Featured Timeline Entries
July 6, 2007 – Jeffrey Epstein’s plea deal touts his close friendship with Bill Clinton and a claim he helped conceive the Clinton Global Initiative program
“Attorneys for convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein touted his close friendship with Bill Clinton and even claimed the billionaire helped start Clinton’s controversial family foundation in a 2007 letter aimed at boosting his image during plea negotiations, FoxNews.com has learned.
The 23-page letter, written by high-powered lawyers Alan Dershowitz and Gerald Lefcourt, was apparently part of an ultimately successful bid to negotiate a plea deal before Epstein could be tried for using underage girls in a sex ring based in Palm Beach, Fla., and his private island estate on the 72-acre Virgin Islands home dubbed “Orgy Island.” Epstein spent 13 months in prison and home detention after agreeing to a plea deal in which he admitted to soliciting an underage girl for prostitution.
“Mr. Epstein was part of the original group that conceived the Clinton Global Initiative, which is described as a project ‘bringing together a community of global leaders to devise and implement innovative solutions to some of the world’s most pressing challenges,” read the July 2007 letter to the U.S. Attorney’s office in the Southern District of Florida. “Focuses of this initiative include poverty, climate change, global health, and religious and ethnic conflicts.”
The hedge fund magnate’s true role in creating the foundation could not be confirmed. Whether Epstein was an actual founder of the foundation or exaggerated his role in a phony effort to appear altruistic is not clear.
Epstein is not cited in official paperwork filed by the Clinton Global Initiative as a founder or director. Neither The Clinton Foundation nor Dershowitz responded to FoxNews.com’s inquiry as to the extent of Epstein’s involvement. FoxNews.com first reported that flight logs show the former president flew on Epstein’s private plane dozens of times. But Clinton has publicly credited longtime assistant Doug Band, now counselor and director of the foundation, as conceiving of the idea.” (Read more: Fox News, 7/06/2016)
October 22, 2010 – Red flags are raised in national security assessments of the Uranium One deal
“My sources tell me President Trump is putting the finishing touches on a White House initiative to declassify documents that have remained hidden from the public for far too long.
This welcome effort to provide more public transparency and accountability almost certainly will focus early on the failings of the now-debunked Russia collusion probe. And I’m sure it will spread quickly toward other high-profile issues, such as the government’s UFO files that have been a focus of clamoring for decades.
But my reporting indicates three sets of documents from the Obama years should be declassified immediately, too, because they will fundamentally change the public’s understanding of history and identify ways to improve governance.
The first includes the national security assessments that the U.S. intelligence community conducted under President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton concerning the Russia nuclear giant Rosatom’s effort to acquire uranium business in the United States.
The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) – made up of Secretary Clinton and eight other senior federal officials – approved Rosatom’s purchase of mining company Uranium One’s U.S. assets in fall 2010, even as the FBI was gathering evidence that the Russian company’s American arm was engaged in bribery, kickbacks and extortion.
Sources who have seen these classified assessments tell me they debunk the last administration’s storyline that there were no national security reasons to oppose Rosatom’s Uranium One purchase or Vladimir Putin’s successful efforts to secure billions of dollars in new nuclear contracts with American utilities during the Obama years.
“There were red flags raised, and the assessments expose other weaknesses in how CFIUS goes about these approval processes,” one knowledgeable source told me.
Under Obama, sensitive foreign acquisitions almost routinely were rubber-stamped by CFIUS, and the approval process sometimes was delegated by Cabinet officials on the CFIUS committee to lower-ranking aides.
Clinton, for example, claims she allowed a deputy to decide the Uranium One purchase, even as her family foundation collected millions in donations from parties interested in the transaction and her husband, former President Bill Clinton, collected a $500,000 speech fee from Moscow.
Since Trump took office and Steve Mnuchin took over as Treasury secretary, laudable legislative and administrative changes have been designed to tighten up the CFIUS process, and the percentage of rejected foreign acquisitions has increased because of more aggressive national security vetting.
But sources say the release of the Rosatom intelligence assessments would identify additional steps that can improve the process, and finally would give Americans a complete picture of what happened during one of the most politically controversial CFIUS decisions in history.” (Read more: The Hill, 8/28/2019)
March 22, 2012 – The Obama administration announces new rules that will allow millions of U.S. citizens’ government files to be copied and analyzed for terrorism clues
(…) “Within the 99-page opinion from Judge Rosemary Collyer she noted none of this FISA-702 database abuse was accidental. In a key footnote on page 87: Collyer outlined the years of unlawful violations was the result of “deliberate decisionmaking“:
This specific footnote, is key to peeling back the onion.
Note the phrase: “([redacted] access to FBI systems was the subject of an interagency memorandum of understanding entered into [redacted])”. This sentence exposes an internal decision; withheld from congress and the FISA court by the Obama administration; and outlines a process for access and distribution of surveillance data. Note: “no notice of this practice was given to the FISC until 2016“.
We feel confident we’ve now found the source of the “memorandum of understanding” that lies at the heart of the issue.
In March 2012 the Obama administration through Attorney General Eric Holder made changes to the exploitation of intelligence databases as noted in this Wall Street Journal article later in the year:
(December 2012 – WSJ) Top U.S. intelligence officials gathered in the White House Situation Room in March to debate a controversial proposal. Counterterrorism officials wanted to create a government dragnet, sweeping up millions of records about U.S. citizens—even people suspected of no crime.
Not everyone was on board. “This is a sea change in the way that the government interacts with the general public,” Mary Ellen Callahan, chief privacy officer of the Department of Homeland Security, argued in the meeting, according to people familiar with the discussions.
A week later, the attorney general signed the changes into effect.
The rules now allow the little-known National Counterterrorism Center to examine the government files of U.S. citizens for possible criminal behavior, even if there is no reason to suspect them. That is a departure from past practice, which barred the agency from storing information about ordinary Americans unless a person was a terror suspect or related to an investigation.
Now, NCTC can copy entire government databases—flight records, casino-employee lists, the names of Americans hosting foreign-exchange students and many others. The agency has new authority to keep data about innocent U.S. citizens for up to five years, and to analyze it for suspicious patterns of behavior. Previously, both were prohibited. Data about Americans “reasonably believed to constitute terrorism information” may be permanently retained.
The changes also allow databases of U.S. civilian information to be given to foreign governments for analysis of their own. In effect, U.S. and foreign governments would be using the information to look for clues that people might commit future crimes. (more)
The 2012 changes, instituted by Eric Holder, permitted files of specific Americans to be generated under the auspices of potential terror threats. The NSA databases could be exploited by the National Counterterrorism Center to extract content that would be contained within these files on targeted Americans.
Keep in mind this is early 2012, John Brennan is Deputy National Security Advisor and Asst. to President Obama for Homeland Security.
When Attorney General Eric Holder empowered the National Counterterrorism Center with this new authority, the office assigned to the data-collection was the Terrorist Threat Integration Center (TTIC). The founder of the TTIC was John Brennan:
On 1 May 2003, the Terrorist Threat Integration Center (TTIC) opened its doors. Led by its first Director, John Brennan, TTIC filled its ranks with approximately three dozen detailees from across the US Government (USG) and was mandated to integrate CT capabilities and missions across the government. (link)
Also note the date of this DOJ Memorandum is March 2012:
Under the new rules issued in March, the National Counterterrorism Center, known as NCTC, can obtain almost any database the government collects that it says is “reasonably believed” to contain “terrorism information.” (link)
The March 2012 date is right before the IRS scandal hit the headlines.
The IRS targeting scandal is where the term “Secret Research Project” originated as a description from the Obama team. It involved the U.S. Department of Justice under Eric Holder and the FBI under Robert Mueller. It never made sense why Eric Holder requested over 1 million tax records via CD ROM, until overlaying the timeline of the FISA abuse:
The IRS sent the FBI “21 disks constituting a 1.1 million page database of information from 501(c)(4) tax exempt organizations, to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.” The transaction occurred in October 2010 (link)
Why disks? Why send a stack of DISKS to the DOJ and FBI when there’s a pre-existing financial crimes unit within the IRS. All of the evidence within this sketchy operation came directly to the surface in spring 2012.
Here’s how it looks:
♦ In 2010 Eric Holder asked the IRS to send him the records of 501(c) non profit groups and individuals representing conservative voters. [LINK] Lois Lerner sent the DOJ 1.1 million pages of 501(c)(4) tax filing data. Including a very specific set of “33 Schedule B attachment files”. The Schedule B’s were specific to Large Conservative 501(c)(4) groups operating and organized to oppose the agenda of President Obama. The Schedule B’s include the donor lists of specific people and sub-groups attached to the 501(c)(4).
The IRS sent the FBI “21 disks constituting a 1.1 million page database of information from 501(c)(4) tax exempt organizations, to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.” The transaction occurred in October 2010 (link)
♦ In 2012 Eric Holder authorizes the use of government databases to search records of Americans and assemble “files” on potential targets. [Link] “The agency has new authority to keep data about innocent U.S. citizens for up to five years, and to analyze it for suspicious patterns of behavior.”
♦ In the period of 2012 through April 2016, According to FISA Judge Rosemary Collyer, there were tens of thousands of illegal (“non-compliant”) search queries of the NSA database targeting Americans. The search results were unlawfully “extracted” to unknown entities. Eighty-five out of every hundred searches were illegal (85% non-compliant rate).
Consider purposeful actions, as a political targeting operation, by weaponizing the systems of government. Steps:
- First, identify the targets (IRS Database).
- Second, research the targets (NSA Database).
- Third assemble files on the targets (DOJ Authorization).
- Fourth use the files to leverage/destroy your opposition.
We now have evidence of the first three steps; and my hunch is if we apply hindsight a lot of unusual activity will now make sense. We have been living inside the fourth step for a few years. We noticed the consequences… but we only had suspicions, until now.” (Read more: Conservative Treehouse, 5/28/2019)
On December 12, 2012, the Wall Street Journal publishes a timeline of events regarding the National Counterterrorism Center controversy:
Dec. 25, 2009 – On Christmas Day, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, a 23-year-old Nigerian man, boarded a flight to Detroit from Amsterdam wearing explosives sewn into his undergarments. His bomb didn’t properly detonate. He eventually pleaded guilty to terror-related charges.
Jan. 7, 2010 – The White House issued a report about the attempted bombing, citing the need to strengthen the watchlisting process.
May 18, 2010 – The Senate Select Committee on Intelligence report on the Christmas Day bombing concluded that “NCTC was not organized adequately to fulfill its mission.”
Feb 24, 2011 – In February 2011, Homeland Security staffers began corresponding about their concerns about the proposed NCTC guidelines, including issues with “oversight/compliance” and difficulty stripping down “what you need to focus on as the problems.”
March 4, 2011 – By March, Justice Department was on its “third round of edits” with NCTC. DHS Associate General Counsel Matthew L. Kronisch encouraged Homeland Security colleagues to submit their comments soon.
March 7, 2011 – In a heated exchange, an official at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence – whose name was redacted – said that several Homeland Security comments “suggest a potential lack of understanding” and “would eviscerate the authorities” of the counterterrorism center.
March 11, 2011 – Homeland Security Associate General Counsel Matthew Kronisch expressed “little expectation of resolving our concerns” but requested a meeting with the Office of Director of National Intelligence and the Department of Justice.
May 12, 2011 – Homeland Security Chief Privacy Officer Mary Ellen Callahan and Officer for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Margo Schlanger elevated their concerns to DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano in a memo titled “How Best to Express the Department’s Privacy and Civil Liberties-Related Concems over Draft Guidelines Proposed by the Office of The Director of National Intelligence and the National Counterterrorism Center.”
June 17, 2011 – Ms. Callahan expressed frustration with the process, stating that she “non-concurred” on “operational examples,” and that the examples were “complete non-sequiturs” and “non-responsive.”
November 8, 2011 – “I’m not sure I’m totally prepared with the firestorm we’re about to create,” Margo Schlanger wrote in an e-mail to Mary Ellen Callahan in November, referring to the fact that the two wanted to push for further privacy protections in the guidelines. Others in the department were willing to agree to the counterterrorism proposal.
March 7, 2012 – Staffers for the Homeland Security Privacy and Civil Rights and Civil Liberties offices’ prepared talking points for the “Deputies Committee meeting” at the White House to discuss the guidelines.
March 22, 2012 – But right after the meeting the guidelines were finalized and quietly released with a statement from the Director of National Intelligence James Clapper who cited the Abdullmutallub failures. “Following the failed terrorist attack in December 2009, representatives of the counterterrorism community concluded it is vital for NCTC to be provided with a variety of datasets from various agencies that contain terrorism information,” said Clapper, “The ability to search against these datasets for up to five years on a continuing basis as these updated Guidelines permit will enable NCTC to accomplish its mission more practically and effectively than the 2008 Guidelines allowed.”
April 2, 2012 – Homeland Security staffers began preparing the terms under which they would hand over the “six DHS datasets associated with the revised NCTC AG Guidelines.”
- Barack Obama
- deliberate decisionmaking
- Department of Homeland Security (DHS)
- Department of Justice
- Eric Holder
- Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI)
- FISA 702 violations
- future crimes
- IRS Database
- IRS scandal
- John Brennan
- Judge Rosemary Collyer
- March 2012
- Margo Schlanger
- Mary Ellen Callahan
- Matthew Kronisch
- memorandum of understanding
- NSA database queries
- Robert Mueller
- Secret Research Project
- Terrorist Threat Integration Center (TTIC)
- The National Counter Terrorism Center
June 2012 – The FISC report reveals the Obama administration conducted political surveillance as early as mid-2012
Former U.S. Attorney to the District of Columbia, Joe diGenova, discusses the declassification of intelligence documents relating to political surveillance; and the origin of the database abuses outlined by FISC Presiding Judge Rosemary Collyer.
Given last weeks visit to Main Justice by congressman Mark Meadows; and considering the visit was specifically to review unredacted Page-Strzok-McCabe messages; it could be surmised the first series of declassified documents might be those communiques. Additionally, John Solomon has stated “Bucket Five” is likely the first release prior to the IG report:
Bucket Five – Intelligence documents that were presented to the Gang of Eight in 2016 that pertain to the FISA application used against U.S. person Carter Page; including all exculpatory intelligence documents that may not have been presented to the FISA Court. Presumably this would include the recently revealed State Dept Kavalac email; and the FBI transcripts from wiretaps of George Papadopoulos (also listed in Carter Page FISA).
Now that we have significant research files on the 2015 and 2016 political surveillance program; which includes the trail evident within the Weissmann/Mueller report; in combination with the Obama-era DOJ “secret research project” (their words, not mine); we are able to overlay the entire objective and gain a full understanding of how political surveillance was conducted over a period of approximately four to six years.
This is why there’s panic.
Working with a timeline, but also referencing origination material in 2015/2016 – CTH hopes to show how the program operated. This explains an evolution from The IRS Files in 2010 to the FISA Files in 2016.
More importantly, research indicates the modern political exploitation of the NSA database, for weaponized intelligence surveillance of politicians, began mid-2012.
The FISA-702 database extraction process, and utilization of the protections within the smaller intelligence community, was the primary process. We start by reviewing the established record from the 99-page FISC opinion rendered by presiding Judge Rosemary Collyer on; and explain the details within the FISC opinion.
I would strongly urge everyone to read the FISC report (full pdf below) because Judge Collyer outlines how the DOJ, which includes the FBI, had an “institutional lack of candor” in responses to the FISA court. In essence, the Obama administration was continually lying to the court about their activity, and the rate of fourth amendment violations for illegal searches and seizures of U.S. persons’ private information for multiple years.
Unfortunately, due to intelligence terminology Judge Collyer’s brief and ruling is not an easy read for anyone unfamiliar with the FISA processes outlined. The complexity also helps the media avoid discussing, and as a result most Americans have no idea the scale and scope of the issues. So we’ll try to break down the language. View this document on Scribd
For the sake of brevity and common understanding CTH will highlight the most pertinent segments showing just how systemic and troublesome the unlawful electronic surveillance was.
Early in 2016 NSA Director Admiral Mike Rogers was alerted of a significant uptick in FISA-702(17) “About” queries using the FBI/NSA database that holds all metadata records on every form of electronic communication.
The NSA compliance officer alerted Admiral Mike Rogers who then initiated a full compliance audit on/around March 9th, 2016, for the period of November 1st, 2015, through May 1st, 2016.
While the audit was ongoing, due to the severity of the results that were identified, Admiral Mike Rogers stopped anyone from using the 702(17) “about query” option, and went to the extraordinary step of blocking all FBI contractor access to the database on April 18, 2016 (keep these dates in mind).
Here are some significant segments:
The key takeaway from these first paragraphs is how the search query results were exported from the NSA database to users who were not authorized to see the material. The FBI contractors were conducting searches and then removing, or ‘exporting’, the results. Later on, the FBI said all of the exported material was deleted.
Searching the highly classified NSA database is essentially a function of filling out search boxes to identify the user-initiated search parameter and get a return on the search result.
(…) Search an ip address “about” and read all data into that server; put in an email address and gain everything about that account. Or use the electronic address of a GPS enabled vehicle (about) and you can withdraw more electronic data and monitor in real time. Search a credit card number and get everything about the account including what was purchased, where, when, etc. Search a bank account number, get everything about transactions and electronic records etc. Just about anything and everything can be electronically searched; everything has an electronic ‘identifier’.
The search parameter is only limited by the originating field filled out. Names, places, numbers, addresses, etc. By using the “About” parameter there may be thousands or millions of returns. Imagine if you put “@realdonaldtrump” into the search parameter? You could extract all following accounts who interacted on Twitter, or Facebook etc. You are only limited by your imagination and the scale of the electronic connectivity.
As you can see below, on March 9th, 2016, internal auditors noted the FBI was sharing “raw FISA information, including but not limited to Section 702-acquired information”.
In plain English the raw search returns were being shared with unknown entities without any attempt to “minimize” or redact the results. The person(s) attached to the results were named and obvious. There was no effort to hide their identity or protect their 4th amendment rights of privacy:
But what’s the scale here? This is where the story really lies.
Read this next excerpt carefully.
The operators were searching “U.S Persons”. The review of November 1, 2015, to May 1, 2016, showed “eighty-five percent of those queries” were unlawful or “non compliant”.
85% !! “representing [redacted number].”
We can tell from the space of the redaction the number of searches were between 1,000 and 9,999 [five digits]. If we take the middle number of 5,000 – that means 4,250 unlawful searches out of 5,000.
The [five digit] amount (more than 1,000, less than 10,000), and 85% error rate, was captured in a six month period.
Also notice this very important quote: “many of these non-compliant queries involved the use of the same identifiers over different date ranges.” So they were searching the same phone number, email address, electronic “identifier”, or people, repeatedly over different dates. Specific people were being tracked/monitored.
Additionally, notice the last quote: “while the government reports it is unable to provide a reliable estimate of” these non lawful searches “since 2012, there is no apparent reason to believe the November 2015 [to] April 2016 coincided with an unusually high error rate”.
That means the 85% unlawful FISA-702(16)(17) database abuse has likely been happening since 2012. (Again, remember that date, 2012) Who was FBI Director? Who was his chief-of-staff? Who was CIA Director? ODNI? etc. Remember, the NSA is inside the Pentagon (Defense Dept) command structure. Who was Defense Secretary? And finally, who wrote and signed-off-on the January 2017 Intelligence Community Assessment?
Tens of thousands of searches over four years (since 2012), and 85% of them are illegal. The results were extracted for?…. (I believe this is all political opposition use; and I’ll explain why momentarily.)
OK, that’s the stunning scale; but who was involved?
Private contractors with access to “raw FISA information that went well beyond what was necessary to respond to FBI’s requests“:
(Coincidentally (or not), the wife of Fusion-GPS founder Glenn Simpson, Mary Jacoby, goes to the White House the next day on April 19th, 2016.)
None of this is conspiracy theory.
All of this is laid out inside this 99-page opinion from FISC Presiding Judge Rosemary Collyer who also noted that none of this FISA abuse was accidental in a footnote on page 87: “deliberate decisionmaking“:
This specific footnote, if declassified, would be key. Note the phrase: “([redacted] access to FBI systems was the subject of an interagency memorandum of understanding entered into [redacted])”, this sentence has the potential to expose an internal decision; withheld from congress and the FISA court by the Obama administration; that outlines a process for access and distribution of surveillance data.
Note: “no notice of this practice was given to the FISC until 2016“, that is important.
Summary of this aspect: The FISA court identified and quantified tens-of-thousands of search queries of the NSA/FBI database using the FISA-702(16)(17) system. The database was repeatedly used by persons with contractor access who unlawfully searched and extracted the raw results without redacting the information and shared it with an unknown number of entities.” (Read more: Conservative Treehouse, 5/24/2019)
- about queries
- Admiral Mike Rogers
- Carter Page
- exculpatory evidence
- FBI contractors
- FISA 702 violations
- FISA application
- FISC Report
- Gang of Eight
- George Papadopoulos
- Judge Rosemary Collyer
- June 2012
- Kathleen Kavalec
- Mueller Report
- non-compliant queries
- NSA database queries
- Obama administration
- political surveillance
- U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC)
September 12, 2012 – Defense, State Dept documents reveal Obama administration knew that al Qaeda terrorists planned Benghazi attack 10 days in advance
“Judicial Watch announced today that it obtained more than 100 pages of previously classified “Secret” documents from the Department of Defense (DOD)and the Department of State revealing that DOD almost immediately reported that the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi was committed by the al Qaeda and Muslim Brotherhood-linked “Brigades of the Captive Omar Abdul Rahman” (BCOAR), and had been planned at least 10 days in advance. Rahman is known as the Blind Sheikh, and is serving life in prison for his involvement in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing and other terrorist acts. The new documents also provide the first official confirmation that shows the U.S. government was aware of arms shipments from Benghazi to Syria. The documents also include an August 2012 analysis warning of the rise of ISIS and the predicted failure of the Obama policy of regime change in Syria.
The documents were released in response to a court order in accordance with a May 15, 2014, Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit filed against both the DOD and State Department seeking communications between the two agencies and congressional leaders “on matters related to the activities of any agency or department of the U.S. government at the Special Mission Compound and/or classified annex in Benghazi” (Judicial Watch v U.S. Department of Defense and U.S. Department of State(No. 1:14-cv-00812)).
Spelling and punctuation are duplicated in this release without corrections.
A Defense Department document from the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), dated September 12, 2012, the day after the Benghazi attack, details that the attack on the compound had been carefully planned by the BOCAR terrorist group “to kill as many Americans as possible.” The document was sent to then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, then-Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Obama White House National Security Council. The heavily redacted Defense Department “information report” says that the attack on the Benghazi facility “was planned and executed by The Brigades of the Captive Omar Abdul Rahman (BCOAR).” The group subscribes to “AQ ideologies:”
The attack was planned ten or more days prior on approximately 01 September 2012. The intention was to attack the consulate and to kill as many Americans as possible to seek revenge for U.S. killing of Aboyahiye ((ALALIBY)) in Pakistan and in memorial of the 11 September 2001 atacks on the World Trade Center buildings.
“A violent radical,” the DIA report says, is “the leader of BCOAR is Abdul Baset ((AZUZ)), AZUZ was sent by ((ZAWARI)) to set up Al Qaeda (AQ) bases in Libya.” The group’s headquarters was set up with the approval of a “member of the Muslim brother hood movement…where they have large caches of weapons. Some of these caches are disguised by feeding troughs for livestock. They have SA-7 and SA-23/4 MANPADS…they train almost every day focusing on religious lessons and scriptures including three lessons a day of jihadist ideology.”
The Defense Department reported the group maintained written documents, in “a small rectangular room, approximately 12 meters by 6 meters…that contain information on all of the AQ activity in Libya.”
(Azuz is again blamed for the Benghazi attack in an October 2012 DIA document.)
The DOD documents also contain the first official documentation that the Obama administration knew that weapons were being shipped from the Port of Benghazi to rebel troops in Syria. An October 2012 report confirms:
Weapons from the former Libya military stockpiles were shipped from the port of Benghazi, Libya to the Port of Banias and the Port of Borj Islam, Syria. The weapons shipped during late-August 2012 were Sniper rifles, RPG’s, and 125 mm and 155mm howitzers missiles.
During the immediate aftermath of, and following the uncertainty caused by, the downfall of the ((Qaddafi)) regime in October 2011 and up until early September of 2012, weapons from the former Libya military stockpiles located in Benghazi, Libya were shipped from the port of Benghazi, Libya to the ports of Banias and the Port of Borj Islam, Syria. The Syrian ports were chosen due to the small amount of cargo traffic transiting these two ports. The ships used to transport the weapons were medium-sized and able to hold 10 or less shipping containers of cargo.
The DIA document further details:
The weapons shipped from Syria during late-August 2012 were Sniper rifles, RPG’s and 125mm and 155mm howitzers missiles. The numbers for each weapon were estimated to be: 500 Sniper rifles, 100 RPG launchers with 300 total rounds, and approximately 400 howitzers missiles [200 ea – 125mm and 200ea – 155 mm.]
The heavily redacted document does not disclose who was shipping the weapons.
Another DIA report, written in August 2012 (the same time period the U.S. was monitoring weapons flows from Libya to Syria), said that the opposition in Syria was driven by al Qaeda and other extremist Muslim groups: “the Salafist, the Muslim Brotherhood, and AQI are the major forces driving the insurgency in Syria.” The growing sectarian direction of the war was predicted to have dire consequences for Iraq, which included the “grave danger” of the rise of ISIS:
The deterioration of the situation has dire consequences on the Iraqi situation and are as follows:
This creates the ideal atmosphere for AQI [al Qaeda Iraq] to return to its old pockets in Mosul and Ramadi, and will provide a renewed momentum under the presumption of unifying the jihad among Sunni Iraq and Syria, and the rest of the Sunnis in the Arab world against what it considers one enemy, the dissenters. ISI could also declare an Islamic state through its union with other terrorist organizations in Iraq and Syria, which will create grave danger in regards to unifying Iraq and the protection of its territory.
Some of the “dire consequences” are blacked out but the DIA presciently warned one such consequence would be the “renewing facilitation of terrorist elements from all over the Arab world entering into Iraqi Arena.”
From a separate lawsuit, the State Department produced a document created the morning after the Benghazi attack by Hillary Clinton’s offices, and the Operations Center in the Office of the Executive Secretariat that was sent widely through the agency, including to Joseph McManus (then-Hillary Clinton’s executive assistant). At 6:00 am, a few hours after the attack, the top office of the State Department sent a “spot report” on the “Attack on U.S. Diplomatic Mission in Benghazi” that makes no mention of videos or demonstrations:
Four COM personnel were killed and three were wounded in an attack by dozens of fighters on the U.S. Diplomatic Mission in Benghazi beginning approximately 1550 Eastern Time….
The State Department has yet to turn over any documents from the secret email accounts of Hillary Clinton and other top State Department officials.
“These documents are jaw-dropping. No wonder we had to file more FOIA lawsuits and wait over two years for them. If the American people had known the truth – that Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and other top administration officials knew that the Benghazi attack was an al-Qaeda terrorist attack from the get-go – and yet lied and covered this fact up – Mitt Romney might very well be president. And why would the Obama administration continue to support the Muslim Brotherhood even after it knew it was tied to the Benghazi terrorist attack and to al Qaeda? These documents also point to a connection between the collapse in Libya and the ISIS war – and confirm that the U.S. knew remarkable details about the transfer of arms from Benghazi to Syrian jihadists,” stated Tom Fitton, Judicial Watch president. “These documents show that the Benghazi cover-up has continued for years and is only unraveling through our independent lawsuits. The Benghazi scandal just got a whole lot worse for Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.” (Judicial Watch, 5/18/2015)
- al Qaeda
- al Qaeda in Iraq AQI
- Benghazi attack
- Department of Defense
- Department of State
- FOIA lawsuit
- Hillary Clinton
- illegal arms shipments
- Joint Chiefs of Staff
- Judicial Watch
- Leon Panetta
- Muslim Brotherhood
- National Security Council
- secret document
- September 2012
- Syrian jihadists
September 15, 2015 – 2017: Robert Mueller’s report did not disclose that Felix Sater is a FBI informant and was possibly used to entrap Trump
(…) 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 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).
(…) 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 one telling Trump to build a Trump Tower in Moscow. Sater, according to Newsweek’s Powell, was not a close confidant of Trump:
In , 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 details 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 projects 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. (Read more: Larry C. Johnson, 8/23/2019)
July 30, 2016 – Ohr meets with Steele, and within hours meets with McCabe and Page for the purpose of “passing on Steele’s info to them”
“Deputy FBI Director Andy McCabe and his legal counsel Lisa Page were in possession of the key Steele dossier allegations on Sat Jul 30 2016, one day BEFORE the FBI opened an investigation into Trump on Sun Jul 31 2016.
(…) Ohr’s testimony: “I wanted to provide the information he [Steele] had given me to the FBI”
And “I reached out to McCabe”
Page/McCabe/Ohr met on a Saturday at the office at very short notice, with Ohr coming almost straight from the Steele meeting to meet with the Deputy Director of the FBI and his legal counsel.
(…) Ohr’s testimony: “I went to his [McCabe’s] office to provide the information”
“Lisa Page was there”
“So I provided the information to them”
(After that Ohr is put in touch with Strzok, running the Trump/Russia case.)
The investigation was opened the next day, July 31, 2016.
Or at least it was *marked* July 31. Here’s Strzok texting to Page about exactly what “good faith date” they can put on the “LHM” (Letter Head Memo) for the opening case file for the Trump/Russia case.
August 4, 2016 – A few operational details of the CIA/NSA/FBI/White House counterintelligence investigation into the Trump campaign
(…) “In the first week of August — directly after the creation of Crossfire Hurricane — Director Brennan contacted Avril Haines via telephone, as he had received intelligence in relation to President Vladimir Putin.
An envelope which contained “eyes only” instructions was sent by courier from the Central Intelligence Agency to the White House. The contents of the envelope were shown to four people: President Barack Obama, and three of his senior aides, most likely Denis McDonough, Susan Rice and Avril Haines.
Within the envelope was a valuable source that Director Brennan had used to ascertain certain information, a source which he intentionally kept away from the Presidential Daily Brief. This was because, by 2013, the Presidential Daily Brief was being received by over 30 recipients.
“Inside was an intelligence bombshell, a report drawn from sourcing deep inside the Russian government that detailed Russian President Vladimir Putin’s direct involvement in a cyber campaign to disrupt and discredit the U.S. presidential race.
But it went further. The intelligence captured Putin’s specific instructions on the operation’s audacious objects — defeat or at least damage the Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton, and help elect her opponent, Donald Trump.” — The Washington Post
As a result of this, Director Brennan created a secret task force at the Central Intelligence Agency’s Headquarters, which was composed of several dozen analysts from the Central Intelligence Agency, the National Security Agency and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
The Working Group reported to two different groups.
- President Barack Obama and less than 14 senior United States Government officials.
- A team of operations specialists at the Central Intelligence Agency, the National Security Agency and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Also in early August 2016 — presumably the same week — agents at the Federal Bureau of Investigation met with Attorney General Loretta Lynch, where they questioned her about a letter they had received in early March 2016 from a foreign source, supposedly written by Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz to Leonard Benardo of the Open Society Foundations regarding the Midyear Exam investigation.
During this meeting, the agents offered to give Attorney General Lynch a “defensive briefing”. Shortly after this, the Federal Bureau of Investigation concluded that the Benardo letter was an unreliable document.
President Obama ordered his aides to determine ways to retaliate or deter against the Russian Government through three steps:
- Gain a high-confidence assessment from the United States intelligence agencies on Russia’s role and intent.
- Check vulnerabilities in state-run election systems.
- Seek bipartisan support from Congressional leaders for a statement condemning Moscow and urging states to accept federal assistance.
The same week, Rice, Haines and Lisa Monaco convened meetings in the White House Situation Room, which would later be referred to as “Deputies Meetings”. These meetings were initially attended by:
- Director John Brennan, Central Intelligence Agency
- Director James Clapper, Office of the Director of National Intelligence
- Director James Comey, Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation
- Attorney General Loretta Lynch, United States Department of Justice
As time passed, another Cabinet member joined the Deputies Meetings: Vice President Joe Biden.
The Deputies Meetings needed to defend against any potential leaks, and therefore followed the same protocols taken during the planning stages of the raid of Osama bin Laden.
At a later time, agendas were directly sent to Cabinet secretaries, including Secretary John Kerry and Secretary Ashton Carter. When an agenda was received, their subordinates were ordered never to open the envelopes. Further to this, some agendas were withheld until the participants had arrived in the Situation Room and sat down.
Ordinarily, a video feed from the White House Situation Room is fed into various National Security Council offices to allow senior aides to view the events with zero sound. However, during the Deputies Meetings, the video feeds were switched off.
One of these Deputies Meetings was hosted by Haines, where the attendees of the meetings argued that any deliberative attempt to strike back against Russia would become a tool of propaganda for President Vladimir Putin, while another was concerned about the potential effect any action may have on Election Day 2016.
Haines would later note she was “very concerned” during this time about the potential of Russians gaining influence within the Trump campaign, although she apparently remained unaware of the existence of the Crossfire Hurricane investigation. (Read more: Conservative Treehouse, 4/29/2019)
- Ashton B. Carter
- Avril Haines
- Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)
- Crossfire Hurricane
- Debbie Wasserman-Schultz
- Denis McDonough
- Department of Justice
- Deputies Meetings
- Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI)
- Joe Biden
- John Brennan
- John Kerry
- Leonard Benardo
- Lisa Monaco
- Loretta Lynch
- Mid Year Exam (MYE)
- National Security Agency (NSA)
- Open Society Foundations
- Russia election interference
- Susan Rice
- Vladimir Putin
- White House Situation Room
August 16-24, 2016 – New Strzok-Page emails reveal FBI gave special treatment to Clinton’s demands for email investigation information just before election
“Judicial Watch announced today it received 218 pages of disgraced former FBI officials Peter Strzok-Lisa Page emails which show then-FBI General Counsel James Baker instructing FBI officials to expedite the release of FBI investigative material to Hillary Clinton’s lawyer, David Kendall in August 2016. Kendall and the FBI’s top lawyer discussed specifically quickly obtaining the “302” report of the FBI/DOJ interview of Mrs. Clinton.
(…) On August 16, 2016, at 10:02 p.m. Baker emails then-Associate Deputy Director David Bowdich; Michael Steinbach, former executive assistant director for national security; former Acting Assistant Director Jason V. Herring; former FBI lawyer Lisa Page; former Principal Deputy General Counsel Trisha Anderson; Michael Kortan, FBI assistant director for public affairs, now retired; James Rybicki, former chief of staff to Comey; and others to inform them that he “just spoke” with Clinton’s lawyer Kendall, who requested documents from the FBI. Baker says he told Kendall he would “need to submit a request.” Baker tells them, “I said we would process it expeditiously.”
“I just spoke with David Kendall … I conveyed our view that in order to obtain the documents [FBI investigative material] they are seeking they need to submit a request pursuant to the Privacy Act and FOIA. I said they could submit a letter to me covering both statutes. They will send it in the morning. I said that we would process it expeditiously. David asked us to focus first on the Secretary’s 302 [FBI interview report]. I said OK. [Redacted] We will have to focus on this issue tomorrow and get the 302 out the door as soon as possible and then focus on the rest of the stuff.”
The following day, August 17, 2016, Kendall sent a FOIA/Privacy Act request on “behalf of former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton” to the FBI’s top lawyer with a request for “expeditious processing.” Baker passes this request to Bowdich, Steinbach, Herring, Page, Anderson:
In my view, we need to move as quickly as possible on this, but pursuant to David’s oral request last night, we should focus first on Secretary Clinton’s 302…. Is the end of this week out of the question for her 302?
In a follow-up email exchange, the same day, Anderson arranged for Herring, Page, former FBI Assistant Director and head of the Office of Congressional Affairs Gregory Brower, Strzok and others to “coordinate a plan for processing and releasing” Clinton’s 302, though one official reminds others that they should process the request “consistent” with other requests.
Then, in an August 21, 2016, email exchange Baker tells his people that he would “alert” Kendall shortly before Clinton’s 302 was to be posted on the FBI’s FOIA Vault webpage. On September 2, 2016, the FBI announced the release of Clinton’s interview documents.
Finally, on August 24, 2016, the acting FBI FOIA unit chief said he sees “no problem” with giving Hillary’s attorney a heads up before her records were posted to the Vault.” (Read more: Judicial Watch, 6/03/2019)
September 2, 2016 – The FBI sends a possible honeypot posing as Stefan Halper’s research assistant, to spy on Trump campaign aide, George Papadopoulos
“The conversation at a London bar in September 2016 took a strange turn when the woman sitting across from George Papadopoulos, a Trump campaign adviser, asked a direct question: Was the Trump campaign working with Russia?
The woman had set up the meeting to discuss foreign policy issues. But she was actually a government investigator posing as a research assistant, according to people familiar with the operation. The F.B.I. sent her to London as part of the counterintelligence inquiry opened that summer to better understand the Trump campaign’s links to Russia.
The American government’s affiliation with the woman, who said her name was Azra Turk, is one previously unreported detail of an operation that has become a political flash point in the face of accusations by President Trump and his allies that American law enforcement and intelligence officials spied on his campaign to undermine his electoral chances. Last year, he called it “Spygate.”
Ms. Turk went to London to help oversee the politically sensitive operation, working alongside a longtime informant, the Cambridge professor Stefan A. Halper. The move was a sign that the bureau wanted in place a trained investigator for a layer of oversight, as well as someone who could gather information for or serve as a credible witness in any potential prosecution that emerged from the case.
A spokesman for the F.B.I. declined to comment, as did a lawyer for Mr. Halper, Robert D. Luskin. Last year, Bill Priestap, then the bureau’s top counterintelligence agent who was deeply involved in the Russia inquiry, told Congress during a closed-door hearing that there was no F.B.I. conspiracy against Mr. Trump or his campaign.
The London operation yielded no fruitful information, but F.B.I. officials have called the bureau’s activities in the months before the election both legal and carefully considered under extraordinary circumstances. They are now under scrutiny as part of an investigation by Michael E. Horowitz, the Justice Department inspector general. He could make the results public in May or June, Attorney General William P. Barr has said. Some of the findings are likely to be classified.” (Read more: The New York Times, 5/02/2019)
George Papadopoulos describes in his House testimony, how undercover CIA asset/FBI informant Stefan Halper introduces him to ‘Azra Turk.’ He also suggests she may be from Turkey.
On the same day the NYT article is published, George Papadopoulos appears on the Tucker Carlson Show to respond:
(…) “Email traffic reviewed by TheDCNF shows that Papadopoulos exchanged emails with Turk, Halper and Halper’s wife.
Papadopoulos has described Turk as a “honeypot,” a spy term used to describe a situation where sex is used to lure targets of intelligence operations. Papadopoulos told TheDCNF that Turk, an attractive blonde, flirted heavily with him and attempted to make contact after the London meeting back in the States.
“I’m stunned by the come-hither tone of Azra Turk and her classic honeypot act,” Papadopoulos wrote in his tell-all, “Deep State Target.”
According to Papadopoulos, both Halper and Turk asked him whether he knew about Russian hacks of Democrats. Papadopoulos says he had knowledge of Russian hacking operations, and conveyed that to the two covert agents.
Papadopoulos says that he did not meet again with Turk, in part because he suspected she was working with foreign intelligence agencies. He has recently said he believes that Turk, who spoke little English during the London meetings, has links to the CIA and Turkish intelligence.” (Read more: The Daily Caller, 5/3/2019)
September 6, 2016 – Hillary compromised classified materials representing the full range of American espionage: human intelligence, signals intelligence, and imagery intelligence
(…) “Hillary compromised classified materials representing the full range of American espionage: human intelligence or HUMINT from CIA, signals intelligence or SIGINT from NSA, and imagery intelligence or IMINT from NGA.
Of those 81 classified email chains, the FBI assessed that 37 of them included Secret information while eight included Top Secret information. Worse, seven email chains included Special Access Program or SAP information, which is tightly protected by the Intelligence Community and shared on a restricted, need-to-know basis only.
Three more email chains contained Sensitive Compartmented Information or SCI, which was almost certainly SIGINT from NSA. SCI always requires special protection and handling. In fact, you’re only allowed to access it inside a specially-built Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility, a SCIF (pronounced “skiff”) in spy-speak. Any exposure of SCI brings severe penalties—at least if you’re not named Clinton.
It’s nice to see the FBI finally confirm just how much highly classified information got exposed here, but I reported this many months ago from Intelligence Community sources, including that Hillary’s “unclassified” emails included Top Secret SAP information from CIA and Top Secret SCI information from NSA.
Which leads to a troubling matter: What the FBI did not mention in its big data dump on EmailGate.
As I told you in this column back in January, Hillary emails included very highly classified intelligence from NSA. In early June 2011, the secretary of state received a long email from her longtime friend and factotum Sid Blumenthal regarding Sudan. This was an astonishingly detailed assessment of high-level political and military machinations in that country, specifically inside information about coup plotting.
This explosive information was timely and deep in the weeds on Sudanese happenings. It’s difficult to see how Blumenthal—a lawyer and Washington fixer, no sort of Africa hand or James Bond—got his hands on such juicy intelligence. As I’ve noted, “Blumenthal’s information came from a top-ranking source with direct access to Sudan’s top military and intelligence officials, and recounted a high-level meeting that had taken place only 24 hours before.” How did Sid obtain this amazing scoop for Hillary?
If Hillary Clinton becomes our next president, we can be certain that her trusty sidekick Sid Blumenthal will have an important role in her White House.
Not to mention that, in terms of verbiage and format, Blumenthal’s email read exactly like classified NSA reporting, as anybody acquainted with our SIGINT would immediately recognize. As one veteran agency official told me back in January, Blumenthal’s email was NSA information with “at least 90 percent confidence.”
Which was no coincidence, since an NSA investigation subsequently determined that Blumenthal’s Sudan assessment was derived from their reporting—in some cases, verbatim. As I reported in March, NSA concluded that Blumenthal’s Sudan report came from four different agency SIGINT reports, all classified Top Secret/SCI. Then it got worse:
At least one of those reports was issued under the GAMMA compartment, which is an NSA handling caveat that is applied to extraordinarily sensitive information (for instance, decrypted conversations between top foreign leadership, as this was). GAMMA is properly viewed as a SIGINT Special Access Program, or SAP, several of which Clinton compromised in another series of her “unclassified” emails.
NSA had no doubt that Blumenthal somehow got his hands on some of their “crown jewels” information. “It’s word-for-word, verbatim copying,” an agency official of them explained. “In one case, an entire paragraph was lifted from an NSA report” that was classified Top Secret/SCI. To add to the mystery, Sid emailed Hillary his “personal” assessment on Sudan only hours after some of those classified NSA reports were issued.
Somehow Sid Blumenthal—who in 2011 was not working for the U.S. government in any capacity and had not held security clearances in a decade—was reading above-top-secret NSA reports just hours after they appeared in tightly restricted GAMMA channels.” (Read more: The Observer, 9/06/16)
- Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI)
- gross negligence
- Hillary Clinton
- Human Intelligence (HUMINT)
- Imagery Intelligence (IMINT)
- National Security Agency (NSA)
- Secure Compartmented Information Facility (SCIF)
- Sidney Blumenthal
- Signals Intelligence (SIGINT)
- Special Access Program (SAP)
- Top Secret / Sensitive Compartmented Information (TS/SCI)
- top secret level emails
September 17, 2016 – Obama State Dept officials Victoria Nuland and Jonathan Winer plan a face-to-face meeting on the “Russia matter”
“Judicial Watch and The Daily Caller News Foundation today released 84 pages of documents, including a September 2016 email exchange between then-Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland and Special Coordinator for Libya Jonathan Winer, a close associate of dossier author Christopher Steele, discussing a “face-to-face” meeting on a “Russian matter.”
According to an op-ed Winer wrote for The Washington Post in 2018, also in September 2016, “Steele and I met in Washington and discussed the information now known as the “dossier… I prepared a two-page summary and shared it with Nuland, who indicated that, like me, she felt that the secretary of state needed to be made aware of this material.”
A September 17, 2016, email exchange between Nuland and Winer – that was classified in the interest of national defense or foreign policy – discusses the political situation in Libya, but also brings up a “Russian matter:”
From: Nuland, Victoria J
Sent: Saturday, September 17, 2016 1:31 PM
To: Winer, Jonathan
Subject: Re. Libya Update
In ny face to face?
From: Winer, Jonathan
Sent: September 17, 2016 at 1:56:05 PM EDT
To: Nuland, Victoria J
Subject: Re: Libya Update
Yes that was [sic] be good.
From: Nuland, Victoria J
Sent: Saturday, September 17, 2016 1:58 PM
To: Winer, Jonathan
Subject: Re. Libya Update
Good. I’ll reach out when im there Sunday. [Redacted]
Other emails show senior State Department personnel using unsecure BlackBerrys to transmit classified information even after the Clinton email scandal became public.” (Read more: Judicial Watch 7/18/2019)
September 26, 2016 – December 10, 2016 – Top Hoyer aide, Daniel Silverberg, coordinates Clinton/DNC/Steele dossier work with key State Dept officials, Victoria Nuland and Jonathan Winer
“Daniel Silverberg, then-House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer’s national security adviser, coordinated “work on Russia dossier materials provided by Christopher Steele” with Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland and Special Envoy for Libya Jonathan Winer, according to newly released documents made public June 12 by Judicial Watch.
A series of emails between Sept. 26, 2016, and Dec. 10, 2016, demonstrate that Winer shared “Russia-related information” he obtained from Steele—whom he described as his “old O friend”—with Nuland, who then shared it with Silverberg.
Winer delayed a previously scheduled meeting with the State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR) in order to share the information with Nuland, according to Judicial Watch.
Multiple references in the emails to additional telephone calls and other contacts with unnamed or redacted parties, as well as discussion of “a possible working group meeting,” suggest an active response by Silverberg to the Steele dossier information he was provided by Nuland and Winer.”
October 11, 2016 – DOJ and FBI officials hide a State Dept email that memorializes Christopher Steele’s political motives
“If ever there were an admission that taints the FBI’s secret warrant to surveil Donald Trump’s campaign, it sat buried for more than 2 1/2 years in the files of a high-ranking State Department official.
Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Kathleen Kavalec’s written account of her Oct. 11, 2016, meeting with FBI informant Christopher Steele shows the Hillary Clinton campaign-funded British intelligence operative admitted that his research was political and facing an Election Day deadline.
And that confession occurred 10 days before the FBI used Steele’s now-discredited dossier to justify securing a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant to surveil former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page and the campaign’s ties to Russia.
Steele’s client “is keen to see this information come to light prior to November 8,” the date of the 2016 election, Kavalec wrote in a typed summary of her meeting with Steele and Tatyana Duran, a colleague from Steele’s Orbis Security firm. The memos were unearthed a few days ago through open-records litigation by the conservative group Citizens United.
Kavalec’s notes do not appear to have been provided to the House Intelligence Committee during its Russia probe, according to former Chairman Devin Nunes (R-Calif.). “They tried to hide a lot of documents from us during our investigation, and it usually turns out there’s a reason for it,” Nunes told me. Senate and House Judiciary investigators told me they did not know about them, even though they investigated Steele’s behavior in 2017-18.
One member of Congress transmitted the memos this week to the Department of Justice’s inspector general, fearing its investigation of FISA abuses may not have had access to them.
Nonetheless, the FBI is doing its best to keep much of Kavalec’s information secret by retroactively claiming it is classified, even though it was originally marked unclassified in 2016.
The apparent effort to hide Kavalec’s notes from her contact with Steele has persisted for some time.
State officials acknowledged a year ago they received a copy of the Steele dossier in July 2016, and got a more detailed briefing in October 2016 and referred the information to the FBI.
But what was discussed was not revealed. Sources told me more than a year ago that Kavalec had the most important (and memorialized) interaction with Steele before the FISA warrant was issued, but FBI and State officials refused to discuss it, or even confirm it.” (Read more: The Hill, 5/07/2019) (Kavalec Memo)
“On May 10, 2019, against the backdrop of documents from the state department, Senator Lindsey Graham sends a letter to both OIG Michael Horowitz and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo seeking additional information about State Department contact with Christopher Steele. (Source Link – Senate Judiciary)
Apparently the Russian “mole” in the DNC didn’t warrant the investigative curiosity of the FBI. Instead, they took the sketchy dossier info and called Carter Page an “agent of a foreign power”…. Go figure.” (Conservative Treehouse, 5/10/2019)
October 12, 2016 – McCabe/Page texts reveal the FBI clash with the DOJ over potential ‘bias’ of source for surveillance warrant
“Just nine days before the FBI applied for a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant to surveil a top Trump campaign aide, bureau officials were battling with a senior Justice Department official who had “continued concerns” about the “possible bias” of a source pivotal to the application, according to internal text messages obtained by Fox News.
The 2016 messages, sent between former FBI lawyer Lisa Page and then-FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, also reveal that bureau brass circulated at least two anti-Trump blog articles, including a Lawfare blog post sent shortly after Election Day that called Trump possibly “among the major threats to the security of the country.”
Another article, sent by Page in July 2016 as the FBI’s counterintelligence probe into Russian election interference was kicking off, flatly called Trump a “useful idiot” for Russian President Vladimir Putin. Page told McCabe that then-FBI Director James Comey had “surely” read that piece. Both articles were authored in whole or part by Benjamin Wittes, a Comey friend.
Further, the texts show that on Sept. 12, 2016, Page forwarded to McCabe some “unsolicited comments” calling then-GOP Rep. Trey Gowdy a “total d–k.” Gowdy, at the time, was grilling FBI congressional affairs director Jason Herring at a hearing on the FBI’s handling of the Clinton email investigation.
But perhaps the most significant Page-McCabe communications made plain the DOJ’s worries that the FISA application to surveil Trump aide Carter Page was based on a potentially biased source — and underscored the FBI’s desire to press on.” (Read more: Fox News, 3/22/2019)
November 5, 2016 – Charles Ortel: The Clinton Foundation is the ‘largest unprosecuted charity fraud ever’
“Wall Street investment analyst Charles Ortel called the Clinton Foundation “the largest unprosecuted charity fraud ever attempted” before all the newly-exposed emails from campaign chairman John Podesta’s account were released from WikiLeaks.
The leaks have fortified his findings. The Wall Street investment analyst, who retired at 46 and prides himself on researching complex problems like General Electric and the credit crisis, has been fly-specking the Clinton Foundation since the spring of 2015.
Ortel explains why he believes the Clinton Foundation is a “crooked charity cooking the books” with over $2 billion dollars in revenue, in this exclusive video interview for The Daily Caller News Foundation.
The Clintons, according to Ortel, have figured out how to turn their public service into a business. This charity is “a perfect gathering place and a front” to act as if you are helping others, when in fact they bring powerful people together, concocting deals and making people rich, including the Clintons, Ortel says.” (Read more: The Daily Caller, 11/05/2016)
November 22, 2016 – Bruce Ohr tells the FBI, “reporting on Trump ties to Russia were going to the Clinton campaign”
Judicial Watch released 34 pages of “302” report material from FBI interviews with Bruce Ohr on August 8, 2019.
In a FBI 302 report dated November 22, 2016, Bruce Ohr states, “reporting on Trump’s ties to Russia were going to the Clinton Campaign, Jon Winer at the U.S. State Department and the FBI.”
December 12, 2016 – McCabe-Page texts reveal high-level intel meeting after 2016 election
“Newly obtained text messages between former Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe and bureau lawyer Lisa Page reveal a high-level meeting among senior intelligence officials was held weeks before President Trump’s inauguration – during a critical period for the Russia probe.
In a Dec. 12, 2016, text reviewed by Fox News, Page wrote to McCabe: “Btw, [Director of National Intelligence James] Clapper told Pete that he was meeting with [CIA Director John] Brennan and Cohen for dinner tonight. Just FYSA [for your situational awareness].”
Within a minute, McCabe replied, “OK.”
Cohen is likely then-Deputy CIA Director David Cohen. Pete is a likely reference to Peter Strzok, who played a lead role in the original Russia investigation at the FBI (and with whom Page was having an affair).
It is unclear whether the dinner meeting concerned the investigation and suspicions about Russians’ contacts with Trump advisers including incoming national security adviser Michael Flynn.
But two government sources told Fox News it was “irregular” for Clapper to be in direct contact with Strzok, who was at a much more junior level. It is not clear from the text if Strzok also attended the dinner. A lawyer for Strzok declined to comment, but did not dispute the text referred to Strzok.
(…) However, the December 2016 meeting that was apparently shared with Strzok – as documented in the text – came during a critical period for the Russia probe. Donald Trump had scored a stunning upset victory a month earlier; Flynn, around this time, was having conversations with Russia’s U.S. ambassador that caught the attention of the feds; the FBI had recently started surveillance on Trump adviser Carter Page; The New York Times was about to publish a lengthy report on Russia’s U.S. election interference; and then-FBI Director James Comey and others would soon brief Trump on allegations against him in the so-called Steele dossier.
The McCabe-Page texts also show Flynn was on their radar at the time. On Nov. 17, 2016, Page sent McCabe a Washington Post article entitled, “Trump offers retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn the job of national security adviser, a person close to the transition says.” (Read more: Fox News, 3/26/2019)
January 3, 2017 – Jay Sekulow: Obama administration’s anti-Trump actions revealed in newly disclosed documents
“In March 2017 CTH first highlighted statements by Evelyn Farkas that described a coordinated effort from within the Obama administration to push political opposition research, gathered by the intelligence community, into the media.
Jay Sekulow now discovers documents that highlight the Obama administration’s efforts in their last days in office. This effort backstops Farkas’s earlier statements. First, from Sekulow:
(Via Fox Op-ed) – Stunning new information just released by the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ) shows that the Obama administration stepped up efforts – just days before President Trump took office – to undermine Trump and his administration.
The ACLJ, where I serve as chief counsel, has obtained records that show the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, under Director James Clapper, eagerly pushed to get new procedures as part of an anti-Trump effort. The procedures increased access to raw signals intelligence before the conclusion of the Obama administration, just days before President Trump was inaugurated.
By greatly expanding access to classified information by unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats, the Obama administration paved the way for a shadow government to leak classified information – endangering our national security and severely jeopardizing the integrity and reputation of our critical national security apparatus – in an attempt to undermine President Trump.
The documents confirmed what we suspected: the Office of the Director of National Intelligence rushed to get the new “procedures signed by the Attorney General before the conclusion of this administration,” referring to the Obama administration.
The documents also reveal that Robert Litt, who worked in the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, told the Office of the Undersecretary of Defense’s Director of Intelligence Strategy, Policy, & Integration: “Really want to get this done … and so does the Boss.” Presumably “the Boss” is a reference to Director Clapper.
And documents the ACLJ received that were produced by the National Security Agency show that NSA officials discussed that they “could have a signature from the AG as early as this week, certainly prior to the 20th of Jan.” In other words, certainly before President Trump’s inauguration. (more from Sekulow)
Overlay Sekulow’s January 2017 documents with the statements from Evelyn Farkas and a clear picture emerges. Here’s Farkas from March 28, 2017:
[TRANSCRIPT] “I was urging my former colleagues, and, and frankly speaking the people on the Hill [Democrat politicians], it was more actually aimed at telling the Hill people, get as much information as you can – get as much intelligence as you can – before President Obama leaves the administration.”
“Because I had a fear that somehow that information would disappear with the senior [Obama] people who left; so it would be hidden away in the bureaucracy, um, that the Trump folks – if they found out HOW we knew what we knew about their, the Trump staff, dealing with Russians – that they would try to compromise those sources and methods; meaning we no longer have access to that intelligence.”
“So I became very worried because not enough was coming out into the open and I knew that there was more. We have very good intelligence on Russia; so then I had talked to some of my former colleagues and I knew that they were also trying to help get information to [Democrat politicians].”
With the help of MSNBC, simultaneous to her admission of first-hand specific knowledge of the administration spying on candidate and president-elect Trump, Ms. Evelyn Farkas outed herself as the key source for a March 2017 New York Times report which discussed President Obama officials leaking classified information to media.
Considerable irony jumps to the forefront when you recognize, the New York Times tried on March 1st, 2017, to protect Evelyn Farkas as the source of their reporting by stating:
“More than a half-dozen current and former officials described various aspects of the effort to preserve and distribute the intelligence, and some said they were speaking to draw attention to the material and ensure proper investigation by Congress. All spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were discussing classified information, nearly all of which remains secret.” (link)
- American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ)
- classified information
- Counterintelligence investigation
- Department of Justice
- Donald Trump
- Evelyn Farkas
- James Clapper
- January 2017
- Jay Sekulow
- Loretta Lynch
- media leaks
- Obama administration
- Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI)
- political opposition research
- Robert Litt
- Signals Intelligence (SIGINT)
- Trump campaign
- weaponized intelligence
January 20, 2017 – 2018: James Comey planted spies in the White House to keep an eye on President Trump
(…) “Two U.S. officials briefed on the inspector general’s investigation of possible FBI misconduct said Comey was essentially “running a covert operation against” the president, starting with a private “defensive briefing” he gave Trump just weeks before his inauguration. They said Horowitz has examined high-level FBI text messages and other communications indicating Comey was actually conducting a “counterintelligence assessment” of Trump during that meeting in New York.
In addition to adding notes of his meetings and phone calls with Trump to the official FBI case file, Comey had an agent inside the White House who reported back to FBI headquarters about Trump and his aides, according to other officials familiar with the matter.
Although Comey took many actions on his own, he was not working in isolation. One focus of Horowitz’s inquiry is the private Jan. 6, 2017, briefing Comey gave the president-elect in New York about material in the Democratic-commissioned dossier compiled by ex-British intelligence officer Christopher Steele. Reports of that meeting were used days later by BuzzFeed, CNN, and other outlets as a news hook for reporting on the dossier’s lascivious and unsubstantiated claims.
Comey’s meeting with Trump took place one day after the FBI director met in the Oval Office with President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden to discuss how to brief Trump — a meeting attended by National Security Adviser Susan Rice, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates and National Intelligence Director James Clapper, who would soon go to work for CNN.
At the same time Comey was personally scrutinizing the president during meetings in the White House and phone conversations from the FBI, he had an agent inside the White House working on the Russia investigation, where he reported back to FBI headquarters about Trump and his aides, according to officials familiar with the matter. The agent, Anthony Ferrante, who specialized in cybercrime, left the White House around the same time Comey was fired and soon joined a security consulting firm, where he contracted with BuzzFeed to lead the news site’s efforts to verify the Steele dossier, in connection with a defamation lawsuit.
Knowledgeable sources inside the Trump White House say Comey carved out an extraordinary new position for Ferrante, which allowed him to remain on reserve status at the FBI while working in the White House as a cybersecurity adviser.
“In an unprecedented action, Comey created a new FBI reserve position for Ferrante, enabling him to have an ongoing relationship with the agency, retaining his clearances and enabling him to come back in [to bureau headquarters],” said a former National Security Council official who requested anonymity.
“Between the election and April 2017, when Ferrante finally left the White House, the Trump NSC division supervisor was not allowed to get rid of Ferrante,” he added, “and Ferrante continued working — in direct conflict with the no-contact policy between the White House and the Department of Justice.”
Through a spokeswoman at FTI Consulting, which maintains the BuzzFeed contract, Ferrante declined to comment.
Another FBI official, Jordan Rae Kelly, who worked closely with Mueller when he headed the bureau, replaced Ferrante upon his White House exit (though she signed security logs for him to continue entering the White House as a visitor while he was working for BuzzFeed). Kelly left the White House last year and joined Ferrante at FTI Consulting.
Working with Comey liaison Ferrante at the NSC in early 2017 was another Obama holdover — Tashina Gauhar, who remains a top national security adviser at the Justice Department.
In January 2017, Gauhar assisted former acting Attorney General Sally Yates in the Flynn investigation. Later, she helped Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein resist, initially, Trump’s order to fire Comey. Gauhar also took copious notes during her meetings with White House lawyers, which were cited by Mueller in the section of his report dealing with obstruction of justice.” (Read more: RealClearInvestigations, 7/22/2019)
- Anthony Ferrante
- Barack Obama
- Clinton/DNC/Steele Dossier
- counterintelligence assessment
- Department of Justice
- DOJ OIG Report
- Donald Trump
- FBI Cybersecurity Division
- FTI Consulting
- James Clapper
- James Comey
- January 2017
- Jeh Johnson
- Joe Biden
- Jordan Rae Kelly
- Lt. General Michael Flynn
- Michael Horowitz
- National Security Council (NSC)
- Robert Mueller
- Rod Rosenstein
- Sally Yates
- Susan Rice
- Tashina Gauhar
- Trump Tower
- White House spies