA abuse against the Trump campaign by DOJ and FBI officials has reportedly been completed. After a declassification period, the report could be released sometime in September. The contents of the report have not been confirmed.

Attorney General William Barr, who is overseeing U.S. Attorney John Durham's investigation into the origins of the Russia investigation, said he is working closely with Horowitz, and they will take up any criminal referrals Horowitz might make.

Former U.S. Attorney Joe diGenova said he has heard the initial FISA warrant against Page and the three renewals at three-month intervals were illegally obtained . He told the Washington Examiner 's Examining Politics podcast late last month that he got his insider information because the report is "being circulated inside and outside of the department for comment by interested parties." - Washington Examiner

Jordan also noted that he wants Horowitz to testify about his reports on former FBI Director James Comey, and asked "When is somebody going to jail for wrongdoing that took place in the Trump-Russia investigation or even the Clinton investigation?"


New_Meat , 7 minutes ago link

The FISA Court is under the supervision of the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. Does John Roberts have zero resources to figure out what happened internally? Is there no Judicial oversight for this Star Chamber?

Or is his "judicial temperament" so calm that he can't see how his Branch has been corrupted?

847328_3527 , 6 minutes ago link

((( Roberts )))

Probably an accomplice to the entire RussiaGate Hoax.

TruthAbsolute , 9 minutes ago link

is there any doubt that the USA has a two tiered justice sytem...people in the Washinton swamp are all covered if they capitulate to the Deep State! Comey is nothing but a Traitor but the left wing party do not care cause he is just like them they hate... Trump! And the Patriot all just stand down!

Ruler , 14 minutes ago link

The Clintons and Bush's have been the worst things to ever have happened to this country.

booboo , 13 minutes ago link

and the kardashians

e-man , 12 minutes ago link

...and Obama. All the espionage and Deep State manipulation (that we know of) were done under his watch.

NukeChinaNow , 6 minutes ago link

What did you expect... when you let one of the monkeys try to turn America into a zoo?

romanmoment , 15 minutes ago link

This is all a ****-show of theater. Nobody is going to be held accountable for anything and, if by chance, some low level schlep gets thrown in the clink he'll hang himself with one-ply toilet paper and nobody will have seen a thing....

[Sep 06, 2019] The CIA Bull in Glenn Simpson's Russia Shop naked capitalism

Notable quotes:
"... Few in the NC commentariat, at least from what I saw, had any problem accepting that the DNC and the Clinton campaign funded the dossier, so I’m wondering why it’s that much of a stretch to believe that the CIA might have engineered the whole thing. ..."
Sep 06, 2019 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

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https://c.deployads.com/sync?f=html&s=2343&u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nakedcapitalism.com%2F2018%2F01%2Fcia-bull-glenn-simpsons-russia-shop.html <img src="http://b.scorecardresearch.com/p?c1=2&c2=16807273&cv=2.0&cj=1" /> The CIA Bull in Glenn Simpson's Russia Shop Posted on January 22, 2018 by Jerri-Lynn Scofield By John Helmer , the longest continuously serving foreign correspondent in Russia, and the only western journalist to direct his own bureau independent of single national or commercial ties. Helmer has also been a professor of political science, and an advisor to government heads in Greece, the United States, and Asia. He is the first and only member of a US presidential administration (Jimmy Carter) to establish himself in Russia. Originally published at Dances with Bears

In criminal trials the rule for prosecuting and defending lawyers is the same. Never ask a witness a question unless you already know the answer. The corollary rule for defending lawyers is – if the answer to your question will incriminate your client, don't ask it, and hope the prosecutor fails to do his job.

Glenn Simpson, a former employee of the Wall Street Journal in New York, is currently on trial in the US for having fabricated a dossier of allegations of Russian misconduct (bribes, sex, blackmail, hacking) involving President Donald Trump and circulating them to the press; the objective was to damage Trump's candidacy before the election of November 8, 2016. Simpson was called to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee on August 22, 2017; then the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence on November 8 and again on November 14, 2017. So far, Simpson's veracity and business conduct face nothing more than the court of public opinion. He has not yet been charged with criminal or civil offences. That will happen if the evidence materializes that Simpson has been lying.

Simpson's collaborator in the dossier and his business partner, Christopher Steele, is facing trial in the London High Court, charged with libels he and Simpson published in their dossier. Together, they are material witnesses in two federal US court trials for defamation, one in Miami and one in New York. If they perjure themselves giving evidence in those cases, they are likely to face criminal indictments. If they tell the truth, they are likely to face fresh defamation proceedings; perhaps a civil racketeering suit for fraud; maybe a false statement prosecution under the US criminal code.

One question for them is as obvious as its answer. Who do an American ex-journalist on US national security and an ex-British intelligence agent go to for sources on Russian undercover operations outside Russia in general, the US in particular? Answer -- first, their friends and contacts from the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA); second, their friends and contacts from the Secret Intelligence Service or MI6, as the UK counterpart is known.

Why then did the twenty-two congressmen, the members of the House Intelligence Committee who subpoenaed Simpson for interview, fail to pursue what information he and Steele received either directly from the CIA or indirectly through British intelligence?

The answer noone in the US wants to say aloud is the possibility that it was the CIA which provided Simpson and Steele with names and source materials for their dossier, creating the evidence of a Russian plot against the US election, and generating evidence of Russian operations. If that is what happened, then Simpson and Steele were participants in a false-flag CIA operation in US politics.

This isn't idle speculation. It has been under investigation at the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) since Simpson and Steele decided in mid-2016 to go to the FBI to request an investigation, and then told American press to get the FBI to confirm it was investigating. At the fresh request this month from the Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, the FBI is still investigating .

Simpson's appearance at the House Intelligence Committee was the sequel to his testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee; for that story, read this .

Simpson's three lawyers from the Washington, DC, firm of Cunningham Levy Muse, who appeared with him at the Senate and House committee hearings. From left to right, Robert Muse; Joshua Levy, and Rachel Clattenburg.  
The firm's other name partner, Bryan Cunningham, was a CIA officer specializingin cyber operations.

The transcripts of the House Intelligence Committee were released last Thursday. Simpson's first appearance was on November 8, and can be read in full here .

Simpson's lawyers did all the talking; Simpson said nothing, pleading the US Constitution's Fifth Amendment right not to incriminate himself.

Although his lawyers repeatedly claimed during the earlier Senate Committee hearing that Simpson was testifying voluntarily, the House Committee recorded that Simpson was compelled to testify. "Our record today," the November 8 transcript begins, "will reflect that you have been compelled to appear today pursuant to a subpoena issued on October 4th, 2017." Simpson then told the Committee through his lawyers that he would plead the Fifth Amendment and not answer any questions. The first transcript is a record of debate between Republican and Democratic members of the Committee.

This resulted in an agreement for Simpson to testify under the subpoena but on terms his lawyers said would limit the scope of the questions which he would agree to answer.

Steele, according to the November 8 transcript, was also summoned to testify. A British citizen with home in Berkshire and office in London, he refused and the Committee recorded his "noncooperation and nontestimony."

Republicans outnumber Democrats on the House Committee, 13 to 9. Just 5 Republican members were at Simpson's November 14 appearance; 7 Democrats. The Republican committee chairman, Devin Nunes, was absent. Release of Simpson's transcript was an initiative of the Democrats. In a statement by their leader on the committee, Adam Schiff, the Democrats claimed last week "thus far, Committee Republicans have refused to look into this key area and we hope the release of this transcript will reinforce the importance of these critical questions to our investigation."

Read the November 14 testimony here .

Members of the House Intelligence Committee on the podium at an open hearing inNovember 2017.    From left to right: Adam Schiff (D), Michael Conaway (R),and Thomas Rooney (R).

Search the 165 pages of the transcript for the CIA, and you will find many references to the letters, C, I and A – spe cia lize, so cia l, commer cia l, espe cia lly, asso cia tion, finan cia l and politi cia n. There were 44 mentions of the Federal Bureau of Intelligence (FBI); 4 mentions of "British Intelligence" – the spy agency to which Steele belonged ten years ago – one mention each of the Israeli Mossad, the Chinese and Indian intelligence services.

According to Simpson, "foreign intelligence services hacking American political operations is not that unusual, actually, and there's a lot of foreign intelligence services that play in American elections." He mentioned the Chinese and the Indians, not the Israelis. The Mossad, Simpson did tell the Committee, was his source for his belief that Russian intelligence has been operating through the Jewish Orthodox Chabad movement, and the Russian Orthodox Church. "The Orthodox church is also an arm of the Russian State now the Mossad guys used to tell me about how the Russians were laundering money through the Orthodox church in Israel, and that it was intelligence operations."

There are just two references in the Committee transcript to the CIA. One was a passing remark to imply the Russians cannot "break[ing] into the CIA, [so instead] you are breaking into, you know, places where, you know, an open society leaves open."

The second was a bombshell. It dropped during questioning by Congressman Thomas Rooney (right),
a 3-term Republican representative from Florida with a career as an army lawyer. Rooney asked Simpson: "Do you or anyone else independently verify or corroborate any information in the dossier?"

Simpson replied by saying, "Yes. Well, numerous things in the dossier have been verified. You know, I don't have access to the intelligence or law enforcement information that I see made reference to, but, you know, things like, you know, the Russian Government has been investigating Hillary Clinton and has a lot of information about her."

Then Simpson contradicted himself, disclosing what he had just denied. "When the original memos came in saying that the Kremlin was mounting a specific operation to get Donald Trump elected President , that was not what the Intelligence Community was saying. The Intelligence Community was saying they are just seeking to disrupt our election and our political process, and that this is sort of kind of just a generally nihilistic, you know, trouble-making operation. And, you know, Chris turned out to be right, it was specifically designed to elect Donald Trump President."

How did Simpson know with such confidence what the "Intelligence Community" was "saying", and who were Simpson's and Steele's sources in the "Intelligence Community"? Rooney failed to inquire. Instead, he and Simpson exchanged question and answer regarding the approach Simpson and Steele made to the FBI when they delivered their dossier. In the details of that, Simpson repeated what he had already told the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Rooney then asked what contact had been made with the CIA or "any other intelligence officials". Simpson claimed he didn't understand the question at first, then he stumbled.

Source: http://docs.house.gov/meetings/IG/IG00/20180118/106796/HMTG-115-IG00-20180118-SD002.pdf -- page 61 .

What Simpson was concealing in the two pauses, reported in the transcript as hyphens, Rooney did not realize. Simpson was implying that noone from Fusion GPS, his consulting company, had been in contact with the CIA, nor him personally. But Simpson left open that Steele had been in contact with the CIA. Rooney followed with a question about "anyone", but that was so imprecise, Simpson recovered his confidence to say "No". That was a cover-up – and the House Intelligence Committee let it drop noiselessly.

Intelligence community sources and colleagues who know Simpson and Steele say Simpson was notorious at the Wall Street Journal for coming up with conspiracy theories for which the evidence was missing or unreliable. He told the Committee that disbelief on the part of his editors and management had been one of his reasons for leaving the newspaper. "One of the reasons why I left the Wall Street Journal was because I wanted to write more stories about Russian influence in Washington, D.C., on both the Democrats and the Republicans eventually the Journal lost interest in that subject. And I was frustrated that was where I left my journalism career."

Left: Glenn Simpson reporter for the Wall Street Journal in 1996, promoting his book, Dirty Little Secrets: The Persistence of Corruption in American Politics.  Right: Simpson in Washington in August 2017.

When Simpson was asked "do you – did you find anything to -- that you verified as false in the dossier, since or during?" Simpson replied: "I have not seen anything – ". Note the hypthen, the stenographer's signal that Simpson was pausing.

"[Question]. So everything in that dossier, as far as you're concerned, is true or could be true?"

"MR. SIMPSON: I didn't say that. What I said was it was credible at the time it came in. We were able to corroborate various things that supported its credibility."

Sources in London are divided on the question of where Steele's sources came from – CIA, MI6, or elsewhere. What has been clear for the year in which the dossier's contents have been in public circulation is that the sources the dossier referred to as "Russian" were not. For details of the sourcing . The subsequent identification of the Maltese source Joseph Mifsud, and the Greek-American George Papadopoulos, corroborates their lack of direct Russian sources. Instead, the sources identified in the dossier were either Americans, Americans of Russian ethnic origin, or Russians with no direct knowledge repeating hearsay three or four times removed from source.

So were the allegations of the dossier manufactured by a CIA disinformation unit, and fed back to the US through the British agent, Steele? Or were they a Simpson conspiracy theory of the type that failed to pass veracity testing when Simpson was at the Wall Street Journal? The House Intelligence Committee failed to inquire.

One independent clue is what financial and other links Simpson and Steele and their consulting firms, Fusion GPS and Orbis Business Intelligence, have had with US Government agencies other than the FBI, and what US Government contracts they were paid for, before the Republican and Democratic Party organizations commissioned the anti-Trump job?

The House Committee has subpoenaed business records from Fusion, but Simpson's lawyers say they will refuse to hand them over. The financial records of Steele's firm are openly accessible through the UK government company registry, Companies House. Click to read here .

Because the Trump dossier work ran from the second half of 2015 to November 2016, the financial reports of Orbis for the financial years ending March 31, 2016, and March 31, 2017, are the primary sources. For FY 2016 and FY 2017, open this link to read.

The papers reveal that Orbis was a small firm with no more than 7 employees. Steele's business partner and co-shareholder, Christopher Burrows, is another former MI6 spy. They had been hoping for MI6 support of their private business, but it failed to materialize, says an London intelligence source. "Chris Burrows is another from the same background. They all hope to be Hakluyt [a leading commercial intelligence operation in London] but didn't get the nod on departure."

Left: Christopher Steele; right, Christopher Burrows.

They do not report the Orbis income. Instead, for 2016 the company filings indicate £155,171 in cash at the bank, and income of £245,017 owed by clients and contractors. Offsetting that figure, Orbis owed £317,848 – to whom and for what purposes is not reported. The unaudited accounts show Orbis's profit jumped from £121,046 in 2015 to £199,223 in 2016, and £441,089 in 2017.

The financial data are complicated by the operation by Steele and Burrows of a second company, Orbis Business Intelligence International, a subsidiary they created in 2010, a year after the parent company was formed. Follow its affairs here .

According to British press reports , Orbis and Steele were paid £200,000 for the dossier. Simpson told the House Intelligence Committee the sum was much less -- $160,000 (about £114,000). Simpson's firm, he also testified, was being paid at a rate of about $50,000 per month for a total of about $320,000. If the British sources are more accurate than Simpson's testimony, Steele's takings from the dossier represented roughly half the profit on the Orbis balance-sheet.

British sources also report that a US Government agency paid for Orbis to work on evidence and allegations of corruption at the world soccer federation, Fédération Internationale de Football (FIFA). Indictments in this case were issued by the US Department of Justice in May 2015 , and the following December . What role the two-partner British consultancy played in the complex investigations by teams from the Justice Department, the FBI and also the Internal Revenue Service is unclear. That Steele, Burrows and Orbis depended on US government sources for their financial well-being appears to be certain.

Another reported version of the FIFA contract is that Steele, Burrows and Orbis were hired by the British Football Association to collect materials on FIFA corruption, and provide them to the FBI and other US investigators, and then to the press. The scheme's objective was reportedly to advance the British bidding for the World Cup in 2018 or 2022 by discrediting the rival bids from Russia and Qatar. Click to read . Were MI6 and CIA sources mobilized by Orbis to feed the FBI with evidence the US investigators were unable to turn up, or was Orbis the conduit through which disinformation targeting Russia was fed to make it appear more credible to the FBI, and to the media?

US Congressional investigators have so far failed to notice the similarities between the FIFA and the Trump dossier operations. Early this month two Republican members of the Senate Judiciary Committee announced that they have called for a Justice Department and FBI investigation of Steele for providing false information to the FBI. The provision of the US code making lying a federal crime requires the falsehoods occur "within the jurisdiction of the executive, legislative, or judicial branch of the Government of the United States." Simpson has testified that when Steele briefed the FBI on the dossier, he did so at meetings in Rome, Italy.

Now then, Part I and this sequel of the Simpson-Steele story having been read and thoroughly mulled over, what can the meaning be?

In the short run, this case was a black job assigned by Republican Party candidates for president, then the Democratic National Committee, for the purpose of discrediting Trump in favour of Hillary Clinton. It failed on Election Day in 2016; the Democrats are still trying.

In the long run, the case is a measurement of the life, or the half-life, of truth. Giuseppe di Lampedusa wrote once that nowhere has truth so short a life as in Sicily. On his clock, that was five minutes. He didn't know the United States, or shall we say the stretch from Washington through New York to the North End of Boston. There, truth has an even shorter life. Scarcely a second.

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Rhondda , January 22, 2018 at 3:57 pm

I pay pretty close attention to this topic and I must say I sometimes wonder if the Russians haven’t sold the rope to the American political elite. I read all 311 pages of Simpson’s testimony. I was struck that much of what he was “fed” by Steele confirmed his “OMG Russia corruption” biases.

And I say “fed to him” when I’m in a generous mood, giving him the benefit of the doubt, because usually I am of the opinion that he’s either a really crappy CIA agent posing as a journalist or just a garden variety rat f*!@er. A black job political operative, stitching together a few almost-believable “facts” and out-and-out fabrications with squishy words like “collusion” and “ties.”

From the embedded link in Helmer’s text above:
http://johnhelmer.net/glenn-simpson-chases-his-shadow-into-a-black-hole/

London due diligence firms say the record of Simpson’s firm Fusion GPS and Steele’s Orbis Business Intelligence operations in the US has discredited them in the due diligence market. The London experts believe the Senate Committee transcript shows Simpson and Steele were hired for the black job of discrediting the target of their research, Trump; did a poor job; failed in 2016; and now are engaged in bitter recriminations against each other to avoid multi-million dollar court penalties.

A source at a London firm which is larger and better known than Steele’s Orbis says “standard due diligence means getting to the truth. It’s confidential to the client, and not leaked. There are also black jobs, white jobs, and red jobs. Black means the client wants you to dig up dirt on the target, and make it look credible for publishing in the press. White means the client wants you to clear him of the wrongdoing which he’s being accused of in the media or the marketplace; it’s also leaked to the press. A red job is where the client pays the due diligence firm to hire a journalist to find out what he knows and what he’s likely to publish, in order to bribe or stop him. The Steele dossier on Trump is an obvious black job. Too obvious.”

Emphasis mine.

3.14e-9 , January 22, 2018 at 6:49 pm

Rhondaa writes:

I read all 311 pages of Simpson’s testimony. I was struck that much of what he was “fed” by Steele confirmed his “OMG Russia corruption” biases.

Same here, but not just about what he was fed by Steele. Simpson claimed to have done some of his own research and said it was consistent with what he got from Steele.

I’m about three-quarters of the way through the transcript of Simpson’s interrogation by the House Intelligence Committee, and I’ve read all 312 pages of the Senate Judiciary Committee transcript, which bears little resemblance to what was reported in the major media – shocking, I know.

Among the “bombshells” the mainstream reported was “proof” that it wasn’t the dossier that launched the FBI’s investigation of Trump, and therefore the dossier couldn’t have been used as justification for a FISA warrant. A bigger bombshell, which of course none of them mentioned, is that Simpson, with his client’s consent, was secretly briefing Clinton-friendly reporters on information from Steele’s memos, and they used it to write stories based on “unnamed sources.” He even admitted that he didn’t verify the information before feeding it to the media, said he didn’t feel he needed to, because it came from a trustworthy source. Where have we heard that before?

Few in the NC commentariat, at least from what I saw, had any problem accepting that the DNC and the Clinton campaign funded the dossier, so I’m wondering why it’s that much of a stretch to believe that the CIA might have engineered the whole thing. It’s well-established that the State Department often acts as a cover for the CIA, and the agency under Secretary Clinton had a strong anti-Russia faction that’s on the record as meddling in Ukraine’s presidential election. And how much doubt could there be that both Clintons kept the CIA connections they made while in office?

Then there was the whole “Grizzly Steppe” report just before Trump’s inauguration, presented as a consensus among “17 intelligence agencies” that the Russians “hacked the election” to help Trump win.

I’m not 100-percent convinced that U.S. intelligence was behind the dossier, but it’s enough of a possibility that I’m not writing it off as some nutty “conspiracy theory.”

integer , January 23, 2018 at 4:16 am

Few in the NC commentariat, at least from what I saw, had any problem accepting that the DNC and the Clinton campaign funded the dossier, so I’m wondering why it’s that much of a stretch to believe that the CIA might have engineered the whole thing.

FWIW this NC commenter has never had any problem believing that this may be the case. In fact I am fairly certain that it is the case, although from what I understand the FBI and MI6 were also involved.

Adding: Heh. I posted this before looking at Rev Kev’s link to the Raimondo article, which comes to the same conclusions. Interesting times!

Scott1 , January 22, 2018 at 4:37 pm

I believe that Seth Abramson or someone put photographs to the Steele dossier showing people in the places & at the times delineated in the Steele dossier.
From the very first Steele said he would not & could not reveal his sources. It was from the first indicated that it would be to the FBI & CIA to discover.
He said he believed that his sources were credible.
When I was studying Intelligence services the CIA was said to be the private army of the CIA. These days I don’t know exactly who the CIA works for, or answers to.
I certainly don’t think well of the CIA believing they are wrapped up working for their Front businesses more than focusing on the mission of spying in the interests of the American people.
Of private intelligence companies I get what I can from IHS Jane’s.
That the CIA lost 20 assets, human beings, in China for incompetent secret communications methods would lead professionals to withhold as much of identities as possible.
For awhile there I believe Steele was worried about his own health.
David Corn at Mother Jones was reticent to break the story.
So now what I see to look for is what Steele said needed to be done, & that being what Mueller is doing at the behest of the DOJ.
The US has been at war, albeit Hybrid war since the imposition of sanctions for their violations of international law as regarded the annexation of Crimea & the attack on the Ukraine.
Sanctions are Economic Warfare.
That the US feels the right to engage in warfare of any kind Economic or Hot over violations of International Law leads me to believe that the UN will fail to prevent the apocalyptic riot.
But that as regards Trump becomes neither here nor there, correct?

The Rev Kev , January 23, 2018 at 12:29 am

Justin Raimondo has weighed in on this story at https://original.antiwar.com/justin/2018/01/22/russsia-gate-implodes/ and he does not sound like a happy camper.

John Gilberts , January 24, 2018 at 12:25 am

William Binney, former NSA technical official and whistleblower, comments on the FISA memo, that has apparently just been released. Obviously, a major development in ‘Russia-gate’.

William Binney Exposes Secret FISA Memo
http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/48650.htm

[Sep 04, 2019] What We Still Do Not Know About Russiagate by Stephen F. Cohen's

Notable quotes:
"... It must again be emphasized: It is hard, if not impossible, to think of a more toxic allegation in American presidential history than the one leveled against candidate, and then president, Donald Trump that he "colluded" with the Kremlin in order to win the 2016 presidential election -- and, still more, that Vladimir Putin's regime, "America's No. 1 threat," had compromising material on Trump that made him its "puppet." Or a more fraudulent accusation. ..."
"... Was it plausible, for example, that Trump, a longtime owner and operator of international hotels, would commit an indiscreet act in a Moscow hotel that he did not own or control? Or that, as Steele also claimed, high-level Kremlin sources had fed him damning anti-Trump information even though their vigilant boss, Putin, wanted Trump to win the election? ..."
"... Nor was Russian "meddling" in the election anything akin to a "digital Pearl Harbor," as widely asserted, and it was certainly far less and less intrusive than President Bill Clinton's political and financial "interference" undertaken to assure the reelection of Russian President Boris Yeltsin in 1996. ..."
"... Nonetheless, Russiagate's core allegation persists, like a legend, in American political life -- in media commentary, in financial solicitations by some Democratic candidates for Congress, and, as is clear from my own discussions, in the minds of otherwise well-informed people. The only way to dispel, to excoriate, such a legend is to learn and expose how it began -- by whom, when, and why. ..."
"... Why did Western intelligence agencies, prompted, it seems clear, by US ones, seek to undermine Trump's presidential campaign? ..."
"... the repeatedly hapless Comey seems incapable of having initiated such an audacious operation against a presidential candidate, still less a president-elect. As I have long suggested, John Brennan and James Clapper, head of the CIA and Office of National Intelligence under Obama respectively, are the more likely culprits. ..."
"... First and foremost, Russiagate is about the present and future of the American political system, not about Russia. (Indeed, as I have repeatedly argued, there is very little, if any, Russia in Russiagate.) ..."
"... At every "debate" or comparable forum, all of the Democratic candidates should be asked about this grave threat to American democracy -- what they think about what happened and would do about it if elected president. Consider it health care for our democracy. ..."
Sep 04, 2019 | www.thenation.com

It must again be emphasized: It is hard, if not impossible, to think of a more toxic allegation in American presidential history than the one leveled against candidate, and then president, Donald Trump that he "colluded" with the Kremlin in order to win the 2016 presidential election -- and, still more, that Vladimir Putin's regime, "America's No. 1 threat," had compromising material on Trump that made him its "puppet." Or a more fraudulent accusation.

Even leaving aside the misperception that Russia is the primary threat to America in world affairs, no aspect of this allegation has turned out to be true, as should have been evident from the outset. Major aspects of the now infamous Steele Dossier, on which much of the allegation was based, were themselves not merely "unverified" but plainly implausible.

Was it plausible, for example, that Trump, a longtime owner and operator of international hotels, would commit an indiscreet act in a Moscow hotel that he did not own or control? Or that, as Steele also claimed, high-level Kremlin sources had fed him damning anti-Trump information even though their vigilant boss, Putin, wanted Trump to win the election? Nonetheless, the American mainstream media and other important elements of the US political establishment relied on Steele's allegations for nearly three years, even heroizing him -- and some still do, explicitly or implicitly.

Not surprisingly, former special counsel Robert Mueller found no evidence of "collusion" between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin. No credible evidence has been produced that Russia's "interference" affected the result of the 2016 presidential election in any significant way. Nor was Russian "meddling" in the election anything akin to a "digital Pearl Harbor," as widely asserted, and it was certainly far less and less intrusive than President Bill Clinton's political and financial "interference" undertaken to assure the reelection of Russian President Boris Yeltsin in 1996.

Nonetheless, Russiagate's core allegation persists, like a legend, in American political life -- in media commentary, in financial solicitations by some Democratic candidates for Congress, and, as is clear from my own discussions, in the minds of otherwise well-informed people. The only way to dispel, to excoriate, such a legend is to learn and expose how it began -- by whom, when, and why.

Officially, at least in the FBI's version, its operation "Crossfire Hurricane," the counterintelligence investigation of the Trump campaign that began in mid-2016 was due to suspicious remarks made to visitors by a young and lowly Trump aide, George Papadopoulos. This too is not believable, as I pointed out previously . Most of those visitors themselves had ties to Western intelligence agencies. That is, the young Trump aide was being enticed, possibly entrapped, as part of a larger intelligence operation against Trump. (Papadopoulos wasn't the only Trump associate targeted, Carter Page being another.)

But the question remains: Why did Western intelligence agencies, prompted, it seems clear, by US ones, seek to undermine Trump's presidential campaign? A reflexive answer might be because candidate Trump promised to "cooperate with Russia," to pursue a pro-détente foreign policy, but this was hardly a startling, still less subversive, advocacy by a would-be Republican president. All of the major pro-détente episodes in the 20th century had been initiated by Republican presidents: Eisenhower, Nixon, and Reagan.

So, again, what was it about Trump that so spooked the spooks so far off their rightful reservation and so intrusively into American presidential politics? Investigations being overseen by Attorney General William Barr may provide answers -- or not. Barr has already leveled procedural charges against James Comey, head of the FBI under President Obama and briefly under President Trump, but the repeatedly hapless Comey seems incapable of having initiated such an audacious operation against a presidential candidate, still less a president-elect. As I have long suggested, John Brennan and James Clapper, head of the CIA and Office of National Intelligence under Obama respectively, are the more likely culprits.

The FBI is no longer the fearsome organization it once was and thus not hard to investigate, as Barr has already shown. The others, particularly the CIA, are a different matter, and Barr has suggested they are resisting. To investigate them, particularly the CIA, it seems, he has brought in a veteran prosecutor-investigator, John Durham.

Which raises other questions. Are Barr and Durham, whose own careers include associations with US intelligence agencies, determined to uncover the truth about the origins of Russiagate? And can they really do so fully, given the resistance already apparent? Even if so, will Barr make public their findings, however damning of the intelligence agencies they may be, or will he classify them? And if the latter, will President Trump use his authority to declassify the findings as the 2020 presidential election approaches in order to discredit the role of Obama's presidency and its would-be heirs?

Equally important perhaps, how will mainstream media treat the Barr-Durham investigation and its findings? Having driven the Russiagate narrative for so long and so misleadingly -- and with liberals perhaps finding themselves in the incongruous position of defending rogue intelligence agencies -- will they credit or seek to discredit the findings?

It is true, of course, that Barr and Durham, as Trump appointees, are not the ideal investigators of Intel misdeeds in the Russiagate saga. Much better would be a truly bipartisan, independent investigation based in the Senate, as was the Church Committee of the mid-1970s, which exposed and reformed (it thought at the time) serious abuses by US intelligence agencies. That would require, however, a sizable core of nonpartisan, honorable, and courageous senators of both parties, who thus far seem to be lacking.

There are also, however, the ongoing and upcoming Democratic presidential debates. First and foremost, Russiagate is about the present and future of the American political system, not about Russia. (Indeed, as I have repeatedly argued, there is very little, if any, Russia in Russiagate.)

At every "debate" or comparable forum, all of the Democratic candidates should be asked about this grave threat to American democracy -- what they think about what happened and would do about it if elected president. Consider it health care for our democracy.

This commentary is based on Stephen F. Cohen's most recent weekly discussion with the host of The John Batchelor Show . Now in their sixth year, previous installments are at TheNation.com .

Stephen F. Cohen Stephen F. Cohen is a professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at New York University and Princeton University. A Nation contributing editor, his most recent book War With Russia? From Putin & Ukraine to Trump & Russiagate is available in paperback and in an ebook edition. His weekly conversations with the host of The John Batchelor Show, now in their sixth year, are available at www.thenation.com .

[Aug 25, 2019] The FBI Tried and Failed to Entrap Donald Trump Using his Business Associate, Felix Sater by Larry C Johnson

Notable quotes:
"... Let me cut to the chase--Felix Sater was an FBI informant since 1998. He was originally signed on as a "cooperator" in December 1998 by Robert Mueller's number two guy, Andrew Weissman. Robert Mueller and his team used Felix Sater as a "lure" or "bait" to tempt Trump and his team, Michael Cohen in particular, to work with Russia. Trump did not bite. ..."
"... Sater, as we now know, played a central role in the FBI plot to destroy Donald Trump by proposing a Trump Tower in Moscow. ..."
"... One of the very first reports provided by Christopher Steele insists that the Russians were working overtime to get Trump in bed with them on "lucrative real estate deals." The Steele report dated 20 June 2016 makes the following claims: ..."
"... Steele's claim that the "Kremlin," as part of a broader scheme to recruit Trump as a Russian asset, was "offering him various lucrative real development" deals in Russia, is refuted by the article by Newsweek's Bill Powell and by Robert Mueller's report ..."
"... Felix Sater was the ones telling Trump to build a Trump Tower in Moscow. Sater, according to Newsweek's Powell, was not a close confidant of Trump: ..."
"... Powell's account is consistent with the information present by Robert Mueller in the Charging Indictment of Michael Cohen. While the Steele Dossier makes the claim that the Russian Government was offering up "lucrative projects" to the Trump organization, Michael Cohen never made such a claim. The details in the charging document show otherwise; i.e., that Felix Sater was pushing the projects : ..."
"... Notwithstanding these communications, the Moscow project was terminated in June 2016. And it was Felix Sater aka "Individual 2", not the Russians, pushing for going to Russia and making a deal. No evidence of Russians offering up "lucrative deals." ..."
"... If the Steele Dossier was true, Trump should have had multiple project going on in Russia, especially Moscow. Steele paints a picture of Putin's people feeding Trump information and opportunity. So where is the evidence of such activity? There is none. ..."
Aug 25, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

I am revisiting a story I did nine months ago about Felix Sater and the Steele Dossier ( you can read it here ). Let me cut to the chase--Felix Sater was an FBI informant since 1998. He was originally signed on as a "cooperator" in December 1998 by Robert Mueller's number two guy, Andrew Weissman. Robert Mueller and his team used Felix Sater as a "lure" or "bait" to tempt Trump and his team, Michael Cohen in particular, to work with Russia. Trump did not bite.

Robert Mueller did not disclose that Sater was an FBI Informant. Mueller did not disclose that Sater was deliberately used starting in September 2015 to entrap Donald Trump. I am revisiting this issue because a Sater's work for the Feds was unsealed last Friday by Judge Glasser in New York. According to the Wall Street Journal:

Felix Sater, a former business associate of President Trump, began working with the Federal Bureau of Investigation in 1998, after he was caught in a stock-fraud scheme. As he pleaded guilty, Mr. Sater turned on his co-conspirators, federal prosecutors in Brooklyn wrote in an Aug. 27, 2009, letter , unsealed Friday, to U.S. District Judge I. Leo Glasser, who was overseeing the case. He had gone on to assist various agencies in different areas of law enforcement for years, they wrote.

"Sater went above and beyond what is expected of most cooperators and placed himself in great jeopardy in doing so," the prosecutors wrote in pushing for him to get a lighter sentence. On the strength of his continuing cooperation, they had put off his sentencing for more than a decade, an unusually long period for such arrangements.

As I tried to unpeel the onion that is the layered life of Felix Sater, I came across an excellent article by Newsweek reporter Bill Powell, Donald Trump Associate Felix Sater Is Linked to the Mob and the CIA -- What's His Role in the Russia Investigation? . It is worth your time. One of the surprising revelations from Powell is that Felix Sater was a childhood friend of Michael Cohen, Trump's lawyer. Let that sink in for a moment. The FBI informant, Felix Sater, was a long time friend of Cohen. This now provides another explanation for how Michael Cohen became part of the Trump orbit. Did Felix Sater, while an active FBI informant, introduce Cohen to Trump? (Sater and his company, Bayrock, started working with Trump in 2003 while Cohen did not start working for Trump until 2006).

Sater, as we now know, played a central role in the FBI plot to destroy Donald Trump by proposing a Trump Tower in Moscow. Trump did not take the bait. No Trump Tower in Moscow deal was ever done. Sater also provides, unwittingly, direct evidence that part of the Christopher Steele Dossier is a fraud and a fabrication.

One of the very first reports provided by Christopher Steele insists that the Russians were working overtime to get Trump in bed with them on "lucrative real estate deals." The Steele report dated 20 June 2016 makes the following claims:

Speaking to a trusted compatriot in June 2016 sources A and B, a senior Russian Foreign Ministry figure and a former top level Russian intelligence officer still active inside the Kremlin respectively, the Russian authorities had been cultivating and supporting US Republican presidential candidate, Donald TRUMP for at least 5 years. . . .

In terms of specifics, Source A confided that the Kremlin had been feeding TRUMP and his team valuable intelligence on his opponents, including Democratic presidential candidate Hillary CLINTON, for several years (see more below). . . .

The Kremlin's cultivation operation on TRUMP also had comprised offering him various lucrative real estate development business deals in Russia , especially in relation to the ongoing 2018 World Cup soccer tournament. How ever, so far, for reasons unknown, TRUMP had not taken up any of these.

Steele's claim that the "Kremlin," as part of a broader scheme to recruit Trump as a Russian asset, was "offering him various lucrative real development" deals in Russia, is refuted by the article by Newsweek's Bill Powell and by Robert Mueller's report

Bill Powell reported the following in Newsweek:

[Felix Sater] and his childhood friend, Michael Cohen -- then a lawyer and dealmaker for the Trump Organization -- had been working for more than a decade, on and off, to build a Trump Tower in Moscow . The New York real estate mogul had long wanted to see his name on a glitzy building in the Russian capital, but the project had never materialized.

Where are all of those "lucrative deals" the Kremlin was supposedly offering up? Nowhere. It was a lie.

Felix Sater was the ones telling Trump to build a Trump Tower in Moscow. Sater, according to Newsweek's Powell, was not a close confidant of Trump:

In [2003], Sater says he met Trump, thanks to his work for Bayrock, the real estate company. . . Sater raised money for Bayrock from, among others, a wealthy businessman from the former Soviet republic of Kazakhstan, and he persuaded people in Trump's orbit -- including Cohen, his old friend -- to bring his deals before the boss. Two of the ideas worked out. Sater and the New York real estate mogul eventually worked on the Trump SoHo in Manhattan and a hotel and condo project in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, which failed after the 2008 economic crisis. He and Trump, Sater claims, were friendly but not particularly close.

Powell does not report the Russians offering up any "lucrative" real estate deal.

Powell's account is consistent with the information present by Robert Mueller in the Charging Indictment of Michael Cohen. While the Steele Dossier makes the claim that the Russian Government was offering up "lucrative projects" to the Trump organization, Michael Cohen never made such a claim. The details in the charging document show otherwise; i.e., that Felix Sater was pushing the projects :

The Moscow Project was discussed multiple times within the Company and did not end in January 2016. Instead, as late as approximately June 2016, COHEN and Individual 2 discussed efforts to obtain Russian governmental approval for the Moscow Project.

Why does the Trump organization need to "obtain Russian governmental approval" if, per the Steele Dossier, the Russians are offering up a slew of "lucrative" deals?

The charging document provides further detail on Cohen and Sater's interaction with Russian officials. In early January 2016, Michael Cohen sent an email to Vladimir Putin's Press Secretary. The Secretary responded:

On or about January 14, 2016, COHEN emailed Russian Official 1's office asking for assistance in connection with the Moscow Project.

On or about January 20, 2016, COHEN received an email from the personal assistant to Russian Official 1 ("Assistant 1"), stating that she had been trying to reach COHEN and requesting that he call her using a Moscow-based phone number she provided.

Shortly after receiving the email, COHEN called Assistant 1 and spoke to her for approximately 20 minutes. On that call, COHEN described his position at the Company and outlined the proposed Moscow Project, including the Russian development company with which the Company had partnered. COHEN requested assistance in moving the project forward, both in securing land to build the proposed tower and financing the construction. Assistant 1 asked detailed questions and took notes, stating that she would follow up with others in Russia.

Notwithstanding these communications, the Moscow project was terminated in June 2016. And it was Felix Sater aka "Individual 2", not the Russians, pushing for going to Russia and making a deal. No evidence of Russians offering up "lucrative deals."

From on or about June 9 to June 14, 2016, Individual 2 sent numerous messages to COHEN about the travel, including forms for COHEN to complete. However, on or about June 14, 2016, COHEN met Individual 2 in the lobby of the Company's headquarters to inform Individual 2 he would not be traveling at that time.

If the Steele Dossier was true, Trump should have had multiple project going on in Russia, especially Moscow. Steele paints a picture of Putin's people feeding Trump information and opportunity. So where is the evidence of such activity? There is none.

The Mueller report reinforces the fact that Felix Sater was the one proposing doing the deal in Moscow and talking to the Russians. THE PROPOSED TRUMP TOWER PROJECT IN MOSCOW, according to Mueller's report, originated with an FBI Informant--Felix Sater. Here's what the Mueller Report states:

In the late summer of 2015, the Trump Organization received a new inquiry about pursuing a Trump Tower project in Moscow. In approximately September 2015, Felix Sater . . . contacted Cohen (i.e., Michael Cohen) on behalf of I.C. Expert Investment Company (I.C. Expert), a Russian real-estate development corporation controlled by Andrei Vladimirovich Rozov. Sater had known Rozov since approximately 2007 and, in 2014, had served as an agent on behalf of Rozov during Rozov's purchase of a building in New York City. Sater later contacted Rozov and proposed that I.C. Expert pursue a Trump Tower Moscow project in which I.C. Expert would license the name and brand from the Trump Organization but construct the building on its own. Sater worked on the deal with Rozov and another employee of I.C. Expert. (see page 69 of the Mueller Report).

Mueller, as I have noted previously , is downright dishonest in failing to identify Sater as an FBI informant. Sater was not just a private entrepreneur looking to make some coin. We now know without a doubt that Sater was a fully signed up FBI informant. Sater's status as an FBI snitch was first exposed in 2012 (you can read the letter confirming Sater's status as an FBI snitch here ). Another inconvenient fact excluded from the Mueller report is that one of Mueller's Chief Prosecutors, Andrew Weissman, signed the deal with Felix Sater in December 1998 that put Sater into the FBI Informant business .

All suggestions for meeting with the Russian Government, including Putin, originated with Felix Sater. The use of Sater on this particular project started in September 2015.

All of this raises very troubling issues about FBI misconduct. Under what authority did The FBI initiate the "Moscow Tower" play in September 2015. We are supposed to believe that the FBI counter intelligence investigation, aka Crossfire Hurricane, only began the end of July 2016 because of an alarming report from an Australian diplomat. We now know that is a lie.

The revelations about Sater add to the urgency to expose the FBI's criminality and malevolence.

[For more on Sater please see my previous posts, Felix Sater--The Rosetta Stone for the FBI/CIA Conspiracy Against Trump? , Felix Sater and the Steele Dossier .]


exiled off mainstreet , 25 August 2019 at 06:46 PM

Mr.Johnson has done good work on these issues throughout the whole time this initiative has gone on. It reveals the level of rot in the structure of the secret police operation carried on by the US government and shows that it probably cannot be reformed from within but that the only solution which might work is the dissolution of the existing institutions and some form of starting over, something which is, of course, highly unlikely to be achieved.
Factotum , 25 August 2019 at 06:50 PM
Thank you for tying so many of these loose ends together, these past few years. It is quacking like a duck to me.
Fred , 25 August 2019 at 07:51 PM
How many other people were successfully railroaded by the FBI and was Barack the only president they were doing this under?
blue peacock , 25 August 2019 at 08:46 PM
Something just doesn't add up for me when Trump who was the target of these spying and information operations doesn't use the power and authority of POTUS to expose all the communications and actions of these people. Why? What is he hiding or what is he afraid of?
Larry Johnson -> blue peacock... , 25 August 2019 at 09:54 PM
It is very simple. Trump is relying on the judicial process out of fear that if he did unilaterally release this info he could be accused of "obstructing justice."
akaPatience , 25 August 2019 at 09:54 PM
Trump announced his candidacy June 16, 2015. SO, by September the FBI had begun its operation against him. It seems like a fairly quick mobilization.

Were Obama and Clinton so insecure that they felt they needed to resort to this, or are they both so corrupt that this was business as usual?

Christopher Steele, Felix Sater, Josef Mifsud, Stephan Halper, Alexander Downer -- so far there are at least 5 known to have connections to the IC who tried to entrap Trump. We need a summary with an index since there's so much corruption to keep straight -- Hillary's Vast Left-wing Conspiracy.

[Aug 24, 2019] Joseph Mifsud, British Joe, Not Russia's Boy by Larry C Johnson - Sic Semper Tyrannis

Notable quotes:
"... George Papadopoulos was nothing more than a naive, eager patsy. A young guy who wanted to be important to the Trump campaign got played. ..."
"... Here are salient sections of the Mueller Report. Read them for yourself and you will see that Mifsud was never fingered as a Russian intelligence asset. You were just asked to believe this nonsense. Sadly, many seemingly smart people have bought into this lie. ..."
"... According to Papadopoulos , Mifsud at first seemed uninterested in Papadopoulos when they met in Rome. After Papadopoulos informed Mifsud about his role in the Trump Campaign, however, Mifsud appeared to take greater interest in Papadopoulos. ..."
"... On March 24, 2016, Papadopoulos met with Mifsud in London. 422 Mifsud was accompanied by a Russian female named Olga Polonskaya. Mifsud introduced Polonskaya as a former student of his who had connections to Vladimir Putin. (p. 84) ..."
"... During the meeting, Polonskaya offered to help Papadopoulos establish contacts in Russia and stated that the Russian ambassador in London was a friend of hers .425 Based on this interaction, Papadopoulos expected Mifsud and Polonskaya to introduce him to the Russian ambassador in London, but that did not occur. (p. 84) ..."
"... Throughout April 2016, Papadopoulos continued to correspond with , meet with, and seek Russia contacts through Mifsud and , at times , Polonskaya. For example, within a week of her initial March 24 meeting with him, Polonskaya attempted to send Papadopoulos a text messagewhich email exchanges show to have been drafted or edited by Mifsud-addressing Papadopoulos 's "wish to engage with the Russian Federation." When Papadopoulos learned from Mifsud that Polonskaya had tried to message him , he sent her an email seeking another meeting. (p. 87) ..."
"... Following the meeting, Mifsud traveled as planned to Moscow.455 On April 18, 2016, while in Russia, Mifsud introduced Papadopoulos over email to Ivan Timofeev, a member of the Russian International Affairs Council (RIAC).456 Mifsud had described Timofeev as having connections with the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA),457 the executive entity in Russia responsible for Russian foreign relations. (p. 88) ..."
"... After a stop in Rome, Mifsud returned to England on April 25, 2016.462 The next day, Papadopoulos met Mifsud for breakfast at the Andaz Hotel (the same location as their last meeting). 463 During that meeting, Mifsud told Papadopoulos that he had met with high-level Russian government officials during his recent trip to Moscow . Mifsud also said that, on the trip, he learned that the Russians had obtained "dirt" on candidate Hillary Clinton. As Papadopoulos later stated to the FBI, Mifsud said that the "dirt" was in the form of " emails of Clinton," and that they "have thousands of emails." (pp. 88-89) ..."
"... I believe that the term that you are looking for is "entrapment" or something very close. ..."
"... you're being far too kind to Papadop, who, while "naive" and "eager", was also a serial liar and fantasist, whose lies, amplified by unethical Mueller thugs, have caused a lot of trouble. He's made matters worse by spreading new fantasies, which have been uncritically believed by far too many. ..."
"... is CNN really a CIA run disinformation site? They have no viewers, credibility, revenues or business plan. Yet they persist in airports world wide. And now this odd CNN relationship to the very same Link Campus that included "visiting professor" Mifsud. ..."
Aug 24, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Joseph Mifsud, the Maltese Diplomat who reportedly told George Papadopoulos that Russia had Hillary's emails, was a British intelligence asset (known as a "Joe" among British spies). But the Brits did not keep Mifsud for themselves. They offered him to the CIA and the FBI, and those two US agencies, in a coordinated effort, relied on Mifsud to entrap Papadopoulos and to manufacture a Russian collusion case against the Trump Campaign.

Mifsud's job was simple--dangle the possibility of getting Hillary's emails from the Russians, offer up meetings with Russian Government officials and introduce Papadopoulos to another Western intelligence operative who pretended to be the niece of Vladimir Putin (Putin does not have a niece). These communications were recorded and then used against Papadopoulos.

The FBI falsely claims that they learned of the Papadopoulos "meeting" with Mifsud two months after it happened from an Australian diplomat, Alexander Downer, who also was tied closely to British intelligence and the Clintons. But this story does not hold water. Take a look at the criminal complaint filed against Papadopoulos ( see here ).

The complaint recounts meetings, emails and conversations that George Papadopoulos had with Professor Mifsud and people Mifsud introduced to Papadopoulos.Where the hell did the FBI get that information? Remember, they charged George with lying to the FBI because of discrepancies between what he told Agents and what Agents claimed was actually said and written.

The meaning of this leaves only two possibilities--the FBI secured a FISA warrant against Papadopoulos sometime in March or April of 2016 or the Brits and American intelligence intercepted the communications between Papadopoulos and the Mifsud crew.

We already know that there is a recording--an exculpatory recording--of Papadopoulos rebuffing the offer to collaborate with the Russians. There was no legal reason to get a FISA warrant against Papadopoulos. And anything collected by British intelligence and passed to the CIA or NSA could not be used as evidence. There is much more to this story to unravel.

What should shock all civil libertarians and Americans of good will is that the public has been bamboozled into believing that Joseph Mifsud was a Russian intelligence operative. But there is no evidence whatsoever for that claim. Please look at the Mueller Report (I have copied key sections and inserted below, at the end of this article). Mueller only claims that, "Joseph Mifsud, a London-based professor who had connections to Russia and traveled to Moscow in April 2016." If that is the standard, then Bill Clinton is a Russian intelligence asset--Clinton has connections to Russia (he got paid a lot of money by the Russians) and he traveled to Moscow.

If you want to get the full picture of Mifsud's ties to British intelligence, the CIA and the FBI, I encourage you to read, The Death of Russiagate?, Mueller team tied to Mifsud network, a tangled web . This article provides actual evidence about the intelligence pedigree of Joseph Mifsud. Robert Mueller, by contrast, provides not one single piece of actual evidence. Mueller and his team of clown lawyers relied on innuendo and guilt by association.

If this had been a genuine counter-intelligence investigation, then the FBI should have asked one fundamental question--"Who is Joseph Mifsud working for?" They did not need to ask The FBI knew the answer. Joseph Mifsud was working for the CIA and the FBI with the permission of the British MI-6.

I hope the full dimensions of this hoax will be exposed. George Papadopoulos was nothing more than a naive, eager patsy. A young guy who wanted to be important to the Trump campaign got played.

Here are salient sections of the Mueller Report. Read them for yourself and you will see that Mifsud was never fingered as a Russian intelligence asset. You were just asked to believe this nonsense. Sadly, many seemingly smart people have bought into this lie.

Spring 2016. Campaign foreign policy advisor George Papadopoulos made early contact with Joseph Mifsud, a London-based professor who had connections to Russia and traveled to Moscow in April 2016. Immediately upon his return to London from that trip, Mifsud told Papadopoulos that the Russian government had "dirt" on Hillary Clinton in the form of thousands of emails. One week later, in the first week of May 2016, Papadopoulos suggested to a representative of a foreign government that the Trump Campaign had received indications from the Russian government that it could assist the Campaign? through the anonymous release of information damaging to candidate Clinton. Throughout that period of time and for several months thereafter, Papadopoulos worked with Mifsud and two Russian nationals to arrange a meeting between the Campaign and the Russian government. No meeting took place. . . .

George Papadopoulos, a foreign policy advisor during the campaign period , pleaded guilty to lying to investigators about, inter alia, the nature and timing of his interactions with Joseph Mifsud, the professor who told Papadopoulos that the Russians had dirt on candidate Clinton .in the form of thousands of emails. . . .

In late April 2016, Papadopoulos was told by London-based professor Joseph Mifsud, immediately after Mifsud 's return from a trip to Moscow, that the Russian government had obtained "dirt" on candidate Clinton in the form of thousands of emails. . . .Throughout the relevant period of time and for several months thereafter, Papadopoulos worked with Mifsud and two Russian nationals to arrange a meeting between the Campaign and the Russian government. That meeting never came to pass. (p. 81)

The purpose of the trip was to meet officials affiliated with Link Campus University, a for-profit institution headed by a former Italian government official.412 During the visit , Papadopoulos was introduced to Joseph Mifsud. (p. 83)

Mifsud is a Maltese national who worked as a professor at the London Academy of Diplomacy in London, England. 413 Although Mifsud worked out of London and was also affiliated with LCILP, the encounter in Rome was the first time that Papadopoulos met him.414 Mifsud maintained various Russian contacts while living in London, as described further below. Among his contacts was ,XXXX a one-time employee of the IRA,. . . In January and February 2016, Mifsud and - discussed possibly meeting in Russia. (p. 83)

According to Papadopoulos , Mifsud at first seemed uninterested in Papadopoulos when they met in Rome. After Papadopoulos informed Mifsud about his role in the Trump Campaign, however, Mifsud appeared to take greater interest in Papadopoulos. The two discussed Mifsud 's European and Russian contacts and had a general discussion about Russia; Mifsud also offered to introduce Papadopoulos to European leaders and others with contacts to the Russian government. Papadopoulos told the Office that Mifsud 's claim of substantial connections with Russian government officials interested Papadopoulos, who thought that such connections could increase his importance as a policy advisor to the Trump Campaign. (p. 83)

On March 24, 2016, Papadopoulos met with Mifsud in London. 422 Mifsud was accompanied by a Russian female named Olga Polonskaya. Mifsud introduced Polonskaya as a former student of his who had connections to Vladimir Putin. (p. 84)

During the meeting, Polonskaya offered to help Papadopoulos establish contacts in Russia and stated that the Russian ambassador in London was a friend of hers .425 Based on this interaction, Papadopoulos expected Mifsud and Polonskaya to introduce him to the Russian ambassador in London, but that did not occur. (p. 84)

Throughout April 2016, Papadopoulos continued to correspond with , meet with, and seek Russia contacts through Mifsud and , at times , Polonskaya. For example, within a week of her initial March 24 meeting with him, Polonskaya attempted to send Papadopoulos a text messagewhich email exchanges show to have been drafted or edited by Mifsud-addressing Papadopoulos 's "wish to engage with the Russian Federation." When Papadopoulos learned from Mifsud that Polonskaya had tried to message him , he sent her an email seeking another meeting. (p. 87)

Mifsud , who had been copied on the email exchanges, replied on the morning of April 11, 2016. He wrote, "This is already been agreed. I am flying to Moscow on the 18th for a Valdai meeting, plus other meetings at the Duma. We will talk tomorrow." 448 The two bodies referenced by Mifsud are part of or associated with the Russian government: the Duma is a Russian legislative assembly, 449 while "Valdai" refers to the Valdai Discussion Club, a Moscow-based group that "is close to Russia's foreign-policy establishment." 450 Papadopoulos thanked Mifsud and said that he would see him "tomorrow." 451 (p. 87)

Following the meeting, Mifsud traveled as planned to Moscow.455 On April 18, 2016, while in Russia, Mifsud introduced Papadopoulos over email to Ivan Timofeev, a member of the Russian International Affairs Council (RIAC).456 Mifsud had described Timofeev as having connections with the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA),457 the executive entity in Russia responsible for Russian foreign relations. (p. 88)

After a stop in Rome, Mifsud returned to England on April 25, 2016.462 The next day, Papadopoulos met Mifsud for breakfast at the Andaz Hotel (the same location as their last meeting). 463 During that meeting, Mifsud told Papadopoulos that he had met with high-level Russian government officials during his recent trip to Moscow . Mifsud also said that, on the trip, he learned that the Russians had obtained "dirt" on candidate Hillary Clinton. As Papadopoulos later stated to the FBI, Mifsud said that the "dirt" was in the form of " emails of Clinton," and that they "have thousands of emails." (pp. 88-89)


prawnik , 21 August 2019 at 10:33 AM

I believe that the term that you are looking for is "entrapment" or something very close.
Jack , 21 August 2019 at 05:36 PM
Larry

Appreciate your efforts in peeling the onion on the shenanigans of our intel and law enforcement agencies. This Russia Collusion/SpyGate story was a regular topic at our monthly "guys night out" gathering at a local watering hole. However at our last gathering the general consensus was "who cares" if Trump the butt of these machinations is unwilling to Drain the Swamp by declassifying. Why do you think Trump is not aggressively going after Brennan, Comey, Clapper, et al?

Jim Ticehurst , 21 August 2019 at 05:39 PM
Larry..Fits The Timeline of for Operations that already been planned in Advance.while watching the Election Result for Trump and Hillary..in 2016..By March 2016 the States were making their choices... 2016..s clear..Long before May. ,,,.Using Its Profile Data n obtained By Fusion GPS..since October 2015..AND..??????.What sources were they Using..Why...and were they actually being Given MISINFORMATION.??.then through It. all these Events.Happened..This,,.Operation you write of.....in May to June...The Steele Dossier Operation was Conducted..The Muller Team..And Case Built..An Extra Ordinary SUPER PACK..and Illegal..(THE REAL COLLUSION).. Operation..So Now...Its Time for the TRUTH..
Jim Ticehurst said in reply to Jim Ticehurst... , 21 August 2019 at 07:23 PM
also..to me...The..."Mystery Woman " in this Spy story...would be Nellie Ohr..especially the European Operations...and That to Me..Has Brennen Finger Prints..on The "Dossier"...So..Background..an d Fine Tuning...
Jim Ticehurst said in reply to Jim Ticehurst... , 21 August 2019 at 11:36 PM
Why Nellie Ohr..Because She her time line go's from The Steel Dossier and Fusion GPS meetings With Obama..Clinton connected People like Attorney Edwin Lieberman..Husband of Hillary Clintons Chief of Staff..To Ukrainetothe" Black Ledger.also a HOAX..To.."Joe.Bidens Connections to the Ukraine..and back to herto work at CIA Open Source Operations..All done Under the time Period when John Brennen was Director ..DCI..of the CIA...Appointed by President OBAMA..To Replace General Petraeus..who looks like He may have been another.PAWN ..and Put into the DCI position on Purpose by Obama..Way back in September 2011..

Someone advised DCI Petraeus..to use the same TRANSITIONAL COMMUNICATION SYSTEMS..

That Petraeus had Used in the Field During Operations in Afghanistan and Iraq.Believing They were SECURE Systems..

Apparently those Systems had already been Hacked By IRAN and China..Long before Obama ...

Made his deals with Iran..Petraeus got into a Affair tht Compromised Him..(Setup),,?? and The FBI..Under Director Muller to General Petraus Out..Shame him..Brought Charges...and Petraeus was Replaced with John Brennen as DCI..in On..Nov...2012...Then Bob Muller was replaced at the FBI,,was replaced By James Comey..In September 2013...ALL Events Occurred during The time Barrack Obama was President..Jan 20...2009 to Jan 20th,,2017...and...Brennen and Nellie Ohr were in the Middle of everything that happened..All Operations..ALL Information gathering..

And ALL Intended to Blame The Russians..and Protect all other Poker Game High Rollers..Including The "Ukraine Train..' Thi is just a Theory..Based on "Open Information...

Stephen McIntyre , 21 August 2019 at 07:54 PM
you're being far too kind to Papadop, who, while "naive" and "eager", was also a serial liar and fantasist, whose lies, amplified by unethical Mueller thugs, have caused a lot of trouble. He's made matters worse by spreading new fantasies, which have been uncritically believed by far too many.
Larry Johnson -> Stephen McIntyre... , 21 August 2019 at 08:15 PM
George proved to be an easy mark. I don't beat up on "nobodies." Papadopoulos qualifies as such in my book. He had done nothing to distinguish himself and suddenly had the world thrust on him. I do feel sorry for hm. This is akin to raping a retarded girl.
h -> Larry Johnson ... , 23 August 2019 at 10:25 AM
This response is spot on, Larry. Excellent comment.
akaPatience , 21 August 2019 at 09:45 PM
AND YET the MSM largely remain AWOL on this and related subjects. They must figure if they continue to hear, see and speak no evil the voting public will be deaf, dumb and blind to such widespread corruption. It's not encouraging that the FBI and DOJ continue to be intractable when it comes to attempts by Judicial Watch to gain transparency and clarity. Unless something like optimal political timing is a big factor, it's also not encouraging that AG Barr and even the POTUS are still keeping a lid on all of this.

It's going to be very interesting to see if the truth can break through the stonewalling especially when it comes to the 2020 elections. Thanks to this site and a few others, there's still hope. Thank you Larry and Col. Lang.

William Chan , 22 August 2019 at 06:33 AM
A BIASED FBI means ALL FBI sworn testimony is questionable and unreliable.
A BIASED FBI means every court case outcome in which the FBI has been involved is untrustworthy.
A BIASED FBI means that everything from WACO to Oklahoma Bomb to 9/11 must be reexamined.
The Feds/FBI did a criminally irresponsible job of investigating the Oklahoma Bomb and Sanilac county, with the Militia Culture permeating it. There were TWO militias up there. (1) The CITIZENS Militia, with 85 year old Hattie Farley, which OPPOSED the Sheriff and the "Good Old Boys" and (2) The violence prone, RACIST, PRO-sheriff "element".

Sanilac county Sheriff Virgil Strickler was BFF and business partner with David Rydel, "commandant" of the "united States Theatre Command" militia which is named in the FBI "Project Megiddo" report for Y2K. Strickler let the Rydel militia use the department's shooting range. LOUD explosions on the Nichols farm were repeatedly reported to Strickler, So what do you know! when the Feds raided the farm the evidence was cleaned up. James Nichols stated in his speech at the Dearborn Centennial Library that the FIRST person he wanted to talk to was Strickler, which he did BEFORE talking to the FEDS. James was welcomed home as a HERO when he was released from Federal custody. All described in Nichols' book "Freedom's End"

The "support network" for the bomb extended to the very top of Sanilac County. Worth Township in Sanilac county, had a Supervisor, James Payne, who flew Confederate flags on his property for decades. He drove around with a Confederate license plate, and had a Black Lawn Jockey holding a Confederate flag standing right at his door. Sheriff Strickler and Judge Donald Teeple redularly passed that lawn jockey and saw the flags as they entered Payne's home to socialize. Payne bragged about "using" his Public Office to direct the State Police Weighmaster to harrass Minority truckers coming through Worth township, and how he did not want "dirty niggers" in His township. This got recorded and all came out in a township meeting. Eric Levine, owner/editor of "The Sanilac County News" never once printed a negative word about the Racism and Confederate flags, rendering support via his silence. Levine never printed a word about Janice Putz, the Township Clerk, and Payne's successor in office, publicly defending Payne's racism in a township meeting. Levine also "ignored" a letter that was mailed to EVERY Worth township resident exposing Payne's racism . .... NOT ONE WORD. Eric Levine supports racism by failing to expose it even when it is major news in his reporting area. Nothing printed beyond the "obligatory" columns denouncing the bombers.

James Nichols gave a talk at the Dearborn Centennial Library promoting his book/conspiracy theory blaming the Government for the Oklahoma bomb. I walked up to him afterward and offered him documentation about judge Donald Teeple's campaign financing. Nichols did not want to hear anything negative about THAT "Government Operative" ...... very ODD to say the least. Why would he decline documentation on someone supposedly his enemy ..... unless ....... Teeple was a real "hero"when it came to looting elderly Citizen's property like ordering the "cleanup" of a fortune in antiques from Hattie Farley, but Teeple was gentle as a lamb with the Nichols boys.

Fred -> William Chan... , 22 August 2019 at 09:05 AM
A BIASED FBI means ALL FBI ....

Binary choices are the only choices, its the way we're programed! BTW you left out Ruby Ridge.

Bill H -> William Chan... , 22 August 2019 at 10:25 AM
The FBI lost all credibility with me back when they trotted out their parade of "domestic terrorists" who they themselves were selling Play-Doh to, but who had only asked for combat boots so that they could practice close order drill in Miami, or a guy who turned out to be bootlegging cell phones in Michigan.

Now they're at it again, patting themselves on the back and making press conferences about no fewer than five mass shooters apprehended this week, among them "saving dozens of lives" by arresting a hotel cook who told a coworker he was planning on coming back to the hotel in a few days to "shoot everyone he saw."

Sure, he was nuts, but even so if he was actually planning to do that would he announce it to someone two days in advance? In any case, the FBI didn't find him, a coworker turned him in when he was not on the FBI's radar.

Factotum , 23 August 2019 at 01:43 AM
Linked article raises the question again: is CNN really a CIA run disinformation site? They have no viewers, credibility, revenues or business plan. Yet they persist in airports world wide. And now this odd CNN relationship to the very same Link Campus that included "visiting professor" Mifsud.

To wit: ......"tried to get him a cushy job working with CNN's Freedom Project at Link Campus in Rome."

The more we learn, the more questions arise. No wonder no one is ready to go public with the final Russia-gate analysis yet.

[Aug 23, 2019] Spygate The Inside Story Behind the Alleged Plot to Take Down Trump by Jeff Carlson

Highly recommended!
Images removed. See the original for full version.
Much more plausible explanation of Russiagate then Mueller report that cost probably 1000 times less. Mueller and his team should commit hara-kiri in shame.
It contains more valuable information about Russiagate and color revolution against Trump initiatesd by Obama and Brennan. And what is important it is much shorter and up to the point. In other words, Jeff Carlson beat the whole Mueller team to the punch.
An excellent reporting by Jeff Carlson !!! Bravo!!!
Notable quotes:
"... Horowitz continued to push Congress for oversight access and encouraged passage of the Inspector General Empowerment Act . Horowitz would ultimately win his battle, but only as President Barack Obama was leaving office. On Dec. 16, 2016, Obama finally signed the Inspector General Empowerment Act into law. ..."
"... The IGs' memo included an assessment that Clinton's email account contained hundreds of classified emails, despite Clinton's claims that there was no classified information present on her server. ..."
"... On July 30, 2015, within weeks of the FBI's opening of the Clinton investigation, McCabe was suddenly promoted to the No. 3 position in the FBI. With his new title of associate deputy director, McCabe was transferred to FBI headquarters from the Washington Field Office, and his direct involvement in the Clinton investigation began. ..."
"... Strzok was one of the agents selected, and in late August 2015, he was assigned to the Mid-Year Exam team and transferred to FBI headquarters. Strzok, in his comments to lawmakers, acknowledged that the newly formed investigative team was largely made up of hand-picked personnel from the Washington Field Office and FBI headquarters. ..."
"... On Jan. 29, 2016, Comey appointed McCabe as FBI deputy director, replacing the retiring Giuliano, and McCabe assumed the No. 2 position in the FBI, after having held the No. 3 position for just six months. ..."
"... By early 2016, the three participants in the infamous "insurance policy" meeting -- McCabe, Strzok, and Page -- were now in place at the FBI. ..."
"... Priestap, who testified that he was unaware of the frequency of meetings between McCabe, Strzok, and Lisa Page, seems to have been kept in the dark regarding many of the actions taken by Strzok, who appeared to be exercising significant investigative control. ..."
"... It sounds like Peter Strzok was kind of driving the train here. Would you agree with that?" ..."
"... Peter and Jon, yeah." ..."
"... Do you know if Mr. McCabe was aware that some of his agent executives were concerned that they were being bypassed on information on what, by all accounts, was a sensitive, critical investigation?" ..."
"... My understanding was that he was aware." ..."
"... Notably, Comey had been convinced to remove the term "gross negligence" to describe Clinton's actions from his prepared statement by, among others, Page, Strzok, Anderson, and Moffa. ..."
"... While GCHQ was gathering intelligence, low-level Trump campaign foreign-policy adviser George Papadopoulos appears to have been targeted, after a series of highly coincidental meetings. Most of these meetings with Papadopoulos -- whose own background and reasons for joining the Trump campaign remain suspicious -- occurred in the first half of 2016. Maltese professor Josef Mifsud, Australian diplomat Alexander Downer, FBI informant Stefan Halper, and officials from the UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) all crossed paths with Papadopoulos -- some repeatedly so. ..."
"... As this foreign intelligence -- unofficial in nature and outside of any traditional channels -- was gathered, Brennan began a process of feeding his gathered intelligence to the FBI. Repeated transfers of foreign intelligence from the CIA director pushed the FBI toward the establishment of a formal counterintelligence investigation. ..."
"... The last major segment of Brennan's efforts involved a series of three reports. The first, titled the "Joint Statement from the Department Of Homeland Security and Office of the Director of National Intelligence on Election Security ," was released on Oct. 7, 2016. The second report, "GRIZZLY STEPPE -- Russian Malicious Cyber Activity ," was released on Dec. 29, 2016. The third report, "Assessing Russian Activities and Intentions in Recent U.S. Elections " -- also known as the intelligence community assessment (ICA) -- was released on Jan. 6, 2017. ..."
"... On July 5, 2016, Gaeta traveled to London and met with Steele at the offices of Steele's firm, Orbis. At some point in early July, Steele passed his initial report to Nuland and the State Department. Nuland later said these documents were passed on at some point to both the FBI and then-Secretary of State John Kerry. ..."
"... Prior to joining Fusion GPS, Nellie had worked as an independent contractor for an internal open-source division of the CIA, Open Source Works, from 2008 to at least June 2010; it appears likely she remained in that role into 2014. ..."
"... Additionally, email communications between her and Bruce Ohr show that she routinely sent her husband at the DOJ articles on Russia -- most carrying a similar negative slant. The emails continued through the duration of Nellie's employment with Fusion GPS and usually contained a brief, often one-line comment from Nellie. ..."
"... In her testimony, Nellie described her work as online open-source efforts that utilized "Russian sources, media, social media, government, you know, business registers, legal databases, all kinds of things." Ohr said that she would "write occasional reports based on the open-source research that I described about Donald Trump's relationships with various people in Russia." ..."
"... Steele had produced eight reports from June 20, 2016, through the end of August 2016 (there also is one undated report included in the dossier). No further reports were generated by Steele until Sept. 14, when he suddenly wrote three separate memos in one day. One of the memos referenced a Russian bank named Alfa Bank, misspelled as "Alpha" in his memo. Steele's sudden burst of productivity was likely done in preparation for his Sept. 19 meeting in Rome with the FBI. ..."
"... The impact of Brennan's potential knowledge of the dossier in August 2016 should not be underestimated. As Brennan testified to Congress, his briefing to the Gang of Eight was done in consultation with the Obama administration: ..."
"... Halper, who has been outed as an FBI informant, stayed in contact with Carter Page for the next 14 months, severing ties exactly as the final FISA warrant on Page expired. ..."
"... Following the publication of the Isikoff article, the Hillary for America campaign released a statement on the same day that touted Isikoff's "bombshell report," with the full article attached. ..."
"... Winer had received a separate dossier , very similar to Steele's, from longtime Clinton confidant Sidney Blumenthal. This "second dossier" had been compiled by another longtime Clinton operative, former journalist Cody Shearer, and echoed claims made in the Steele dossier. Winer gave Steele a copy of the "second dossier." Steele then shared this second dossier with the FBI, which may have used it as a means to corroborate Steele's own dossier. ..."
"... Steele also met with U.S. media during his visit to Washington, doing so "at Fusion's instruction." According to UK Court documents , Steele testified that he "briefed" The New York Times, The Washington Post, Yahoo News, The New Yorker, and CNN at the end of September 2016. Steele would engage in a second round of media contact in mid-October 2016, meeting again with The New York Times, The Washington Post, and Yahoo News. Steele testified that all these meetings were "conducted verbally in person." ..."
"... Sometime in late 2016, his wife, Nellie Ohr, provided him with a memory stick containing all of her research that she had compiled while employed at Fusion GPS. Bruce Ohr testified he gave the memory stick to Pientka. Nellie Ohr had left Fusion in September 2016. Through Pientka, Strzok now had all of Nellie Ohr's Fusion research in his possession. ..."
"... Flynn's 2015 dinner in Moscow was initially used to implicate the Trump campaign's ties to Russia. It was then used as a means to cast doubts on Flynn's ability as Trump's national security adviser. Following Flynn's resignation, it was then used as a means to pursue the ongoing collusion narrative that gained full strength in the early days of the Trump administration. ..."
"... On April 18, 2016, Rogers moved aggressively in response to the disclosures. He abruptly shut down all FBI outside-contractor access. At this point, both the FBI and the DOJ's NSD became aware of Rogers's compliance review. They may have known earlier, but they were certainly aware after outside-contractor access was halted. ..."
"... Carlin filed the government's proposed 2016 Section 702 certifications on Sept. 26, 2016. Carlin knew the general status of the compliance review by Rogers. The NSD was part of the review. Carlin failed to disclose a critical Jan. 7, 2016, report by the NSA inspector general and associated FISA abuse to the FISA court in his 2016 certification. Carlin also failed to disclose Rogers's ongoing Section 702-compliance review. ..."
Mar 28, 2019 | www.theepochtimes.com

Updated: July 7, 2019

Efforts by high-ranking officials in the CIA , FBI , Department of Justice ( DOJ ), and State Department to portray President Donald Trump as having colluded with Russia were the culmination of years of bias and politicization under the Obama administration.

<img class="size-large wp-image-2855920" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/27/DOJ-FBI_infographic_3_Epoch-Times-1200x630.png" alt="" width="640" height="336" /> Click on image to enlarge.

The weaponization of the intelligence community and other government agencies created an environment that allowed for obstruction in the investigation into Hillary Clinton and the relentless pursuit of a manufactured collusion narrative against Trump.

A willing and complicit media spread unsubstantiated leaks as facts in an effort to promote the Russia-collusion narrative.

The Spygate scandal also raises a bigger question: Was the 2016 election a one-time aberration, or was it symptomatic of decades of institutional political corruption?

This article builds on dozens of congressional testimonies, court documents, and other research to provide an inside look at the actions of Obama administration officials in the scandal that's become known as Spygate.

<img class=" wp-image-2833768" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/11/Michael-Horowitz-1200x1239.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="165" /> Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz . (MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

To understand this abuse of power, it helps to go back to July 2011, when DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz was appointed.

From the very start, Horowitz found his duties throttled by Attorney General Eric Holder, who placed limitations on the inspector general's right to have unobstructed access to information. Holder used this tactic to delay Horowitz's investigation of the failed sting operation known as Operation Fast and Furious.

"We got access to information up to 2010 in all of these categories. No law changed in 2010. No policy changed. It was simply a decision by the General Counsel's Office in 2010 that they viewed, now, the law differently. And as a result, they weren't going to give us that information," Horowitz told members of Congress in February 2015.

On Aug. 5, 2014, Horowitz and other inspectors general had sent a letter to Congress asking for unimpeded access to all records. Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates responded on July 20, 2015, with a 58-page memorandum, titled " Memorandum for Sally Quillian Yates Deputy Attorney General ," written by Karl R. Thompson, the principal deputy assistant attorney general of the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC).

<img class=" wp-image-2833772" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/11/sally-yates-1200x1188.jpg" alt="" width="161" height="159" /> Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The July 20, 2015, opinion was widely criticized . But it accomplished what it was intended to do. The opinion limited IG Horowitz's oversight from extending to any information collected under Title III -- including intercepted communications and national security letters. (Notably, The New York Times disclosed that national security letters were used in the surveillance of the Trump 2016 presidential campaign.)

In response, on Aug. 3, 2015, IG Horowitz sent a blistering letter to Congress. The letter was signed not only by Horowitz but by all other acting inspectors general as well:

"The OLC opinion's restrictive reading of the IG Act represents a potentially serious challenge to the authority of every Inspector General and our collective ability to conduct our work thoroughly, independently, and in a timely manner. Our concern is that, as a result of the OLC opinion, agencies other than DOJ may likewise withhold crucial records from their Inspectors General, adversely impacting their work.

Horowitz continued to push Congress for oversight access and encouraged passage of the Inspector General Empowerment Act . Horowitz would ultimately win his battle, but only as President Barack Obama was leaving office. On Dec. 16, 2016, Obama finally signed the Inspector General Empowerment Act into law.

It is against this backdrop of minimal oversight that Spygate took place.

Ironically, the Clinton email server investigation, known as the "Mid-Year Exam," originated from a disclosure contained in a June 29, 2015, memo sent by the inspectors general for both the State Department and the Intelligence Community to Patrick F. Kennedy, then-undersecretary of state for management.

The IGs' memo included an assessment that Clinton's email account contained hundreds of classified emails, despite Clinton's claims that there was no classified information present on her server.

On July 6, 2015, the IG for the Intelligence Community made a referral to the FBI, which resulted in the official opening of an investigation into the Clinton email server by FBI officials Randall Coleman and Charles Kable on July 10, 2015.

<img class="size-large wp-image-2833204" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/11/Andrew-McCabe-Lisa-Page-Peter-Strzok-1200x720.jpg" alt="peter strzok andrew mccabe and lisa page" width="640" height="384" /> (L-R) FBI agent Peter Strzok, FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe , and FBI lawyer Lisa Page. (Getty Images/Epoch Times)

A Hand-Picked Team

At this time, Peter Strzok was an assistant special agent in charge at the FBI's Washington Field Office. The assistant director in charge at the Washington Field Office during this period was Andrew McCabe, a position he assumed on Sept. 14, 2014.

On July 30, 2015, within weeks of the FBI's opening of the Clinton investigation, McCabe was suddenly promoted to the No. 3 position in the FBI. With his new title of associate deputy director, McCabe was transferred to FBI headquarters from the Washington Field Office, and his direct involvement in the Clinton investigation began.

Strzok would follow shortly. Less than a month after McCabe was transferred, FBI headquarters reached out to the Washington Field Office, saying it needed greater staffing and resources "based on what they were looking at, based on some of the investigative steps that were under consideration," Strzok told congressional investigators in a closed-door hearing on June 27, 2018.

Strzok was one of the agents selected, and in late August 2015, he was assigned to the Mid-Year Exam team and transferred to FBI headquarters. Strzok, in his comments to lawmakers, acknowledged that the newly formed investigative team was largely made up of hand-picked personnel from the Washington Field Office and FBI headquarters.

Starting in October 2015 and continuing into early 2016, FBI Director James Comey made a series of high-profile reassignments that resulted in the complete turnover of the upper-echelon of the FBI team working on the Clinton email investigation:

Comey is the only known senior FBI leadership official who remained involved throughout the entire Clinton email investigation. McCabe had the second-longest tenure.

On Jan. 29, 2016, Comey appointed McCabe as FBI deputy director, replacing the retiring Giuliano, and McCabe assumed the No. 2 position in the FBI, after having held the No. 3 position for just six months.

It was at this point that FBI lawyer Lisa Page was assigned to McCabe as his special counsel. This was not the first time that Page worked directly for McCabe. James Baker, the FBI's former general counsel, told congressional investigators that Page had worked for McCabe at various times during McCabe's career, going back as far as 2013.

By early 2016, the three participants in the infamous "insurance policy" meeting -- McCabe, Strzok, and Page -- were now in place at the FBI.

In January 2016, Bill Priestap was named as head of the FBI's Counterintelligence Division, replacing Coleman and inheriting the Clinton email investigation in the process.

<img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-2857145" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/28/Spygate_Epoch-TImes.jpg" alt="" width="676" height="1280" />

According to Priestap, Coleman had "set up a reporting mechanism that leaders of that team would report directly to him, not through the customary other chain of command" in the Clinton email investigation. Priestap, who said he didn't know why Coleman had "set it up," kept the chain of command in place when he assumed Coleman's position in January 2016.

This new structure resulted in some unusual reporting lines that went outside normal chains of command. Strzok, who would not normally fall under Priestap's oversight, was now reporting directly to him.

As Priestap described it, the team involved in the Clinton investigation comprised three different but intertwined elements: the primary team, the filter team, and the senior leadership team.

While the elements of the day-to-day investigative team differed for the Clinton email investigation and the Trump–Russia investigation, the primary team remained the same throughout both cases -- as did the lines of communication between the FBI and the DOJ. According to testimony by Page, John Carlin, who ran the DOJ's National Security Division (NSD), was receiving briefings on both investigations directly from McCabe.

Priestap Left in the Dark

Priestap, who testified that he was unaware of the frequency of meetings between McCabe, Strzok, and Lisa Page, seems to have been kept in the dark regarding many of the actions taken by Strzok, who appeared to be exercising significant investigative control. Priestap was asked about this by congressional investigators during a June 5, 2018, testimony:

Rep. Meadows: " It sounds like Peter Strzok was kind of driving the train here. Would you agree with that?"

Mr. Priestap: " Peter and Jon, yeah."

<img class=" wp-image-2833249" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/11/Priestap-1200x1548.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="205" /> Assistant Director of the FBI's Counterintelligence Division Bill Priestap. (Jennifer Zeng/The Epoch Times)

Additionally, Page often circumvented the established chain of command, not only with McCabe, for whom she reportedly served as a conduit for Strzok, but also with Baker. Additionally, there were concerns that Page bypassed both the executive assistant director for the National Security Branch -- first Giacalone, then Steinbach -- and Priestap, the head of counterintelligence. Anderson, the No. 2 lawyer, admitted in her testimony to congressional investigators that she had been aware of these concerns, saying, "Neither of them personally complained to me, but I was aware of their concerns."

A report published by IG Horowitz in June 2018, which reviewed the FBI's investigation of the Clinton email case, included the notable statement that several witnesses had informed the IG that Page "circumvented the official chain of command, and that Strzok communicated important Midyear case information to her, and thus to McCabe, without Priestap's or Steinbach's knowledge." Steinbach, who was the executive assistant director and Priestap's direct supervisor, left the FBI in early 2017.

According to Anderson, McCabe was aware of the ongoing concerns regarding Page's circumventions, but it appears that nothing was done to address them:

Mr. Baker: " Do you know if Mr. McCabe was aware that some of his agent executives were concerned that they were being bypassed on information on what, by all accounts, was a sensitive, critical investigation?"

Ms. Anderson: " My understanding was that he was aware."

DOJ Prevents 'Gross Negligence' Charges

By the spring of 2016, the Clinton email investigation was already winding down. This was due in large part to the fact that the DOJ, under Attorney General Loretta Lynch , had decided to set an unusually high threshold for the prosecution of Clinton, effectively ensuring from the outset that she would not be charged.

In order for Clinton to be prosecuted, the DOJ required the FBI to establish evidence of intent -- even though the gross negligence statute explicitly does not require this.

This meant that the FBI would have needed to find a smoking gun, such as an email or an admission made during FBI questioning, revealing that Clinton or her aides knowingly set up the private email server to send classified information.

According to Page, the DOJ played a far larger role in the Clinton investigation than previously had been known:

"Everybody talks about this as if this was the FBI investigation, and the truth of the matter is there was not a single step, other than the July 5th statement, there was not a single investigative step that we did not do in consultation with or at the direction of the Justice Department," Page told congressional investigators on July 13, 2018.

<img class=" wp-image-2833254" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/11/GettyImages-545524880-1200x1441.jpg" alt="" width="161" height="193" /> Attorney General Loretta Lynch. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Comey also had hinted at the influence exerted by the DOJ over the Clinton investigation, at a July 5, 2016, press conference , in which he recommended that Clinton not be charged, stating that "there are obvious considerations, like the strength of the evidence, especially regarding intent."

Notably, Comey had been convinced to remove the term "gross negligence" to describe Clinton's actions from his prepared statement by, among others, Page, Strzok, Anderson, and Moffa.

CIA Director Instigates Trump Investigation

As the Clinton investigation wound down, interest from the intelligence community in the Trump campaign was ramping up. Sometime in 2015, it appears former CIA Director John Brennan established himself as the point man to push for an investigation into the Trump campaign. Using a combination of unofficial foreign intelligence compiled by contacts, colleagues, and associates -- primarily from the UK , but also from other Five Eyes members, such as Australia -- Brennan then fed this information to the FBI. Brennan stated this fact repeatedly during a May 23, 2017, congressional testimony :

"I made sure that anything that was involving U.S. persons, including anything involving the individuals involved in the Trump campaign, was shared with the [FBI]."

<img class=" wp-image-2833258" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/11/GettyImages-687314312-1200x1279.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="171" /> CIA Director John Brennan. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Brennan also admitted that it was his intelligence that helped establish the FBI investigation:

"I was aware of intelligence and information about contacts between Russian officials and U.S. persons that raised concerns in my mind about whether or not those individuals were cooperating with the Russians, either in a witting or unwitting fashion, and it served as the basis for the FBI investigation to determine whether such collusion [or] cooperation occurred."

In late 2015, Britain's Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) was involved in collecting information regarding then-candidate Trump and transmitting it to the United States. The GCHQ is the UK equivalent of the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA).

<img class=" wp-image-2833230" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/11/George-Papadopoulos.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="192" /> Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos. (MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

While GCHQ was gathering intelligence, low-level Trump campaign foreign-policy adviser George Papadopoulos appears to have been targeted, after a series of highly coincidental meetings. Most of these meetings with Papadopoulos -- whose own background and reasons for joining the Trump campaign remain suspicious -- occurred in the first half of 2016. Maltese professor Josef Mifsud, Australian diplomat Alexander Downer, FBI informant Stefan Halper, and officials from the UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) all crossed paths with Papadopoulos -- some repeatedly so.

<img class=" wp-image-2833234" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/11/Alexander-Downer-1200x1391.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="186" /> Australian high commissioner to the UK, Alexander Downer. (GOH CHAI HIN/AFP/Getty Images)

Downer's conversation with Papadopoulos was reportedly disclosed to the FBI on July 22, 2016, through Australian government channels, although it may have come directly from Downer himself.

Details from the conversation between Downer and Papadopoulos were then used by the FBI to open its counterintelligence investigation on July 31, 2016.

In the summer of 2016, Robert Hannigan, the head of the UK's GCHQ, traveled to Washington to meet with Brennan regarding alleged communications between the Trump campaign and Moscow. Around the same time, Brennan formed an inter-agency task force comprising an estimated six agencies and/or government departments. The FBI, Treasury, and DOJ handled the domestic inquiry into Trump and possible Russia connections. The CIA, Office of the Director of National Intelligence, and the NSA handled foreign and intelligence aspects.

During this time, Brennan appeared to have employed the use of reverse targeting , which refers to the targeting of a foreign individual with the intent of capturing data on a U.S. citizen.

Mr. Brennan:

" We call it incidental collection in terms of CIA's foreign intelligence collection authorities. Any time we would incidentally collect information on a U.S. person, we would hand that over to the FBI because they have the legal authority to do it. We would not pursue that type of investigative, you know, sort of leads. We would give it to the FBI. So, we were picking things up that was of great relevance to the FBI, and we wanted to make sure that they were there -- so they could piece it together with whatever they were collecting domestically here."

As this foreign intelligence -- unofficial in nature and outside of any traditional channels -- was gathered, Brennan began a process of feeding his gathered intelligence to the FBI. Repeated transfers of foreign intelligence from the CIA director pushed the FBI toward the establishment of a formal counterintelligence investigation.

The last major segment of Brennan's efforts involved a series of three reports. The first, titled the "Joint Statement from the Department Of Homeland Security and Office of the Director of National Intelligence on Election Security ," was released on Oct. 7, 2016. The second report, "GRIZZLY STEPPE -- Russian Malicious Cyber Activity ," was released on Dec. 29, 2016. The third report, "Assessing Russian Activities and Intentions in Recent U.S. Elections " -- also known as the intelligence community assessment (ICA) -- was released on Jan. 6, 2017.

This final report was used to continue pushing the Russia-collusion narrative following the election of President Donald Trump. Notably, Adm. Mike Rogers of the NSA publicly dissented from the findings of the ICA, assigning it only a moderate confidence level.

Fusion GPS and the Steele Dossier

Meanwhile, another less official effort began. Information paid for by the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and the Clinton campaign targeting Trump made its way to the highest levels of the FBI and the State Department, with a sophisticated strategy relying on the personal connections of hired operatives.

<img class=" wp-image-2833265" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/11/GettyImages-621958726-1200x1324.jpg" alt="" width="159" height="176" /> Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. (JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)

At the center of the multi-pronged strategy to disseminate the information were Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson and former British spy Steele.

In early March 2016, Fusion GPS approached Perkins Coie -- the law firm used by the Clinton campaign and the DNC -- expressing interest in an "engagement," according to an Oct. 24, 2017, response letter by Perkins Coie. The firm hired Fusion GPS in April 2016 to "perform a variety of research services during the 2016 election cycle."

Steele's firm, Orbis Business Intelligence, was retained by Fusion GPS during the period between June and November 2016. During this time, Steele produced 16 memos, with the last memo dated Oct. 20, 2016. There is one final memo that Steele wrote on Dec. 13 at the request of Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.).

<img class=" wp-image-2833240" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/11/GettyImages-634408242-1200x1349.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="180" /> Sen. John McCain commissioned one of Steele's memos. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Steele provided Fusion GPS with something that Simpson's firm was lacking: access to individuals within the FBI and the State Department. These contacts could be traced back to at least 2010, when Steele had provided assistance in the FBI's investigation into FIFA over concerns that Russia might have been engaging in bribery to host the 2018 World Cup.

Sometime in the latter half of 2014, Steele began to informally provide reports he had prepared for a private client to the State Department. One of the recipients of the reports was Victoria Nuland, the assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs.

After Steele's company was hired by Fusion GPS in June 2016, he began to reach out to the FBI through Michael Gaeta, an FBI agent and assistant legal attaché at the U.S. Embassy in Rome who Steele had worked with on the FIFA case. Gaeta also headed up the FBI's Eurasian Organized Crime unit, which specializes in investigating criminal groups from Georgia, Russia, and Ukraine.

Gaeta was later identified as Steele's FBI handler, in a July 16, 2018, congressional testimony before the House Judiciary and Oversight committees by Page.

<img class=" wp-image-2833242" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/11/victoria-nuland-1200x1373.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="183" /> Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Victoria Nuland. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

On July 5, 2016, Gaeta traveled to London and met with Steele at the offices of Steele's firm, Orbis. At some point in early July, Steele passed his initial report to Nuland and the State Department. Nuland later said these documents were passed on at some point to both the FBI and then-Secretary of State John Kerry.

Exactly what happened with the reports that Gaeta brought back from London, and precisely who he gave them to within the FBI, remains unknown, although some media reports have indicated they might have been sent to the FBI's New York Field Office. During the period following Steele's initial contact with the FBI, there appears to have been no further FBI interaction or contact with Steele.

Former CIA Contractor Worked for Fusion GPS

Notably, eight months before Fusion GPS hired Christopher Steele, Simpson had hired Nellie Ohr, the wife of then-Associate Deputy Attorney General Bruce Ohr, to work for his firm as a researcher in October 2015. It was at this time that Fusion GPS was retained by the Washington Free Beacon to engage in research on the Trump campaign.

Prior to joining Fusion GPS, Nellie had worked as an independent contractor for an internal open-source division of the CIA, Open Source Works, from 2008 to at least June 2010; it appears likely she remained in that role into 2014.

Nellie told congressional investigators, in her Oct. 19, 2018, closed-door testimony, that part of her work for Fusion GPS was to research the Trump 2016 presidential campaign, including campaign associate Carter Page, early campaign supporter Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, and campaign manager Paul Manafort, as well as Trump's family members, including some of his children.

Additionally, email communications between her and Bruce Ohr show that she routinely sent her husband at the DOJ articles on Russia -- most carrying a similar negative slant. The emails continued through the duration of Nellie's employment with Fusion GPS and usually contained a brief, often one-line comment from Nellie.

In her testimony, Nellie described her work as online open-source efforts that utilized "Russian sources, media, social media, government, you know, business registers, legal databases, all kinds of things." Ohr said that she would "write occasional reports based on the open-source research that I described about Donald Trump's relationships with various people in Russia."

The work Nellie conducted for Fusion GPS matches the same skill set used when she worked for Open Source Works, which is a division within the CIA that uses open-source information to produce intelligence products.

When asked how she came to be hired by Fusion GPS and who had approached her, Nellie responded, "Nobody approached me," telling investigators that it was she who had initiated contact and approached Fusion GPS after reading an article on Simpson.

Nellie would continue to work for Fusion GPS until September 2016. By this time, Simpson and Steele already had started working on pushing the Steele dossier into the FBI.

Following the end of her employment with Fusion GPS, Nellie provided Bruce with a memory stick that contained all of the research she had compiled during her time at the firm. Bruce then gave the memory stick to the FBI, through his handler, Joe Pientka.

Bruce Ohr Becomes a Conduit

Nearly a month after Gaeta brought back the reports that Steele provided in London, Simpson and Steele decided to pursue a new channel into the FBI through Bruce Ohr. Bruce had known Steele since at least 2007, when they met during an "official meeting" while Steele was still employed by the British government as an MI6 agent. Steele had already been in contact with Bruce via email in early 2016. Notably, most of these prior communications appeared to discuss Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska and his ongoing efforts to obtain a U.S. visa.

<img class=" wp-image-2833270" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/11/Bruce-ohr.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="191" /> Department of Justice official Bruce Ohr. (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

On July 29, 2016, Steele wrote to Bruce, saying that he would "be in DC at short notice on business," and asked to meet with both Bruce and his wife. On July 30, 2016, the Ohrs met Steele for breakfast at the Mayflower Hotel. Also present at the breakfast meeting was a fourth individual, described by Bruce as "an associate of Mr. Steele's, another gentleman, younger fellow. I didn't catch his name." Nellie testified that Steele's associate had a British accent.

The timing of the July 30 breakfast meeting is of particular note, as the FBI's counterintelligence investigation, "Crossfire Hurricane," was formally opened the following day, on July 31, 2016, by FBI agent Peter Strzok.

<img class=" wp-image-2833272" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/11/Nellie-Ohr.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="183" /> Fusion GPS contractor Nellie Ohr. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

According to a transcript of Bruce's testimony before Congress, Steele relayed information from his dossier at this meeting and claimed that "a former head of the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service, the SVR, had stated to someone that they had Donald Trump over a barrel."

Steele also referenced Deripaska's business dealings with Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and foreign policy adviser Carter Page's meetings in Moscow.

Lastly, Bruce noted that Steele told him he had been in contact with the FBI but now had additional reports. "Chris Steele had provided some reports to the FBI, I think two, but that Glenn Simpson had more," he said.

Immediately following the Ohrs' breakfast meeting with Steele, Bruce Ohr reached out to FBI Deputy Director McCabe and the two met in McCabe's office -- sometime between July 30 and the first days of August. Also present at this meeting was FBI lawyer Page, who had previously worked for Bruce Ohr at the DOJ, where he was her direct supervisor for five to six years.

Bruce Ohr would later testify that during the July/August meeting, he told McCabe that his wife, Nellie, worked for Fusion, noting, "I wanted the FBI to be aware of any possible bias." FBI General Counsel Baker, who reviewed a portion of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) application to spy on Trump campaign adviser Carter Page -- which relied in part on the information from Steele -- told congressional investigators that he was never told of Ohr's concerns regarding possible bias and conflicts of interest.

On Aug. 15, 2016, a week or two following Bruce Ohr's meeting with McCabe, Strzok would send the now-infamous "insurance policy" text referencing McCabe to Lisa Page:

"I want to believe the path you threw out for consideration in Andy's office – that there's no way he gets elected – but I'm afraid we can't take that risk. It's like an insurance policy in the unlikely event you die before you're 40."

On Aug. 22, Bruce Ohr had a meeting with Simpson. Ohr would later discuss that meeting during his testimony:

"I don't know exactly what Chris Steele was thinking, of course, but I knew that Chris Steele was working for Glenn Simpson, and that Glenn might have additional information that Chris either didn't have or was not authorized to prevent [present], give me, or whatever."

It was at this meeting that Simpson first mentioned Belarusan-American businessman Sergei Millian and former Trump attorney Michael Cohen.

Brennan's Briefings to the Gang of Eight <img class=" wp-image-2833280" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/11/GettyImages-103218413-1200x1585.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="211" /> Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

During this same period in late August 2016, Brennan began briefing members of the Gang of Eight on the FBI's counterintelligence investigation, through a series of meetings in August and September 2016. Notably, each Gang of Eight member was briefed separately, calling into question whether each of the members received the same information. Efforts by Democrats to block the release of transcripts from each meeting are ongoing. Comey, however, did not notify Congress of the FBI investigation until early March 2017, and it's entirely possible he was unaware of Brennan's private briefings during the summer of 2016.

During her testimony, FBI lawyer Lisa Page was questioned by Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) in relation to an Aug. 25, 2016, text message that read, "What are you doing after the CH brief?" CH almost certainly referred to Crossfire Hurricane.

Lisa Page then was asked about an event that took place on the same day as the "CH brief" -- a briefing provided by Brennan to then-Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid:

"You give a brief on August the 25th. Director Brennan is giving a brief. It's not a Gang of Eight brief. It is a one-on-one, from what we can tell, a one-on-one briefing with Harry Reid at that point."

According to Meadows, Brennan briefed Reid on the Steele dossier:

"We have documents that would suggest that in that briefing the dossier was mentioned to Harry Reid and then obviously we're going to have to have conversations. Does that surprise you that Director Brennan would be aware [of the dossier]?"

Lisa Page appeared genuinely surprised that Brennan would have been aware of the dossier's existence at this early point, telling Meadows: "The FBI got this information from our source. If the CIA had another source of that information, I am neither aware of that nor did the CIA provide it to us if they did."

She elaborated further: "As of August of 2016, I don't know who Christopher Steele is. I don't know that he's an FBI source. I don't know what he does. I have never heard of him in all of my life."

This claim by Page seems incongruous when viewed against Bruce Ohr's testimony that he met with Page and McCabe in the first days of August following his July 30, 2016, breakfast with Steele:

"My initial meeting was with Mr. McCabe and with Lisa Page.

"I was telling them about what I was hearing from Chris Steele."

Meanwhile, Brennan's briefing prompted Reid to write not one but two letters to Comey. Both demanded that Comey commence an investigation, with the details to be made public.

Reid's first letter , which touched on Carter Page, was sent on Aug. 27, 2016. Reid's second letter , far angrier and declaring Comey to be in possession of material information, was sent on Oct. 30, 2016.

There had been reports that Comey had been considering closing the FBI investigation of Trump, something Brennan strongly opposed. Now, with Reid's letters sent, that avenue was effectively closed. The termination of the FBI's Trump–Russia investigation would be all but impossible in the face of Reid's public demands.

Perhaps it was in response to Reid's Aug. 27 letter that the FBI suddenly reached out to Steele in September 2016, asking him for all the information in his possession. The team working on Crossfire Hurricane received documents and a briefing from Steele in mid-September, reportedly at a meeting in Rome, where Gaeta also was present.

During Lisa Page's testimony, she appeared to corroborate this account, noting that the team received the "reports that are known as the dossier from an FBI agent who is Christopher Steele's handler in September of 2016." She would later clarify the timing, noting "we received the reporting from Steele in mid-September." A text sent to her by FBI agent Peter Strzok on Oct. 12, 2016, may provide us with the actual date:

"We got the reporting on Sept 19. Looks like [redacted] got it early August."

Steele had produced eight reports from June 20, 2016, through the end of August 2016 (there also is one undated report included in the dossier). No further reports were generated by Steele until Sept. 14, when he suddenly wrote three separate memos in one day. One of the memos referenced a Russian bank named Alfa Bank, misspelled as "Alpha" in his memo. Steele's sudden burst of productivity was likely done in preparation for his Sept. 19 meeting in Rome with the FBI.

The impact of Brennan's potential knowledge of the dossier in August 2016 should not be underestimated. As Brennan testified to Congress, his briefing to the Gang of Eight was done in consultation with the Obama administration:

"Through the so-called Gang-of-Eight process we kept Congress apprised of these issues as we identified them. Again, in consultation with the White House, I personally briefed the full details of our understanding of Russian attempts to interfere in the election to congressional leadership.

"Given the highly sensitive nature of what was an active counter-intelligence case, involving an ongoing Russian effort, to interfere in our presidential election, the full details of what we knew at the time were shared only with those members of Congress."

https://www.youtube.com/embed/PseDla0l9xE?wmode=transparent&wmode=opaque The Carter Page FISA Warrant <img class=" wp-image-2833286" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/11/Carter-Page.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="207" /> Trump campaign adviser Carter Page. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

As the dossier was making its way into the FBI, the agency began its preparations to obtain a FISA warrant on Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, who was surveilled under Title I of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.

According to Baker's testimony, it appears that the FBI began to set its sights on Carter Page in the summer of 2016. When asked how he had first gained knowledge of the FBI's intention to pursue a FISA warrant on Carter Page, Baker testified that it came through his familiarity with the FBI's investigation:

Mr. Baker: " I learned of -- so I was aware when the FBI first started to focus on Carter Page, I was aware of that because it was part of the broader investigation that we were conducting. So I was aware that we were investigating him. And then at some point in time –"

Rep. Meadows: "But that was many years ago. That was in 2014. Or are you talking about 2016?"

Mr. Baker: " I am talking about 2016 in the summer."

Rep. Meadows: "Okay."

Mr. Baker: " Yeah. And so I was aware of the investigation, and then at some point in time, as part of the regular briefings on the case, the briefers mentioned that they were going to pursue a FISA."

It appears the FBI, and possibly the CIA, began to focus on Carter Page earlier than Baker was aware. Carter Page had been invited some months prior to a July 2016 symposium held at Cambridge regarding the upcoming election. The speaker list was notable:

Carter Page attended the event just four days after his July 2016 Moscow trip, and it was during this time in the UK that he first encountered Stefan Halper. Page's Moscow trip would later figure prominently in the Steele dossier.

Halper, who has been outed as an FBI informant, stayed in contact with Carter Page for the next 14 months, severing ties exactly as the final FISA warrant on Page expired.

Trisha Anderson, the principal deputy general counsel for the FBI and head of the bureau's National Security and Cyber Law Branch, approved the application for a warrant to spy on Carter Page before it went to FBI Director James Comey.

According to Anderson, pre-approvals for the Carter Page FISA warrant were provided by both McCabe and Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates, before the FISA application was ever presented to Anderson for review.

"[M]y boss and my boss' boss had already reviewed and approved this application. And, in fact, the Deputy Attorney General, who had the authority to sign the application, to be the substantive approver on the FISA application itself, had approved the application. And that typically would not have been the case before I did that," said Anderson.

The unusual preliminary reviews and approvals from both McCabe and Yates appear to have had a substantial impact on the normal review process, leading other individuals like Anderson to believe that the warrant application was more vetted than it really was.

Anderson also testified that she had not read the Carter Page FISA application prior to signing off on it and passing it along to Comey for the final FBI signature. According to FBI lawyer Sally Moyer, the underlying Woods file (a document that provides facts supporting the allegations made in a FISA application) was only read by the originating agent and the supervisory special agent in the field. Moyer also noted that the Woods file relating to the Page FISA had not been reviewed or audited by anyone.

The Carter Page FISA application was largely reliant on the Steele dossier, which was unverified at the time of its submission to the FISA court and remains unverified by the FBI to this day. Circular reporting, provided by Steele himself, was used as corroboration of the dossier. Additionally, Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos, whose conversation with Australian diplomat Alexander Downer was used to open the FBI's July 31, 2016, counterintelligence investigation, is referenced in the FISA, yet there "is no evidence of any cooperation or conspiracy between Page and Papadopoulos," according to a House Intelligence Committee memo.

Moyer testified that without the Steele dossier, the Carter Page application would have had a "50/50" chance of achieving the probable cause standard before the FISA court. Notably, the Steele dossier is generally considered to have been largely discredited.

A Perkins Coie Partner and Alfa Bank Allegations

<img class=" wp-image-2679668" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2018/10/05/Michael-Sussmann-Perkins-Coie.jpg" alt="Michael Sussmann Lawyer Perkins Coie" width="160" height="194" /> Michael Sussmann, partner at Perkins Coie. (Courtesy Perkins Coie)

On Sept. 19, shortly after Steele completed his latest three memos, FBI General Counsel James Baker met with Perkins Coie partner Michael Sussmann, the lawyer the DNC turned to on April 28, 2016, after discovering the alleged hacking of their servers.

Sussman, who sought out the meeting, presented Baker with documents that Baker described as "a stack of material I don't know maybe a quarter inch half inch thick something like that clipped together, and then I believe there was some type of electronic media, as well, a disk or something."

The information that Sussmann gave to Baker was related to what Baker described as "a surreptitious channel of communications" between the Trump Organization and "a Russian organization associated with the Russian Government."

Baker was describing alleged communications between Alfa Bank and a server in the Trump Tower. The allegations, which were investigated by the FBI and proven to be false, were widely covered in the media.

Just four days earlier, on Sept. 14, Steele mentioned Alfa Bank (misspelled as Alpha bank) in one of his memos.

According to Baker's testimony, there appears to have been at least three meetings with Sussmann -- the first in person and at least two subsequent meetings by phone. In either the second or third conversation, Baker came to understand The New York Times was also in possession of Sussmann's information. As would become clear later, other members of the media also had this same information.

As Baker was meeting with Sussmann, Steele was back in Washington for a series of meetings that included his DOJ contact, Bruce Ohr.

On Sept. 23, 2016, Bruce Ohr again met with Steele for breakfast, telling lawmakers during testimony, "Steele was in Washington, D.C., again, and he reached out to me, and, again, we met for breakfast, and he provided some additional information." Ohr said this meeting concerned similar topics that were discussed at the July 30, 2016, meeting but did not provide further details.

Bruce Ohr would also meet either that same month or in early October with FBI agent Peter Strzok, FBI lawyer Lisa Page, and DOJ career officials from the criminal division, Bruce Swartz, Zainab Ahmad, and Andrew Weissman (Ohr testified that he was unsure whether Weismann was at this or a later meeting). Both Weissman and Ahmad would later become part of the team assembled by special counsel Robert Mueller.

Steele's Meetings With the Media

On the same day that Bruce Ohr met with Christopher Steele for breakfast, on Sept. 23, 2016, Yahoo News reporter Michael Isikoff published an article about Trump campaign foreign policy adviser Carter Page. The article, headlined " U.S. Intel Officials Probe Ties Between Trump Adviser and Kremlin ," was based on an interview with Steele. Isikoff's article would later be used by the FBI in the FISA spy warrant application on Carter Page as corroborating information.

Following the publication of the Isikoff article, the Hillary for America campaign released a statement on the same day that touted Isikoff's "bombshell report," with the full article attached.

A second lengthy article was published on Sept. 23, by Politico: " Who Is Carter Page? The Mystery of Trump's Man in Moscow ," by Julia Ioffe. This article was particularly interesting as it appeared to highlight media efforts by Fusion GPS:

"As I started looking into Page, I began getting calls from two separate 'corporate investigators' digging into what they claim are all kinds of shady connections Page has to all kinds of shady Russians. One is working on behalf of various unnamed Democratic donors; the other won't say who turned him on to Page's scent. Both claimed to me that the FBI was investigating Page for allegedly meeting with Igor Sechin and Sergei Ivanov, who was until recently Putin's chief of staff -- both of whom are on the sanctions list -- when Page was in Moscow in July for that speech."

Ioffe noted that "seemingly everyone I talked to had also talked to the Washington Post, and then there were these corporate investigators who drew a dark and complex web of Page's connections."

Her article also mentioned rumors regarding Alfa Bank:

"In the interest of due diligence, I also tried to run down the rumors being handed me by the corporate investigators: that Russia's Alfa Bank paid for the trip as a favor to the Kremlin; that Page met with Sechin and Ivanov in Moscow; that he is now being investigated by the FBI for those meetings because Sechin and Ivanov were both sanctioned for Russia's invasion of Ukraine."

It was probably during this same trip to Washington that Steele met with Jonathan Winer, a former deputy assistant secretary of state for international law enforcement and former special envoy for Libya, whom Steele had known since at least 2010.

Winer had received a separate dossier , very similar to Steele's, from longtime Clinton confidant Sidney Blumenthal. This "second dossier" had been compiled by another longtime Clinton operative, former journalist Cody Shearer, and echoed claims made in the Steele dossier. Winer gave Steele a copy of the "second dossier." Steele then shared this second dossier with the FBI, which may have used it as a means to corroborate Steele's own dossier.

Steele also met with U.S. media during his visit to Washington, doing so "at Fusion's instruction." According to UK Court documents , Steele testified that he "briefed" The New York Times, The Washington Post, Yahoo News, The New Yorker, and CNN at the end of September 2016. Steele would engage in a second round of media contact in mid-October 2016, meeting again with The New York Times, The Washington Post, and Yahoo News. Steele testified that all these meetings were "conducted verbally in person."

Alfa Bank Media Leaks

<img class=" wp-image-2679669" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2018/10/05/james-baker.jpg" alt="James Baker FBi Special Counsel" width="160" height="203" /> Former FBI General Counsel James Baker.

As Steele's media meetings were going on, FBI General Counsel James Baker learned that Perkins Coie partner Michael Sussmann was also speaking with reporters from The New York Times regarding the Alfa Bank information that Sussmann had provided to the FBI. After some internal discussion, the FBI approached both Sussmann and The New York Times, asking that any story be held until the FBI had time to complete an investigation into the documents provided by Sussmann. It appears that an agreement was reached, and the FBI began to look into the claims regarding Alfa Bank and the server at Trump Tower.

But Sussman wasn't the only one that Baker, currently the subject of an ongoing criminal leak investigation, was speaking with. According to congressional investigators, beginning sometime in September 2016 -- before the presidential election -- Baker began having conversations with his old friend and journalist, David Corn of Mother Jones.

According to Baker, these conversations were in relation to ongoing FBI matters:

Rep. Jordan: " Did you talk to Mr. Corn prior to the election about anything, anything related to FBI matters? Not -- so we're not going to ask about the Steele dossier. Anything about FBI business, FBI matters?"

Mr. Baker: " Yes."

Rep. Jordan: " Yes. And do you know -- can you give me some dates or the number of times that you talked to Mr. Corn about FBI matters leading up to the 2016 Presidential election?"

Mr. Baker: " I don't remember, Congressman."

By Oct. 31, 2016, the FBI had apparently wrapped up their investigation into the Alfa Bank allegations, finding no evidence of anything untoward in the process. It was on this day that three separate articles on Alfa Bank would be published.

The first, " Investigating Donald Trump, F.B.I. Sees No Clear Link to Russia " by The New York Times, appeared to be an updated version of the article they had intended to publish before the FBI asked them to delay their reporting. It stated the following:

"In classified sessions in August and September, intelligence officials also briefed congressional leaders on the possibility of financial ties between Russians and people connected to Mr. Trump. They focused particular attention on what cyberexperts said appeared to be a mysterious computer back channel between the Trump Organization and the Alfa Bank, which is one of Russia's biggest banks and whose owners have longstanding ties to Mr. Putin."

The reference to "classified sessions in August and September" is likely in relation to the series of Gang of Eight briefings that former CIA Director John Brennan engaged in at that time -- including his briefing to then-Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid. The article continued:

"F.B.I. officials spent weeks examining computer data showing an odd stream of activity to a Trump Organization server and Alfa Bank. Computer logs obtained by The New York Times show that two servers at Alfa Bank sent more than 2,700 'look-up' messages -- a first step for one system's computers to talk to another -- to a Trump-connected server beginning in the spring. But the F.B.I. ultimately concluded that there could be an innocuous explanation, like a marketing email or spam, for the computer contacts."

The second article, "Was a Trump Server Communicating With Russia?" by Slate Magazine, was solely focused on the allegations regarding a server in the Trump Tower that had allegedly been communicating with a server at Alfa Bank in Russia.

Immediately following the publication of the Slate article, Clinton posted a tweet that included a statement from Jake Sullivan, a senior policy adviser:

"Computer scientists have apparently uncovered a covert server linking the Trump Organization to a Russian-based bank."

Sullivan's statement referenced the Slate article and included the following:

"This could be the most direct link yet between Donald Trump and Moscow. Computer scientists have apparently uncovered a covert server linking the Trump Organization to a Russian-based bank.

"This secret hotline may be the key to unlocking the mystery of Trump's ties to Russia. It certainly seems the Trump Organization felt it had something to hide, given that it apparently took steps to conceal the link when it was discovered by journalists."

The Alfa Bank story took off -- despite the same-day story from The New York Times that specifically noted the FBI had investigated that matter and found nothing untoward.

The final article published on Oct. 31, " A Veteran Spy Has Given the FBI Information Alleging a Russian Operation to Cultivate Donald Trump " by Mother Jones reporter -- and Baker's friend -- David Corn, also mentioned Alfa Bank:

"In recent weeks, reporters in Washington have pursued anonymous online reports that a computer server related to the Trump Organization engaged in a high level of activity with servers connected to Alfa Bank, the largest private bank in Russia. On Monday, a Slate investigation detailed the pattern of unusual server activity but concluded, 'We don't yet know what this [Trump] server was for, but it deserves further explanation.' In an email to Mother Jones, Hope Hicks, a Trump campaign spokeswoman, maintains, 'The Trump Organization is not sending or receiving any communications from this email server. The Trump Organization has no communication or relationship with this entity or any Russian entity.'"

More notably, Corn's article also provided the first public reporting on the existence of the Steele dossier:

"A former senior intelligence officer for a Western country who specialized in Russian counterintelligence tells Mother Jones that in recent months he provided the bureau with memos, based on his recent interactions with Russian sources, contending the Russian government has for years tried to co-opt and assist Trump -- and that the FBI requested more information from him."

As it turns out, Corn had detailed, first-hand knowledge of the dossier. According to testimony from Baker, Corn had been provided with parts of the dossier by Fusion GPS head Glenn Simpson. Baker knew of this fact, because within a week of publishing his article, Corn passed these dossier parts on to Baker personally:

Rep. Jordan: " Prior to the election Mr. Corn had a copy of the dossier and was talking to you about giving that to you so the FBI would have it. Is that all right? I mean all accurate."

Mr. Baker: " My recollection is that he had part of the dossier, that we had other parts already, and that we got still other parts from other people, and that -- and nevertheless some of the parts that David Corn gave us were parts that we did not have from another source?"

Steele had written four memos after the FBI team received his information in mid-September. All of the memos were written in October -- on the 12th, 18th, 19th, and the 20th. It is possible that these were the memos passed along to Baker by Corn.

Baker testified that he received elements of the dossier from Corn that were not in the FBI's possession at the time. He said that he immediately turned this information over to leadership within the FBI, noting, "I think it was Bill Priestap," the head of the FBI's Counterintelligence Division.

The use of personal relationships as a mechanism to transmit outside information to the FBI was actually noted by Baker, who said of Corn: "Even though he was my friend, I was also an FBI official. He knew that. And so he wanted to somehow get that into the hands of the FBI."

Bruce Ohr's FBI Handler

Christopher Steele was terminated as a source by the FBI on Nov. 1, 2016, for communicating with the media. Despite this, DOJ official Bruce Ohr and Steele communicated regularly for another full year, until November 2017.

On Nov. 21, 2016, Ohr had a meeting with FBI agent Peter Strzok and FBI lawyer Lisa Page, and was introduced to FBI agent Joe Pientka, who became Ohr's FBI handler. Pientka was also present with Strzok during the Jan. 24, 2017, interview of Trump's national security adviser, Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn .

The next day, Nov. 22, 2016, Ohr met alone with Pientka. Ohr would continue to relay his communications with Steele to the FBI through Pientka, who then recorded them in FD-302 forms. What Ohr didn't know was that Pientka was transmitting all the information directly to Strzok.

Ohr, in his testimony, detailed his interactions with Steele and Glenn Simpson, as well as his communications with officials at the FBI and DOJ. Notably, Ohr repeatedly stated that he never vetted any of the information provided by either Steele or Simpson. He simply turned it over or relayed it to the FBI -- usually to Pientka -- but Ohr also testified that "at least on two occasions I was handed onto a new agent."

Sometime in late 2016, his wife, Nellie Ohr, provided him with a memory stick containing all of her research that she had compiled while employed at Fusion GPS. Bruce Ohr testified he gave the memory stick to Pientka. Nellie Ohr had left Fusion in September 2016. Through Pientka, Strzok now had all of Nellie Ohr's Fusion research in his possession.

On Dec. 10, 2016, Bruce Ohr met with Simpson, who gave him a memory stick that Ohr believed contained a copy of the Steele dossier. Ohr also passed this second memory stick along to Pientka.

On Jan. 20, 2017, Ohr had one final communication with Simpson, a phone call that took place on the same day as Trump's inauguration. Ohr testified that Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson was concerned that one of Steele's sources was about to be exposed through the pending publication of an article:

Mr. Ohr: " He says something along the lines of, I -- there's going to be some reporting in the next few days that's going to -- could expose the source, and the source could be in personal danger."

Rep. Meadows: " And why was he concerned about that source being exposed?"

Mr. Ohr: " I think he was aware of some kind of article that was likely to come out in the next, you know, few days or something."

Apparently, Simpson's information was at least partly accurate. On Jan. 24, 2017, The Wall Street Journal reported that Sergei Millian, a Belarusan-American businessman and onetime Russian government translator, was both "Source D" and "Source E" in the dossier. It remains unknown exactly how Simpson knew in advance that Millian would be outed as a source.

But there are some questions as to the accuracy of the Journal's reporting. The dossier appears to conflict with the newspaper's article in at least one aspect. According to the dossier, Source E was used as confirmation for Source D -- meaning they can't be the same person.

McCain, the Dossier, and a UK Connection

Simpson and Steele were carefully thorough in their dissemination efforts. The dossier was fed into U.S. channels through several different sources.

One such source was Sir Andrew Wood, the former British ambassador to Russia, who had been briefed about the dossier by Steele. Wood may have previously worked on behalf of Steele's company, Orbis Business Intelligence; he was referenced in a UK court filing as an associate of Orbis. Wood was also referred to as an adviser to Orbis in a deposition by an associate of late Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), David Kramer.

Kramer knew Wood previously from their mutual expertise on Russia. Kramer said in his deposition, which was part of a defamation lawsuit against BuzzFeed News, that Wood told him that "he was aware of information that he thought I should be aware of and that Senator McCain might be interested in."

<img class=" wp-image-2833323" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/11/kramer-300x300.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="173" /> McCain associate David Kramer. (Courtesy McCain Institute)

McCain, Wood, and Kramer would meet later that afternoon, on Nov. 19, 2016, in a private meeting room at the Halifax International Security Forum in Nova Scotia, Canada.

Wood told both Kramer and McCain that "he was aware of this information that had been gathered that raised the possibility of collusion and compromising material on the president-elect. And he explained that he knew the person who gathered the information and felt that the person was of the utmost credibility," Kramer said.

Kramer ascribed the word "collusion" three times to Wood in his deposition. He also said that Wood mentioned the possible existence of a video "of a sexual nature" that might have "shown the president-elect in a compromising situation." According to Kramer, Wood said that "if it existed, that it was from a hotel in Moscow when president-elect, before he was president-elect, had been in Moscow."

No such video was ever uncovered or given to Kramer.

Kramer testified that following the description of the video, "the senator turned to me and asked if I would go to London to meet with what turned out to be Mr. Steele."

Kramer traveled to London to meet with Steele on Nov. 28, 2016. Kramer reviewed all the memos during his meeting with Steele but wasn't provided with a physical copy of the dossier.

When Kramer returned to Washington, he was provided with a copy of the dossier -- which, at that point, consisted of 16 memos -- during a meeting with Simpson on Nov. 29, 2016. Kramer also testified that there was another individual, "a male," present at the meeting.

<img class=" wp-image-2849229" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/22/John-McCain-1200x1530.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="204" /> Late Sen. John McCain (R-AZ). (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Interestingly, Kramer testified that Simpson gave him two copies of the dossier, noting that Simpson told him that "one had more things blacked out than the other." Kramer said, "It wasn't entirely clear to me why there were two versions of this, so but I took both versions."

Kramer noted that Simpson, who was aware the dossier was being given to McCain, said the dossier "was a very sensitive document and needed to be handled very carefully."

Despite that warning, Kramer showed the dossier to a number of journalists and had discussions with at least 14 members of the media, along with some individuals in the U.S. government.

Kramer testified that he gave a physical copy of the dossier to reporters Peter Stone and Greg Gordon of McClatchy; to Fred Hiatt, the editor of the Washington Post editorial page; Alan Cullison of The Wall Street Journal; Bob Little at NPR; Carl Bernstein at CNN; and Ken Bensinger at BuzzFeed. It's possible that Kramer gave copies to other reporters as well.

Kramer said that Simpson and Steele were aware of most of these contacts, but that Kramer hadn't told either of them that he gave the dossier to NPR. He also noted that Steele had been in contact with Bernstein at CNN and that the CNN and BuzzFeed meetings occurred at Steele's request. Steele told Kramer that he and Bensinger "had been in touch during the FIFA investigation; they got to know each other that way."

According to Kramer, he didn't believe that Fusion GPS and Simpson were aware of these two meetings with CNN and BuzzFeed.

Kramer testified that he, McCain, and McCain's chief of staff, Christopher Brose, met to review the dossier on Nov. 30, 2016. Kramer suggested that McCain "provide a copy of [the dossier] to the director of the FBI and the director of the CIA." McCain later passed a copy of the dossier to James Comey on Dec. 9, 2016. It isn't known whether McCain also provided a copy to then-CIA Director John Brennan. Notably, Brennan did attach a two-page summary of the dossier to the intelligence community assessment that he delivered to outgoing President Barack Obama on Jan. 5, 2017.

Kramer said that he wasn't aware of the content of McCain's Dec. 9 discussion with Comey, noting that he "did not get any readout from the senator on the meeting, but just that it had happened."

Kramer did, however, provide updates to both Steele and Simpson regarding the status of McCain's meeting with Comey, in subsequent discussions with Simpson and Steele:

"It was mostly just to inform him about whether or not the senator had transfer -- transmitted the document to the FBI. Both he and Mr. Steele were -- I kept them apprised of whether the senator was -- where the senator was in terms of his contact with the FBI."

The implications of this statement are significant. Kramer, a private citizen, was providing updates to a former British spy as to what a sitting senator, and chairman of the Senate Committee on Armed Services, was saying to the director of the FBI.

Other members of the media also had advance knowledge of McCain's intention to meet with Comey. Kramer testified that both Mother Jones reporter David Corn and Guardian reporter Julian Borger came to meet with him. According to Kramer, "They were mostly interested in Senator McCain and his, whether he had given it to Director Comey or not."

Several days after McCain, Brose, and Kramer met to discuss the dossier, Kramer said that McCain instructed him to meet with Victoria Nuland, the assistant secretary of state for Europe and Eurasian Affairs, and Celeste Wallander, the senior director for Russia and Central Asia on the National Security Council.

The purpose of the meeting was to verify whether the dossier "was being taken seriously." Both Nuland and Wallander were previously aware of the dossier's existence, and both officials previously knew Steele, whom "they believed to be credible." Kramer said he didn't physically share the dossier with them at this point, but met again with Wallander "around New Years" and "gave her a copy of the document"

Nuland had actually received a copy of the earlier Steele memos back in July 2016.

Steele produced a final memo dated Dec. 13, 2016. According to UK court documents , Kramer, on behalf of McCain, had asked Steele to provide any further intelligence that he had gathered relating to "alleged Russian interference in the US presidential election." Notably, it appears it was this request from McCain that led Steele to produce his Dec. 13 memo.

Although Kramer didn't provide a date, he said he received the final Steele memo sometime after "Senator McCain had provided the copy to Director Comey." We know that Kramer received the final memo prior to Dec. 29 -- when Kramer met with BuzzFeed's Bensinger.

Kramer testified that Bensinger "said he wanted to read them, he asked me if he could take photos of them on his -- I assume it was an iPhone. I asked him not to. He said he was a slow reader, he wanted to read it. And so I said, you know, I got a phone call to make, and I had to go to the bathroom " Kramer said that he "left him to read it for 20, 30 minutes."

Kramer also testified that besides the reporters, he gave a final copy of the dossier to two other people in early January 2017: Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Il.) and House Speaker Paul Ryan's chief of staff, Jonathan Burks.

James Clapper Leaks Details of Obama–Trump Briefings

The ICA on alleged Russian hacking was released internally on Jan. 5, 2017. On this same day, outgoing president Obama held an undisclosed White House meeting to discuss the assessment -- and the attached summation of the dossier -- with national security adviser Susan Rice, FBI Director James Comey, and Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates. Rice would later send herself an email documenting the meeting.

The following day, CIA Director John Brennan, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, and Comey attached a written summary of the Steele dossier to the classified briefing they gave Obama. Comey then met with President-elect Trump to inform him of the dossier. This meeting took place just hours after Comey, Brennan, and Clapper formally briefed Obama on both the ICA and the Steele dossier.

<img class=" wp-image-2833293" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/11/James-Clapper-1200x1296.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="173" /> Director of National Intelligence James Clapper. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Comey would only inform Trump of the "salacious" details contained within the dossier. He later explained on CNN in an April 2018 interview that he had done so at the request of Clapper and Brennan, "because that was the part that the leaders of the intelligence community agreed he needed to be told about."

Shortly after Comey's meeting with Trump, both the Trump–Comey meeting and the existence of the dossier were leaked to CNN. The significance of the meeting was material, as Comey noted in a Jan. 7 memo :

"Media like CNN had them and were looking for a news hook. I said it was important that we not give them the excuse to write that the FBI has the material."

The media had widely dismissed the dossier as unsubstantiated and, therefore, unreportable. It was only after learning that Comey briefed Trump on it that CNN reported on the dossier. The House Intelligence Committee report on Russian election interference confirmed that Clapper personally leaked confirmation of the dossier, along with Comey's meeting with Trump, to CNN:

"The Committee's investigation revealed that President-elect Trump was indeed briefed on the contents of the Steele dossier and when questioned by the Committee, former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper admitted that he confirmed the existence of the dossier to the media."

Additionally, the House intelligence report shows Clapper appears to have been the direct source for CNN's Jake Tapper and his Jan. 10 story that disclosed the existence of the dossier:

"When initially asked about leaks related to the ICA in July 2017, former DNI Clapper flatly denied 'discuss[ing] the dossier [compiled by Steele] or any other intelligence related to Russia hacking of the 2016 election with journalists.' Clapper subsequently acknowledged discussing the 'dossier with CNN journalist Jake Tapper,' and admitted that he might have spoken with other journalists about the same topic.

"Clapper's discussion with Tapper took place in early January 2017, around the time IC leaders briefed President Obama and President-elect Trump, on 'the Christopher Steele information,' a two-page summary of which was 'enclosed in' the highly-classified version of the ICA."

On Jan. 10, 2017, CNN published the article "Intel Chiefs Presented Trump With Claims of Russian Efforts to Compromise Him " by Evan Perez, Jim Sciutto, Jake Tapper, and Carl Bernstein. (The article would later be updated and have a Jan. 12, 2017, date.)

The allegations within the dossier were made public, and with reporting of the briefings by intelligence community leaders, instant credibility was given to the dossier's assertions.

Immediately following the CNN story, BuzzFeed published the Steele dossier, and the Trump–Russia conspiracy was pushed into the mainstream.

David Kramer was asked about his reaction when CNN broke the story on the dossier. According to his deposition, Kramer stated, "I believe my words were 'Holy [expletive].'"

Kramer, who was actually meeting with The Guardian's Julian Borger when CNN reported on the dossier, said that he quickly spoke with Steele, who "was shocked."

On the following day, Jan. 11, 2017, Clapper issued a statement condemning the leaks -- without revealing the fact that he was the source of the leak.

On Nov. 17, 2016, Clapper submitted his resignation as director of national intelligence; his resignation became effective on Jan. 20, 2017. Later that year, CNN hired Clapper as its national security analyst.

The Effort to Remove General Flynn

Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, then-national security adviser to President Donald Trump, was interviewed on Jan. 24, 2017, by FBI agents Peter Strzok and Joe Pientka about two December 2016 conversations that Flynn had had with Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak.

<img class=" wp-image-2833340" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/11/Michael-Flynn-1200x1469.jpg" alt="" width="161" height="197" /> National security adviser Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn. (Kevin Hagen/Getty Images)

Details of the phone conversation had leaked to the media. Flynn ultimately pleaded guilty to one count of lying to the FBI regarding his conversations with Kislyak. It remains unknown to this day who leaked Flynn's classified call -- a far more serious felony violation.

The Washington Post reported in January 2017 that the FBI had found no evidence of wrongdoing in Flynn's actual call with the Russian ambassador. The call, and the matters discussed in it, broke no laws.

Flynn has been portrayed in the media as being suspiciously close to Russia; a dinner in Moscow that occurred in late 2015 is frequently cited as evidence of this.

On Dec. 10, 2015, Flynn attended an event in Moscow to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Russian television network RT. Flynn, who was seated next to Russian President Vladimir Putin for the culminating dinner, was also interviewed on national security matters by an RT correspondent. Flynn's speaker's bureau, Leading Authorities Inc., was paid $45,000 for the event and Flynn received $33,000 of the total amount.

Seated at the same table with Flynn was Jill Stein, the Green Party candidate in the 2016 election. By all accounts, including Stein's , Flynn and Putin didn't engage in any real conversation. At the time, Flynn's trip didn't garner significant attention. But it would later be used by the media and the Clinton campaign to push the Russia-collusion narrative.

Notably, as stated by lawyer Robert Kelner, Flynn disclosed his Moscow trip to the Defense Intelligence Agency before he traveled there and provided a full briefing upon his return:

"As has previously been reported, General Flynn briefed the Defense Intelligence Agency, a component agency of the DoD, extensively regarding the RT speaking event trip both before and after the trip, and he answered any questions that were posed by the DIA concerning the trip during those briefings."

Flynn's trip to Russia was first brought to broader attention on July 18, 2016, during a live interview at the Republican National Convention with Yahoo News reporter Michael Isikoff.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/vjvvtuDEQJY?wmode=transparent&wmode=opaque

The Isikoff interview took place on July 18, 2016. Unknown at the time, the matter had also captured the attention of Christopher Steele, who had begun publishing his dossier memos on June 20, 2016.

Contained within an Aug. 10, 2016, memo was this initial reference to Flynn:

"Kremlin engaging with several high profile US players, including STEIN, PAGE and (former DIA Director Michael Flynn) and funding their recent visits to Moscow."

In addition to the obvious questions raised by the timing of Flynn's name appearing in Steele's Aug. 10 memo, is the manner in which Flynn is denoted. All other names are capitalized, in the manner of intelligence briefings. Flynn's name isn't capitalized and, in one case, appears within parentheses.

Steele met with Yahoo News' Isikoff in September 2016 and gave him information from the dossier. The resulting Sept. 23, 2016, article from Isikoff was then cited by the FBI as validating Steele's claims and was featured in the original FISA application , and its three subsequent renewals , for a warrant to spy on Trump campaign foreign policy adviser Carter Page.

Steele wasn't the only person Isikoff was working with. On April 26, 2016, Isikoff published a story on Yahoo News about Paul Manafort's business dealings with Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska. It was later learned from a Democratic National Committee (DNC) email leaked by Wikileaks that Isikoff had been working with Alexandra Chalupa, a Ukrainian-American operative who was doing consulting work for the DNC. Chalupa met with top officials in the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington in an effort to expose alleged ties between Trump, Manafort, and Russia.

The obvious question remains: How did the information on Flynn make its way into the dossier at the time it did, and who provided the information to Steele?

Flynn's 2015 dinner in Moscow was initially used to implicate the Trump campaign's ties to Russia. It was then used as a means to cast doubts on Flynn's ability as Trump's national security adviser. Following Flynn's resignation, it was then used as a means to pursue the ongoing collusion narrative that gained full strength in the early days of the Trump administration.

A Jan. 10, 2017, article in The New York Times, " Trump's National Security Pick Sees Ally in Fight Against Islamists: Russia ," highlighted the efforts:

"In an extraordinary report released last week, the agencies bluntly accused the Russian government of having worked to undermine American democracy and promote the candidacy of Mr. Trump. The report is likely to renew questions about Mr. Flynn's avowed eagerness to work with Russia, and his dismissal of concerns about President Vladimir V. Putin."

Flynn would resign from his position as national security adviser in February 2017. The sequence of events leading to his resignation were both coordinated and orchestrated, with acting Attorney General Sally Yates playing a leading role.

On Jan. 12, 2017, Flynn's Dec. 29, 2016, call with Kislyak was leaked to The Washington Post. The article portrayed Flynn as undermining Obama's Russia sanctions that had been imposed on the same day as Flynn's call with the Russian ambassador.

On Jan. 15, five days before Trump's inauguration, Vice President Mike Pence appeared on "Face the Nation" to defend Flynn's calls.

A few days later, on Jan. 19, Obama officials -- Yates, Clapper, Brennan and Comey -- met to discuss Flynn's situation. The concern they reportedly discussed was that Flynn might have misled Trump administration officials regarding the nature of his call with Kislyak.

<img class="wp-image-2852644 size-full" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2018/10/25/spygate-small.jpg" alt="" width="592" height="724" /> Click on the infographic to enlarge

Yates, Clapper, and Brennan supported informing the Trump administration of their concerns. Comey took a dissenting view. On Jan 23, Yates again pressured Comey, telling the FBI director that she believed Flynn could be vulnerable to blackmail. At this point, according to media reports, Comey relented, despite the FBI finding nothing unlawful in the content of Flynn's calls.

Strzok and Pientka, at the instruction of McCabe, interviewed Flynn the following day. According to court documents, McCabe and other FBI officials "decided the agents would not warn Flynn that it was a crime to lie during an FBI interview because they wanted Flynn to be relaxed." It was during this interview that Flynn reportedly lied to the FBI.

The DOJ was provided with a detailed briefing of the Flynn interview on the following day. On Jan. 26, Yates contacted White House counsel Don McGahn, who agreed to meet to discuss the matter. Yates arrived at McGahn's office, bringing Mary McCord, John Carlin's acting replacement as head of the DOJ's National Security Division.

Yates later testified before Congress that the meeting surrounded Flynn's phone calls and his FBI interview. She also testified that Flynn's call and subsequent interview "was a topic of a whole lot of discussion in DOJ and with other members of the intel community." McGahn reportedly asked Yates, "Why does it matter to the DOJ if one White House official lies to another official?"

McGahn called Yates the following day and asked her to return for a second meeting. Yates returned to the White House without McCord. McGahn asked to examine the FBI's evidence on Flynn. Yates said she would respond by the following Monday.

Yates failed to provide McGahn with the FBI's evidence on Flynn. From that point, the pressure on Flynn and the Trump administration escalated -- with help from media reporting.

Flynn resigned on Feb. 13, after it was reported that he had misled Pence about phone conversations he'd had with Kislyak.

The following day, The New York Times reported that "phone records and intercepted calls show that members of Donald J. Trump's 2016 presidential campaign and other Trump associates had repeated contacts with senior Russian intelligence officials in the year before the election, according to four current and former American officials."

With Flynn gone and the Russian narrative firmly established, the conspirators then turned their attention to Trump's newly confirmed attorney general, Jeff Sessions . On March 1, 2017, The Washington Post reported that Sessions had twice had contact with the Russian ambassador, Kislyak. The following day, March 2, Sessions recused himself from the Russia investigation.

On the same day that Sessions recused himself, Evelyn Farkas, a former deputy assistant secretary of defense, detailed efforts at hampering the newly installed Trump administration, during a March 2, 2017, interview with MSNBC , in which she described how the Obama administration gathered and disseminated intelligence on the Trump team:

"I was urging my former colleagues and, frankly speaking, the people on the Hill 'Get as much information as you can. Get as much intelligence as you can before President Obama leaves the administration.'

"The Trump folks, if they found out how we knew what we knew about the Trump staff's dealing with Russians, [they] would try to compromise those sources and methods, meaning we would no longer have access to that intelligence. That's why you have the leaking."

Note that Farkas said "how we knew," not just "what we knew."

Obama Officials Used Unmasking to Target the Trump Campaign

On Tuesday, March 21, 2017, the chair of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), met a classified source who showed him "dozens" of intelligence reports. Contained within these reports was evidence of surveillance on the Trump campaign. Nunes held a press conference on March 22 highlighting what he had found:

<img class=" wp-image-2849235" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/22/Devin-Nunes-1200x1522.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="203" /> Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.). (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

"I recently confirmed that on numerous occasions, the intelligence community incidentally collected information about U.S. citizens involved in the Trump transition. Details about persons associated with the incoming administration, details with little apparent foreign intelligence value were widely disseminated in intelligence community reporting."

In a series of rapid-fire questions and answers, Nunes attempted to elaborate on what he had been shown:

"From what I know right now, it looks like incidental collection. We don't know exactly how that was picked up but we're trying to get to the bottom of it I think the NSA's going to comply. I am concerned – we don't know whether or not the FBI is going to comply. I have placed a call, I'm waiting to talk to Director Comey, hopefully later today.

"I have seen intelligence reports that clearly show the President-elect and his team were at least monitored and disseminated out in intelligence, in what appears to be raw -- well I shouldn't say raw -- but intelligence reporting channels.

"It looks to me like it was all legally collected, but it was essentially a lot of information on the President-elect and his transition team and what they were doing."

The documents Nunes had been shown highlighted the unmasking activities of the FBI, the Obama administration, and CIA Director Brennan in relation to the Trump campaign. Although March 2017 would prove chaotic, the Trump administration had survived the first crucial months, and would now begin to slowly assert its administrative authority.

Comey Testifies No Obstruction by Trump Administration

On May 3, 2017, James Comey testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee. Under oath, Comey stated that his agency -- and the FBI's investigation -- had not been pressured by the Trump administration:

Sen. Hirono: " So if the attorney general or senior officials at the Department of Justice opposes a specific investigation, can they halt that FBI investigation?"

Mr. Comey: " In theory, yes."

Sen. Hirono: " Has it happened?"

Mr. Comey: " Not in my experience. Because it would be a big deal to tell the FBI to stop doing something that – without an appropriate purpose. I mean where oftentimes they give us opinions that we don't see a case there and so you ought to stop investing resources in it. But I'm talking about a situation where we were told to stop something for a political reason. That would be a very big deal. It's not happened in my experience."

<img class="wp-image-2849240" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/22/Former-FBI-Director-James-Comey-.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="199" /> FBI Director James Comey. (REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)

Less than a week later, on May 9, Trump fired Comey based on a May 8 recommendation by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein .

Rosenstein would later tell members of Congress: "In one of my first meetings with then-Sen. Jeff Sessions last winter, we discussed the need for new leadership at the FBI. Among the concerns that I recall were to restore the credibility of the FBI, respect the established authority of the Department of Justice, limit public statements and eliminate leaks."

Regarding the recommendation, Rosenstein said: "I wrote it. I believe it. I stand by it."

McCabe's FBI Reaches Out Again to Steele

Within days of Trump's firing of Comey, the FBI, now under the leadership of acting-FBI Director Andrew McCabe, suddenly decided to reestablish direct contact with Christopher Steele through DOJ official Bruce Ohr.

The re-engagement attempt came six months after Steele had been formally terminated by the FBI on Nov. 1, 2016.

The FBI's re-engagement of Ohr was highlighted during a congressional review of some text messages between Ohr and Steele:

Mr. Ohr: " The FBI had asked me a few days before, when I reported to them my latest conversation with Chris Steele, they had had would he -- next time you talk with him, could you ask him if he would be willing to meet again."

Rep. Jordan: " So this is the re-engagement?"

Mr. Ohr: " Yes."

The texts being referenced were sent on May 15, 2017, and refer to a request that Ohr received from the FBI to ask Steele to re-engage with the FBI in the days after Comey had been fired on May 9.

This was the only time the FBI used Ohr to reach out to Steele.

The Battle Between McCabe and Rosenstein

Two days after Comey was fired, on May 11, 2017, McCabe testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee. While the hearing's original intent had been to focus on national security threats, Trump's firing of Comey completely altered the topic of the hearing.

McCabe, who agreed that he would notify the committee "of any effort to interfere with the FBI's ongoing investigation into links between Russia and the Trump campaign," told members of Congress that there had been "no effort to impede our investigation to date." In other words, McCabe testified that he was unaware of any evidence of obstruction from Trump or his administration. Notably, Comey's May 3 testimony may have left McCabe with little choice other than to confirm there had been no obstruction.

<img class="wp-image-2849245 " src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/22/McCabe-1200x1290.jpg" alt="" width="161" height="173" /> Former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe. (REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque)

McCabe, however, failed to inform the committee that he was actively considering opening an obstruction-of-justice probe of Trump -- a path he would initiate in a meeting with Rosenstein just five days later.

On the morning of May 16, 2017, Rosenstein allegedly suggested to McCabe that he could secretly record Trump. It was at this meeting that McCabe was "pushing for the Justice Department to open an investigation into the president," according to witness accounts reported by The Washington Post.

In addition to McCabe, Rosenstein, and McCabe's special counsel, Lisa Page, there were one or two others present, including Rosenstein's chief of staff , James Crowley, and possibly Scott Schools, the senior-most career attorney at the DOJ and a top aide to Rosenstein.

An unnamed participant at the meeting, in comments to The Washington Post, framed the conversation between McCabe and Rosenstein in an entirely different light, noting that Rosenstein had responded with angry sarcasm to McCabe, saying, "What do you want to do, Andy, wire the president?"

This was just five days after McCabe had publicly testified that there was no obstruction on the part of the Trump administration.

<img class="wp-image-2849247 " src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/22/Rod-Rosenstein-1200x1404.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="187" /> Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

Sometime later that same day, both Rosenstein and Trump met with former FBI Director Robert Mueller in the Oval Office. The meeting was reported as being for the FBI director position, but the idea that Mueller would be considered for the FBI director role seems highly unlikely.

Mueller had previously served as the FBI director from 2001 to 2013 -- two years beyond the normal 10-year tenure for an FBI director. In 2011, Obama requested that Mueller stay on as FBI director for an additional two years, which required special congressional approval .

Rosenstein appointed Mueller as special counsel the following day, on May 17, 2017, and in doing so, Rosenstein removed control of the Trump–Russia investigation from McCabe and put it in the hands of Mueller.

This was confirmed in a recent statement by a DOJ spokesperson, who said, "The deputy attorney general in fact appointed special counsel Robert Mueller, and directed that Mr. McCabe be removed from any participation in that investigation."

Following the appointment of Mueller as special counsel, it also appears the FBI's efforts to re-engage with Steele abruptly ended.

'There's No Big There There'

We know the FBI hadn't found any evidence of collusion in the May 2017 timeframe. While McCabe was attempting to open an obstruction investigation, Peter Strzok -- who played a key role in the counterintelligence investigation of the Trump campaign -- texted Lisa Page about lacking evidence of collusion:

"You and I both know the odds are nothing. If I thought it was likely, I'd be there, no question. I hesitate, in part, because of my gut sense and concern there's no big there there."

Page, who was asked about this text during her July 2018 testimony, said, "So I think this represents that even as far as May of 2017, we still couldn't answer the question."

James Baker, who was questioned about the Strzok text, was then asked if he'd seen any evidence to the contrary. He stumbled a bit in his reply:

Rep. Meadows: " Do you have any evidence to the contrary that you observed personally in your official capacity?"

Mr. Baker: " So the difficulty I'm having with your question is, what does 'collusion' mean, and what does 'prove' mean? And so I don't know how to respond to that."

FBI Leadership Speculates on New Trump–Russia Collusion Narrative

In his testimony, Baker disclosed the actual substance of discussions taking place at the upper echelons of the FBI immediately following Comey's firing -- that Vladimir Putin had ordered Trump to fire Comey:

Mr. Baker: " We discussed, so to the best of my recollection, with the same people I described earlier: Mr. McCabe, possibly Mr. Gattis [Carl Ghattas, executive assistant director of the National Security Branch], Mr. Priestap, possibly Lisa Page, possibly Pete Strzok. I don't remember that specifically."

Rep. Ratcliffe: " So there was -- there was a discussion between those folks, possibly all of the folks that you've identified, about whether or not President Trump had been ordered to fire Jim Comey by the Russian Government?"

Mr. Baker: " I wouldn't say ordered. I guess I would say the words I sort of used earlier, acting at the behest of and somehow following directions, somehow executing their will, whether -- and so literally an order or not, I don't know. But -- "

Rep. Ratcliffe: " And so -- "

Mr. Baker: " As a -- it was discussed as a theoretical possibility."

Rep. Ratcliffe: " When was it discussed?"

Mr. Baker: "After the firing, like in the aftermath of the firing."

The FBI, with no actual evidence of collusion after 10 months of investigating, began discussing a complete hypothetical at the highest levels of leadership as a means to possibly open an obstruction-of-justice investigation of the president of the United States.

During his testimony, Baker told lawmakers: "I had a jaundiced eye about everything, yes. I had skepticism about all this stuff. I was concerned about all of this. This whole situation was horrible, and it was novel and we were trying to figure out what to do, and it was highly unusual."

McCabe was later fired for lying to the DOJ inspector general and is currently the subject of a criminal grand jury investigation.

The Fixer

Despite the ongoing assault from the intelligence community and holdovers from the Obama administration, Trump was not entirely without allies.

Dana Boente, one of the nation's highest-profile federal prosecutors, served in a series of critical shifting roles within the Trump administration. Boente, who remained the U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia until early 2018, concurrently became the acting attorney general following the firing of Sally Yates. Boente, who was specifically appointed by Trump, was not directly in the line of succession that had been previously laid out under an unusual executive order from the Obama administration.

<img class=" wp-image-2849248" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/22/Dana-Boente.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="213" /> FBI General Counsel Dana Boente. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

Upon the confirmation of Sessions as attorney general, Boente next served as acting deputy attorney general until the confirmation of Rod Rosenstein as deputy attorney general on April 25, 2017. Boente then became the acting head of the DOJ's National Security Division on April 28, 2017, following the sudden resignation of Mary McCord.

Boente was appointed as FBI general counsel on Jan. 23, 2018, replacing Baker, who was demoted and reassigned. Baker is currently the subject of a criminal leak investigation. Boente remains in his position as FBI general counsel.

On March 31, 2017, the Trump administration asked for the resignations all 46 holdover U.S. attorneys from the Obama administration. Trump refused to accept the resignations of just three of them -- Boente, Rosenstein, and John Huber.

As Sessions noted in a March 29, 2018, letter to congressional chairmen Chuck Grassley, Bob Goodlatte, and Trey Gowdy, Huber was assigned by Sessions to lead a prosecution team and is currently working with DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz:

"I already have directed senior federal prosecutors to evaluate certain issues previously raised by the Committee. Specifically, I asked United States Attorney John W. Huber to lead this effort."

John Carlin's Race With Admiral Rogers

<img class=" wp-image-2833317" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/11/Mike-Rogers-1200x1435.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="191" /> Director of the National Security Agency Admiral Mike Rogers. (SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)

The Carter Page FISA application has been the subject of significant media attention, but there's another element to the story that, although largely ignored, is equally important. It involved what amounted to a surreptitious race between then-NSA Director Adm. Mike Rogers and DOJ National Security Division (NSD) head John Carlin.

Following a March 9, 2016, discovery that outside contractors for the FBI had been accessing raw FISA data since at least 2015, Rogers directed the NSA's Office of Compliance to conduct a "fundamental baseline review of compliance associated with 702" at some point in early April 2016 ( Senate testimony & pages 83–84 of court ruling).

On April 18, 2016, Rogers moved aggressively in response to the disclosures. He abruptly shut down all FBI outside-contractor access. At this point, both the FBI and the DOJ's NSD became aware of Rogers's compliance review. They may have known earlier, but they were certainly aware after outside-contractor access was halted.

The DOJ's NSD maintains oversight of the intelligence agencies' use of Section 702 authority. The NSD and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) jointly conduct reviews of the intelligence agencies' Section 702 activities every 60 days. The NSD -- with notice to the ODNI -- is required to report any incidents of agency noncompliance or misconduct to the FISA court.

Instead of issuing individual court orders, the attorney general and the director of national intelligence (DNI) are required by Section 702 to provide the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) with annual certifications that specify categories of foreign intelligence information the government is authorized to acquire, pursuant to Section 702.

The attorney general and the DNI also must certify that Intelligence Community agencies will follow targeting procedures and minimization procedures that are approved by the FISC as part of the certification.

Carlin filed the government's proposed 2016 Section 702 certifications on Sept. 26, 2016. Carlin knew the general status of the compliance review by Rogers. The NSD was part of the review. Carlin failed to disclose a critical Jan. 7, 2016, report by the NSA inspector general and associated FISA abuse to the FISA court in his 2016 certification. Carlin also failed to disclose Rogers's ongoing Section 702-compliance review.

On Sept. 27, 2016, the day after he filed the annual certifications, Carlin announced his resignation , which would become effective on Oct. 15, 2016.

<img class=" wp-image-2849255" src="https://img.theepochtimes.com/assets/uploads/2019/03/22/John-Carlin-FBI.jpg" alt="" width="160" height="192" /> John Carlin, DOJ's National Security Division. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

On Oct. 4, 2016, a standard follow-up court hearing was held ( Page 19 ), with Carlin present. Again, he made no disclosure of FISA abuse or other related issues. This lack of disclosure would be noted by the court later in the April 2017 ruling:

"The government's failure to disclose those IG and OCO reviews at the October 4, 2016 hearing [was ascribed] to an institutional 'lack of candor.'"

Rogers appeared formally before the FISA court on Oct. 26, 2016, and presented the written findings of his audit:

"Two days later, on the day the Court otherwise would have had to complete its review of the certifications and procedures, the government made a written submission regarding those compliance problems and the Court held a hearing to address them.

"The government reported that the NSA IG and OCO were conducting other reviews covering different time periods, with preliminary results suggesting that the problem was widespread during all periods under review."

The FISA court was unaware of the FISA "query" violations until they were presented to the court by then-NSA Director Rogers.

Carlin didn't disclose his knowledge of FISA abuse in the annual Section 702 certifications, apparently in order to avoid raising suspicions at the FISA court ahead of receiving the Carter Page FISA warrant.

The FBI and the NSD were literally racing against Rogers's investigation in order to obtain a FISA warrant on Carter Page. FISA Abuse & the FISC

Rogers presented his findings directly to the FISA court's presiding judge, Rosemary Collyer. Collyer and Rogers would work together for the next six months, addressing the issues that Rogers had uncovered.

It was Collyer who wrote the April 26, 2017, FISA court ruling on the entire episode. It also was Collyer who signed the original FISA warrant on Carter Page on Oct. 21, 2016, before being apprised of the many issues by Rogers.

The litany of abuses described in the April 26, 2017, ruling was shocking and detailed the use of private contractors by the FBI in relation to Section 702 data. Collyer referred to it as "a very serious Fourth Amendment issue." The FBI was specifically singled out by the court numerous times in the ruling:

"The improper access previously afforded the contractors has been discontinued. The Court is nonetheless concerned about the FBI's apparent disregard of minimization rules and whether the FBI may be engaging in similar disclosures of raw Section 702 information that have not been reported."

Rogers informed Collyer of the ongoing FISA abuses by the FBI and NSD just three days after she personally signed the Carter Page FISA warrant.

Virtually every FBI and NSD official with material involvement in the original Carter Page FISA application would later be removed -- either through firing or resignation.

Correction: A previous version of this article stated the wrong month for Christopher Steele's 2016 meeting with the FBI in Rome. The meeting took place in September 2016.

[Aug 22, 2019] FBI Informant Fed Media Lies to Smear Flynn, Defamation Lawsuit Alleges

Aug 22, 2019 | www.theepochtimes.com

Halper

Halper has links to the CIA and MI6. He also served in the Nixon, Ford, and Reagan administrations.

Halper met with Carter Page, a volunteer adviser to the Trump campaign, at a Cambridge symposium held on July 11 and 12, 2016. Page had just returned from a trip to Russia a few days prior and said he remained in contact with Halper for a number of months after that.

Page's trip became the core subject of the Steele dossier -- a collection of unsubstantiated claims about Trump-Russia collusion put together by former MI6 agent Christopher Steele that was paid for by Hillary Clinton's 2016 presidential campaign and the Democratic National Committee. The dossier was used by the FBI as the core evidence to obtain from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court a warrant to spy on Page several weeks before the presidential election

On Sept. 2, 2016, Halper also contacted George Papadopoulos, another Trump campaign aide, and offered $3,000 and a paid trip to London to write a paper about a gas field in the Mediterranean Sea. Papadopoulos accepted the offer and flew to London, where he met Halper and his assistant.

On Aug. 31 or Sept. 1, 2016, Halper also met with Trump campaign co-Chairman Sam Clovis in Northern Virginia and offered help to the Trump campaign with foreign policy, The Washington Post reported .

Halper's concern about Lokhova is portrayed as feigned in her complaint, since he seemed to have shown no concern for about two years after the 2014 Flynn meeting, only showing concern after Flynn started to aid Trump.

In fact, Halper appears himself to be rather close to Russian intelligence, having invited Vladimir Trubnikov, former director of Russian intelligence, to teach at CIS at least twice -- in 2012 and in 2015 -- according to the complaint. Trubnikov obliged him both times.

Between 2012 and 2017, Halper was paid more than a $1 million by the Office of Net Assessment, a strategy think tank that falls directly under the U.S. secretary of defense.

Adam Lovinger, an analyst at the think tank, raised alarm about the contracts to Halper, but was punished for it , according to his lawyer.

Flynn

Flynn was one of the most consequential post-9/11 intelligence officials in the world.

"Mike Flynn's impact on the nation's War on Terror probably trumps any other single person as his energy and skill at harnessing the Intelligence Community into a focused effort was literally historic," wrote then-Brig. Gen. John Mulholland in Flynn's 2007 performance review.

At the time, Flynn headed intelligence at the Joint Special Operations Command.

Mulholland, himself a former special forces officer, called Flynn "easily the best intelligence professional of any service serving today."

In 2014, however, he was forced into retirement over disagreements with the Obama administration.

More than a year ago, Flynn pleaded guilty to lying to two FBI agents about conversations with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak that took place when former President Barack Obama imposed additional sanctions on Russia in December 2016.

He also pleaded guilty to lying about asking Russia to vote against or delay the vote on a U.N. Security Council resolution.

Finally, he pleaded guilty to lying about his foreign lobbying disclosures regarding the extent to which his work benefiting the Turkish government was overseen by that government. Foreign lobbying paperwork violations are seldom prosecuted. Flynn said the work started in August 2016; he shut down his lobbying firm in November 2016.

In March, Flynn asked a federal judge to delay his sentencing to give him more time to continue in his cooperation with a case in Virginia against two of his former associates, who face charges for concealing that they lobbied in the United States on behalf of Turkey.

Flynn has extensively cooperated with government prosecutors on multiple investigations and further cooperation will give him yet more grounds to ask for a lenient sentence. Even before the delay, the prosecutors were asking for a lenient sentence, including no prison time, while the defense wanted no more than a year of probation and community service.

[Aug 21, 2019] Solomon If Trump Declassifies These 10 Documents, Democrats Are Doomed

Highly recommended!
They are afraid to admin that a color revolution was launched to depose Trump after the elections of 2016. Essentially a coup d'état by intelligence agencies and Clinton wing of Democratic Party.
Notable quotes:
"... The 53 House Intel interviews. House Intelligence interviewed many key players in the Russia probe and asked the DNI to declassify those interviews nearly a year ago, after sending the transcripts for review last November. There are several big reveals, I'm told, including the first evidence that a lawyer tied to the Democratic National Committee had Russia-related contacts at the CIA. ..."
"... The Stefan Halper documents. It has been widely reported that European-based American academic Stefan Halper and a young assistant, Azra Turk, worked as FBI sources . ..."
"... Page/Papadopoulos exculpatory statements. Another of Nunes' five buckets, these documents purport to show what the two Trump aides were recorded telling undercover assets or captured in intercepts insisting on their innocence. Papadopoulos told me he told an FBI undercover source in September 2016 that the Trump campaign was not trying to obtain hacked Clinton documents from Russia and considered doing so to be treason. ..."
"... The 'Gang of Eight' briefing materials. These were a series of classified briefings and briefing books the FBI and DOJ provided key leaders in Congress in the summer of 2018 that identify shortcomings in the Russia collusion narrative. ..."
"... The Steele spreadsheet. I wrote recently that the FBI kept a spreadsheet on the accuracy and reliability of every claim in the Steele dossier. According to my sources, it showed as much as 90 percent of the claims could not be corroborated, were debunked or turned out to be open-source internet rumors. ..."
"... The Steele interview. It has been reported, and confirmed, that the DOJ's inspector general (IG) interviewed the former British intelligence operative for as long as 16 hours about his contacts with the FBI while working with Clinton's opposition research firm, Fusion GPS. It is clear from documents already forced into the public view by lawsuits that Steele admitted in the fall of 2016 that he was desperate to defeat Trump ..."
"... The redacted sections of the third FISA renewal application. This was the last of four FISA warrants targeting the Trump campaign; it was renewed in June 2017 after special counsel Robert Mueller 's probe had started, and signed by then-Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein . It is the one FISA application that House Republicans have repeatedly asked to be released, and I'm told the big reveal in the currently redacted sections of the application is that it contained both misleading information and evidence of intrusive tactics used by the U.S. government to infiltrate Trump's orbit. ..."
"... Records of allies' assistance. Multiple sources have said a handful of U.S. allies overseas – possibly Great Britain, Australia and Italy – were asked to assist FBI efforts to check on Trump connections to Russia. ..."
"... Attorney General Bill Barr's recent comments that "the use of foreign intelligence capabilities and counterintelligence capabilities against an American political campaign, to me, is unprecedented and it's a serious red line that's been crossed." ..."
Aug 21, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

As the Russiagate circus attempts to quietly disappear over the horizon, with Democrats preferring to shift the anti-Trump narrative back to "racist", "white supremacist", "xenophobe", and the mainstream media ready to squawk "recession"; the Trump administration may have a few more cards up its sleeve before anyone claims the higher ground in this farce we call an election campaign.

As The Hill's John Solomon details, in September 2018 that President Trump told my Hill.TV colleague Buck Sexton and me that he would order the release of all classified documents showing what the FBI, the Department of Justice (DOJ) and other U.S. intelligence agencies may have done wrong in the Russia probe.

And while it's been almost a year since then, of feet-dragging and cajoling and deep-state-fighting, we wonder, given Solomon's revelations below, if the president is getting ready to play his 'Trump' card.

Here are the documents that Solomon believes have the greatest chance of rocking Washington, if declassified:

1.) Christopher Steele 's confidential human source reports at the FBI. These documents, known in bureau parlance as 1023 reports, show exactly what transpired each time Steele and his FBI handlers met in the summer and fall of 2016 to discuss his anti-Trump dossier. The big reveal, my sources say, could be the first evidence that the FBI shared sensitive information with Steele, such as the existence of the classified Crossfire Hurricane operation targeting the Trump campaign. It would be a huge discovery if the FBI fed Trump-Russia intel to Steele in the midst of an election, especially when his ultimate opposition-research client was Hillary Clinton and the Democratic National Committee (DNC). The FBI has released only one or two of these reports under FOIA lawsuits and they were 100 percent redacted. The American public deserves better.

2.) The 53 House Intel interviews. House Intelligence interviewed many key players in the Russia probe and asked the DNI to declassify those interviews nearly a year ago, after sending the transcripts for review last November. There are several big reveals, I'm told, including the first evidence that a lawyer tied to the Democratic National Committee had Russia-related contacts at the CIA.

3.) The Stefan Halper documents. It has been widely reported that European-based American academic Stefan Halper and a young assistant, Azra Turk, worked as FBI sources . We know for sure that one or both had contact with targeted Trump aides like Carter Page and George Papadopoulos at the end of the election. My sources tell me there may be other documents showing Halper continued working his way to the top of Trump's transition and administration, eventually reaching senior advisers like Peter Navarro inside the White House in summer 2017. These documents would show what intelligence agencies worked with Halper, who directed his activity, how much he was paid and how long his contacts with Trump officials were directed by the U.S. government's Russia probe.

4.) The October 2016 FBI email chain. This is a key document identified by Rep. Nunes and his investigators. My sources say it will show exactly what concerns the FBI knew about and discussed with DOJ about using Steele's dossier and other evidence to support a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant targeting the Trump campaign in October 2016. If those concerns weren't shared with FISA judges who approved the warrant, there could be major repercussions.

5.) Page/Papadopoulos exculpatory statements. Another of Nunes' five buckets, these documents purport to show what the two Trump aides were recorded telling undercover assets or captured in intercepts insisting on their innocence. Papadopoulos told me he told an FBI undercover source in September 2016 that the Trump campaign was not trying to obtain hacked Clinton documents from Russia and considered doing so to be treason. If he made that statement with the FBI monitoring, and it was not disclosed to the FISA court, it could be another case of FBI or DOJ misconduct.

6.) The 'Gang of Eight' briefing materials. These were a series of classified briefings and briefing books the FBI and DOJ provided key leaders in Congress in the summer of 2018 that identify shortcomings in the Russia collusion narrative. Of all the documents congressional leaders were shown, this is most frequently cited to me in private as having changed the minds of lawmakers who weren't initially convinced of FISA abuses or FBI irregularities.

7.) The Steele spreadsheet. I wrote recently that the FBI kept a spreadsheet on the accuracy and reliability of every claim in the Steele dossier. According to my sources, it showed as much as 90 percent of the claims could not be corroborated, were debunked or turned out to be open-source internet rumors. Given Steele's own effort to leak intel in his dossier to the media before Election Day, the public deserves to see the FBI's final analysis of his credibility. A document I reviewed recently showed the FBI described Steele's information as only "minimally corroborated" and the bureau's confidence in him as "medium."

8.) The Steele interview. It has been reported, and confirmed, that the DOJ's inspector general (IG) interviewed the former British intelligence operative for as long as 16 hours about his contacts with the FBI while working with Clinton's opposition research firm, Fusion GPS. It is clear from documents already forced into the public view by lawsuits that Steele admitted in the fall of 2016 that he was desperate to defeat Trump , had a political deadline to make his dirt public, was working for the DNC/Clinton campaign and was leaking to the news media. If he told that to the FBI and it wasn't disclosed to the FISA court, there could be serious repercussions.

9.) The redacted sections of the third FISA renewal application. This was the last of four FISA warrants targeting the Trump campaign; it was renewed in June 2017 after special counsel Robert Mueller 's probe had started, and signed by then-Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein . It is the one FISA application that House Republicans have repeatedly asked to be released, and I'm told the big reveal in the currently redacted sections of the application is that it contained both misleading information and evidence of intrusive tactics used by the U.S. government to infiltrate Trump's orbit.

10.) Records of allies' assistance. Multiple sources have said a handful of U.S. allies overseas – possibly Great Britain, Australia and Italy – were asked to assist FBI efforts to check on Trump connections to Russia. Members of Congress have searched recently for some key contact documents with British intelligence . My sources say these documents might help explain Attorney General Bill Barr's recent comments that "the use of foreign intelligence capabilities and counterintelligence capabilities against an American political campaign, to me, is unprecedented and it's a serious red line that's been crossed."

These documents, when declassified, would show more completely how a routine counterintelligence probe was hijacked to turn the most awesome spy powers in America against a presidential nominee in what was essentially a political dirty trick orchestrated by Democrats.


rahrog , 2 minutes ago link

America's Ruling Class is laughing at all you fools still falling for the Rs v Ds scam.

Stupid people lose.

LibertyVibe , 3 minutes ago link

I disagree with Solomon. Nothing will "doom" the swamp unless the righteous few are willing to indict, prosecute and carry out sentencing for the guilty. Exposing the guilty accomplishes nothing, because anyone paying attention already knows of their crimes. Those who want to believe lies will still believe them after the truth comes out.
It's ALL A WASTE OF TIME unless we follow through.

#TheDailyNews #DrainTheSwamp

Lord Raglan , 5 minutes ago link

Where's all the other, earlier docs Trump was going to declassify? Just wondering..............

TheFQ , 16 minutes ago link

Does anyone see a pattern here after the 2009 Tea Party movement began?

2009 - Republicans: "If we win back the House, we can accomplish our agenda."

2011 - Republicans: "If we win back the Senate, we can accomplish our agenda." (NOTE: After winning back the House)

2012 - Republicans: "If we win back the Senate, we can accomplish our agenda." (NOTE: 2 YEARS After winning back the House)

2013 - Republicans: "If we win back the Presidency, we can accomplish our agenda." (NOTE: 1 YEAR after winning back the House and the Senate)

2014 - Republicans: "If we win back the Presidency, we can accomplish our agenda." (NOTE: 2 YEARS after winning back the House and the Senate)

2015 - Republicans: "If we win back the Presidency, we can accomplish our agenda." (NOTE: 3 YEARS after winning back the House and the Senate)

2016 - Republicans: "If we win back the Presidency, we can accomplish our agenda." (NOTE: 4 YEARS after winning back the House and the Senate)

2017 - Republicans: "Now that we've won back the Presidency, we can accomplish our agenda." (NOTE: After winning back the House 6 YEARS AGO and the Senate 4 YEARS AGO)

2018 - Republicans: "Now that we've won back the Presidency, we can accomplish our agenda." (NOTE: After winning back the House 7 YEARS AGO and the Senate 5 YEARS AGO)

2019 - John Solomon - "If Trump Declassifies These 10 Documents, Democrats Are Doomed"

I hate to say it, but I DON'T BELIEVE YOU, JOHN.

ALL WE HAVE HEARD OVER THE COURSE OF THIS DECADE IS "IF THIS HAPPENS...THEN THEY ARE DOOMED / WE CAN ACCOMPLISH OUR AGENDA / YADDA YADDA YADDA.

WHEN THE FOLLOWING ARE FOUND GUILTY OF TREASON, THEN AND ONLY THEN WILL I BELIEVE YOU:

WHY ARE THESE TREASONOUS, VILE, CORRUPT CRIMINALS NOT INDICTED FOR TREASON?

WTF?

FFS...

benb , 12 minutes ago link

WHY ARE THESE TREASONOUS, VILE, CORRUPT CRIMINALS NOT INDICTED FOR TREASON?

Because the people doing the indicting are in on it.

enfield0916 , 36 minutes ago link

As if there's any major philosophical difference between the Librtads and Zionist Cocksuckvatives.

Both sides use the .gov agencies to subvert and ignore the Constitution whenever possible. Best example is WikiLeaks and how each party wished Assange would just go away when he revealed damaging information about both sides on multiple occasions.

[Aug 12, 2019] Russiagate is the idea around which varied interests can be organized

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... Like the Wolfowitz explanation of the Iraq War, Russiagate is the idea around which varied interests can be organized. Cold Warriors like to hate on Russia. It justifies arms spending and their own importance. Clintonistas need an excuse to distract from her being a loser. The DNC needs an excuse for manipulating the candidate selection in favor of donor interests. "Moderates" need a distraction from their ongoing refusal to address the interests of voters. ..."
Aug 12, 2019 | consortiumnews.com

Mark Thomason , August 12, 2019 at 10:34

Like the Wolfowitz explanation of the Iraq War, Russiagate is the idea around which varied interests can be organized. Cold Warriors like to hate on Russia. It justifies arms spending and their own importance. Clintonistas need an excuse to distract from her being a loser. The DNC needs an excuse for manipulating the candidate selection in favor of donor interests. "Moderates" need a distraction from their ongoing refusal to address the interests of voters.

[Aug 08, 2019] The Mainstream Media Wants The Mifsud Story To Just Go Away

Notable quotes:
"... "I can report absolutely that the Durham investigators have now obtained an audiotape deposition of Joseph Mifsud, where he describes his work, why he targeted George Papadopoulos , who directed him to do that, what directions he was given, and why he set that entire process of introducing Papadopoulos to Russia in motion in March of 2016, which is really the flashpoint the starting point of this whole Russia collusion narrative," Solomon told Fox News' Sean Hannity. ..."
"... You can't save the Russian collusion narrative, if you can't find any real Russians anywhere in the story. The FBI under James Comey will then be seen as having engaged in an operation to entrap people, and "Russian agents" turn out to be fakes working for the FBI and who were making fake offers of Russian help to the Trump campaign. ..."
"... Mifsud turning out to be a fake Russian agent working for the FBI ..."
"... To have to admit that the story was actually right, while they themselves were still peddling the Trump-Russia collusion hoax, would be a most bitter pill for many of these 'legitimate' news outlets to swallow. ..."
"... And yet when it comes to recent developments about Mifsud, a key player in this Trump-Russia collusion narrative, many mainstream reporters appear indifferent at best, or outrightly hostile at worst to these latest developments. ..."
"... While many of these mainstream media reporters have been desperately trying to find some way to save the Trump/Russian collusion narrative, the last thing they want to have to report is that the supposed key Russian agent that started this whole Spygate thing wasn't really a Russian agent, but was instead an FBI asset pretending to be a Russian agent. ..."
Aug 07, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

The Mainstream Media Wants The Mifsud Story To Just Go Away

by Tyler Durden Wed, 08/07/2019 - 22:35 0 SHARES

Authored by Brian Cates via The Epoch Times,

While many mainstream media journalists have been spinning fantasies for more than two years, based on Russian collusion stories being handed to them by anonymous sources, crack reporter John Solomon of The Hill has been pursuing real leads and uncovering actual evidence.

Now, Solomon is reporting that an audiotape containing professor Joseph Mifsud's deposition has been given to both U.S. Attorney John Durham's investigators and to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

"I can report absolutely that the Durham investigators have now obtained an audiotape deposition of Joseph Mifsud, where he describes his work, why he targeted George Papadopoulos , who directed him to do that, what directions he was given, and why he set that entire process of introducing Papadopoulos to Russia in motion in March of 2016, which is really the flashpoint the starting point of this whole Russia collusion narrative," Solomon told Fox News' Sean Hannity.

"I can also confirm that the Senate Judiciary Committee has also obtained the same deposition," he said.

Mifsud , who I have written about extensively in previous columns , is the key that turns the lock to the lid of this Pandora's box that we refer to as "Spygate."

So I'm wondering why Solomon appears to be the only mainstream reporter pursuing this Mifsud story.

I suspect it's because many DNC Media outlets, after having fallen deeply and passionately in love with the Trump-Russia collusion hoax, are reluctant to call attention to something that would be the final nail in its coffin.

The last thing the mainstream media wants right now would be for Mifsud to go on the record with both Durham's investigative team and with Congress to say he was working for the FBI and was only pretending to be a Russian agent.

If Mifsud was an FBI asset sent to entrap Papadopoulos, then there are no real Russian agents anywhere in this entire Trump-Russia collusion story.

Foreign policy advisor to US President Donald Trump's election campaign, George Papadopoulos goes through security at the US District Court for his sentencing in Washington, DC on Sept. 7, 2018. (Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP/Getty Images)

Ponder what that means for a minute.

You can't save the Russian collusion narrative, if you can't find any real Russians anywhere in the story. The FBI under James Comey will then be seen as having engaged in an operation to entrap people, and "Russian agents" turn out to be fakes working for the FBI and who were making fake offers of Russian help to the Trump campaign.

Some of these news media outlets are still - at this late date - claiming there's some life left in the Russian collusion narrative. Mifsud is literally the last dying hope for these people that somewhere in all of this there is a real Russian asset and real collusion. They literally need Mifsud to be a real asset of the Putin government. And if Mifsud goes on the record to officially affirm he was working for the FBI, then the media's last dying hope is gone forever.

To hear the mainstream media tell it, Mifsud turning out to be a fake Russian agent working for the FBI is a "conspiracy theory" created by "right-wing zealots" such as Reps. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) and Jim Jordan (R-Ohio).

To have to admit that the story was actually right, while they themselves were still peddling the Trump-Russia collusion hoax, would be a most bitter pill for many of these 'legitimate' news outlets to swallow.

Which likely explains why Solomon appears to be just about the only mainstream reporter pursuing the Mifsud story. If there are any other major news outlet reporters out there avidly pursuing the facts about Mifsud and his reported contacts and testimony to Justice Department investigators, they're being pretty quiet about it.

What are the mainstream news reporters who are ignoring the Mifsud story telling themselves, anyway?

"I can't pursue this new information on Mifsud, because it's taking the story where I don't want it to go!"?

That's a thought process that happens only to a political activist disguised as a reporter. No real reporter would ever think that way.

And yet when it comes to recent developments about Mifsud, a key player in this Trump-Russia collusion narrative, many mainstream reporters appear indifferent at best, or outrightly hostile at worst to these latest developments.

While many of these mainstream media reporters have been desperately trying to find some way to save the Trump/Russian collusion narrative, the last thing they want to have to report is that the supposed key Russian agent that started this whole Spygate thing wasn't really a Russian agent, but was instead an FBI asset pretending to be a Russian agent.

These selfsame media reporters have spent more than two years mocking the idea that Mifsud is an FBI asset as something straight out of the right-wing fever swamp of convoluted nonsense conspiracy theories. This is why so many political activists masquerading as journalists are desperately hoping that somehow the Mifsud story will just go away and die on its own.

My instinct says they're going to be massively disappointed soon.


leodogma1 , 17 minutes ago link

The only one's ever colluding with the Russians was Hillary the "******* Rotten" Clinton, Obongo "the One" and the usual suspects (Comey,Clapper,Brennan,Lynch,) et.al .. FBI/DOJ/CIA Rats, British UN-intelligence,Australian & Ukraine interference. The DNC server was never hacked by Russians but copied, the Steele/Fusion GPS dossier was a work of worn out fiction that was originally put together in 2007 and used against McCain.

Nelbev , 28 minutes ago link

Worth a read,

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2019/05/05/nunes_mueller_report_cherry-picked_information_to_portray_mifsud_as_russian_agent_he_was_really_a_western_agent.html# !

https://theconservativetreehouse.com/2019/05/05/maria-bartiromo-and-devin-nunes-discuss-predicate-of-spygate-and-mueller-dossier/

Russian agent Mifsud working with Papadopoulos to get Hillary emails claimed by DNC/Crowdstrike/Perkins Coie hacked by Russians before destroyed by Hillary under subpoena, just a FBI paid actor to keep the narrative going and covering up illegal spying on Trump, NSA 702 "about" querries by private contractors ang gov. violating FISA which happened much earlier.

greenskeeper carl , 28 seconds ago link

Conservative treehouse does a better job than just about anywhere else I've seen of tying that all together. But, if they are correct about this, as they've been correct about a lot of things, it won't change anything or matter at all. None of these people will ever be indicted, much less spend a single day in jail. Sad, but true. In a year and a half trump will most likely be gone, and all of this will be memory holed.

TrustbutVerify , 55 minutes ago link

Most Democrats still adhere to the Trump - Russia collusion narrative. And they wonder why some Leftists like Roseanne Barr admit 'Democrats have gone insane.' An opinion shared by most of the rest of the country. And yet public speeches by Trump are enthusiastically attended by thousands - a story very much minimized by these same "news" outlets.

Those Democrats exist within a media bubble (95% of press outlets - online, too) working for the Deep State (99% are Democrats) that misinforms them. Perhaps they are intentionally self-duped. Though it remains shocking how deeply deluded they are.

Justapleb , 30 minutes ago link

They adhere to the hoax because they knew it was a hoax to begin with.

The dems have never been sincere calling people racist, sexist, Hitler, then Russian or Assad stooges, etc.

Their Saul Alinsky tactic is to shriek incessantly, always accuse, never take the defensive because your position is indefensible. You can't argue why offering open borders and free health care to 7 billion people is rational.

That is why the violence is so important to them, and so important to keep concealing the deep state/democratic crime syndicate.

Charlie_Martel , 59 minutes ago link

The main stream media is the mouth piece of the intelligence community.

Walking Turtle , 54 minutes ago link

The main stream media is the mouth piece of the intelligence community.

The main stream media is [ currently ] the mouth piece of the [ criminal Deep State ] intelligence community.

There; fify. The "Intelligence Community" in its entirety is hardly any monolith of pure evil. There are cadres and factions within every agency, including Old-School Patriot.

MUST be said now and then lest others lose perspective. And that is all. 0{:-\o[

Oldwood , 1 hour ago link

None of it matters.

The progressives will happily embrace the worst criminal behavior by our government as JUSTIFIED to depose the devil incarnate Trump.

There is only one principle...winning. The law is THEIR weapon devised to punish their enemies and control their minions. All means are justifiable to the ends, and the vast majority of those "serving" in government have no hesitancy in abusing their power to fulfill the larger agenda.

They will have proof and undeniable facts...to no avail because those charged with the prosecution of their own, will NOT.

DEDA CVETKO , 1 hour ago link

I have spoken with my crystal ball, and it told me something rather unintelligible about Mifsud, MI-6, Seth Rich and Vince Foster.

Does anyone have any idea what my crystal ball was talking about?

Demologos , 34 minutes ago link

When I asked my magic 8-ball if Mifsud was See Aye Ehh, it answered "very likely"

DEDA CVETKO , 20 minutes ago link

Smart balls you got there!

fezline , 1 hour ago link

More sensationalism... how many articles are you going to post saying the spygate situation is about to blow up? I would love for it to happen but unlike the libtards hanging on Rachel Maddow's every word... when I hear the walls are closing in for over 2 or 3 months straight... I start to call ********... Give up the sensationalism Tyler... it's straight up MSM flavor ********.

[Aug 05, 2019] UK 'up to its neck' in Russiagate affair, says George Galloway, as secret texts reveal British role

Barr now has goods to jail major conspirators for life. It is unlikely happened but we can hope.
Notable quotes:
"... "Turns out it was Britain that was the foreign country interfering in American affairs," former MP George Galloway told RT, speaking about the new revelations published by the Guardian about early British involvement in the 'Russiagate' investigation. ..."
"... The Guardian reported on texts between former deputy FBI director Andrew McCabe and Jeremy Fleming, his then counterpart at MI5, who now heads GCHQ. The two men met in 2016 to discuss "our strange situation" – an apparent reference to Russia's alleged interference in US domestic politics. ..."
"... British intelligence "appears to have played a key role in the early stages," the report said. ..."
"... Galloway said the revelation was not surprising because people "already knew" that British intelligence had played a part in the Russia-related investigations in the US. He recalled that it was former British spy Christopher Steele who drew up the now-infamous Steele dossier, which made multiple unverifiable and salacious claims about Trump and has since been largely discredited. Britain is "up to its neck in the whole Russiagate affair," he said. ..."
"... Asked what the UK stood to gain by trying to implicate Russia in a US election scandal at a time when then-foreign secretary Boris Johnson was dismissing baseless claims of Russian interference in the Brexit campaign, Galloway noted that Johnson's comments on Russia have appeared to strangely sway between friendly and antagonistic. ..."
"... In June 2016, the FBI opened a covert investigation codenamed 'Crossfire Hurricane' into Trump's now disproven collusion with Moscow, which was later taken over by special counsel Robert Mueller. ..."
Jul 31, 2019 | www.rt.com

While hysteria raged about possible Russian "interference" in the 2016 US election, British intelligence officials were secretly playing a "key role" in helping instigate investigations into Donald Trump, secret texts have shown. "Turns out it was Britain that was the foreign country interfering in American affairs," former MP George Galloway told RT, speaking about the new revelations published by the Guardian about early British involvement in the 'Russiagate' investigation.

The Guardian reported on texts between former deputy FBI director Andrew McCabe and Jeremy Fleming, his then counterpart at MI5, who now heads GCHQ. The two men met in 2016 to discuss "our strange situation" – an apparent reference to Russia's alleged interference in US domestic politics.

British intelligence "appears to have played a key role in the early stages," the report said.

www.youtube.com/embed/y0X5ubiSd0M

Galloway said the revelation was not surprising because people "already knew" that British intelligence had played a part in the Russia-related investigations in the US. He recalled that it was former British spy Christopher Steele who drew up the now-infamous Steele dossier, which made multiple unverifiable and salacious claims about Trump and has since been largely discredited. Britain is "up to its neck in the whole Russiagate affair," he said.

The texts also reveal that the Brexit vote was viewed by some in the FBI as something that had been influenced by Russia.

Asked what the UK stood to gain by trying to implicate Russia in a US election scandal at a time when then-foreign secretary Boris Johnson was dismissing baseless claims of Russian interference in the Brexit campaign, Galloway noted that Johnson's comments on Russia have appeared to strangely sway between friendly and antagonistic.

Johnson is like "a sofa that bears the impression of the last person to sit upon him," the former MP quipped. What happens next will depend on who is leading the tango, "the orange man in Washington or the blonde mop-head in London."

In June 2016, the FBI opened a covert investigation codenamed 'Crossfire Hurricane' into Trump's now disproven collusion with Moscow, which was later taken over by special counsel Robert Mueller.

Ultimately, the two-year-long probe that followed came up short, producing no evidence to prove a conspiracy or collusion between Trump campaign officials and Russia

See also:

Also on rt.com Fear behind fury: As DNI, Ratcliffe could expose FISA files that Russiagaters hope stay buried

[Jul 31, 2019] Secret McCabe Texts With MI-5 Counterpart Emerge, Spotlighting UK s Early Role In Russiagate

Notable quotes:
"... In 2017, The Guardian reported that Britain's spy agencies had played a key role in alerting their American counterparts of communications between members of the Trump campaign and "suspected Russian agents," which was passed along to the US in what was characterized as a "routine exchange of information." ..."
"... "For over a year, people have asked me to declassify. What I've done is declassified everything," said Trump, adding "He can look and I hope he looks at the UK and I hope he looks at Australia and I hope he looks at Ukraine ." ..."
"... "It's the greatest hoax probably in the history of our country and somebody has to get to the bottom of it. We'll see. For a long period of time, they wanted me to declassify and I did." ..."
"... in May, Fox News reported that the discredited "Steele Dossier" - assembled by former MI6 spy Christopher Steele - was referred to as "crown material" in an email exchange suggesting that former FBI Director James Comey insisted that CIA Director John Brennan pushed for the inclusion of the dossier in the intelligence community assessment (ICA) on Russian interference. ..."
"... Moreover, much of "Operation Crossfire Hurricane" - the FBI's official investigation into the Trump campaign - occurred on UK soil , which is perhaps why the New York Times reported last September that the UK begged Trump not to declassify 'Russiagate' documents 'without redaction.' ..."
"... Maltese professor and self-described Clinton foundation member Joseph Mifsud fed him the rumor that Russia had damaging information on Hillary Clinton. It was later at a London bar that Papadopoulos would drunkenly pass the rumor to Australian diplomat Alexander Downer. ..."
Jul 31, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Newly surfaced text messages between Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe and his counterpart at MI-5, the UK's domestic security service, have cast new light on Britain's role in the FBI's 2016 'Russiagate' investigation, according to The Guardian .

Two of the most senior intelligence officials in the US and UK privately shared concerns about " our strange situation " as the FBI launched its 2016 investigation into whether Donald Trump's campaign was colluding with Russia , the Guardian has learned.

Text messages between Andrew McCabe, the deputy director of the FBI at the time, and Jeremy Fleming , his then counterpart at MI5, now the head of GCHQ , also reveal their mutual surprise at the result of the EU referendum, which some US officials regarded as a "wake-up call", according to a person familiar with the matter. - The Guardian

McCabe and Flemming's texts were "infrequent and cryptic," but "occurred with some regularity" after the June 2016 Brexit referendum.

In his text message about the August 2016 meeting, Fleming appeared to be making a reference to Peter Strzok , a senior FBI official who travelled to London that month to meet the Australian diplomat Alexander Downer . Downer had agreed to speak with the FBI about a Trump campaign adviser, George Papadopoulos, who had told him that Russia had dirt on Hillary Clinton, the Democratic nominee in the race. - The Guardian

In 2017, The Guardian reported that Britain's spy agencies had played a key role in alerting their American counterparts of communications between members of the Trump campaign and "suspected Russian agents," which was passed along to the US in what was characterized as a "routine exchange of information."

UK begged Trump not to declassify

In May, President Trump issued a sweeping declassification order on materials related to the DOJ/FBI Russia investigation - leaving it in the hands of Attorney General William Barr to determine exactly what happened to Trump and his campaign before and after the 2016 US election.

"For over a year, people have asked me to declassify. What I've done is declassified everything," said Trump, adding "He can look and I hope he looks at the UK and I hope he looks at Australia and I hope he looks at Ukraine ."

"It's the greatest hoax probably in the history of our country and somebody has to get to the bottom of it. We'll see. For a long period of time, they wanted me to declassify and I did."

https://www.youtube.com/embed/OqTdwruOJJo?start=150

Meanwhile, also in May, Fox News reported that the discredited "Steele Dossier" - assembled by former MI6 spy Christopher Steele - was referred to as "crown material" in an email exchange suggesting that former FBI Director James Comey insisted that CIA Director John Brennan pushed for the inclusion of the dossier in the intelligence community assessment (ICA) on Russian interference.

Moreover, much of "Operation Crossfire Hurricane" - the FBI's official investigation into the Trump campaign - occurred on UK soil , which is perhaps why the New York Times reported last September that the UK begged Trump not to declassify 'Russiagate' documents 'without redaction.'

Let's also not forget that shortly after Trump campaign aide George Papadopoulos announced his intention to work for the campaign, he was lured to London in March, 2016, where Maltese professor and self-described Clinton foundation member Joseph Mifsud fed him the rumor that Russia had damaging information on Hillary Clinton. It was later at a London bar that Papadopoulos would drunkenly pass the rumor to Australian diplomat Alexander Downer.

We wonder what else McCabe's texts with his MI-5 counterpart will reveal?

[Jul 26, 2019] Barr's Russiagate Origin Probe Pivots To 'Smoking Gun' Tapes With Exculpatory Evidence

Notable quotes:
"... Mueller is not currently mentally capable of programming his microwave, never mind author a report or conduct an investigation. ..."
"... I think if Barr digs deep enough he is going to see a foreign country was In control of Hillary during her state department days, and potentially Bubba during his presidency, remember how those secrets got leaked to China during Bill's Presidency? The preceding would also implicate that inner circle assisting Hill Dog, ie Comey, Clapper, MCabe, Brennan and the rest of those rat bastards BTW where is the computer guy that they were all using who got nabbed just before fleeing on a jet out of the country, What about Huma? ..."
"... Mueller was the token 'R'/Marine Vet/Never Trumper hired to give this corruption an air of 'fairness'. He was a tool, and has been for decades. Special place for him somewhere. ..."
"... Unfortunately the DNC clowns have discovered how to use Hillary's projection techniques and they are using them more and more. No matter what they do or what we discover they do they project it back on us. ..."
Jul 26, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Barr's Russiagate Origin Probe Pivots To 'Smoking Gun' Tapes With Exculpatory Evidence

by Tyler Durden Fri, 07/26/2019 - 17:05 0 SHARES

A DOJ internal review of the Russia investigation is now focusing on transcripts of (not-so) covertly recorded conversations between former Trump campaign aide George Papadopoulos and 'at least one government source' during an overseas conversation in 2016.

In particular, DOJ investigators are focusing on why certain exculpatory (or exonerating) evidence from the transcripts was not included in subsequent FBI surveillance warrant applications , according to Fox News , citing two sources familiar with the review.

"A source told Fox News that the "exculpatory evidence" included in the transcripts is Papadopoulos denying having any contact with the Russians to obtain the supposed "dirt" on Clinton," according to the report.

And while Fox doesn't name the 'government source,' it's undoubtedly Australian diplomat and Clinton ally Alexander Downer, who was "idiotic enough" to spy on Papadopoulos with his phone, according to the former Trump aide.

But Papadopoulos did not only meet with Mifsud and Downer while overseas. He met with Cambridge professor and longtime FBI informant Stefan Halper and his female associate, who went under the alias Azra Turk. Papadopoulos told Fox News that he saw Turk three times in London: once over drinks, once over dinner and once with Halper. He also told Fox News back in May that he always suspected he was being recorded . Further, he tweeted during the Mueller testimony about "recordings" of his meeting with Downer . - Fox News

"These recordings have exculpatory evidence," one source told Fox , adding " It is standard tradecraft to record conversations with someone like Papadopoulos -- especially when they are overseas and there are no restrictions. "

The recordings in question pertain to conversations between government sources and Papadopoulos, which were memorialized in transcripts. One source told Fox News that Barr and Durham are reviewing why the material was left out of applications to surveil another former Trump campaign aide, Carter Page.

" I think it's the smoking gun ," the source said. - Fox News

Also under review by AG Barr and US Attorney John Durham of Connecticut is the actual start date of the original FBI investigation into the Trump campaign and Russian interference in the US election.

Former Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) first revealed the existence of transcripts documenting the secretly recorded conversations earlier this year.

"If the bureau's going to send in an informant, the informant's going to be wired, and if the bureau is monitoring telephone calls, there's going to be a transcript of that," Gowdy said on Fox News in May.

"Some of us have been fortunate enough to know whether or not those transcripts exist. But they haven't been made public, and I think one, in particular ... has the potential to actually persuade people," he continued, adding "Very little in this Russia probe I'm afraid is going to persuade people who hate Trump or love Trump. But there is some information in these transcripts that has the potential to be a game-changer if it's ever made public. "

According to the report, the transcripts are currently classified - however President Trump's May order to approve declassification at AG Barr's discretion means they may see the light of day. And even if not, the declassification allowed Barr to barge in on DNI Director Dan Coats' office and demand the files .

A source told Fox News that without the declassification order signed by Trump, Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats was not going to give anyone access to the files -- over concerns for protecting sources and methods. But another source told Fox News in May that Coats, along with CIA Director Gina Haspel and FBI Director Chris Wray, are all working "collaboratively" with Barr and Durham on the review.

Barr and Durham are also trying to pinpoint the actual "start date" of the investigation, according to a source. - Fox News

As passionately laid out by Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) during this week's Mueller testimony, the FBI officially opened the Russia investigation after Papadopoulos told Downer about a rumor (told to him by Clinton Foundation member Joseph Mifsud) that Russia had 'dirt' on Hillary Clinton.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/QC529hakU6U

That said, some have suggested that the FBI probe began long before Downer's report to intelligence agencies .

On Wednesday, House Intelligence Committee Ranking Member Devin Nunes, R-Calif., challenged former Special Counsel Mueller over when the investigation started.

"The FBI claims the counterintelligence investigation of the Trump campaign began on July 31, 2016, but in fact, it began before that," Nunes said. "In June 2016, before the investigation was officially opened, Trump campaign associates Carter Page and Stephen Miller were invited to attend a symposium at Cambridge University in July 2016. Your office, however, did not investigate who was responsible for inviting these Trump associates to the symposium." - Fox News

"Maybe a better course of action is to figure out how the false accusations started," said Jordan on Wednesday, adding "Here's the good news -- that's exactly what Bill Barr is doing and thank goodness for that."


Ida_Noe , 2 minutes ago link

For what it's worth, I think the whole thing started w/Her campaign, in particular: Podesta (means, motive and opportunity). I think it began as a cheating strategy and snowballed into a coup; many ppl involved... Trump won (Thank G--!) and they've been trying to cover their tracks ever since

Anunnaki , 27 minutes ago link

They used Mueller's stellar reputation to unleash a Clinton/FBI witch hunt behind the scenes.

so obvious Mueller had nothing to do with the report with his name n it.

now his reputation is dog ****

SHADEWELL , 22 minutes ago link

Mueller is not currently mentally capable of programming his microwave, never mind author a report or conduct an investigation.

We are seeing a spectacular display of an ill advised poorly thought out conspiracy to take Trump down...

No one is really looking at why the desperation to get Hillary in, remember Cuntlery herself stated that if Trump were to be elected "we will all hang"

I think if Barr digs deep enough he is going to see a foreign country was In control of Hillary during her state department days, and potentially Bubba during his presidency, remember how those secrets got leaked to China during Bill's Presidency? The preceding would also implicate that inner circle assisting Hill Dog, ie Comey, Clapper, MCabe, Brennan and the rest of those rat bastards BTW where is the computer guy that they were all using who got nabbed just before fleeing on a jet out of the country, What about Huma?

Why the desperation to obliterate the server with bleach bit, and hammer pound the phones?

And what about the infamous Clinton Body Count...

Just sayin

whatafmess , 39 minutes ago link

Suddenly "enhanced interrogation" makes a whole lot more sense... Lets see how the tough marine remembers his training. As for Mifsud, he will likely instantly remember his past life as a canary the moment he's shown a fuckin phone book...

Fuckin traitors, no mercy

Nunny , 45 minutes ago link

Mueller was the token 'R'/Marine Vet/Never Trumper hired to give this corruption an air of 'fairness'. He was a tool, and has been for decades. Special place for him somewhere.

SHADEWELL , 57 minutes ago link

Becoming pretty clear at this point that the ***** that perpetrated this treason have pretty much already played out every option

Yes that's right Cuntlery...your time is coming Bitch. At what point do they just punt for the good of the country and accept guilt quietly. Nadler and Schiff keep pushing it, will go very badly after Horowitz report

rodguy911 , 15 minutes ago link

Unfortunately the DNC clowns have discovered how to use Hillary's projection techniques and they are using them more and more. No matter what they do or what we discover they do they project it back on us. With unending driveby complicity it always buys at least a few weeks or gets them to the next news cycle where they feel safe again. Complex criminality wreaks of the company.

moobra , 1 hour ago link

Alexander Downer is a the classic groomed fwit who was given a path to power so he could be controlled. He was the national leader of the opposition but was such a *** he was unelectable and dumped. Most cartoonists in Australia depict him in fishnet stockings. The usual *** of his generation who could never come out (like Mcron). Quite effeminate and in *** terms would be the bottom.

What a stumbling clown trying to play James Bond.

JBLight , 1 hour ago link

"That said, some have suggested that the FBI probe began long before Downer's report to intelligence agencies ."

The patriots already know that the entire Russia/Trump probe was just cover for illegal spying that they were doing WITHOUT FISA approval. The Russia/Trump probe was going to be their excuse.

LEEPERMAX , 1 hour ago link

The president was framed by the following BRITISH operatives:

Respect_The_Cock , 1 hour ago link

Mueller was a figurehead. In doing more reading and talking to some folks - I wonder how much he is to blame.

Hear me out: I don't think Mueller had his fastball when they installed him as Weismann's American Hero Gentile Beard - and they knew it.

so, who wanted Mueller so bad?

#GetWeissman

jeff montanye , 1 hour ago link

it's fortuitous in any case as the great first cause of the last generation of government malfeasance, 9-11, was investigated by mueller as head of the fbi for the bush administration. it keeps that more in the public eye and mind. it let's people see that the deep state is bipartisan: helps republican bush and democrat clinton. just as long as they both help the likud mossad.

fitZHugh , 38 minutes ago link

There's a LOT for which to blame Mueller. Whitey Bulger, Ruby Ridge, Pan Am flight 103 come immediately to mind. As for who wanted him so bad, I would hazard a guess it was all the democrats on his "staff" who needed the cover of a "conservative republican". I know, hard to say that with a straight face.

[Jul 20, 2019] FBI's spreadsheet puts a stake through the heart of Steele's dossier

Jul 20, 2019 | thehill.com

But lest anyone be tempted to think Steele's 2016 dossier is about to be mysteriously revived as credible, consider this: Over months of work, FBI agents painstakingly researched every claim Steele made about Trump's possible collusion with Russia, and assembled their findings into a spreadsheet-like document.

The over-under isn't flattering to Steele.

Multiple sources familiar with the FBI spreadsheet tell me the vast majority of Steele's claims were deemed to be wrong, or could not be corroborated even with the most awesome tools available to the U.S. intelligence community. One source estimated the spreadsheet found upward of 90 percent of the dossier's claims to be either wrong, nonverifiable or open-source intelligence found with a Google search.

In other words, it was mostly useless.

"The spreadsheet was a sea of blanks, meaning most claims couldn't be corroborated, and those things that were found in classified intelligence suggested Steele's intelligence was partly or totally inaccurate on several claims," one source told me.

The FBI declined comment when asked about the spreadsheet.

The FBI's final assessment was driven by many findings contained in classified footnotes at the bottom of the spreadsheet. But it was also informed by an agent's interview, in early 2017, with a Russian that Steele claimed was one of his main providers of intelligence, according to my sources.

The FBI came to suspect that the Russian misled Steele, either intentionally or through exaggeration, the sources said.

The spreadsheet and a subsequent report by special prosecutor Robert Mueller show just how far off the seminal claims in the Steele dossier turned out to be.

For example, U.S. intelligence found no evidence that Carter Page, during a trip to Moscow in July 2016, secretly met with two associates of Vladimir Putin Igor Sechin and senior government official Igor Divyekin -- as part of the effort to collude with the Trump campaign, as Steele reported.

Page did meet with a lower-level Rosneft official, and shook hands with a Russian deputy prime minister, the FBI found, but it was a far cry from the tale that Steele's dossier spun.

Likewise, Steele claimed that Sechin had offered Page a hefty finder's fee if he could get Trump to help lift sanctions on Moscow: "a 19 percent (privatized) stake in Rosneft in return."

That offer, worth billions of dollars, was never substantiated and was deemed by some in U.S. intelligence to be preposterous.

The inaccuracy of Steele's intelligence on Page is at the heart of the inspector general investigation specifically because the FBI represented to the FISA court that the intelligence on Page was verified and strong enough to support the FISA warrant. It was, in the end, not verified.

Another knockdown of the dossier occurred when U.S. intelligence determined former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen was not in Prague in the summer of 2016 when Steele claimed he was meeting with Russians to coordinate a hijacking of the election, the sources said.

Steele's theory about who in the Trump campaign might be conspiring with Russia kept evolving from Page to Cohen to former campaign chairman Paul Manafort. None of those theories checked out in the end, as the Mueller report showed.

Again, Steele's intelligence was wrong or unverifiable.

The salacious, headline-grabbing claim that Russians had incriminating sex tapes showing Trump engaged in depraved acts with prostitutes also met a factual dead end when the FBI interviewed the Georgian-American businessman who claimed to know about them. Giorgi Rtskhiladze told investigators "he was told the tapes were fake," according to a footnote in the Mueller report. Rtskhiladze's lawyer subsequently issued a letter taking issue with some of Mueller's characterizations.

Steele had some general things right, of course, including that the Russians were behind the hacking of the Democratic National Committee's emails. Of course, there were public reports saying so when Steele reported this.

But even then, his dossier's theory of how the hackers worked, who paid them and how they communicated with Trump was determined in the FBI spreadsheet and subsequent Mueller investigation to be far from accurate.

Even State officials, who listened to Steele's theories in October 2016 -- less than two weeks before his dossier was used to support the FISA request -- instantly determined he was grossly wrong on some points.

Any effort to use Steele's belated cooperation with the inspector general's investigation to prop up the credibility of his 2016 anti-Trump dossier or the FBI's reliance on it for the FISA warrant is deeply misguided.

Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), a key defender of Trump, said he talked with DOJ officials after the most recent stories surfaced about Steele and was told the reporting is wrong. "Based on my conversations with DOJ officials, recent reports which suggest Christopher Steele's dossier and allegations are somehow deemed credible by DOJ, are simply false and not based on any confirmation from sources with direct knowledge of ongoing investigations," Meadows told me.

The FBI's own spreadsheet was so conclusive that it prompted then-FBI Director James Comey (no fan of Trump, mind you) to dismiss the document as " salacious and unverified " and for lead FBI agent Peter Strzok to text, " There's no big there there ." FBI lawyer Lisa Page testified that nine months into reviewing Steele's dossier they had not found evidence of the collusion that Steele alleged.

Two years later, Mueller came to the same conclusion: Steele's intelligence alleging a conspiracy was never verified.

The next time you hear a pundit suggesting Steele's dossier is credible or that the FBI's reliance on it as FISA evidence was justified, just picture all those blanks in that FBI spreadsheet.

They speak volumes as to what went wrong in the Russia investigation.

John Solomon is an award-winning investigative journalist whose work over the years has exposed U.S. and FBI intelligence failures before the Sept. 11 attacks, federal scientists' misuse of foster children and veterans in drug experiments, and numerous cases of political corruption. He serves as an investigative columnist and executive vice president for video at The Hill. Follow him on Twitter @jsolomonReports .

[Jul 09, 2019] Looks like UK elite is trying to influence the 2020 election

Notable quotes:
"... The UK's Skripal affair lured Trump into expelling diplomats, later making him look too trigger happy. ..."
"... In addition, I am sure the UK's intelligence would never do any of this without the OK from US intelligence. ..."
Jul 09, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

aspnaz , Jul 9 2019 0:02 utc | 83

This is a blatant UK and US intelligence hit job aimed at influencing the 2020 election:

- "UK hijacks oil tanker": Message="UK is prepared to take action against Iran, why is Trump so war shy"

- "Trump asks Iran before bombing": Message=ditto the above.

- "Diplomatic cables released "accidentally" by UK Foreign Office": Message="Even the UK is getting tired of confused Trump"

Come on folks, stop analysing it with endless "what if"'s and see it for what it is.

Prepare for much more of this: The UK's Skripal affair lured Trump into expelling diplomats, later making him look too trigger happy. Now they are trying to make him look indecisive, stupid and reluctant to stand with his closest allies: notice how Bolton has receded into the background to avoid the flak?

In addition, I am sure the UK's intelligence would never do any of this without the OK from US intelligence.

[Jul 09, 2019] Halper, such as he could be called a source at all, appears to have been, has to have been, working in the UK with Agency people and almost certainly with MI6 as well.

Notable quotes:
"... Halper, such as he could be called a source at all, appears to have been, has to have been, working in the UK with Agency people and almost certainly with MI6 as well. ..."
"... If John Brennan was not there at the genesis of this fiasco, I will eat my hat; and I cannot see how there weren't high level officials at MI6 engaged as well ..."
"... Similarly, Steele is dredging for Russian dirt wherever he can get it and he's sealed himself off from his former employer? Not likely. ..."
"... The one thing which overwhelms all else is the actual nature of the material that came from the DNC servers and appeared on Wikileaks. A great deal of noise is made about that information's journey, who stole (hacked or copied) it, how it was done, who transmitted it, etc. But no noise whatever is made about the information itself, or at least when an attempt is made it is buried by the "Russia meddled" noise. ..."
"... The information itself is that the DNC is a bad actor, that it rigged the primary election for Hillary Clinton. No one, no one , denies the truth of the information itself. When what the DNC did is mentioned the conversation instantly changes to the Russians having "meddled in our election." ..."
"... Buried in the noise is that the DNC meddled in the electoral process far more destructively and far more directly than the Rusians did, if the Russians did so at all, which I perceive as highly doubtful. ..."
Jul 09, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Flavius -> Turcopolier... ,

I would guess that the Bureau Agents had to be read in on what the Agency people had been doing with Halper and possibly Mifsud,; that, and to bring their purported counter-intelligence expertise to bear. Active investigation in the UK with respect to Papadopolis was in prospect, probably to include tech surveillance, and the Bureau has no authority to conduct active independent investigation overseas.

Halper, such as he could be called a source at all, appears to have been, has to have been, working in the UK with Agency people and almost certainly with MI6 as well.

If NSA was there in the UK, it was with a view to coordinating tech; but with that said, it would be highly irregular for our people to be conducting active investigation, especially if it included physical and technical surveillance, without coordinating at some level with MI6 and 5 as well.

If John Brennan was not there at the genesis of this fiasco, I will eat my hat; and I cannot see how there weren't high level officials at MI6 engaged as well .

Halper is working in the UK with the Agency in re Russia and not working with the Russia obsessed MI6? Similarly, Steele is dredging for Russian dirt wherever he can get it and he's sealed himself off from his former employer? Not likely.

Bill H , 08 July 2019 at 10:08 AM

The one thing which overwhelms all else is the actual nature of the material that came from the DNC servers and appeared on Wikileaks. A great deal of noise is made about that information's journey, who stole (hacked or copied) it, how it was done, who transmitted it, etc. But no noise whatever is made about the information itself, or at least when an attempt is made it is buried by the "Russia meddled" noise.

The information itself is that the DNC is a bad actor, that it rigged the primary election for Hillary Clinton. No one, no one , denies the truth of the information itself. When what the DNC did is mentioned the conversation instantly changes to the Russians having "meddled in our election."

Buried in the noise is that the DNC meddled in the electoral process far more destructively and far more directly than the Rusians did, if the Russians did so at all, which I perceive as highly doubtful.

JamesT -> Bill H ... , 08 July 2019 at 03:05 PM

Bill H - I could not agree with you more.

pretzelattack , 08 July 2019 at 02:00 PM

i'm not familiar with all the intricate details of the "investigation" (i just detect a strong smell of bs coming from mueller), and I found this piece hard to follow on the page-strzok texts and their significance.

Barbara Ann , 08 July 2019 at 02:00 PM

Thanks Larry.

This from the Fox article: "Fox News has learned some of the words and names that were redacted in the string of Strzok-Page messages" prompts a (maybe dumb) question:

Do we know/can we infer how Fox managed to fill in just some of the redacted info? It seems odd to me that only a few of the blanks have been filled in, as if Fox had access to the original FBI phone records they'd have all of it. Also, the new handwritten parts seem to contain information which could not possibly have been gathered from any other source outside of this private 2 way conversation - e.g. "Just you two? Was DCM present for the interview?" and the reply "No, two of them, two of us".

Do Fox have it all and are they then just teasing us, or is perhaps one of the two star-crossed lovers singing?

[Jun 28, 2019] Joining Some Dots on the Skripal Case Part 6

It is possible that Skripal was a source of some information in Steele dossier
Notable quotes:
"... Another corroboration was the Trump Tower meeting: ostensibly set up by Trump linked Araz Agalarov could verify the piss taking allegations. It's well worth revisiting the Elizabeth Vos Disobedient Media article for background on this meeting set up Mifsud et al: who are linked to London – not Moscow. ..."
"... "Genuine" in the sense that it was really written by a KGB insider (which Skripal was), NOT in the sense that what he alleged was true. The point is that the source of the Steele-Clinton dossier would have been revealed and, of course, the source would have been a proven consummate liar and traitor. This would blow Mueller's "investigation" out of the water. ..."
"... As someone who has worked for more than a decade with the microfilm collection of Soviet documents in the Hoover Institution Archives, I can say that the dossier itself was compiled by a Russian, whose command of English is far from perfect and who follows the KGB (now FSB) practice of writing intelligence reports, in particular the practice of capitalizing all names for easy reference. The report includes Putin's inner circle – Peskov, Ivanov, Sechin, Lavrov. The anonymous author claims to have "trusted compatriots" who knew the roles that each Kremlin insider, including Putin himself, played in the Trump election saga and were prepared to tell him. ..."
"... Sergei Skripal could fit the description of the "Russian" referred to in the third paragraph. ..."
Jul 11, 2018 | off-guardian.org

BigB

The main corroboration for the Steele Dossier was Christopher Steele: briefing the press at the Tabard Inn, Washington – to set up a collaboration loop. Julian Assange tweeted that one of the journalists was Paul Wood who looks like a spook or an asset himself.

https://mobile.twitter.com/JulianAssange/status/976943588394323973

Another journalists was Michael Isikoff. His planted story war used to collaborate the Dossier as the basis of the FBI's FISA warrant to surveill Carter Page.

The Nunes Memo also states that Steele back-chanelled additional allegations into the DOJ via Bruce Ohr.

Another corroboration was the Trump Tower meeting: ostensibly set up by Trump linked Araz Agalarov could verify the piss taking allegations. It's well worth revisiting the Elizabeth Vos Disobedient Media article for background on this meeting set up Mifsud et al: who are linked to London – not Moscow.

https://disobedientmedia.com/2018/04/all-russiagate-roads-lead-to-london-as-evidence-emerges-of-joseph-mifsuds-links-to-uk-intelligence/

Anyway, all these "experts" – and Wikipedia – seem to have got their information from one source – Steele: who both wrote and then corroborated his own dossier. With a little help from his intel friends

Einstein
"Genuine" in the sense that it was really written by a KGB insider (which Skripal was), NOT in the sense that what he alleged was true. The point is that the source of the Steele-Clinton dossier would have been revealed and, of course, the source would have been a proven consummate liar and traitor. This would blow Mueller's "investigation" out of the water.

But I'll not engage with you any further on this, since there's none so blind as those who will not see.

Thomas Peterson
why exactly does it seem likely Skripal was one of Steele's sources? did Steele even need any sources to write his ludicrous 'dossier'?
Jen
Paul Roderick Gregory who has followed Soviet and Russian politics professionally for several decades has this to say about the Steele dossier:
https://www.forbes.com/sites/paulroderickgregory/2017/01/13/the-trump-dossier-is-false-news-and-heres-why/#5a2c34e06867

The Orbis report makes as if it knows all the ins-and-outs and comings-and-goings within Putin's impenetrable Kremlin. It reports information from anonymous "trusted compatriots," "knowledgeable sources," "former intelligence officers," and "ministry of foreign affairs officials." The report gives a fly-on-the-wall account of just about every conceivable event associated with Donald Trump's Russian connections. It claims to know more than is knowable as it recounts sordid tales of prostitutes, "golden showers," bribes, squabbles in Putin's inner circle, and who controls the dossiers of kompromat (compromising information).

There are two possible explanations for the fly-on-the-wall claims of the Orbis report: Either its author (who is not Mr. Steele) decided to write fiction, or collected enough gossip to fill a 30-page report, or a combination of the two. The author of the Orbis report has one more advantage: He knew that what he was writing was unverifiable. He advertises himself as the only Kremlin outsider with enough "reliable" contacts to explain what is really going within Putin's office.

As someone who has worked for more than a decade with the microfilm collection of Soviet documents in the Hoover Institution Archives, I can say that the dossier itself was compiled by a Russian, whose command of English is far from perfect and who follows the KGB (now FSB) practice of writing intelligence reports, in particular the practice of capitalizing all names for easy reference. The report includes Putin's inner circle – Peskov, Ivanov, Sechin, Lavrov. The anonymous author claims to have "trusted compatriots" who knew the roles that each Kremlin insider, including Putin himself, played in the Trump election saga and were prepared to tell him.

The Orbis report spins the tale of Putin insiders, spurred on by Putin himself, engaging in a five-year courtship of Donald Trump in which they offer him lucrative real estate deals that he rejects but leaves himself open to blackmail as a result of sexual escapades with prostitutes in St. Petersburg and Moscow (the famous "golden shower" incident). Despite his reluctance to enter into lucrative business deals, Trump "and his inner circle have accepted regular intelligence from the Kremlin, including on his Democratic and other political rivals," according to the Orbis report.

This story makes no sense. In 2011, when the courtship purportedly begins, Trump was a TV personality and beauty pageant impresario. Neither in the U.S. or Russia would anyone of authority anticipate that Trump would one day become the presidential candidate of a major U.S. political party, making him the target of Russian intelligence.

Sergei Skripal could fit the description of the "Russian" referred to in the third paragraph.

[Jun 26, 2019] Guardian Working for UK Intel Services MI6 Tool Publishes Black Propaganda

Notable quotes:
"... Harding's avowed contact with Steele may also have contributed to another high profile blunder in April this year. In the immediate wake of the apparent poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Salisbury, UK, the UK government issued a D(SMA) notice , blocking mention of Pablo Miller -- Skripal's MI6 recruiter -- in the media. ..."
Jun 24, 2018 | sputniknews.com

On September 21, The Guardian ran an absolutely sensational exclusive, based on disclosures made by "multiple" anonymous sources to Luke Harding, one of the paper's leading journalists - in 2017, Russian diplomats allegedly held secret talks in London with associates of Assange, in an attempt to assist in the Wikileaks founder's escape from the UK.

The dastardly conspiracy would've entailed Assange being smuggled out of the Ecuadorian embassy in Knightsbridge under cover of Christmas Eve in a diplomatic vehicle and transported to Russia, where he'd be safe from extradition to the US, ending his eight-years of effective arbitrary detention in the process.

In any event, the audacious plot was eventually aborted after being deemed "too risky" -- even for the reckless daredevils of Moscow -- mere days before its planned execution date.

Rommy Vallejo, head of Ecuador's intelligence agency, is said to have travelled to the UK around December 15 to supervise the operation, and left when it was called off.

'Extraordinary, Deliberate Lies'

The Russian Embassy in London was quick to condemn the article on Twitter, calling the claims "another example of disinformation and fake news" in the UK mainstream media, and noting the paper violated national media standards by failing to ask the Russian side for a comment prior to the report's release. "This publication has nothing to do with the reality. The Embassy has never engaged with Ecuadorian colleagues, or with anyone else, in discussions of any kind on Russia's participation in ending Assange's stay within the diplomatic mission of Ecuador.

We're puzzled by the sensational attitude of the authors. As recently as September 18, Culture Secretary Jeremy Wright called for increased efforts to combat media and online disinformation. [The] Guardian piece is a brilliant example of the kind of journalism British reader should be protected from," a spokesperson added in an official statement. In a subsequent statement , the Russian Foreign Ministry slammed the article for containing a "whole series of similar anti-Russia innuendos, and once again made clear Russian diplomats did not contact staff of the Ecuadoran Embassy in London or Assange's associates in order to assist in his escape from the UK.

However, a far more damning indictment of the article's extraordinary, evidence-free claims was provided by Craig Murray, former UK Ambassador to Uzbekistan, who denounced the "quite extraordinary set of deliberate lies" in a September 23 blog post. In doing so, he revealed he and Fidel Narvaez -- a close confidant of Assange fingered as the key point of contact between the Ecuadorian embassy and Moscow in the article -- had engaged in discussions with Assange in 2017 regarding a possible departure from the UK capital, and debated possible future destinations for the embattled Wikileaks founder.

As of today -- start of the 73rd UN General Assembly -- 957 days have passed since the UN ruled Julian Assange is unlawfully & arbitrarily detained by the UK authorities and must be released & compensated. https://t.co/zZGUOhNDvH #FreeAssange pic.twitter.com/i08Ji9WF1g -- WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) September 18, 2018
​"It's not only the case Russia didn't figure in those plans, Julian directly ruled out the possibility of going to Russia. I know 100% for certain the entire story is a complete and utter fabrication. I cannot find words enough to express the depth of my contempt for Harding and [Editor] Katherine Viner, who've betrayed completely the values of journalism. The aim of the piece is evidently to add a further layer to the fake news of Wikileaks' non-existent relationship to Russia as part of the "Hillary didn't really lose" narrative. I am, frankly, rather shocked," Murray wrote .

Friends in Spooky Places

The identities of Harding's alleged anonymous sources aren't even hinted at in the article, but Murray made a striking suggestion -- he "strongly suspect[ed]" that "MI6 tool" Harding's informants were the UK security services. If true, this would make the article "entirely black propaganda" produced by British spies. Whether MI6 agents are the source of the story or not, it's certainly true Harding enjoys a very close relationship indeed with British intelligence services -- a bond he has frequently, openly and proudly advertised in articles and books.

For instance, in his highly controversial 2017 book Collusion, Harding argued Donald Trump had a relationship with the Russian 'deep state' dating back to the 1980s, and colluded with the Kremlin to subvert US democracy. To support this conclusion, he frequently cited claims fed to him directly by Christopher Steele, the ex-MI6 spy turned 'business intelligence' professional, who authored the utterly discredited 'Trump-Russia' dossier for Fusion GPS.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/9Ikf1uZli4g

When challenged to provide any evidence whatsoever for his book's assertions by Aaron Mate of The Real News, Harding was left mumbling and stuttering -- he was also unable to defend his claim that an individual's use of an emoji was proof they were working for Russian intelligence, and terminated the interview prematurely.

Harding's avowed contact with Steele may also have contributed to another high profile blunder in April this year. In the immediate wake of the apparent poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Salisbury, UK, the UK government issued a D(SMA) notice , blocking mention of Pablo Miller -- Skripal's MI6 recruiter -- in the media. Individuals who conducted internet searches for Miller afterwards quickly found his LinkedIn profile, which identified him as a 'Senior Analyst' at Orbis Intelligence -- Steele's corporate espionage company.-

It is true, or was. As I say, this 2017 forum thread, which links to Pablo Miller's LinkedIn profile, states Orbis is listed on Miller's CV -- https://t.co/Fx0vu1qorJ . Stop regurgitating anonymous claims by your spook pals and do some research, Luke -- Kit Klarenberg (@KitKlarenberg) March 12, 2018
​Miller's page was quickly deleted though, and Harding took to Twitter to issue firm denials of a connection between Miller and the firm, going so far as to suggest "someone" was using search engine optimization techniques to dishonestly associate Miller and Orbis. However, enterprising Sputnik journalist Kit Klarenberg quickly and easily found an online forum thread dating from 2017 clearly identifying Miller as an Orbis employee -- as of September, Harding is yet to respond, or retract his claims.
Related:
Freudian Slip: Did Guardian Urge Two Tech Giants to 'Promote Hate and Division'?
Russian Embassy on The Guardian Article: 'Great Foreign Policy Planning'
The Guardian's Attempt to Save the White Helmets
UK Broadcasters to Be Urged to Face Up to 'Russian Propaganda' - Reports

[Jun 24, 2019] It would all be very funny if it weren't so depressing. I can understand Hollywood actors doing this -- after all, these people excel at reading from a script for money. But Stephen King? I thought he was somewhat of an intellectual. Apparently not. Or perhaps he's buddies with CIA shill Reiner. Who knows.

Notable quotes:
"... Rob Reiner (backed by David Frum, Max Boot, James Clapper and their absolutely-not-xenophobic-sounding "Committee to Investigate Russia") continues to use Hollywood celebrities to spread the Trump Derangement Syndrome. First it was Morgan Freeman. Didn't go over too well. Even the "liberals" hated it. Now it's Robert De Niro, Martin Sheen, Laurence Fishburne, Stephen King, George Takei, and a few lesser known actors. ..."
"... Woah! Stop right there! The "Trump adviser" is George Papadopoulos -- that is clear from the video sequence. So the "Russian operative" they're talking about is none other than Joseph Mifsud. ..."
"... So how can it be that Joseph Mifsud is now a "Russian operative"? Well, look no further than his Wikipedia page. You see, he visited Valdai Discussion Club annual conference once or twice. Apparently, that's all it takes nowadays to become a Russian-linked Russian operative with close connections to Russia. ..."
Jun 24, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

S , Jun 23, 2019 10:12:29 PM | 167

Rob Reiner (backed by David Frum, Max Boot, James Clapper and their absolutely-not-xenophobic-sounding "Committee to Investigate Russia") continues to use Hollywood celebrities to spread the Trump Derangement Syndrome. First it was Morgan Freeman. Didn't go over too well. Even the "liberals" hated it. Now it's Robert De Niro, Martin Sheen, Laurence Fishburne, Stephen King, George Takei, and a few lesser known actors. Here's an excerpt:
Stephen King: Here are some other specific examples from the Mueller report.

Sophia Bush: One: in the Spring of 2016, a Russian operative told a Trump adviser that the Russian government had dirt on Hillary Clinton in the form of thousands of emails.

Jonathan Van Ness: The adviser then worked to arrange a meeting between the campaign and the Russian government.

Laurence Fishburne: That's collusion.

Woah! Stop right there! The "Trump adviser" is George Papadopoulos -- that is clear from the video sequence. So the "Russian operative" they're talking about is none other than Joseph Mifsud. Here's Papadopoulos himself talking about Mifsud in an April 16, 2019 interview with Michael Tracey:

George Papadopoulos: He remains an enigma to this day and no one could track him down, but I've been told recently he's not dead, so there's some improvements.

Michael Tracey: Right, we should say I mean, he was rumored to have been deceased at a certain point, right?

George Papadopoulos: That's right.

Michael Tracey: And now it appears he might be living under an assumed name [?] but nobody's heard from him quite a while.

George Papadopoulos: Well, the only in-public statements that he's made were two. One, he gave an interview -- a bizarre interview -- to the Italian media the day my name was released and he said he's never heard of "Putin's niece" and "George is probably talking about some girl that he was trying to have a romantic relationship with" (and we could get into that aspect of my relationship with Joseph Mifsud). And also he his lawyer, this man named Stephan Roh, who's a prominent Swiss attorney, has gone public numerous times and stated that Joseph Mifsud was no Russian asset, but he was a Western intelligence operative, and he was working under the guidance of the FBI when he was interacting with Papadopoulos. He said this on CNN during a one-hour short documentary that CNN had about my life, and he's given interviews subsequently to The Daily Caller , where he suggested the same exact thing.

Now, anybody who's been following my case and who could just simply google Joseph Mifsud can also see that: Joseph Mifsud, of course, was dealing with MI6 figures at the highest level; three months after I notified the FBI that he could be potentially a Russian asset, he was in Saudi Arabia on a panel with Ash Carter, who was the former defense secretary under Obama; and around the time [?] my name was released in October of 2017, he was photographed in The Guardian attending private parties with Boris Johnson, who just happened to be the Secretary of State of the UK. So, unless the Russians, basically, infiltrated the upper echelons of the U.S. and UK security establishment, then Mifsud was no Russian agent, and he's, in my opinion, and what everybody now who is objective believes is that he was actually an operative working on behalf of the West to, basically, entrap me with this unsolicited information regarding Hillary Clinton and her emails, and that's why he's gone underground, and he's living somewhere in Italy, I've been told, and he's actually on the payroll of Italian intelligence -- that's what I've been told recently. So, it's a very bizarre story, but I can try and go step-by-step and explain my entire encounters with him, and what we know now about him.

And he does indeed go step-by-step and describe his encounters with Mifsud in the full two-hour interview (continue from 15:14). And of course after Mifsud told Papadopoulos during their last meeting that "the Russians have Hillary Clinton's emails", no attempt was made by Papadopoulos to "arrange a meeting between the Trump campaign and the Russian government". In fact, Papadopoulos was scared and confused as it was right after that meeting that his life went very bizarre.

So how can it be that Joseph Mifsud is now a "Russian operative"? Well, look no further than his Wikipedia page. You see, he visited Valdai Discussion Club annual conference once or twice. Apparently, that's all it takes nowadays to become a Russian-linked Russian operative with close connections to Russia.

It would all be very funny if it weren't so depressing. I can understand Hollywood actors doing this -- after all, these people excel at reading from a script for money. But Stephen King? I thought he was somewhat of an intellectual. Apparently not. Or perhaps he's buddies with CIA shill Reiner. Who knows.

[Jun 14, 2019] MI5 'unlawfully' handled bulk surveillance data, lawsuit reveals

Jun 14, 2019 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

et Al June 11, 2019 at 8:05 am

SkyNudes: MI5 'unlawfully' handled bulk surveillance data, lawsuit reveals
https://news.sky.com/story/mi5-unlawfully-handled-bulk-surveillance-data-lawsuit-reveals-11739729

The security service is accused of breaking the law and documents state the "the task [of complying with it] was too large".

"The documents show extraordinary and persistent illegality in MI5's operations, apparently for many years," said civil liberties organisation Liberty, which is bringing the case.

"The existence of what MI5 itself calls 'ungoverned spaces' in which it holds and uses large volumes of private data is a serious failure of governance and oversight, especially when mass collection of data of innocent citizens is concerned."
####

Incompetent? No. Don't give a shit? Yes.

It won't make a blind bit of difference as the security service have broad brush surveillance powers and the 'National Security' exception behind them. At least they are not handing over that data to their terrorist sponsoring Gulf brothers Oh, hang on, can't rule anything out!

[Jun 12, 2019] Steele's Shoddy Dossier by Andrew C. McCarthy

Notable quotes:
"... Steele had been Litvinenko's handler when he was poisoned in 2006 ..."
"... In the late Nineties, through no fault of his own, his cover in Moscow, along with that of scores of other spies, had been blown. When he was retained to pen the dossier reports, he hadn't been to Russia in nearly 20 years. ..."
"... Steele told Bruce Ohr he was desperate that Trump not get elected. ..."
"... Steele told State Department official Kathleen Kavalec that he hoped his dirt on Trump would become public before Election Day and that he was cultivating relationships with various major press outlets. Kavalec passed this information along to the bureau. ..."
"... The FBI has never accused Steele of lying about media contacts; there were so many such contacts that it would have been foolish of Steele to deny them; Steele freely discussed them with the State Department's Kavalec, and Justice's Bruce Ohr knew that Fusion GPS was trying to push anti-Trump information into the press. ..."
"... As mentioned earlier, Steele maintained that a "former top Russian intelligence officer" was one of his principal sources -- in particular, for the allegation that Russia had amassed enough kompromat on Trump to blackmail him at a time of Putin's choosing. ..."
"... We're supposed to believe that when Steele was not slumming with the wannabe likes of Sergei Millian, he was plugged in to the crème de la Kremlin? ..."
Jun 06, 2019 | www.nationalreview.com

Its claims were absurd, its evidence unconvincing -- why did government officials ignore so many red flags?

Could former Obama-administration intelligence chiefs run any faster from the Steele dossier? "Pseudo-intelligence," scoffs former national intelligence director James Clapper in his new memoir -- after having arranged for the dossier to be included in a briefing of then-president-elect Trump, ensuring it would be published by the media. John Brennan, the former CIA director, belittles the dossier as uncorroborated reporting never refined into an authentic intelligence-agency product -- and hopes we don't notice his behind-the-scenes stoking of the dossier's explosive allegations during the 2016 campaign. "Salacious and unverified," sniffs former FBI director James Comey -- after his bureau repeatedly relied on the dossier to obtain surveillance warrants from a federal court.

Even the principal author himself, former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele, no longer stands behind his work. He touted it plenty ahead of the election he told colleagues he desperately wanted Trump to lose. Later, though, when he was sued for libel in Britain and had to answer questions under oath, the dossier disintegrated into "unverified" bits of "raw intelligence" that he had passed along because they "warranted further investigation" -- not because they were, you know, true.

By any objective measure, Steele's dossier is a shoddy piece of work. Its stories are preposterous -- the "pee tape," the grandiose Trump–Russia espionage conspiracy, the closely coordinating Trump emissaries who turn out not even to know each other, the trips and meetings that never happened, the hub of conspiratorial activity that did not actually exist. Steele gets basic facts wrong. There are undated and misdated reports. The putative Russia expert repeatedly misspells the name of Alfa Bank ("Alpha"), which is among the country's most important financial institutions. In the antithesis of good spycraft, Steele tried (unsuccessfully) to corroborate his sensational claims by using dodgy information pulled off the Internet, including posts by "random individuals" who were as unknown to Steele as most of Steele's vaunted sources are unknown to everyone else. No wonder Steele's former MI6 superior, Sir John Scarlett, scathingly assessed the dossier as falling woefully short of professional intelligence standards: The reports were "visibly" part of a "commercial" venture, unlikely ever to be corroborated, and patently suspect due to questions about who commissioned them and why they were generated.

Yet the Obama administration made the dossier the centerpiece of its Russia investigation.

The FBI eventually tried to corroborate Steele's claims. The effort was ramped up only after the Obama administration -- through the Justice Department and the bureau -- peddled the dossier to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, a secret tribunal established by Congress in the wake of the 1970s spy scandals to give Americans a modicum of due-process protection against national-security monitoring. Months after the FISA warrants were issued, enabling the bureau to monitor former Trump-campaign adviser Carter Page, then-director Comey sheepishly conceded to Judiciary Committee senators that investigators had not verified the allegations; they had relied on them because they had believed Steele. This despite the fact that Steele had not even pretended to be the actual source of the allegations. Essentially, he was an aggregator, a collector of rank rumor.

Proceeding in this manner flouted an elementary principle. All warrants require the government to make a probable-cause showing about the target. In criminal law, it must illustrate that a crime has been committed; in counterintelligence law, that the proposed surveillance target is acting as an agent of a foreign power. Regardless of what must be proved, though, the showing must be based on information from the sources who made the relevant observations , whom the judge is given reasons to credit. The credibility of the person who assembles the source information (usually, the case agent) is largely beside the point.

Nevertheless, it's worth asking: Just how reliable was Christopher Steele?

Steele was a virulently anti-Trump partisan. The media-Democrat encomia therefore hail him as a meticulous former British intelligence officer with a formidable record. So highly regarded was he that MI6 put him in charge of the investigation of the Putin regime's brazen murder in London of Alexander Litvinenko, a former Russian-intelligence operative who had defected to Britain. Less often mentioned is that Steele had been Litvinenko's handler when he was poisoned in 2006. Steele, we're further told, was so well connected that he was chosen to run MI6's all-important Russia desk. Well, yes . . . but he ran it from London.

In the late Nineties, through no fault of his own, his cover in Moscow, along with that of scores of other spies, had been blown. When he was retained to pen the dossier reports, he hadn't been to Russia in nearly 20 years.

His recruiter and collaborator was the self-professed "journalist for rent" Glenn Simpson, a former Wall Street Journal investigative reporter. Simpson had co-founded a so-called intelligence firm, Fusion GPS, which had been contracted to do anti-Trump research for the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee by Perkins Coie, their law firm.

By that point in the spring of 2016, Steele was a sleuth for hire who had done the bidding of such fine, upstanding clients as Oleg Deripaska, known as "Putin's oligarch," who had cornered the Russian aluminum market during the post-Soviet era of "gangster capitalism" and labors under U.S. sanctions imposed due to the regime's malign policies. And why shouldn't Steele work for Deripaska?

... ... ...

In the media coverage of Russiagate, Steele's intelligence-officer background has been a deceptive distraction. In drafting the dossier, he was not a detached intelligence agent whose training in the separation of fact from fiction was critical to his country's security and prosperity. That was the Steele of years ago. Arguably it was the Steele of 2010, fresh out of MI6, who had worked with the Obama Justice Department on the heralded FIFA soccer-corruption investigation. The Steele of 2016, however, was a private eye, marshaling (or inflating) information in the light most favorable to his clients. During the Trump–Clinton contest, he was a well-paid and quite willing political hack.

Both the FBI and the Justice Department were well aware of that. Another Fusion GPS collaborator on the dossier was Nellie Ohr, a former CIA open-source researcher married to Bruce Ohr, a high-ranking Justice Department official. Nearly three months before the Obama administration used the dossier in court, Bruce Ohr told top bureau officials -- including his longtime colleagues, deputy director Andrew McCabe and McCabe's counselor, Lisa Page -- that Steele was working with Nellie Ohr on anti-Trump research that was connected to the Clinton campaign. Steele told Bruce Ohr he was desperate that Trump not get elected. Ten days before the court issued FISA warrants based on the dossier, Steele told State Department official Kathleen Kavalec that he hoped his dirt on Trump would become public before Election Day and that he was cultivating relationships with various major press outlets. Kavalec passed this information along to the bureau.

Yet the Justice Department and the FBI withheld from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court the dossier's connection to the Clinton campaign, as well as Steele's avowed commitment to defeat Trump. The FISA-warrant application not only concealed indications that Steele was leaking his unverified allegations to the media; the FBI told the court that Steele was not the "direct" source for a press story (written by Michael Isikoff of Yahoo News ) for which Steele appeared to be the obvious source, and for which he was, in fact, the source.

Again, this is something the FBI could have figured out with minimal effort -- such as by pointedly interviewing Steele. For reasons that are still unclear, he had become a paid FBI informant in February 2016, months before his anti-Trump work started. He was obliged to answer the bureau's questions. There is no reason to believe Steele would have held back: The FBI has never accused Steele of lying about media contacts; there were so many such contacts that it would have been foolish of Steele to deny them; Steele freely discussed them with the State Department's Kavalec, and Justice's Bruce Ohr knew that Fusion GPS was trying to push anti-Trump information into the press.

Steele began generating his reports in mid June. There are 17 in all, cumulating to 35 pages, most crafted before the election. The dossier spells out the essential collusion narrative that has been mass-marketed by Trump detractors since the 2016 election.

The first report, dated June 20, is what grabbed the attention of the FBI and the State Department. It is entitled "U.S. Presidential Election: Republican Candidate Donald Trump's Activities in Russia and Compromising Relationship with the Kremlin." Steele claimed that Putin's regime had been "cultivating, supporting and assisting Trump" for five years, providing the candidate "and his inner circle" with "a regular flow of intelligence from the Kremlin, including on his Democratic and other political rivals." According to Steele's star witness, described as a "former top Russian intelligence officer," the Kremlin was able to control the New York real-estate tycoon because it possessed kompromat -- blackmail material involving "perverted sexual acts which have been arranged/monitored by the FSB" (successor to the KGB). This was said to include the so-called pee tape, a 2013 video of Trump in a luxury suite at Moscow's Ritz-Carlton Hotel, cavorting with prostitutes as they performed a "golden showers (urination) show" on a bed in which President Obama and his wife, Michelle, were said to have slept.

Steele was confident in the lurid story because of his sources. Most important was a "close associate of Trump who had organized and managed his recent trips to Moscow" and who had been heard to say "this Russian intelligence had been 'very helpful.'" This source, with whom Steele was not in direct contact (i.e., it's double-hearsay), was said to have been overheard claiming on-scene knowledge of Trump's lewd romp -- though Steele's rambling, imprecise writing style makes it unclear whether the source had supposedly placed himself in the room or merely at the hotel.

One is left to wonder: Did it not occur to the FBI that Trump had not made any "recent trips to Moscow"? There is no record of his having been in Moscow after a brief weekend trip for a beauty pageant in 2013. Trump is a very public person, so that should not have been difficult to figure out. In 2018, the Washington Post 's Rosalind S. Helderman and Tom Hamburger pulled together and published a comprehensive account of Trump's travel to and business dealings in Russia, going back over 30 years. Why not the world's premier investigative agency, which had, by mid 2016, been scrutinizing Trump–Russia contacts for months, in conjunction with the rest of the government's $50 billion–per–annum "community" of intelligence agencies? What "recent trips to Moscow" and "very helpful" Russian intelligence could Steele have been talking about?

Steele's work is slapdash: His source for the pee tape is referred to as "Source D" in the first report but becomes "Source E" in later ones. Upon request, Steele would have been obliged to disclose his sources to the bureau (and he is known to have identified at least some of them). Regardless, these were supposedly Trump associates with Russian backgrounds; for the FBI, finding them should have been a layup. (Indeed, it is publicly rumored, though unconfirmed, that Steele's sources included Russian-born Felix Sater, a fraudster and longtime FBI informant who was a close friend and high-school classmate of Trump's former lawyer Michael Cohen and who partnered with Trump in real-estate ventures, including the mogul's failed efforts to build a Trump Tower in Moscow.)

Both the Wall Street Journal and ABC News identified Steele's main pee-tape source as Sergei Millian. At the time, he was a 38-year-old native of Belarus who had immigrated to America in his early twenties. To be blunt, you would not trust him as far as you could throw him. Upon arriving, he worked as a translator and used the (apparently true) name "Siarhei Kukuts." In 2006, to raise his profile, he started an outfit called "the Russian–American Chamber of Commerce." Sounds impressive, but it was basically a Potemkin platform with little in the way of assets or activities -- just the sort of entity Russian intelligence would typically use as a front for recruitment operations, which is how the FBI is said to have suspected that Millian's "chamber" was occasionally used.

Even Simpson confided to friends that he worried Millian was an unreliable "big talker." No wonder. Millian has claimed in Russian and American media appearances to have a close relationship with Trump and to have marketed Trump Organization properties as a real-estate broker. In reality, he barely knows Trump and cannot keep straight the story of when they met. Originally, he said it was in 2007 in Moscow. When it was suggested to him that Trump had not been in Russia that year, he revised the tale, claiming to have met the mogul in Florida at a 2008 marketing meeting.

According to Cohen, Trump's former lawyer, there was just one meeting, a photo op of the kind Trump, a global celebrity, had done thousands of times. Cohen denied Millian's claims of a personal and professional relationship with Trump as well as a working relationship with him. (Cohen says he never met Millian but did email him warnings to stop exaggerating his ties to the Trump Organization.) No, Cohen is not the world's most reliable source, convicted as he is of fraud and false statements. But he was right to contend that no publicly known evidence supports Millian's claims of close Trump ties. Further, Millian's representations have been contradictory. When challenged on his purported work as a Trump real-estate agent, he admitted to never actually having represented Trump. Significantly, Millian acknowledges that he was not with Trump during the 2013 Moscow trip. And upon being exposed as an indirect Steele source, Millian dismissed the dossier as "fake news (created by sick minds)."

So Millian denies the pee-tape story, and it seems evident that he was not a "close associate" of Trump's. No investigator who had interviewed Millian, or who had even questioned Steele in any depth about him, would have dared to rely on information Steele had sourced to him. And the night-and-day difference between Steele's description of Millian's connection to Trump and the reality of it would have induced any qualified FBI agent to pause until all of Steele's allegations -- not just the ones about Millian -- could be carefully investigated. But it gets worse -- much worse. Millian was not just a key source on the pee tape. He appears to be the source of Steele's core claim:

There was a well-developed conspiracy of cooperation between [Trump] and the Russian leadership. This was managed on the Trump side by the Republican candidate's manager, Paul Manafort, who was using foreign policy advisor Carter Page and others as intermediaries.

Mind you, it's not just that Steele was not in direct contact with Millian, or that Millian lacked the kind of relationship with Trump that would have enabled him to know of such a conspiratorial arrangement. Both Manafort and Page were available for interview by the FBI. In fact, they had both been interviewed on a number of occasions -- Manafort in connection with his work for a Ukrainian political party; Page when he cooperated with the government's prosecution of Russian spies (and while Manafort has now been convicted of fraud, the FBI has never accused Page of lying). Upon questioning them, an agent could easily have learned that they say they do not know each other, and that there was no evidence to the contrary. They were both on Trump's campaign, but their roles did not intersect: Manafort, the chairman, focused on GOP convention delegates; Page was a tangential, low-level foreign-policy adviser.

But even that is not the half of it. The dossier attributes to the source identified as Millian the claim that the "Trump campaign/Kremlin co-operation" against Hillary Clinton entailed the exchange of intelligence and money at key hubs, including the Russian consulate in Miami. Except there is no Russian consulate in Miami . When Steele told this part of his story to the State Department's Kavalec, she was able in nothing flat to confirm that it could not be true. And she immediately forwarded that information to the FBI, which was then working on the first FISA surveillance application. Yet the Obama Justice Department and the bureau represented to the court that they were aware of no derogatory information regarding Steele -- in addition to concealing the dossier's connection to the Clinton campaign, as well as Steele's bias and media contacts.

The dossier allegation that catalyzed the surveillance of Page involved the claim that, in his purported role as Trump-campaign intermediary to the Putin regime, Page had met with two operatives close to Putin during a July 2016 trip to Moscow: Igor Sechin, head of the Kremlin-controlled energy conglomerate Rosneft; and Igor Diveykin, an influential member of Putin's presidential administration. Sechin, under U.S. economic sanctions due to Russia's aggression in Ukraine, is claimed to have said that, if Trump were elected president and lifted the sanctions, Russia would pay Page and Trump the brokerage fee from the sale of a 19 percent stake in Rosneft -- a bribe that would have amounted to tens of millions of dollars. Diveykin also supposedly told Page that Russia had a kompromat file on Mrs. Clinton that it might be willing to share with the Trump campaign -- while warning that there was also a file on Trump, which the tycoon should bear in mind when dealing with Russia. And the dossier had Trump lawyer Cohen in a role similar to Page's -- dispatched by Trump on a secret trip to Prague to meet with Putin's operatives for dark discussions about (a) damage control after public revelations of Manafort and Page ties to Russia and (b) "deniable cash payments" for "hackers in Europe who had worked under Kremlin direction against the Clinton campaign."

Two things are especially worth noting about these claims, which have been convincingly denied by Page and Cohen. First, Steele's vaunted sources never predicted clandestine treachery. Rather, Steele and Simpson fashioned a narrative framework of Trump–Russia collusion and then folded into the story each new publicly reported development -- Page's well-publicized trip to Russia, the hacked DNC emails, and so on. Indeed, Steele's reports (including one written just three days before WikiLeaks began publishing the DNC emails on July 22) never said a word about the emails, even though WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange had begun speaking publicly about a coming release of Clinton-related material over a month earlier. When Steele finally wrote about the emails, he echoed what the Clinton campaign was already saying publicly.

Second, there is the matter of the Kremlin sources to whom Steele attributed his information. As mentioned earlier, Steele maintained that a "former top Russian intelligence officer" was one of his principal sources -- in particular, for the allegation that Russia had amassed enough kompromat on Trump to blackmail him at a time of Putin's choosing.

Steele also purported to derive insider intelligence from what were variously described as a "senior Russian Foreign Ministry figure," a "senior Kremlin official," an official close to the head of Putin's presidential administration, and/or "two well-placed and established Kremlin sources." Information was said to be forwarded to Steele through an unidentified person sometimes described as the "trusted compatriot" of these sources. And for all we know, there may have been yet more intermediaries in the telephone game between the sources, the "compatriot," and Steele.

When he was interviewed by the State Department's Kathleen Kavalec in October 2016, Steele claimed his sources included Vyacheslav Trubnikov and Vladislov Surkov. A regime eminence, Trubnikov ran Russia's SVR (the external intelligence service, analogous to our CIA) before Putin came to power. Thereafter, he served in other key posts: first deputy for foreign affairs, ambassador to India, and omnipresent counselor. Surkov, who has been Russia's deputy prime minister, may now be Putin's top adviser -- referred to as the "Kremlin demiurge" and "Putin's Rasputin."

Comments

Really? We're supposed to believe that when Steele was not slumming with the wannabe likes of Sergei Millian, he was plugged in to the crème de la Kremlin? Count me skeptical. As Daniel Hoffman, the CIA's former station chief in Moscow, told the Daily Caller 's Chuck Ross, trusted figures in Russia's national-security bureaucracy "never stop" working for the Kremlin. In Trubnikov's case, "there's no such thing as a former intelligence officer." And Surkov might as well be Putin's right hand. If these characters were Steele's sources, they were not spying on the Kremlin but getting the West believe what the Kremlin wanted to West to believe.

Special Counsel Robert Mueller's final report found no conspiracy between the Kremlin and the Trump campaign. What remain to be investigated are the neon-flashing indications that we've been had.

Andrew C. McCarthy is a senior fellow at the National Review Institute and a contributing editor of National Review . @AndrewCMcCarthy

[Jun 05, 2019] Christopher Steele after he produced his totally falsified dossier on Trump now is afraid of repercussions

What a despicable coward. He played a very dirty game and lost. Now he should pay the price and fall on the sword. Trump is very vindictive person ;-)
Jun 05, 2019 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
RussiaGate

"NYT's Matthew Rosenberg: Christopher Steele Concerned He Will Be Thrown Under The Bus" [ RealClearPolitics ]. "'He is incredibly concerned and obsessed this investigation is going to throw him under the bus. And his view, at least from the people close to him, is, 'Look, I was working on this dossier that people were paying for. I saw things that the Democrats were paying for. I saw things that seemed frightening to me and alarming. I went to old contacts of the FBI to tell them. I wasn't a paid source in this case.' That's his view of it,' Rosenberg reported on Tuesday's 'CNN Tonight' with host Don Lemon. ' He was simply helping them out . And what they did with it, if they used -- misused it in a FISA, whatever they did, he had nothing to do with that. Which is to a degree true. He's not part of that process. He was simply a source of information. And I think he's acutely concerned he's going to be thrown under the bus here,' Rosenberg said." • Simply helping them out. Because that's what spooks do. It is known.

polecat , June 5, 2019 at 3:34 pm

Re. Our current favorite ex-working working British spy .. I hope that Mr. 'no-holds' Barr haz a chance to try out that newly acquired Steele Belted Radial the one with those 'Don't Tread on Me' nobbies worn off. He better secure it fast, before it rolls away into a frigid IC ditch somewhere.

[Jun 04, 2019] Steele Cuts Deal; Will Discuss Trump Sex Dossier With DOJ Inspector General

Jun 04, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Former MI6 agent Christopher Steele has finally agreed to meet with US officials to discuss his relationship with the FBI, and the now-infamous dossier of unfounded claims against Donald Trump which he assembled on behalf of the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee.

The 54-year-old Steele has agreed to meet with investigators from the US Justice Department's Office of the Inspector General (OIG), according to The Times of London , after a former US official told Politico that the OIG report would "try to deeply undermine" Steele.

The news marks a 180-shift in Steele's past refusals to engage with US authorities. In April, Politico reported that Steele would not meet with the OIG to assist them with their investigation, while just last week , Reuters reported that he wouldn't meet with US attorney John Durham, who was handpicked by AG William Barr to review the origins of the Trump-Russia probe.

Steele, a MI6 Russia specialist for more than two-decades, has worked with the FBI as a confidential source since 2010. According to the report, he will retain the services of a top American attorney if the interview goes ahead , and is only willing to discuss the narrow scope of his dealings with US intelligence. Steele also wanted US officials to seek the approval of the British government.

Of note, the Steele dossier was referred to as " Crown material " in emails between US intelligence officials.

That said, a senior source told The Times : "As far as we are aware, no request has been made to HMG [Her Majesty's government] on this matter. Any decision to co-operate would be a matter for Mr Steele as this relates to issues arising many years after he left government employment."

Last year Mr Steele, who runs a corporate intelligence company, was named as the author of memos containing unsubstantiated allegations that the Kremlin held sexually lurid information about Mr Trump .

Mr Steele's dossier led to an FBI inquiry, which became a two-year investigation presided over by the special counsel Robert Mueller. That found that figures in the Trump campaign team expected to benefit from Kremlin activities but cleared Mr Trump of liaising with Russia. - Times of London

In his dodgy dossier - a collection of 17 memos, some of which used Kremlin sources - Steele claimed that the Trump campaign was part of a "well-developed conspiracy of co-operation" with the Russian government in an attempt to influence the outcome of the 2016 US election. Steele claimed that the Kremlin was blackmailing Trump with a video of him encouraging prostitutes to urinate on a bed once used by former President Obama.

Steele's work was commissioned by opposition research firm Fusion GPS, which was in turn paid by lawyers for the Clinton campaign and the DNC.


Librarian , 35 minutes ago link

Well, it was fairly obvious that Trump wasn't going out to meet the UK PM as she was quitting at the end of the same week.

What was really done? That also is fairly obvious.

Official assurances were made to the Crown that Steele wouldn't be subject to capital punishment. Also we probably had to promise that we wouldn't make him drink tea prepared from an industrial sized tea bag that fits oh-so perfectly into a prison coffee machine drip basket.

What with the UK being strong-armed by the EU technocrats into a no-deal Brexit, trading with the USA is the only path forward that will keep the markets and the pound steady.

The EU will begin a 20-30 year slide into economic irrelevance as unpopular concessions start to be made to appease EU member countries to remain in the Union.

Juncker will retire from the EU Commission and will become a tax avoidance consultant in Luxembourg. He will do well until he is reported lost at sea during a suspicious yachting trip.

A_Huxley , 39 minutes