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

Bill Clinton and Jeffrey Epstein (Credit: public domain)

“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)

January 2009 – 2012: Ghislaine Maxwell’s nephew is a high-ranking official in Clinton’s State Department

(…) Alexander Djerassi, who is Ghislaine Maxwell’s nephew, was a high-ranking official in Hillary Clinton’s State Department.

Here is Alexander Djerassi’s bio from his time as an associate with the Carnegie Endowment:

“Alexander Djerassi was a nonresident associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, where his research focused on Tunisia and U.S. foreign policy toward the Middle East and North Africa. From 2009 to 2012, Djerassi was chief of staff and special assistant in the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs, covering U.S. relations with Arab states, Israel, and Iran. He worked on matters relating to democratization and civil society in the Arab world, the Arab uprisings, and Israeli-Palestinian peace. Djerassi has served as a U.S. representative to the Friends of Libya conferences, Friends of the Syrian People conferences, U.S.-GCC Strategic Coordination Forum, and several UN General Assemblies.”

(…) Dale Djerassi, who gave $8,200 to Clinton’s “New York Senate 2000” committee in June, participated in the bizarre “St. Batman Crucifixion” in Woodside, Calif., in 1994.

The performance art piece was a re-enactment of the crucifixion of Jesus, featuring a naked man wearing a Batman medallion and mask being tied to a giant cross by Djerassi and another man.

For the sake of posterity, and art, the event was photographed and can be viewed on the web (BatmanCrucifixion)(Read more: National File, 12/07/2019)  (Archive)

December 29, 2009 – Obama issues an Executive Order making it clear, all communications with a foreign government are automatically deemed classified information

(…) “In the first year of his administration (December 29, 2009, to be exact), President Obama issued Executive Order 13526, entitled “Classified National Security Information.” It explains what information is deemed classified if its disclosure would cause “damage to the national security.” Beyond that, whether the classified information is categorized as “top secret,” “secret,” or “confidential” depends on how serious the damage would be.

With that as background, the order makes clear that there is one category of information that is automatically deemed classified: information from foreign governments. Section 1.1(d) of the executive order decrees: “The unauthorized disclosure of foreign government information is presumed to cause damage to the national security.”

The reason for this is plain: It is not just the often sensitive nature of diplomatic communications; it is the fact that, in order to protect our national security, the United States must rely on intelligence from foreign governments; if our government does not keep that information strictly confidential, the foreign governments will be unwilling to share it – endangering American lives. As Secretary of State, Clinton not only knew this elementary rule; it was her duty to ensure that the rule was followed throughout her department.

After an artist prints out 62,000 pages of Hillary Clinton’s emails as part of an art exhibition titled “HILLARY: The Hillary Clinton Emails” in Venice, Italy, the former Democratic presidential nominee shows up and spends an hour reading them. She even poses for a picture that she posted on Twitter and jokes that someone should “alert the House GOP.” (Credit: Reuters)

As has been clear from the beginning, and is now patent after the latest disclosure of a subset of 6,000 of the emails Clinton deigned to preserve, at least 125 of which reportedly contain classified information, the emails Clinton sent, received and stored via her private server system were rife with information from foreign governments. This information was born classified. It makes no difference that these emails were not stamped “top secret”; all national security officials with security clearances know that foreign government information is deemed classified and must be handled as such. Period.

Indeed, since it is the State Department that deals most directly with foreign governments, the Secretary of State has the highest obligation and interest when it comes to assuring them that the information they share with the U.S. government is being handled with appropriate care.” (Read more: National Review, 9/01/2015)

June 14, 2010 – The untold story of a Nigerian woman who sued the Clinton Foundation for wrongful termination of employment due to a pregnancy

(A clipping from the Clinton Foundation website)

“In mid-February, investigative journalist Michael Smith unearthed an episode that rubbishes the Clinton Foundation’s decades-long claim of being supportive towards women worldwide: the case of Nigerian national Mrs Folarin Oreka Maiya tells quite a different story.

Why Nigeria’s Legal System is Worth Its Salt

On 14 June 2010, Maiya, an employee of the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAIN) in Nigeria with an impeccable work record was sacked after informing her immediate supervisor that she was 12 weeks pregnant.

CHAIN’s decision to fire the pregnant African woman with zero explanations was subsequently endorsed by US-based CHAI Inc and the William J Clinton Foundation Inc despite Maiya’s repeated “self-humiliating” pleas.

Perhaps, the story would have ended here, but Maiya wasn’t easily frightened. She filed a suit with the National Industrial Court of Nigeria in the Abuja Judicial Division which found that the woman’s rights to protection from discrimination and inhumane, malicious, oppressive, and degrading treatment were breached by the Clintons’ entity that discharged her due to her pregnancy.

The court decision contains a description of the litigation that clearly shows the Incorporated Trustees of CHAIN not only showed no regret over its decision to sack the pregnant woman but insisted that she was “only insinuating that her rights to human dignity and freedom from discrimination were breached”.

The defendant also tried to convince the judge that CHAIN is a separate legal entity distinct from the US-based CHAI and the William J Clinton Foundation Inc. However, after examining the facts the court came to the conclusion that CHAIN is a mere agent of the two other entities, which were well aware of what had been going on.

The judge eventually ruled in Mrs Folarin Oreka Maiya’s favour citing “gross violations” of her constitutional rights by the Clintons’ charity. Still, the Clinton Foundation failed to disclose this fact to the general public, and presumably did not brief the US and state government authorities on it while Hillary Clinton was serving as US secretary of state.

The case is especially interesting since it happened under the presidency of Barack Obama, the first African American to be elected to the office of president of the United States, with his wife Michelle known for decrying the kidnapping of Nigerian girls by Boko Haram extremists and campaigning against it in 2014.

 

The Obama Foundation did not respond to a request by a Sputnik journalist to comment on the Maiya vs The Incorporated Trustees of CHAIN case. Similarly, the William J Clinton Foundation Inc, Clinton Health Access Initiative, Chelsea Clinton, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, National Organisation for Women, Association for Women’s Rights in Development, International Alliance of Women, Women for Women International, and International Women’s Health Coalition – all those who claim to spearhead feminist values – did not provide any comment on the controversial 2010 episode.” (Read more: Sputnik News, 2/26/2020)  (Archive)

****************

Michael Smith writes more about the legal case:

Dr. Owens Wiwa (Credit: public domain)

“On 11 November 2011 His Lordship the Honourable Justice BA Adejumo, President of the National Industrial Court of Nigeria delivered a scathing judgement against 3 Clinton Foundation entities.

It’s important to explain who and what those entities are.

Firstly the court found that The Incorporated Trustees of Clinton Health Access Initiative, Nigeria headed by Dr Owens Wiwa had committed a “gross violation of (Folarin’s) constitutional rights”.  The CHAI Nigeria had “severely wounded her, with their assault on her womanhood”.  The court found that the Nigerian entity had acted illegally and had tried to cover-up its unlawful actions by giving false evidence to the court.

But the court reserved its most scathing criticism for the US-based CHAI Inc and the William J Clinton Foundation Inc.

The court held that the Clinton Foundation’s Nigerian entity was a fully-controlled agent of the Clinton Foundation itself.  His Honour Judge Adejumo said, 

“It is on the record that (Folarin) made several self-humiliating entreaties to the US-based respondents (CHAI) to reconsider the decision to sack her which the respondents flagrantly rebuffed.  It is on the record that she appealed to the US head office in the United States (William J Clinton Foundation Inc), which instead of calling the Nigerian office to order, decided to ratify its illegal act.  It is equally on the record that the respondents have not shown any remorse, they have continued to justify the action.  Considering this high-handedness and gross violation of the constitutional rights of the applicant, it is my considered opinion that the applicant is entitled to the award of aggravated damages”.

The Nigerian court’s decision is now on the record at the International Labour Organisation’s legal precedent database.

The full court’s judgement is here.

Mrs Folarin Oreka Maiya received a full 12 months salary to compensate her for the Clintons’ inhumanity.” (Read more: Michael Smith News, 2/15/2020)  (Archive)

October 22, 2010: Biden’s energy adviser and Burisma deal-maker also aided in Russia’s purchase of Uranium One

Annie Medaglia (l) of the Atlantic Council’s Global Energy Center, moderates a June 1 discussion with Todd Foley of the American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE); Amos Hochstein of the US State Department; and Adnan Z. Amin of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). (Credit: Larry Luxner/Atlantic Council)

(…) Between his visits to Congress (and well-connected think tanks) to apprise decision makers of Putin’s energy antics, [Amos] Hochstein was Biden’s right-hand man meeting with numerous world leaders. He frequently flew to Ukraine (and other nations) with Biden to work out energy deals.

But Hochstein had a secret.

Time and again, Biden’s advisor failed to mention that he had witnessed Putin’s energy strategy firsthand. Hochstein communicated Putin’s energy dominance strategy in the oil and gas sectors very effectively, but he never mentioned Russia’s attempts to corner the global uranium market. It was something he had assisted personally.

While working as a U.S. lobbyist in the private sector, Hochstein had advised Rosatom’s subsidiary: Tenex.

Hochstein became a revolving door extraordinaire early in his Beltway career. As he weaved in and out of the private sector, his positions (and profits) rose substantially. From 2001 to 2007, Hochstein worked in various capacities at Washington lobbying powerhouse Cassidy & Associates. In 2006, then-Governor Mark Warner (D-Va.) hired Hochstein to serve as a senior policy advisor. Hochstein purportedly left Cassidy in January 2007 to join Connecticut Senator Chris Dodd’s presidential campaign, according to a press release by the firm. …

Yet, Hochstein continued to work for Cassidy’s deep-pocketed foreign clients, even while he was employed by Governor Warner and Senator Dodd’s presidential campaign. In 2006, Russian nuclear corporation Tenex asked Doug Campbell (unaware that he was an FBI operative) to find a Beltway lobbying powerhouse to help further their interests.

By March 2006, Campbell found himself meeting with Hochstein, who ensured that Tenex hired Cassidy & Associates. Cassidy claimed that Hochstein left the firm in January 2007, but Hochstein continued to meet with Putin’s top nuclear officials throughout 2007 and 2008 while he was working with powerful Democrats.

Did Warner and Dodd know that Hochstein was simultaneously serving Russian interests? Hochstein’s public bios make no mention of his work on behalf of Tenex, although he does acknowledge returning to Cassidy in August 2008 (and remaining there until 2011).

Before long, he was directly advising Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, her successor John Kerry, and finally Vice President Biden (and even President Obama). His LinkedIn profile is meticulously manicured to show no overlap between his public and private sector gigs, but, in fact, Hochstein advised multiple public officials and simultaneously worked to advance foreign interests while on the payroll of Cassidy.

According to the Obama White House’s visitor records, Hochstein visited more than 150 times between December 2010 and September 2016, including several trips to the Situation Room. His first visits occurred while he was still working with Cassidy.” (Read more: Just the News, 7/13/2020)  (Archive)

October 22, 2010 – Red flags are raised in national security assessments of the Uranium One deal

(Credit: public domain)

“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.

Barack Obama and Eric Holder (Credit: Olivier Douliery/Getty Images)

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 2012WSJ) 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 2016According 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.”

(Wall Street Journal, 12/12/2012)

2012 – 2017: DOJ Political Surveillance – From the IRS, to the FISA Court

An assembly of government reports and public records now indicates political exploitation of the NSA database, for weaponized intelligence surveillance of politicians, began mid-2012.  After an initial attempt to exploit IRS records, the legal tool used to access the NSA database was the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act or FISA.

With research files on the ’15, ’16 and ’17 political surveillance program; including information from the Mueller report and information from the IG Horowitz report; in combination with the Obama-era DOJ “secret research project” (their words, not mine); we are able to overlay the Obama-era domestic IC operations & gain a full understanding of how political surveillance was conducted over a period of four to six years.

The FISA-702 database extraction process, and utilization of the protections within the smaller intelligence community, became the primary process only after a previous DOJ effort ran into trouble. The established record from the 99-page FISC opinion rendered by Presiding Judge Rosemary Collyer on April 26, 2017, helps explain the details.

I would strongly urge everyone to read the FISC report because Judge Collyer outlines how the DOJ, which includes the FBI, had an “institutional lack of candor” in responses to the FISA court.  Very specifically, the court outlined how the Obama administration was continually lying to the court about both their activity and the rate of fourth amendment violations for illegal searches and seizures of U.S. persons’ private information. These violations continued for multiple years throughout Obama’s terms.

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.

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.

FISA-702(16) is a search of the system returning a U.S. person (“702”), and the “16” is a checkbox to initiate a search based on “To and From“. For example, if you put in a date and a phone number and check “16” as the search parameter the user will get the returns on everything “To and From” that identified phone number for the specific date. Calls, texts, contacts, etc. Including results for the inbound and outbound contacts.

FISA-702(17) is a search of the system returning a U.S. person (702), and the “17” is a checkbox to initiate a search based on everything “About” the search qualifier. For example, if you put a date and a phone number and check “17” as the search parameter the user will get the returns of everything about that phone. Calls, texts, contacts, geolocation (or GPS results), account information, user, service provider, etc. As a result, 702(17) can actually be used to locate where the phone (and user) was located on a specific date or sequentially over a specific period of time which is simply a matter of changing the date parameters.

And that’s just from a phone number.

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 was 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, November 2015 to April 2016.

Also, notice this very important quote:

”many of these non-compliant queries involved the use of the same identifiers over different date ranges.”

This tells us the system users 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% rate of unlawful FISA-702(16)(17) database abuse has likely been happening since 2012.

2012 is an important date in this database abuse because a network of specific interests is assembled that also shows up in 2016/2017:

  • Who was the 2012 FBI Director? Robert Mueller.  The same Mueller selected by the FBI group to become a special prosecutor in 2017.
  • Who was Robert Mueller’s chief-of-staff? Aaron Zebley.  The same Aaron Zebley, who became one of the lead lawyers on the Mueller special counsel.
  • Who was the 2012 CIA Director? John Brennan.
  • Who was the 2012 ODNI? James Clapper.
  • Remember, the NSA is inside the Pentagon (Defense Dept) command structure. Who was Defense Secretary? Ash Carter.

Now it becomes important to remember in 2016:

  • Who wanted NSA Director Mike Rogers fired? Brennan, Clapper, and Carter.
  • And finally, who wrote and signed-off-on the January 2017 Intelligence Community Assessment and then lied about the use of the Steele Dossier? John Brennan, James Clapper

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“:

And as noted, the contractor access was finally halted on April 18th, 2016.

[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 a 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 also: “no notice of this practice was given to the FISC until 2016“, that is important.

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 dating back to around 2012.  •The NSA 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. •The same people had multiple searches performed against their private information from November of 2015 to May of 2016, the exact time of the Republican presidential primary.

The outlined process certainly points toward a political spying and surveillance operation, and we are not the only one to think that’s what this system is being used for.” (Read more: Conservative Treehouse, 3/09/2020)  (Archive)

September 12, 2012 – Defense, State Dept documents reveal Obama administration knew that al Qaeda terrorists planned Benghazi attack 10 days in advance

Clinton with Libyan rebels upon her departure from Tripoli in Libya on October 18, 2011. (Credit: Reuters)

“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.

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)

October 10, 2012 – 2019: Ghislaine Maxwell and Jeffrey Epstein’s company TerraMar is financially supported by Clinton Foundation

(Credit: public domain)

“After her arrest this month on child sex trafficking crimes, multiple plaintiffs have connected her to highly evolved pedophile and human trafficking rings. After the death of Robert Maxwell, her father, in 1991 she moved to a Manhattan Property owned by Lynn Foreseter de Rothschild, whose husband is the British mega banker Evelyn Robert de Rothschild. The property is also listed as the base for TerraMar.

The TerraMar Project was a non-profit company that Ghislaine Maxwell started in 2012. Jeffrey Epstein and various other high power financiers funded the venture. The company described itself as an ocean conservation group but it shut down by 2019 over sex trafficking crimes stemming from Epstein’s arrest. It was only six days after Jeffrey Epstein was brought into custody that the firm announced it was shutting down permanently.

TerraMar didn’t last long but its short life was full of suspicious activity. The company had immediate support from globalist organizations including the Clinton Foundation. Maxwell attended multiple United Nations (UN) meetings and even spoke to the council as the founder of TerraMar. Ghislaine and another man from the company’s Board of Directors, Scott Borgerson, spoke in Washington DC at a special event sponsored by the Council on Foreign Relations.

The TerraMar Project was a non-profit company that Ghislaine Maxwell started in 2012. Jeffrey Epstein and various other high power financiers funded the venture. The company described itself as an ocean conservation group but it shut down by 2019 over sex trafficking crimes stemming from Epstein’s arrest. It was only six days after Jeffrey Epstein was brought into custody that the firm announced it was shutting down permanently.

(Read more: Repub.li, 7/07/2020)  (Archive)

March 7, 2014 – Nearly a billion dollars of Ukraine’s gold reserve is loaded on a plane destined for the United States

Ukraine Gold

(…)  “…one place where any serious probe can start is with a story we wrote in March 2014, when citing a local media report, we shone light on a mysterious operation in which a substantial portion of Ukraine’s gold reserves were loaded onboard an unmarked plane, and flown to the US, just weeks after the February 2014 revolution. From the source, March 7, 2014:

Tonight, around at 2:00 am, an unregistered transport plane took off took off from Boryspil airport.

According to Boryspil staff, prior to the plane’s appearance, four trucks and two cargo minibuses arrived at the airport all with their license plates missing. Fifteen people in black uniforms, masks and body armor stepped out, some armed with machine guns. These people loaded the plane with more than forty heavy boxes.

After this, several mysterious men arrived and also entered the plane. The loading was carried out in a hurry. After unloading, the plateless cars immediately left the runway, and the plane took off on an emergency basis.

Airport officials who saw this mysterious “special operation” immediately notified the administration of the airport, which however strongly advised them “not to meddle in other people’s business.”

Later, the editors were called by one of the senior officials of the former Ministry of Income and Fees, who reported that, according to him, tonight on the orders of one of the “new leaders” of Ukraine, all the gold reserves of the Ukraine were taken to the United States.

Needless to say, there was no official confirmation of any of this taking place, and in fact, our report in which we mused if the “price of Ukraine’s liberation” was the handover of Ukraine’s gold to the Fed at a time when Germany was actively seeking to repatriate its own physical gold located at the bedrock of the NY Fed, led to the usual mainstream media mockery.

But then everything changed in November 2014, when in an interview on Ukraine TV, none other than the then-head of the Ukraine Central Bank, Valeriya Gontareva (who became head of the Ukraine central bank in June 2014 when she replaced Stepan Kubiv and also presided over the nationalization of Kolomoiski’s PrivateBank in December 2016), made the stunning admission that “in the vaults of the central bank there is almost no gold left. There is a small amount of gold bullion left, but it’s just 1% of reserves.”

As Ukraina reported at the time, this stunning revelation means that not only has Ukraine been quietly depleting its gold throughout the year, but that the latest official number, according to which Ukraine gold was 8 times greater than the reported 1%, was fabricated, and that the real number is about 90% lower.

According to official statistics the NBU, the amount of gold in the vaults should be eight times more than is actually in stock. At the beginning of this month, the volume of gold was about $ 1 billion, or 8% of the total gold reserves. Now this is just one percent.

Assuming Gonaterva’s admission was true, it would imply that the official reserve data at the Central Bank was clearly fabricated, prompting questions about just how long ago the actual gold “displacement” took place. Could it have been during a cold night in March when “more than 40 heavy boxes” full of gold were loaded up on the plane and flown off to an unknown destination in the US?

To help out in this puzzle, we got some additional information from Rusila, which in Nov 2014 reported that “Ukraine’s gold reserves disappeared.”

According to recent data, the value of Ukraine gold should be $988.7 million. That is the value of gold proportion of gold in gold reserves is 8%. If you believe Gontareva, it turns out there is a mere $123.6 million in gold remaining. The figure is fantastic, considering that the amount of gold at the end of February (when the new authorities have already taken key positions) was $1.8 billion or 12% of the reserves.

In other words, since the beginning of the year gold reserves dropped almost 16 times. Gold stock in February were approximately 21 tons of gold, the presence of which was once proudly reported by Sergei Arbuzov, who led the NBU in 2010-2012. So what happened to 20.8 tons of gold?

Explaining the dramatic reduction in the context of the hryvnia devaluation through gold sales is impossible. After all, 92% of the reserves of the National Bank is in the form of a foreign currency that is much easier to use to maintain hryvnia levels and cover current liabilities. Besides since March the international price of gold has plummeted. Selling gold under such circumstances is a crime. In fact it would be more expedient to increase gold reserves through currency conversion in precious metals.

But apparently the result is not due to someone’s negligence or carelessness. The gold reserve has been actively carted out of the country, as a result of the very vague economic and political prospects of Ukraine. Something similar happened to the gold reserves of the USSR – when the Gorbachev elite realized that perestroika is leading the country to the abyss, gold simply disappeared in an unknown direction.

Oddly enough there was no official gold reduction just prior to the time when Victoria “Fuck the EU” Nuland was planning Yanukovich’s ouster, and as shown above, quite the contrary: Ukraine’s gold pile was increasing with every passing year… until it collapsed in early 2014. It is a little odder that it was during the period when Ukraine was “supported” by its western allies that several billion dollars worth of physical gold – the people’s gold – just “vaporized.”

Which brings us to the $1.8 billion question: what happened to Ukraine’s goldbecause if the now-former central banker’s story is accurate, that’s roughly the amount of gold that quietly left the country just days after the US-backed presidential coup. And, it is also roughly how much taxpayer-funded Ukraine aid, procured by Joe Biden while his son was working at Burisma, is now missing.

At this point, there are certainly many pressing questions but one stands out: was the real “quid pro quo” not one of Trump holding up payments to Kiev in exchange for a probe of Biden – which after reading all of the above is more than warranted – but if the quo, namely US support for regime change in Ukraine and almost two billion in now missing taxpayer funds which ended up in an oligarch’s bank and mysteriously “vaporized” but not before said oligarch hired the son of the US vice president, wasn’t the quid to some 40 tons of Ukraine leaving forever to an unknown destination in the US.

We hope that Trump’s second term will provide ample time and opportunity to answer this critical question, and just to set off investigators on the right track, we believe that any investigation should begin with the former central bank head, Gontareva, who he also fled to London where she now lives in self-appointed exile and where she now “fears for her life” after one of her homes near Kiev was badly damaged in an arson attack and was also injured in August when she was knocked down by a car in London. Failing that, one can always check the flight manifests and the cargo contents of all planes that left Ukraine and arrived in the US on March 7, 2014, with a cargo consisting of billions of dollars in gold…” (Read more: Zero Hedge, 2/08/2020)  (Archive)

May 14, 2014 – Glenn Greenwald describes Hillary Clinton: “Banal, corrupted, principle-free, power-hungry…”

In May 2014 during a Q & A with GQ, Glenn Greenwald is asked the following question about the upcoming 2016 election, following with his reply:

How do you feel about the early presidential jockeying?

“Hillary is banal, corrupted, drained of vibrancy and passion. I mean, she’s been around forever, the Clinton circle. She’s a fucking hawk and like a neocon, practically. She’s surrounded by all these sleazy money types who are just corrupting everything everywhere. But she’s going to be the first female president, and women in America are going to be completely invested in her candidacy. Opposition to her is going to be depicted as misogynistic, like opposition to Obama has been depicted as racist. It’s going to be this completely symbolic messaging that’s going to overshadow the fact that she’ll do nothing but continue everything in pursuit of her own power. They’ll probably have a gay person after Hillary who’s just going to do the same thing.

I hope this happens so badly, because I think it’ll be so instructive in that regard. It’ll prove the point. Americans love to mock the idea of monarchy, and yet we have our own de facto monarchy. I think what these leaks did is, they demonstrated that there really is this government that just is the kind of permanent government that doesn’t get affected by election choices and that isn’t in any way accountable to any sort of democratic transparency and just creates its own world off on its own.” (GQ, 5/14/2014)

Later, in November 2014, Greenwald writes about Hillary’s forthcoming run for the Presidency. Here are some excerpts from the Intercept:

It’s easy to strike a pose of cynicism when contemplating Hillary Clinton’s inevitable (and terribly imminent) presidential campaign. As a drearily soulless, principle-free, power-hungry veteran of DC’s game of thrones, she’s about as banal of an American politician as it gets. One of the few unique aspects to her, perhaps the only one, is how the genuinely inspiring gender milestone of her election will (following the Obama model) be exploited to obscure her primary role as guardian of the status quo.

But one shouldn’t be so jaded. There is genuine and intense excitement over the prospect of (another) Clinton presidency. Many significant American factions regard her elevation to the Oval Office as an opportunity for rejuvenation, as a stirring symbol of hope and change, as the vehicle for vital policy advances. Those increasingly inspired factions include:

Wall Street

Down on Wall Street they don’t believe (Clinton’s populist rhetoric) for a minute. While the finance industry does genuinely hate Warren, the big bankers love Clinton, and by and large they badly want her to be presidentMany of the rich and powerful in the financial industry—among them, Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein, Morgan Stanley CEO James Gorman, Tom Nides, a powerful vice chairman at Morgan Stanley, and the heads of JPMorganChase and Bank of America—consider Clinton a pragmatic problem-solver not prone to populist rhetoric. To them, she’s someone who gets the idea that we all benefit if Wall Street and American business thrive. What about her forays into fiery rhetoric? They dismiss it quickly as political maneuvers. None of them think she really means her populism. (Read more: The Intercept, 11/14/2014)

In October 2016, candidate Donald Trump was of the same opinion:

May 2014 – Hunter Biden is on the board of a trade coalition lobbying Obama admin on Ukraine aid

Vice President Joe Biden, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), and Hunter Biden, a member of the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition (USGLC) Board, attend the USGLC awards dinner at the Grand Hyatt Washington on December 12, 2017, where Biden, along with Reps. Kay Granger (R-Texas) and Nita M. Lowey (D-N.Y.), were honored for their long-standing commitment to America’s global leadership through strong U.S. development and diplomacy programs. (Credit: U. S. Global Leadership Coalition)

“Hunter Biden was on the board of a trade coalition that lobbied the Obama administration in 2014 on foreign assistance to Ukraine and appears to have set up a State Department meeting for the group’s president.

Biden’s links to the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition (USGLC) and its affiliate, the Center for U.S. Global Leadership, have gone largely unreported in the coverage of his various business dealings, which have caused a headache for his father as he runs for president.

(…) USGLC, which lobbies and advocates for increased spending in the State Department’s International Affairs Budget, added a series of Ukraine-related bills to its lobbying portfolio at around the same time, lobbying disclosures show.

Biden’s private equity firm, Rosemont Seneca, was by far the smallest company of any of the directors on USGLC or the Center for U.S. Global Leadership.” (Read more: The Daily Caller, 2/17/2020)  (Archive)

2015 – 2016: A former Ukrainian Security Service (SBU) employee, claims President Poroshenko and Clinton Foundation donor Victor Pinchuk, diverted IMF funds into Clinton 2016 campaign

During the US election campaign in 2016, the Ukrainian authorities led by President Petro Poroshenko (r), openly and actively support Hillary Clinton. (Credit: public domain)

(Timeline editor’s note: This is an excerpt from an article written by Vasily Prozorov who is a former employee of the Ukrainian security service SBU. All of his work can be found at ukr-leaks.org. We hope documents will eventually be released to further verify the story.)

Auto-translated in Chrome:

(…) “Manafort is only one of the participants in the drama, called “Ukraine Gate”. Another story is related to the financial support of Hillary Clinton from Ukraine. The intrigue is that during the presidential race in the United States, official Kiev helped the Democratic candidate not only politically and informationally, but also used the money stolen from the IMF tranches, to sponsor your favorite.

So, according to the information available to me, Ukraine is currently continuing investigation of criminal proceedings regarding the theft of IMF funds received by the National Bank of Ukraine (NBU).

Vasily Prozorov (Credit: public domain)

It was assumed that foreign aid would be intended to support the financial sector of Ukraine. Under this program, the NBU allocated funds to various private credit organizations of the country. Their owners transferred the received amounts to offshore companies, transferring the agreed kickbacks to the head of the NBU Valeria Gontareva and her patron Petro Poroshenko, for whom she had previously worked in the ICU investment campaign.

Such banks of Ukraine as Tavrika, Pivdenkombank, Avtokrazbank, Moscow Commercial Bank (Converse Bank), Finrostbank, Terra Bank, Kiivska Rus, Vernum Bank participated in this scheme, “Credit Dnipro”, “Delta Bank” and others. Money was transferred from the country to offshore via Austrian bank MeinlBank AG.

The largest volumes of monetary assets were received by two credit organizations – Credit Dnipro and Delta Bank. These banks are closely associated with one of the richest Ukrainian oligarchs – Victor Pinchuk, son-in-law of former President of Ukraine Leonid Kuchma. The Ukrainian billionaire maintained contacts with the former IMF representative in Ukraine, Jerome Wash, and Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the former IMF managing director, was a member of the Credit Dnipro Supervisory Board. It is hard to imagine that these distinguished gentlemen were not aware of the financial transactions of their Ukrainian friends. Therefore, it is possible that an international group was engaged in the theft of billions of foreign aid to Ukraine.

At the next stage, IMF loans went to the offshore companies MelfaGroup LTD (Belize), TandiceLimited (Cyprus), TosalanTradingLimited (Cyprus), AgaluskoInvestmentLimited (Cyprus), WintenTrading LTD (Cyprus), SilistenTradingLimited “NasternoCommercialLimited.” These offices, as it turned out, also associated with Victor Pinchuk.

But this was not the end of the financial chain. Most of the money from these foreign assets of Pinchuk went to the accounts of his main “washing machine” – The Victor Pinchuk Foundation. And already the “laundered money” was transferred to the Clinton Foundation. Since 2012, for almost five years, the family of the former US president has been listed more than 29 million dollars. Moreover, the largest tranches from the Pinchuk Foundation to the Clinton Foundation were held in 2015 and 2016. By a “coincidental” coincidence, it was at this time that Hillary fought for the post of US president.

Scheme of theft of IMF money tranches and their transfer to the Clinton fund.

Obviously, such a scheme was implemented with the direct participation of the head of the National Bank, Mrs. Gontareva, and the assistance of Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk and President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko.” (Read more: Ukraine Leaks/Archived, 7/26/2019) (Direct link)

2015 – 2016: The IMF money withdrawal and laundering scheme, from Ukraine to the Clinton campaign

Translated:

(…) “In May 2016, according to the decision of the Kiev Pechersk Court, some Ukrainian credit organizations used shadow schemes for withdrawing funds through the correspondent accounts of the Austrian Meinl Bank AG, the damage from their actions amounted to more than $ 800 million.

(Credit: Kate Matberg/Mediapart)

Another “ingenious scheme” worked smoothly as follows. Ukrainian banks entered into custody and collateral agreements with a non-resident Austrian bank, in which all amounts of funds on correspondent accounts, accrued interest and any future receipts to these accounts were pledged to the foreign bank. The pledge was provided to ensure the fulfillment of obligations under the loan agreements that the non-resident bank, in turn, concluded with third parties – non-resident companies in Ukraine. The latter were associated with the owners of Ukrainian banking institutions. And the borrowers did not fulfill their loan obligations, for which Meinl Bank AG unilaterally extrajudicially charged (i.e., debited from the accounts of Ukrainian banks) all funds in its favor.

And now let’s take a closer look at the list of these Ukrainian banks and using their own reporting documents (by the way, already removed from the Internet, but still recorded by the author before this sad event), we will analyze some of their activities.

Former Ukraine Minister of Finance, Natalie Jaresko is named to manage Puerto Rico’s financial crisis on March 24, 2017. (Credit: public domain)

Of the 36 banks that were granted loans by the National Bank of Ukraine at the expense of IMF tranches, 11 were closed without returning borrowed funds (June 10, 2014 – March 15, 2018, Chairman of the Board Ms. Gontareva), 11 were closed without returning borrowed funds. It seems not so much in the framework of the “struggle for the purification and improvement of the financial and credit system of the state”.

However, the true scope, excuse my French, the scam becomes clear when it turns out that only eight credit institutions received up to 95% of this money. They strenuously pumped them through the already familiar Austrian Meinl Bank AG with a further withdrawal to private offshore companies in Cyprus and Belize. As a result, six of them have already left the orderly ranks of the banking system of Ukraine. And it happened somehow quietly, almost without ceremony, which suggests the national scale of such “Mummery”. Yes, and the ratio of the numbers 11 to 36, or 6 out of 11, not all the same – 6 out of 8 rather confirms our conjecture that Ms. N. Yaresko who held the post of Minister of Finance from February 12, 2014 to April 14, 2016 owned the situation.

It would not be superfluous to recall that Ms. N. Yaresko, a citizen of the United States treated by the highest presidential power, obtained the citizenship of Ukraine, so to speak, from the hands of Mr. Poroshenko for “special merit.” Was it only for merits to the state and what exactly were her merits?  Maybe in the ability to “correctly” distribute and divide financial flows, primarily taking care of the welfare of Mr. Poroshenko’s “team” and his inner circle?

Former IMF representative in Ukraine, Jerome Vacher (Credit: public domain)

Two more banks – participants of this scheme are PJSC “Credit Dnipro” and PJSC “Delta Bank” affiliated with it (declared insolvent in 2015, the bankruptcy procedure is not completed) continue to operate. Their owner is oligarch Pinchuk V.M. – son-in-law of the former President of Ukraine Kuchma L.D. Mr. Pinchuk maintained close ties with the former representative of the IMF in Ukraine, Mr. Jerome Vacher. In addition, the supervisory board of the IMF Dominique Strauss-Kahn is on the supervisory board of PJSC “Credit Dnipro”. It should also be noted that Mr. Pinchuk is the founder of the “Victor Pinchuk Foundation”, which is funded, including through some private offshore companies.

Do you think this is another final link in the chain of funds adventure allocated by the IMF? Do not hurry! Since 2012, for almost five years, only through the Pinchuk’s fund, “Clinton Foundation” received more than $ 29 million. Yes, my dear Ukrainian reader, Mr. Pinchuk, in fact, became one of the largest financial donors to the former American presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.

Simultaneously, Mr. Pinchuk did not forget Mr. Poroshenko, paying for his election campaign in the media. Mr. Dudnik A.P. was responsible for this truly significant event for one of the leading Ukrainian oligarchs – yes, exactly the head of the supervisory board of the PJSC “Credit Dnipro” bank.

And this already really looks like a “state level” of the highest standard, especially considering the “State Dept” past of Ms. N. Yaresko. Isn’t it a perfect mediator and “watchwoman” for all interested parties?!

Clinton Foundation mega-donor Victor Pinchuk, (l), Toomas Hendrik (c), President of the Republic of Estonia and Petro Poroshenko (r), President of Ukraine. (Credit: Pinchuk Fund)

So instead of financing own economy, the current Ukrainian government headed by Mr. Poroshenko in effect, created a corrupt scheme of international scope, replenished its personal reserves “for a rainy day” and pleased the “democrats” ruling in the USA at that time. However, the Ukrainian president is not very successful with the current American “partners”. Violating the laws of at least two countries, as well as all conceivable principles of democracy and decency (yes, they also exist in politics, to put it mildly, are peculiar, but still) the US Democratic Party actually received uncontrollable income at the expense of the world financial organization allocated to support economy of another state – Ukraine. A crime? Yes! And it is very similar to the “payoff”! (Read more: Kate Matberg/Mediapart, 4/15/2019)

(Timeline editor’s note: We hope documents will be released to further verify this information.)

March 19, 2015 – Ukrainian oligarch, Victor Pinchuk’s ties to Serhiy Leshchenko and the Clintons

On April 11, 2019, Greg Craig, Obama’s former White House counsel and a partner at law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, was indicted for lying about and concealing his work in Ukraine. Craig, who reportedly worked closely with Manafort, was paid more than $4 million to produce an “independent” report justifying Ukraine’s trial and conviction of the former prime minister, Yulia Tymoshenko. Notably, Craig’s name was not included in the “Black Ledger” leak from Leshchenko and Sytnyk.

The indictment notes that “a wealthy private Ukrainian” was fully funding the report. In a recent YouTube video, Craig publicly stated that “it was Doug Schoen who brought this project to me, and he told me he was acting on behalf of Victor Pinchuk, who was a pro-western, Ukrainian businessman who helped to fund the project.”

“The Firm understood that its work was to be largely funded by Victor Pinchuk,” Skadden wrote in recent FARA filings.

Pinchuk put out a statement on Jan. 21, denying any financial involvement:

“Mr. Pinchuk was not the source of any funds used to pay fees of Skadden in producing their report into the trial and conviction of Yulia Tymoshenko. He was in no way responsible for those costs. Neither Mr. Pinchuk nor companies affiliated with him have ever been a client of Skadden. Mr. Pinchuk and his team had no role in the work done by Skadden, including in the preparation or dissemination of the Skadden report.”

Pinchuk is the founder of Interpipe, a steel pipe manufacturer. He owns Credit Dnipro Bank, several ferroalloy plants and a media empire. He is married to Elena Pinchuk, the daughter of former Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma.

Pinchuk has been accused of profiting immensely from the purchase of state-owned assets at severely below-market prices through political favoritism.

Between April 4 and April 12, 2016, Ukrainian parliamentarian Olga Bielkova had four meetings, with Samuel Charap (International Institute for Strategic Studies), Liz Zentos (National Security Council), Michael Kimmage (State Department), and David Kramer (McCain Institute).

FARA documents filed by Schoen showed that he was paid $40,000 a month by Pinchuk (page 5)—in part to arrange these meetings.

Schoen attempted to arrange another 72 meetings with congressmen and media (page 10). It’s unknown how many of these meetings, if any, took place.

In September 2013, Pinchuk pays Clinton to appear at a YES event promoting Ukrainian membership of the European Union, break with Russia, and regime change in Kiev and Moscow. (Credit: Pinchuk Foundation)

Schoen also helped Pinchuk establish ties with the Clinton Foundation. The Wall Street Journal reported on March 19, 2015, how Schoen connected Pinchuk with senior Clinton State Department staffers in order to pressure former Ukrainian President Yanukovych to release Tymoshenko–a political rival of Yanukovych–from jail. And the relationship between Pinchuk and the Clintons continued. According to the Kyiv Post:

“Clinton and her husband Bill, the 42nd U.S. president, have been paid speakers at the annual YES and other Pinchuk events. They describe themselves as friends of Pinchuk, who is known internationally as a businessman and philanthropist.”

Although exact numbers aren’t clear, reports filed by the Clinton Foundation indicate that as much as $25 million of Pinchuk’s donations went to the Clinton organization.

Pinchuk also has ties to Leshchenko, the Ukrainian MP who leaked the information on Manafort. Leshchenko had been a frequent speaker at the Ukrainian Breakfast, a traditional private event held at Davos, Switzerland, and hosted by the Victor Pinchuk Foundation and has also been pictured with Pinchuk at multiple other events.” (Read more: The Epoch Times, 4/26/2019)

Aug. 26, 2015 – Donna Brazile: Inside Hillary Clinton’s Secret Takeover of the DNC

(Credit: Robyn Beck/Getty Images)

Donna Brazile is the former interim chair of the Democratic National Committee. Excerpted from the book Hacks: The Inside Story of the Break-ins and Breakdowns that Put Donald Trump in the White House to be published on November 7, 2017, by Hachette Books, a division of Hachette Book Group. Copyright 2017 Donna Brazile.

(…) “I had promised Bernie when I took the helm of the Democratic National Committee after the convention that I would get to the bottom of whether Hillary Clinton’s team had rigged the nomination process, as a cache of emails stolen by Russian hackers and posted online had suggested. I’d had my suspicions from the moment I walked in the door of the DNC a month or so earlier, based on the leaked emails. But who knew if some of them might have been forged? I needed to have solid proof, and so did Bernie.

So I followed the money. My predecessor, Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, had not been the most active chair in fundraising at a time when President Barack Obama’s neglect had left the party in significant debt. As Hillary’s campaign gained momentum, she resolved the party’s debt and put it on a starvation diet. It had become dependent on her campaign for survival, for which she expected to wield control of its operations.

Debbie was not a good manager. She hadn’t been very interested in controlling the party—she let Clinton’s headquarters in Brooklyn do as it desired so she didn’t have to inform the party officers how bad the situation was. How much control Brooklyn had and for how long was still something I had been trying to uncover for the last few weeks.

By September 7, the day I called Bernie, I had found my proof and it broke my heart.

***

The Saturday morning after the convention in July, I called Gary Gensler, the chief financial officer of Hillary’s campaign. He wasted no words. He told me the Democratic Party was broke and $2 million in debt.

“What?” I screamed. “I am an officer of the party and they’ve been telling us everything is fine and they were raising money with no problems.”

That wasn’t true, he said. Officials from Hillary’s campaign had taken a look at the DNC’s books. Obama left the party $24 million in debt—$15 million in bank debt and more than $8 million owed to vendors after the 2012 campaign—and had been paying that off very slowly. Obama’s campaign was not scheduled to pay it off until 2016. Hillary for America (the campaign) and the Hillary Victory Fund (its joint fundraising vehicle with the DNC) had taken care of 80 percent of the remaining debt in 2016, about $10 million, and had placed the party on an allowance.

If I didn’t know about this, I assumed that none of the other officers knew about it, either. That was just Debbie’s way. In my experience, she didn’t come to the officers of the DNC for advice and counsel. She seemed to make decisions on her own and let us know at the last minute what she had decided, as she had done when she told us about the hacking only minutes before the Washington Post broke the news.

On the phone, Gary told me the DNC had needed a $2 million loan, which the campaign had arranged.

“No! That can’t be true!” I said. “The party cannot take out a loan without the unanimous agreement of all of the officers.”

“Gary, how did they do this without me knowing?” I asked. “I don’t know how Debbie relates to the officers,” Gary said. He described the party as fully under the control of Hillary’s campaign, which seemed to confirm the suspicions of the Bernie camp. The campaign had the DNC on life support, giving it money every month to meet its basic expenses, while the campaign was using the party as a fund-raising clearinghouse. Under FEC law, an individual can contribute a maximum of $2,700 directly to a presidential campaign. But the limits are much higher for contributions to state parties and a party’s national committee.

Individuals who had maxed out their $2,700 contribution limit to the campaign could write an additional check for $353,400 to the Hillary Victory Fund—that figure represented $10,000 to each of the 32 states’ parties who were part of the Victory Fund agreement—$320,000—and $33,400 to the DNC. The money would be deposited in the states first, and transferred to the DNC shortly after that. Money in the battleground states usually stayed in that state, but all the other states funneled that money directly to the DNC, which quickly transferred the money to Brooklyn.

“Wait,” I said. “That victory fund was supposed to be for whoever was the nominee, and the state party races. You’re telling me that Hillary has been controlling it since before she got the nomination?”

Gary said the campaign had to do it or the party would collapse.

“That was the deal that Robby struck with Debbie,” he explained, referring to campaign manager Robby Mook. “It was to sustain the DNC. We sent the party nearly $20 million from September until the convention, and more to prepare for the election.”

“What’s the burn rate, Gary?” I asked. “How much money do we need every month to fund the party?”

The burn rate was $3.5 million to $4 million a month, he said.

I gasped. I had a pretty good sense of the DNC’s operations after having served as interim chair five years earlier. Back then the monthly expenses were half that. What had happened? The party chair usually shrinks the staff between presidential election campaigns, but Debbie had chosen not to do that. She had stuck lots of consultants on the DNC payroll, and Obama’s consultants were being financed by the DNC, too.

When we hung up, I was livid. Not at Gary, but at this mess I had inherited. I knew that Debbie had outsourced a lot of the management of the party and had not been the greatest at fundraising. I would not be that kind of chair, even if I was only an interim chair. Did they think I would just be a surrogate for them, get on the road and rouse up the crowds? I was going to manage this party the best I could and try to make it better, even if Brooklyn did not like this. It would be weeks before I would fully understand the financial shenanigans that were keeping the party on life support.” (Read more: Politico, 11/07/2017)

NPR reports having seen a copy of the agreement dated August 26, 2015, that Clinton made with the DNC and transcribes it here.

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

Felix Sater tweets to Bill Clinton on August 28, 2018,  a photo of them at a party in the Hamptons . (Credit: Felix Sater/Twitter)

(…) 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 [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 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)

October 22, 2015 – FBI leadership shows double standard for Clinton and Trump 2016 campaigns…defensive briefings for Clinton, FISA warrants for team Trump

“Declassified documents obtained by the Senate Judiciary Committee show FBI leadership exhibited a “double standard” for President Trump’s and Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaigns, according to Chairman Lindsey Graham.

The South Carolina Republican said FBI materials, which he unveiled on Sunday, show an FBI field office wanted to pursue a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrant in 2015 related to an “operative” believed to be connected to a foreign government trying to influence Clinton’s campaign by “illegally” funneling millions of dollars but were stopped by the bureau’s “Seventh Floor,” which demanded Clinton’s team receive a defensive briefing about “the problem so she could fix it.”

(…) Graham’s office released the documents soon after his appearance on Fox News. The chairman did not identify the Clinton campaign associate and told anchor Maria Bartiromo that he was not at liberty to identify the country the FBI believed to be attempting to infiltrate Clinton’s team.

“There was a clear double standard by the Department of Justice and FBI when it came to the Trump and Clinton campaigns in 2016,” Graham said in a statement. “These newly released documents indicate that a foreign government was trying to influence the Clinton campaign through a campaign associate and the FBI was seeking a FISA warrant. However, the Bureau, as it is supposed to do, required that Hillary Clinton be defensively briefed about the matter so she could engage in corrective action.”

When it came the Trump’s campaign, Graham said, “There were four counterintelligence investigations opened against Trump campaign associates. Not one time was President Trump defensively briefed about the FBI’s concerns. Even more egregious, when the FBI gave a generic briefing to the Trump campaign about foreign influence, not only did they fail to mention the specific concerns about Trump associates, they sent an FBI agent into the briefing to monitor President Trump and General Flynn.”

The defensive briefing to Clinton’s campaign was conducted at FBI headquarters on Oct. 22, 2015 by counterintelligence official David Archey. The briefing was also attended by two Clinton attorneys — referred to only as “Counsel to Hillary Clinton” from “Lawfirm” in the redacted documents. The summary of the briefing notes that a “full investigation” had been initiated on Nov. 25, 2014, and FBI emails indicate that the DOJ’s Office of Intelligence had sent the FBI a FISA application certification on Dec. 15, 2014, for final FBI approval, which apparently never happened.

“The purpose of the meeting was to provide a classified defensive briefing for Mrs. Clinton’s presidential campaign,” Archey wrote. “Counsel to Hillary Clinton were advised the FBI has information that the Foreign Government is attempting to influence Hillary Clinton through lobbying efforts and campaign contributions. The campaign contributions may come in a form outside established parameters for such contributions.”

Archey also advised Clinton’s lawyers that “the FBI was providing them with this briefing for awareness and so Ms. Clinton could take appropriate action to protect herself.” The FBI provided Clinton’s lawyers with “examples of issues that were known to be potentially important to the Foreign Government” including five different pieces of “Sensitive Information,” which are redacted. Archey said the campaign “should increase its vigilance of contributions related to any of the matters discussed above.”

A number of declassified FBI emails from earlier in 2015, before her campaign began, show members of the FBI pushing for a FISA against the unnamed person connected to an unnamed foreign government attempting to influence Clinton’s probable campaign and wondering what was behind the holdup.

WSJ is reporting that Hillary Clinton plans to formally announce her 2016 Presidential candidacy in April 2015. To me, this underscores the need for us to push this FISA. By the time we get it signed and go up, we would only be up a few weeks before she announces, at best,” one FBI official wrote on March 2, 2015. “On the other hand, if we wait for the events to unfold … her announcement may occur in advance of us getting the FISA coverage. That puts us even further behind the curve on the intel necessary for this operation.”

The next month, an unnamed FBI special agent-in-charge wrote an email to FBI Director James Comey, lamenting that “the FISA application has remained in limbo for the last four months, even though subsequent investigative activity” by an unnamed person held office “provided additional probable cause.” The field office was “still uncertain as to why the application has not been sent to DOJ for final approval,” according to the April 14, 2015 email, “although several reasons have been put forth” including that “the decision to put the application on hold” originated “on the seventh floor” — referring to FBI leadership.

“While superficially connected to political candidates, the investigation targets a NONUSPER [Non-U.S. Person] involved in illegal activity; it does not target the candidate(s), and there is no evidence the candidate is even aware of the potential targeting,” the special agent told Comey.

Ultimately, the FISA didn’t happen, according to Graham. His press release decried a “double standard” by the FBI when it came to the Clinton and Trump campaigns. (Read more: Washington Examiner, 8/23/2020)  (Archive)

SJC Clinton briefing by Danny Chaitin on Scribd

December 2015 – March 2017: A new whistleblower emerges claiming the Treasury was spying on Flynn, Manafort, the Trump family and others

“President Barack Obama’s Treasury Department regularly surveilled retired Army Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn’s financial records and transactions beginning in December 2015 and well into 2017, before, during and after when he served at the White House as President Donald Trump’s National Security Director, a former senior Treasury Department official, and veteran of the intelligence community, told the Star Newspapers.

Richard K. Delmar (Credit: public domain)

(…) In March 2017, she filed a formal whistleblower complaint with Acting Treasury Inspector General Richard K. Delmar, who continues in that office today, she said. Beyond Delmar acknowledging receipt of the complaint, the inspector general never followed up on the matter.

(…) This surveillance program was run out of Treasury’s Office of Intelligence Analysis, which was then under the leadership of S. Leslie Ireland. Ireland came to OIA in 2010 after a long tenure at the Central Intelligence Agency and a one-year stint as Obama’s daily in-person intelligence briefer.

The whistleblower said Treasury should never have been part of the unmasking of Flynn, because its surveillance operation was off-the-books. That is to say, the Justice Department never gave the required approval to the Treasury program, and so there were no guidelines, approvals nor reports that would be associated with a DOJ-sanctioned domestic surveillance operation.

“Accessing this information without approved and signed attorney general guidelines would violate U.S. persons constitutional rights and civil liberties,” she said.

By March 2016, the whistleblower said she and a colleague, who was detailed to Treasury from the intelligence community, became convinced that the surveillance of Flynn was not tied to legitimate criminal or national security concerns, but was straight-up political surveillance among other illegal activity occurring at Treasury.

“When I showed it to her, what she said, ‘Oh, sh%t!’ and I knew right then and there that I was right – this was some shady stuff,” the whistleblower said.

“It wasn’t just him,” the whistleblower said. “They were targeting other U.S. citizens, as well.”

Only two names are listed in the whistleblower’s official paperwork, so the others must remain sealed, she said. The second name is Paul J. Manafort Jr., the one-time chairman of Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign.

The other names include: Members of Congress, the most senior staffers on the 2016 Trump campaign and members of Trump’s family, she said.

“Another thing they would do is take targeted names from a certain database – I cannot name, but you can guess – and they were going over to an unclassified database and they were running those names in the unclassified database,” she said.

This ruse was to get around using classified resources to surveil Americans, she said. Once the Treasury personnel had enough information about someone they were targeting from the black box, they would go to the white box for faster and more informed search.

It was routine for these searches that had no criminal nor national security predicate, merely a political predicate, she said.”  (Read more: The Ohio Star, 5/18/2020 (Archive)


Conservative Treehouse has more to say about this whistleblower complaint:

“This whistleblower complaint simply makes sense.

Jack Lew (Credit: White House Archives)

We know Jack Lew was moved from President Obama’s White House to the position of Treasury Secretary specifically because the IRS targeting became public.   As Treasury Secretary, Mr. Lew was in a position to keep damaging information from surfacing.

Political spying 1.0 was actually the weaponization of the IRS. This 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 early spring 2012.

The IRS scandal was never really about the IRS, it was always about the DOJ asking the IRS for the database of information. That is why it was transparently a conflict when the same DOJ was tasked with investigating the DOJ/IRS scandal.

Additionally, Obama sent his chief-of-staff Jack Lew to become Treasury Secretary; effectively placing an ally to oversee/cover-up any issues. As Treasury Secretary Lew did just that.

[…] The timeline reflects a few months after realizing the “Secret Research Project” was now worthless (June 2012), they focused more deliberately on a smaller network within the intelligence apparatus and began weaponizing the FBI/NSA database.

Sometime around the summer of 2012 the Obama administration shifted from direct searches of the Treasury IRS files, to using contractor access to the NSA database as a way to conduct political surveillance and export search results without any minimization.

The process of exploiting the NSA database continued for years until March 2016 when a severe uptick in activity, coinciding with candidate Donald Trump becoming the presumptive GOP nominee, flagged the NSA database auditor.

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

It just makes sense the exported contractor results from database access would then transfer to non-classified (Treasury) searches on other networks for more details.   That process is exactly what the Treasury whistleblower is outlining.

Here’s the full background story.

March 19, 2016 – The phishing email that hacks the account of John Podesta, originates from Ukraine

“This appears to be the phishing email that hacked Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta’s Gmail account. Further, The Clinton campaign’s own computer help desk thought it was real email sent by Google, even though the email address had a suspicious “googlemail.com” extension.”

podesta-phishing.png

The email, with the subject line “*Someone has your password,*” greeted Podesta, “Hi John” and then said, “Someone just used your password to try to sign into your Google Account john.podesta@gmail.com.” Then it offered a time stamp and an IP address in “Location: Ukraine.”

“Google stopped this sign-in attempt. You should change your password immediately.” And it then offered a link to change his password.

“This is a legitimate email,” Charles Delevan at the HFA help desk wrote to Podesta’s chief of staff, Sara Latham. “John needs to change his password immediately, and ensure that two-factor authentication is turned on his account.”

legitimate-email.png

Delevan included the Gmail link that would be used to change a user’s password, but whoever changed Podesta’s password instead clicked on the shortened URL that was in the original phishing email. This is the same technique used to hack Colin Powell’s emails and the Democratic National Committee emails, according to the website Motherboard.” (Read more: CBS News, 10/28/2016) (Wikileaks – Podesta Emails)

April-September 2016: Unpacking the other Clinton-linked Russia dossier – A closer look at the Shearer memos/dossier

Cody Shearer (Credit: public domain)

“Rep. Nunes is not the first Republican to question what role the Shearer memo may have played in the FBI’s investigation into the Trump team and its possible role in securing the warrant under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. Chairman Charles Grassley and Sen. Lindsey Graham of the Senate Judiciary Committee alluded to the Shearer document in a memorandum attached to a Jan. 4, 2018 letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein referring Steele to the Department of Justice for a criminal inquiry. In their redacted classified memorandum, the two Republican senators hint at the possibility that the FBI’s probe into the Trump team’s possible ties to Russia is the result of an operation managed by the Clinton inner circle.

“One memorandum by Mr. Steele that was not published by BuzzFeed is dated October 19, 2016,” write Grassley and Graham. “Mr. Steele’s memorandum states that his company ‘received this report from [REDACTED] US State Department,’ that the report was second in a series, and that the report was information that came from a foreign sub-source who ‘is in touch with [REDACTED], a contact of [REDACTED], a friend of the Clintons, who passed it to [REDACTED].’ It is troubling enough that the Clinton campaign funded Mr. Steele’s work, but that these Clinton associates were contemporaneously feeding Mr. Steele’s allegations raises additional concerns about his credibility.”

Writing in his Feb. 8 Washington Post op-ed about getting the Shearer memo from Sidney Blumenthal in  September 2016, Obama State Department official Winer explained that soon after the Blumenthal meeting, he met with Christopher Steele. Winer had known Steele, a longtime associate who often used Winer as his point of contact at the State Department. Steele had shown Winer the memos he’d written on Trump’s possible ties to Russia.

Winer asserted that in reading Shearer’s memo, he was “struck … how some of the material echoed Steele’s but appeared to involve different sources.” He shared Shearer’s memo with Steele, who described it as “potentially ‘collateral’ information,” presumably to buttress his own findings. The FBI, as Winer explained, had asked Steele to provide any supporting information. From the Grassley-Graham letter, it appears that Steele gave the FBI the Shearer report titled “FSB Interview,” “the second in a series.” He either withheld the first, “The Compromised Candidate” report, or Winer never gave it to him.

During the same period, late summer and early fall, the FBI was seeking a FISA warrant on Carter Page. A Department of Justice spokesperson declined comment when RCI emailed to ask if the Shearer memo was used as part of the Steele dossier to secure the warrant on Page’s communications that was granted Oct. 21, 2016.

When news of the Shearer memo broke more than a year later, the Guardian reported in a Jan. 30, 2018 article that the FBI “is still assessing details in the ‘Shearer memo’ and is pursuing intriguing leads.” The memo, the Guardian explained, “was initially viewed with skepticism, not least because he had shared it with select media organizations before the election.”

Even as his FSB memo was provided to the FBI before the election,  it appears that Shearer was shopping his information to press outfits while also comparing rumors with leading journalists. Shearer’s first report, “The Compromised Candidate,” is a record of various journalists and media personalities explaining how they’ve heard the same rumors, and even tried, unsuccessfully, to report the story that Shearer is pushing in the second report.

Robert Baer (Credit: CNN)

(…) In the same report, Shearer quotes a conversation with former CIA officer Robert Baer, again hinting at another intermediary between the Trump campaign and the Russian government. Shearer writes that Baer told him “the Russians had established an encrypted communication system with a cut out between the Trump campaign and Putin.”

Baer told RCI that “he’d heard that story from acquaintances at the New York Times who were trying to run the story down.”

Baer said he remembered speaking with Shearer about Trump and Russia in “March or April” of 2016. If Baer’s memory is correct then Shearer was investigating the Trump story at around the same time the Clinton campaign and the DNC hired Fusion GPS to compile opposition research on the Trump campaign.

Shearer writes in his first report that he was told by Alan Cullison of the Wall Street Journal that Fusion GPS principals and former Journal reporters, Glenn Simpson and Peter Fritsch (Shearer misspells both names in the memo) had been hired by the DNC to “rack [sic] down Trump compromised story.”

(…) The inaccuracies in Shearer’s account fuel suspicions that he misidentified the source of the information on who was funding the Steele dossier. What matters is that Shearer knew who was paying for Fusion GPS’s work on Trump. More important, if Steele received both of Shearer’s reports in September 2016, that would contradict the information in the FBI’s warrant application that said Steele didn’t know who was paying for his work. The source of the funding was right there in Shearer’s first memo. The FBI’s warrant application, however, says Simpson “never advised Source No. 1 [Mr. Steele] as to the motivation behind the research into candidate’s #1 [Mr. Trump’s] ties to Russia.” If Steele had both of Shearer’s reports, he knew he was being paid by the DNC.

This Washington Post Steele dossier timeline indicates Steele’s memo dated September 14, 2016, sounds very similar to Shearer’s FSB “pee-pee” memo that Jonathan Winer gave to Steele in the same month. (Credit: Washington Post)

The members of the press corps whom Simpson and Steele were briefing during that period almost certainly knew who was paying. Shearer’s notes, according to the Feb. 9, 2018 Journal article, “circulated in political and journalistic circles in Washington in late 2016.” Whoever saw both of Shearer’s reports would have known that the DNC was paying for the Fusion GPS campaign—long before the information became public a year later, in October 2017.

Cullison, who declined to comment for this story, was the Wall Street Journal’s Moscow correspondent for 20 years. The memo has him telling Shearer that since May 2016 he, too, had been looking into rumors of Trump’s activities in Moscow, including allegations of his sexual activities.

“Our reporter was unable to corroborate these allegations,” WSJ spokesperson Severinghaus said in the February Journal article, “and determined the information provided by Mr. Shearer did not meet our high standards for fair and accurate reporting.”

To this date, no journalist has been able to confirm on its own any of the incendiary allegations of Trump-Russia collusion story since the rumors surfaced during the 2016 presidential campaign. The first accounts of the Trump campaign’s possible ties to Russia were published by Michael Isikoff of Yahoo News (Sept. 23, 2016) and David Corn of Mother Jones (Oct. 31). Both were sourced to Steele’s research.

Shearer’s first report shows that the story was circulating through the press corps for months, and no one was able to confirm it.

Shearer tried to drum up interest in the collusion narrative but no one in the press was biting. No one was willing to sink time and prestige on material sourced to unnamed Russian intelligence officials that was provided by a Clinton political operative whose partner, Sidney Blumenthal, had an even more controversial reputation.

But it would be different if it came from someone else, an intelligence operative whose American handlers worked up a suitable legend of his exploits in a glamorous, allied clandestine service, and his deep knowledge of all things Russian. So what did it matter if Steele had become an executive in a corporate intelligence firm whose official cover had been blown a decade before and who hadn’t been to Russia in years? The byline of a former MI6 agent could credential a compendium of unsubstantiated rumors when the names of Clinton confederates Cody Shearer and Sidney Blumenthal could not.” (Read more: RealClearInvestigations, 4/26/2018)  (Archive)

 

June 15, 2016 – Guccifer2.0 claims are debunked and discredited – “Russia-tainted metadata” and Warren Flood

“Guccifer2.0 stated in an interview with Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai (for Motherboard / Vice News) on June 21, 2016, that he breached the server using a “0-day exploit of NGP-Van”.

ThreatConnect, although still apparently unswayed from their assessment that Guccifer2.0 is a collective of Russians did report some very useful facts that serve to debunk Guccifer2.0’s claims.

(…) “Russia-Tainted Metadata” Reportage Mostly Ignored A Key Piece of Metadata

Warren Flood (Credit: LinkedIn)

There is a key fact about some non-Russian metadata that nobody seems to have reported and it certainly seems to be of critical importance – and that is the document creation timestamps…

There were multiple documents shared with TheSmokingGun, Gawker, ArsTechnica and others.

The first document, “1.doc” (mirror), was given considerable coverage, while the name “Warren Flood” was reported, the date in the report (rather than in the metadata) was reported and so it was attributed to Warren Flood on December 19, 2015.

Gawker incorrectly claimed the metadata showed the document was created in 2015 when it actually indicated the document was created by Warren Flood at a much later date.

The truth is that the metadata shows the document being created 30 minutes before Guccifer2.0 appears to have gotten his hands on it:

Created by Warren Flood on 15th of June at 13:38
Modified by Феликс Эдмундович on 15th of June at 14:08

The other document, “2.doc” (mirror) was not mentioned so much, but it too had interesting metadata:

Created by Warren Flood on 15th of June at 13:38
Modified by Феликс Эдмундович on 15th of June at 14:11

How did this get missed? – My guess is that people who investigated were using MS-Word. Recent versions of MS-Word tend to show limited metadata from RTF1 format files, for example, MS-Word 2010 shows:

If you open “2.doc” in OpenOffice though, you will spot what first alerted me to the timestamp correlations in the first place:

If you look at the raw data of “1.doc” you can see an ever closer correlation:

UPDATE (18 Feb 2017)

It was pointed out to me that I’d only focused on 2 documents and that there were more released by Guccifer2.0. – He had actually released a set of 5 RTF1-format documents, all had creation/modification dates as 15th of June and another one of them had Flood listed as it’s creator:

MD5 sums and mirror links are provided below in case the originals are altered or removed in future:

(Live links at source link)

more detailed look at the actual contents of documents (eg. RSIDs of different changes and correlations across files) gives further clues about the procedures used to intentionally stick “Russian fingerprints” on some of the files.

Who is Warren Flood? (UPDATED June 3rd, 2018)

Warren Flood was Biden’s former IT director at the White House.

A document that Flood authored in 2008 and that was attached to one of John Podesta’s emails, was used by Guccifer 2.0 as a template into which he then copied the contents of the Trump Opposition Research, copied from this file (which is also attached to this leaked email). It is Flood’s document that the “CONFIDENTIAL” text in the background derives from.

The copy of the Trump research Guccifer 2.0 had was actually a document originally authored by Lauren Dillon (DNC research director) and modified (and sent to John Podesta) by Tony Carrk (Research Director at Hillary for America). (Read more: Adam Carter/g-2.space, 2/18/2017)  (Archive)

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.

Sounds…unusual/urgent?

(…) 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.

(Read more: Undercover Huber, 3/10/2019)

July 31, 2016 – FBI Strzok’s electronic communication memo (EC) confirms the Trump campaign was investigated without justification

Peter Strzok testifies on FBI and Department of Justice actions during the 2016 Presidential election in a House Joint committee hearing on Capitol Hill July 12, 2018. (Credit: Chip Somodavilla/Getty Images)

“Late last week the FBI document that started the Trump-Russia collusion fiasco was publicly released. It hasn’t received a lot of attention but it should, because not too long from now this document likely will be blown up and placed on an easel as Exhibit A in a federal courtroom.

(…) To the untrained eye, the FBI document that launched Crossfire Hurricane can be confusing, and it may be difficult to discern how it might be inadequate. To the trained eye, however, it is a train wreck. There are a number of reasons why it is so bad. Two main ones are offered below (if you would like to follow along, the document is here):

First, the document is oddly constructed. In a normal, legitimate FBI Electronic Communication, or EC, there would be a “To” and a “From” line. The Crossfire Hurricane EC has only a “From” line; it is from a part of the FBI’s Counterintelligence Division whose contact is listed as Peter Strzok. The EC was drafted also by Peter Strzok. And, finally, it was approved by Peter Strzok. Essentially, it is a document created by Peter Strzok, approved by Peter Strzok, and sent from Peter Strzok to Peter Strzok.

On that basis alone, the document is an absurdity, violative of all FBI protocols and, therefore, invalid on its face. An agent cannot approve his or her own case; that would make a mockery of the oversight designed to protect Americans. Yet, for this document, Peter Strzok was pitcher, catcher, batter and umpire.

In addition, several names are listed in a “cc” or copy line; all are redacted, save Strzok’s, who, for some reason, felt it necessary to copy himself on a document he sent from himself to himself.

(…) Second, the Crossfire Hurricane case was opened as a Foreign Agent Registration Act (FARA) investigation. A FARA investigation involves a criminal violation of the law – in this case, a negligent or intentional failure to register with the U.S. government after being engaged by a foreign country to perform services on its behalf – that is punishable by fines and imprisonment. It is rarely investigated.

(…) Ultimately, there was no attempt by Strzok to articulate any factors that address the elements of FARA. He couldn’t, because there are none. Instead, there was a weak attempt to allege some kind of cooperation with Russians by unknown individuals affiliated with the Trump campaign, again, with no supporting facts listed.

What this FBI document clearly establishes is that Crossfire Hurricane was an illicit, made-up investigation lacking a shred of justifying predication, sprung from the mind of someone who despised Donald Trump, and then blessed by inexperienced leadership at the highest levels who harbored their own now well-established biases.” (Read more: The Hill, 5/27/2020)  (Archive)

July 31, 2016 – A Clinton supporter is the most likely source behind the Trump Tower/Alfa Bank connections

Jean Camp (Credit: Indiana University)

“After news broke that the Democratic National Committee had been hacked, a group of prominent computer scientists went on alert. The group of individuals, led by a Hillary supporter, started snooping around the Trump Tower computers to allegedly see if these servers had also been hacked.

This group was led by Indiana University professor, Jean Camp.  Professor Camp, according to Circa, was a staunch Hillary supporter:

“A respected computer scientist who raised concerns about a possible connection between President Trump and a Russian bank is an unabashed Hillary Clinton supporter who made multiple small donations to the Democrat’s presidential campaign around the time she and her colleagues surfaced the allegations.”

Some techies uncovered that the Trump Tower servers began to be bombarded with the same exact invalid look-up requests that use the words “trump” and “alfa” together, which were automatically placed in the servers’ log file by the server. The New York Times reports computer logs showed that two servers at Alfa Bank sent more than 2,700 “look-up” messages to the Trump servers.

At about the same time, the FBI received a complaint from “cyber experts” about a possible Trump-Alfa Bank connection, which led the FBI to investigate a Trump-Alfa Bank connection.  According to the New York Times:

“In classified sessions in August and September of 2016, 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 cyber experts 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.”

At about the same time that the FBI began its investigation, Christopher Steele began pushing the now debunked claim that Trump was connected to Alfa Bank. In mid-September Steele submitted his memos, and at least one of these included the Trump-Alfa Bank connection. Steele submitted these memos to the press and to the FBI.

We know that the FBI received a copy because at this time the FBI sought and received a FISA warrant related to Russia-linked bank, using the Steele dossier as evidence.  This is the only plausible piece of evidence that the FBI could have used.  Before this time, the FBI was turned down by the FISA court but on this occasion, a warrant was granted. (As McCabe said: The FISA warrants would not have been granted without the Steele dossier.)

The FBI had no other evidence on the Trump – Russia bank connection and as time went by they had no additional evidence.  The New York Times then reported:

“Law enforcement officials say that none of the investigations so far have found any conclusive or direct link between Mr. Trump and the Russian government. And even the hacking into Democratic emails, F.B.I. and intelligence officials now believe, was aimed at disrupting the presidential election rather than electing Mr. Trump.”

(Read more: The Gateway Pundit, 1/09/2019)

July 31, 2016 – August 2019: The FBI agent who interviews Gen. Flynn, Joseph Pientka, plays a critical role in Trump campaign investigation

This is the only known photo of Joseph Pientka (far left) found in the Washingtonian and dated in 2007. (Credit: Vincent Ricard)

(…) In a report released in December by Horowitz on the FBI’s FISA abuse during its investigation into the Trump campaign, the role of an unidentified FBI supervisory special agent (SSA)—described in Horowitz’s report as “SSA 1”—was featured prominently throughout. The description of events and dates match the public information on Pientka’s actions, and on Dec. 13, Pientka was confirmed by Fox News as being “SSA 1.”

The inspector general report noted that all the participating members of the FBI’s Crossfire Hurricane team were selected by Strzok, Pientka, and “the Intel Section chief,” who is almost certainly intelligence analyst Jonathan Moffa, who, according to July 16, 2018, testimony from Lisa Page, worked on both the Clinton and Trump investigations with Strzok.

On page xviii of the inspector general report, it was disclosed that Pientka was running the FBI’s counterintelligence investigation into the Trump campaign as its supervisor. Pientka also was the agent who provided defensive briefings to the Trump and Clinton campaigns in August 2016.

“We learned during the course of our review that in August 2016, the supervisor of the Crossfire Hurricane investigation, SSA 1 [Pientka], participated on behalf of the FBI in a strategic intelligence briefing given by Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) to candidate Trump and his national security advisors, including Michael Flynn, and in a separate strategic intelligence briefing given to candidate Clinton and her national security advisors,” the report states.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), during congressional testimony given by Horowitz, noted that the FBI used this meeting as an opportunity to effectively spy on the Trump campaign and gather further information—a characterization that Horowitz agreed with. Horowitz also said in his testimony he was concerned about this practice:

Sen. Graham: “So when we get defensively briefed tomorrow, would it be okay for FBI agents to open up 302s on what we said?”

Mr. Horowitz: “We have very significant concerns about that.”

Horowitz noted in his report that Pientka was specifically selected to “provide the FBI briefings, in part, because Flynn, who was a subject in the ongoing Crossfire Hurricane investigation, would be attending the Trump campaign briefing.”

Just prior to this defensive briefing, on Aug. 1, 2016, Strzok and Pientka “traveled to the European city to interview the FFG [Friendly Foreign Government] officials who met with Papadopoulos in May 2016.” The IG report noted that “during the interview they learned that Papadopoulos did not say that he had direct contact with the Russians.”

It also appears that Pientka was in charge of selecting the Confidential Human Sources (CHS) that were used against George Papadopoulos, Carter Page, Paul Manafort, and Flynn:

“In determining how to use CHSs in the Crossfire Hurricane investigation, SSA 1 and the case agents told the OIG that they focused their CHS operations on the predicating information and the four named subjects,” the inspector general report states.

The report describes “a consensually recorded meeting in August 2016 between Carter Page and an FBI CHS.” The IG noted that Pientka and “Case Agent 1 told the OIG that this meeting was important for the investigation.” But it appears that important information from this meeting was left out of the Page FISA application.

In footnote 197, the IG noted that “Page’s comment about his lack of a relationship with Manafort was relevant to one of the allegations in the Steele reporting that was relied upon in the Carter Page FISA applications, but information about the August 2016 CHS meeting was not shared with the OI attorneys handling the FISA applications until June 2017.” (Read more: The Epoch Times, 12/30/2019)  (Archive)

August 4, 2016 – A few operational details of the CIA/NSA/FBI/White House counterintelligence investigation into the Trump campaign

Avril Haines appears on MSNBC with Andrea Mitchell in August, 2018, to discuss President Trump’s abuse of power after removing former CIA director Brennan’s security clearance. (Credit: MSNBC screenshot)

(…) “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.

Obama meets with Kathryn Ruemmler (l), Lisa Monaco (c), and Susan Rice. (Credit: White House Flickr photo by Pete Souza)

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)

August 10, 2016 – FBI’s Peter Strozk, Lisa Page, Jonathan Moffa and others, discuss Seth Rich in mostly redacted emails

Seth Rich (l) and Julian Assange (Credit: public domain)

“A persistent American lawyer has uncovered the undeniable fact that the FBI has been continuously lying, including giving false testimony in court, in response to Freedom of Information requests for its records on Seth Rich. The FBI has previously given affidavits that it has no records regarding Seth Rich.

A Freedom of Information request to the FBI which did not mention Seth Rich, but asked for all email correspondence between FBI Head of Counterterrorism Peter Strzok, who headed the investigation into the DNC leaks and Wikileaks, and FBI attorney Lisa Page, has revealed two pages of emails which do not merely mention Seth Rich but have “Seth Rich” as their heading. The emails were provided in, to say the least, heavily redacted form.

Before I analyse these particular emails, I should make plain that they are not the major point. The major point is that the FBI claimed it had no records mentioning Seth Rich, and these have come to light in response to a different FOIA request that was not about him. What other falsely denied documents does the FBI hold about Rich, that were not fortuitously picked up by a search for correspondence between two named individuals?

To look at the documents themselves, they have to be read from the bottom up, and they consist of a series of emails between members of the Washington Field Office of the FBI (WF in the telegrams) into which Strzok was copied in, and which he ultimately forwarded on to the lawyer Lisa Page.” (Read much more: Craig Murray, 1/28/2020)  (Archive)

Persistent American lawyer Ty Clevenger writes:

(…) “As most people outside of solitary confinement know, the whole “Russian collusion” investigation began with the premise that Russia hacked the DNC, but considerable evidence suggests that the DNC emails were downloaded by someone inside the DNC — like Mr. Rich — and then provided to Wikileaks.

Rather than re-invent the wheel, I’ve copied and pasted my letter to U.S. Attorney John Durham, U.S. Attorney Richard Donoghue, and Inspector General Michael Horowitz:

Mr. Durham, Mr. Donoghue and Mr. Horowitz:

I wish to file a criminal complaint regarding false statements made by FBI Section Chief David M. Hardy in two affidavits [click here and here] filed in the FOIA case identified above [i.e.Ty Clevenger v. U.S. Department of Justice, et al., Civil Action No. 18-CV-01568]. I requested FBI records pertaining to Seth Rich, who allegedly was the source of Democratic National Committee emails published by Wikileaks in 2016 (rather than Russian hackers). In the affidavits (attached to the email version of this letter), Mr. Hardy testified that his office conducted a reasonable search, and it found no responsive records.

New evidence proves otherwise, and it appears that Mr. Hardy has perpetrated a fraud on the court. Judicial Watch recently published documents that it obtained in response to a FOIA request for communications between former FBI agent Peter Strzok and former FBI attorney Lisa Page and I would direct your attention to pages 123-125. In those pages, you will find a heavily-redacted email discussion regarding Mr. Rich.  Note that the header on those emails is “Seth Rich.” (Read more: Ty Clevenger/Lawflog, 1/27/2020)  (Archive)

August 16-24, 2016 – New Strzok-Page emails reveal FBI gave special treatment to Clinton’s demands for email investigation information just before election

David Kendall, (r), sits behind Hillary Clinton during a House hearing of the Select Committee on Benghazi, on October 22, 2015. (Credit: Diego M. Radzinschi/The National Law Journal)

“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, 2016email 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)

August 17, 2016 – Trump himself was the target of Obama administration’s Russia probe

(…) Among the most significant of the newly declassified documents is a memorandum written by FBI agent Joe Pientka III, the case agent on Trump-Russia. It was Pientka who, at the FBI’s New York City headquarters on August 17, 2016, purported to brief Trump and two top campaign surrogates — the aforementioned General Flynn and then–New Jersey governor Chris Christie, who was slated to run the transition if Trump won.

In reality, Pientka and the FBI regarded the occasion not as a briefing for the Republican presidential nominee but as an opportunity to interact with Donald Trump for investigative purposes. Clearly, the Bureau did that because Trump was the main subject of the investigation. The hope was that he’d blurt things out that would help the FBI prove he was an agent of Russia.

The Obama administration and the FBI knew that it was they who were meddling in a presidential campaign — using executive intelligence powers to monitor the president’s political opposition. This, they also knew, would rightly be regarded as a scandalous abuse of power if it ever became public. There was no rational or good-faith evidentiary basis to believe that Trump was in a criminal conspiracy with the Kremlin or that he’d had any role in Russian intelligence’s suspected hacking of Democratic Party email accounts.

You didn’t have to believe Trump was a savory man to know that. His top advisers were Flynn, a decorated combat veteran; Christie, a former U.S. attorney who vigorously investigated national-security cases; Rudy Giuliani, a legendary former U.S. attorney and New York City mayor who’d rallied the country against anti-American terrorism; and Jeff Sessions, a longtime U.S. senator with a strong national-defense track record. To believe Trump was unfit for the presidency on temperamental or policy grounds was a perfectly reasonable position for Obama officials to take — though an irrelevant one, since it’s up to the voters to decide who is suitable. But to claim to suspect that Trump was in a cyberespionage conspiracy with the Kremlin was inane . . . except as a subterfuge to conduct political spying, which Obama officials well knew was an abuse of power.

So they concealed it. They structured the investigation on the fiction that there was a principled distinction between Trump himself and the Trump campaign. In truth, the animating assumption of the probe was that Trump himself was acting on Russia’s behalf, either willfully or under the duress of blackmail. By purporting to focus on the campaign, investigators had the fig leaf of deniability they needed to monitor the candidate.

Just two weeks before Pientka’s August 17 “briefing” of Trump, the FBI formally opened “Crossfire Hurricane,” the codename for the Trump-Russia investigation. The Bureau also opened four Trump-Russia subfiles, related to Trump campaign officials Paul Manafort, Carter Page, George Papadopoulos and Flynn.

There was no case file called “Donald Trump” because Trump was “Crossfire Hurricane.” The theory of Crossfire Hurricane was that Russia had blackmail information on Trump, which it could use to extort Trump into doing Putin’s bidding if Trump were elected. It was further alleged that Russia had been cultivating Trump for years and was helping Trump’s election bid in exchange for future considerations. Investigators surmised that Trump had recruited Paul Manafort (who had connections to Russian oligarchs and pro-Russia Ukrainian oligarchs) as his campaign manager, enabling Manafort to use such emissaries as Page to carry out furtive communications between Trump and the Kremlin. If elected, the theory went, Trump would steer American policy in Russia’s favor, just as the Bureau speculated that Trump was already corruptly steering the Republican party into a more pro-Moscow posture.” (Read more: National Review, 8/01/2020)  (Archive)

August 17, 2016 – The FBI Crossfire Hurricane team uses a ‘security’ and ‘defensive’ briefing to spy on Trump and Flynn

“Newly declassified internal Federal Bureau of Investigation documents prove the top U.S. law enforcement agency used a so-called defensive briefing of the Trump campaign in 2016 to spy on and collect information about Donald Trump himself. The new documents, which are just the latest in a string of declassifications regarding the FBI operation to spy on the Trump campaign and later the Trump administration, detail the FBI’s attempts to use a briefing ostensibly meant to warn the Trump campaign about foreign intelligence threats to spy on the Trump campaign itself.

FBI Summary Of August 17, 2… by The Federalist on Scribd

(…) In one of the documents declassified and released on Wednesday, FBI supervisory Special Agent Joe Pientka wrote that he deliberately used the briefing to “actively listen for topics or questions” from Trump “regarding the Russian Federation.” Rather than provide the Trump campaign a specific warning that certain campaign principals were being targeted by Russian intelligence, the FBI instead gave a general, non-specific warning that foreign intelligence services might eventually target the campaign.

Pientka’s written summary of the briefing noted that Trump, Michael Flynn, and former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie were the only three Trump campaign members in attendance. Christie’s attendance had not previously been disclosed. The August 17, 2016 meeting came the day after the FBI opened a formal counterintelligence investigation against Flynn and just two days after FBI counterintelligence official Peter Strzok texted his former lover, FBI attorney Lisa Page, about an “insurance policy” he had designed to keep Trump from becoming president.

(…) Pientka was excoriated in a report from the Department of Justice (DOJ) Office of Inspector General (OIG) for his behavior during the FBI’s spy operation against the Trump campaign. Pientka told the OIG that he designed the August 17 meeting to “gain assessment and possibly have some level of familiarity with [Flynn].”

According to the OIG report, Pientka “was selected to provide the FBI briefings, in part, because Flynn, who was a subject in the ongoing Crossfire Hurricane investigation, would be attending the Trump campaign briefing.”

Pientka told the OIG that he was selected to attend on behalf of the FBI so he could “record” or “overhear” from Trump, Flynn, or Christie “any kind of admission” that they were colluding with the Russian government to steal the election from Hillary Clinton. Pientka also added that he wanted to get a baseline impression of Flynn’s “overall mannerisms” in case he needed to later use that information against him.” (Read more: The Federalist, 7/23/2020)  (Archive)

August 31, 2016 – Guccifer 2.0 leaks a DCCC email referring to Black Lives Matter as a “radical movement”

“On 31 August 2016, the hacker (or hackers) operating under the name Guccifer 2.0 (previously associated with a number of breaches of Democratic National Committee material) released a controversial document that purportedly outlined recommended practices for Democratic candidates’ engaging with the Black Lives Matter movement in 2015.

Troy Perry (Credit: public domain)

A number of documents supposedly accessed from the computer of House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi were posted to Guccifer 2.0’s blog, among them a 19 November 2015 memo to Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) workers from staffer Troy Perry:

Presidential candidates have struggled to respond to tactics of the Black Lives Matter movement. While there has been little engagement with House candidates, candidates and campaign staff should be prepared. This document should not be emailed or handed to anyone outside of the building. Please only give campaign staff these best practices in meetings or over the phone.

In a sub-section of that document, DCCC staffers were advised to offer limited invitations for meetings with Black Lives Matter activists and not to “offer support for concrete policy positions” about the movement:

Tactics
Meet with Local Activists

° If approached by BLM activists, campaign staff should offer to meet with local activists. Invited BLM attendees should be limited. Please aim for personal or small group meetings.

° Listen to their concerns
° Don’t offer support for concrete policy positions
° Frontline district staff should meet with activists

Provide a Point Person

Always provide a campaign contact person for BLM activists. It is important to let activists know the campaign wants to engage in an open dialogue.

In response to the leaked documents, DCCC national press secretary Meredith Kelly said in a statement that:

The DCCC highly respects and values the leadership of the Black Lives Matter movement. In less than two years, BLM has evolved from three words into a political force that is changing and waking our nation. At the DCCC, we highly encourage our candidates to not only embrace the importance of this movement, but to meet with and listen to community activists to partner social change.

We will not allow this hacking to distract from our common goals nor disparage the BLM movement. We continue to welcome further engagement with activists and BLM leaders nationwide.

The Black Lives Matter movement expressed disappointment with the contents of the revealed material in a statement posted to Facebook and Twitter:

We are disappointed at the DCCC’s placating response to our demand to value all Black life. Black communities deserve to be heard, not handled. People are dying.

Whether Republican, Democrat or otherwise, our elected officials have an ethical and democratic responsibility to make legislation that reflects the needs of their constituents. That includes Black people facing life-threatening challenges because of racist, failed policies.

We demand, and are fighting every day for, a radical transformation of American democracy where all Black lives are valued.

Prominent Black Lives Matter activist Deray Mckesson published a tweet questioning whether the DNCC’s stance had changed since November 2015:

Fellow activist Shaun King also tweeted a criticism:

The DCCC acknowledged Guccifer 2.0’s Black Lives Matter document leak, but the DCCC has not yet issued any official comment on the content of the leak (or any dispute of its authenticity), and Nancy Pelosi has so far declined to comment.

The authenticity of previous DNC leaks was not questioned by any involved parties, and several high-ranking DNC officials (including former chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz) resigned in the aftermath.” (Snopes, 8/31/2016)  (Archive)

September 2, 2016 – The FBI sends a possible honeypot posing as Stefan Halper’s research assistant, to spy on Trump campaign aide, George Papadopoulos

(Credit: Conservative Treehouse)

“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:

https://youtu.be/ewA34BJAKmI?t=512

(…) “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

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton is introduced during a campaign stop Friday, Jan. 22, 2016, in Rochester, N.H. ((Credit: /Matt Rourke/The Associated Press))

(…) “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)

September 17, 2016 – Obama State Dept officials Victoria Nuland and Jonathan Winer plan a face-to-face meeting on the “Russia matter”

Victoria Nuland and Jonathan Winer (Credit: public domain)

“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.”

(In June 2016 Nuland permitted a meeting between Steele and the FBI’s legal attaché in Rome. Nuland told CBS News that the State Department knew about the Steele dossier by July 2016.)

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, 2016email 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 (Credit: Flickr)

“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.”

(Read more: The Epoch Times, 6/13/2019)

October 1-15, 2016: Email exchanges between Comey, FBI and DOJ officials, suggests they are aware of intel concerns about reliability of main evidence, before obtaining Title 1 FISA warrant

Devin Nunes (Credit: Greg Nash)

“Just before Thanksgiving, House Republicans amended the list of documents they’d like President Trump to declassify in the Russia investigation. With little fanfare or explanation, the lawmakers, led by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), added a string of emails between the FBI and the Department of Justice (DOJ) to their wish list.

Sources tell me the targeted documents may provide the most damning evidence to date of potential abuses of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), evidence that has been kept from the majority of members of Congress for more than two years.<

The email exchanges included then-FBI Director James Comey, key FBI investigators in the Russia probe and lawyers in the DOJ’s national security division, and they occurred in early to mid-October, before the FBI successfully secured a FISA warrant to spy on Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.

The email exchanges show the FBI was aware — before it secured the now-infamous warrant — that there were intelligence community concerns about the reliability of the main evidence used to support it: the Christopher Steele dossier.

The exchanges also indicate FBI officials were aware that Steele, the former MI6 British intelligence operative then working as a confidential human source for the bureau, had contacts with news media reporters before the FISA warrant was secured.” (Read more: The Hill, 12/05/2018)

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.

Kathleen Kavalec (Credit: BizPacReview)

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)

Additionally, the FBI has apparently reversed course on the self-serving redactions they put in place when the Kavalec Memo was released.  A less redacted version is linked here.

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)

April 9, 2020 – Newly declassified Papadopoulos transcript reveals no evidence of coordination between campaign and Russia

George Papadopoulos is ordered to report to prison on November 26, 2018. (Credit: Alex Wong/Getty Images)

“A newly declassified transcript from the FBI’s 2016 Russia probe reviewed by CBS News shows a recorded conversation between former Trump advisor George Papadopoulos and the bureau’s confidential human source turned up no evidence of coordination between the campaign and Russia.

The 90-page, lightly redacted transcript between Papadopoulos — who is identified by the code name “Crossfire Typhoon,” or CT  — and the bureau’s confidential human source, or CHS, captures the October 23, 2016 conversation.

Papadopoulos does boast about setting up “a meeting with…  (t) President of Egypt and Trump,” according to the transcript, and says that he had made “a lot of cool [connections] and I’m going to see what’s going to happen after the election.”

The recorded conversation was documented in the December Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s report on the FBI’s surveillance of former Trump campaign aide Carter Page.

Of the October 23, 2016 transcript, Horowitz wrote, “Papadopoulos did not say much about Russia during the first conversation with Source 3, other than to mention a “friend Sergey…[who] lives in…Brooklyn,” and invite Source 3 to travel with Papadopoulos to Russia in the summertime.”

The date on the transcript reflects that the FBI was using a confidential source to gather intelligence about the former campaign aide less than three weeks before the presidential election. Within days of the Papadopoulos recorded conversation, the FBI Russia team, known as “Crossfire Hurricane” had also secured a surveillance warrant for Page to investigate alleged coordination between the Trump team and Moscow.

(…) Earlier this month, CBS News was first to report that transcripts of a separate conversation, on October 31, 2016, showed that Papadopoulos denied to an FBI confidential source that the campaign was involved in the circumstances surrounding the hack of the Democratic National Committee’s email system, calling the idea “illegal.”

However, Horowitz also noted in his report that “Case Agent 1” had said of a similar recorded conversation with Papadopoulos in September 2016, “the Crossfire Hurricane team’s assessment was that the Papadopoulos denial was a rehearsed response and that he did not view the information as particularly germane to the investigation of Carter Page.” (Read more: CBS News, 4/25/2020)  (Archive)

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 6, 2016 – Despite Comey assurances, the vast bulk of Clinton emails on Weiner’s laptop are never examined

Part of a letter from FBI director James Comey to Congress on Nov. 6, 2016. Comey tells Congress that a review of the Clinton emails on Weiner’s laptop, “has not changed our conclusions” from earlier this year. (Credit: Jon Elswick/The Associated Press)

“When then-FBI Director James Comey announced he was closing the Hillary Clinton email investigation for a second time just days before the 2016 election, he certified to Congress that his agency had “reviewed all of the communications” discovered on a personal laptop used by Clinton’s closest aide, Huma Abedin, and her husband, Anthony Weiner.

At the time, many wondered how investigators managed over the course of one week to read the “hundreds of thousands” of emails residing on the machine, which had been a focus of a sex-crimes investigation of Weiner, a former Congressman.

Comey testifies to the Senate Judiciary Committee on May 3, 2017. (Credit: J. Scott Applewhite/The Associated Press)

Comey later told Congress that “thanks to the wizardry of our technology,” the FBI was able to eliminate the vast majority of messages as “duplicates” of emails they’d previously seen. Tireless agents, he claimed, then worked “night after night after night” to scrutinize the remaining material.

But virtually none of his account was true, a growing body of evidence reveals.

In fact, a technical glitch prevented FBI technicians from accurately comparing the new emails with the old emails.

Only 3,077 of the 694,000 emails were directly reviewed for classified or incriminating information.

Three FBI officials completed that work in a single 12-hour spurt the day before Comey again cleared Clinton of criminal charges.

“Most of the emails were never examined, even though they made up potentially 10 times the evidence” of what was reviewed in the original year-long case that Comey closed in July 2016, said a law enforcement official with direct knowledge of the investigation.

Yet even the “extremely narrow” search that was finally conducted, after more than a month of delay, uncovered more classified material sent and/or received by Clinton through her unauthorized basement server, the official said. Contradicting Comey’s testimony, this included highly sensitive information dealing with Israel and the U.S.-designated terrorist group Hamas. The former secretary of state, however, was never confronted with the sensitive new information and it was never analyzed for damage to national security.

Even though the unique classified material was improperly stored and transmitted on an unsecured device, the FBI did not refer the matter to U.S. intelligence agencies to determine if national security had been compromised, as required under a federally mandated “damage assessment” directive.

The newly discovered classified material “was never previously sent out to the relevant original classification authorities for security review,” the official, who spoke to RealClearInvestigations on the condition of anonymity, said.

Other key parts of the investigation remained open when the embattled director announced to Congress he was buttoning the case back up for good just ahead of Election Day.” (Read much more: RealClearInvestigations, August 28, 2018)  (Archive)

November 9, 2016 – The day after the election, DNC operative Alexandra Chalupa, pushes the Trump-Russia hoax in a Facebook post and admits to Obama’s DOJ/DHS joining a hacktivist group to scan state election systems

Alexandra “Ali” Chalupa (Credit: Facebook)

(…) “Alexandra “Ali” Chalupa is a Democratic National Committee operative linked to Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden and fake “whistleblower” / CIA analyst Eric Ciaramella.

…Chalupa admits she was involved in a plot to scan a number of state’s voting systems with Obama’s Department of Justice and Department of Homeland Security [teamed up with a group] in what Chalupa says is a DC unit of the hacktivist group “Anonymous.”

The Chalupa confession that the DOJ and DHS were hacking into state’s voting systems without the state’s permission is troubling enough, but the added detail about federal agencies working with an unknown independent hacking group raises serious national and cybersecurity issues.

(…) That’s because the unauthorized intrusions into a number of state voting systems on Election Day were admitted to in a Facebook post by Alexandra Chalupa and then appears to be corroborated by reporting months later that shows a number of states seem to have had their voting system scanned by computers at the Department of Homeland Security.

(…) “On the day after the election, November 9th, 2016 Chalupa wrote a Facebook post that claims the vote was stolen by Trump and Russians.

(Read more: Gateway Pundit, 11/22/2019)  (Archive)  (Archive copy of Chalupa’s Facebook post)

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 20-29, 2016 – A newly semi-declassified Senate report details a 9 day ‘bitter argument’ between CIA And FBI over Steele dossier

“Documents declassified on Tuesday detail an intense debate between the CIA and FBI in late 2016 over the handling of information from Christopher Steele, with one CIA official telling the Senate Intelligence Committee that the former British spy’s allegations about Trump-Russia collusion were “very unvetted.”

Despite the CIA’s concerns about Steele’s allegations, the FBI successfully lobbied to include his information in an Intelligence Community Assessment (ICA) regarding Russian interference in the 2016 election. The bureau also continued using information from Steele to conduct surveillance against former Trump campaign aide Carter Page.

Investigators have since debunked several of Steele’s allegations.

The newly declassified information is from a Senate Intelligence Committee report released on April 21 that detailed the creation of an ICA released on Jan. 6, 2017.

According to the Senate report, FBI investigators informed CIA analysts on Dec. 20, 2016 that the bureau wanted to include information from Steele in the ICA.

James Comey and Andrew McCabe, the FBI director and deputy director, respectively, negotiated with their counterparts at the CIA and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence to include Steele’s information, saying that it was relevant to the question of Russian interference in the 2016 election.

But CIA officials and analysts told the Senate panel that they had deep reservations about the dossier, according to the newly declassified materials.

“We would have never included that report in a CIA-only assessment because the source was so indirect. And we made sure we indicated we didn’t use it in our analysis, and if it had been a CIA-only product we wouldn’t have included it at all,” the CIA’s deputy director of analysis told the Senate panel.” (The Daily Caller, 7/28/2020)  (Archive)

January 9, 2017 – Strobe Talbott shares a copy of the dossier with Fiona Hill the day before Buzzfeed publishes it

Fiona Hill (Credit: public domain)

“Fiona Hill, who served as a top Russia adviser to President Donald Trump, testified at an impeachment hearing Thursday that a longtime Clinton insider showed her a copy of the Steele dossier a day before it was published by BuzzFeed News.

Hill testified that Strobe Talbott, the former president of the Brookings Institution, shared the salacious document with her on Jan. 9, 2017. At the time, Hill was a director at Brookings, a left-of-center foreign policy think tank. She joined the Trump White House in early 2017 as senior director for European and Russian affairs on the National Security Council.

A day after Hill’s exchange with Talbott, BuzzFeed published the dossier, which was authored by former British spy Christopher Steele and funded by the Clinton campaign and DNC.

Hillary Clinton and Strobe Talbott (Credit: Getty Images)

Hill’s testimony establishes yet another link between Steele’s dossier work and Clinton world. Talbott is a longtime Clinton associate who served in the Bill Clinton administration in the1990s. His brother-in-law is Cody Shearer, a Clinton-linked operative who is the author of a Trump dossier of his own that closely mirrors allegations made by Steele.” (Read more: The Daily Caller, 11/21/2019)  (Archive)

January 10, 2017 – Flynn attorney Sidney Powell calls for the release of a letter from James Clapper who allegedly asks David Ignatius to, “in words to the effect of take the kill shot on Flynn”

In an October 24, 2019 court filing by Flynn attorney Sidney Powell, on page 15 she requests the phone records of James Clapper to confirm his contacts with Washington Post reporter, David Ignatius. In particular, she’s interested in getting a copy of a letter that Clapper sent to Ignatius, dated January 10, 2017, where Clapper asks that he “take the kill shot” on Lt. General Michael Flynn.

Two days later,  an article by Ignatius appears in the WaPo, dated January 12, 2017, titled “Why Did Obama Dawdle on Russia’s Hacking?” In it he writes the possible  “kill shot” and keep in mind, Ignatius allegedly had the transcripts of Flynn’s calls with Kislyak, thanks to the possible leak by ONA Director, Col. James H. Baker (see below).

Ignatius writes with attached links:

“Question 3: What discussions has the Trump team had with Russian officials about future relations? Trump said Wednesday that his relationship with President Vladimir Putin is “an asset, not a liability.” Fair enough, but until he’s president, Trump needs to let Obama manage U.S.-Russia policy.
Retired Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn, Trump’s choice for national security adviser, cultivates close Russian contacts. He has appeared on Russia Today and received a speaking fee from the cable network, which was described in last week’s unclassified intelligence briefing on Russian hacking as “the Kremlin’s principal international propaganda outlet.”
According to a senior U.S. government official, Flynn phoned Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak several times on Dec. 29, the day the Obama administration announced the expulsion of 35 Russian officials as well as other measures in retaliation for the hacking. What did Flynn say, and did it undercut the U.S. sanctions? The Logan Act (though never enforced) bars U.S. citizens from correspondence intending to influence a foreign government about “disputes” with the United States. Was its spirit violated?
The Trump campaign didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
If the Trump team’s contacts helped discourage the Russians from a counter-retaliation, maybe that’s a good thing. But we ought to know the facts.” (Read more: The Washington Post, 1/12/2017)

James Clapper, now a CNN contributor and outspoken critic of President Trump, is known for falsely testifying in front of Congress in March 2013 that the National Security Agency does not collect data from millions of Americans. (Credit: Graeme Jennings/Getty Images)

Washington Post columnist David Ignatius listens to introductions before his interview with Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, hosted by the Center on International Cooperation, at New York University, April 29, 2015. (Credit: Richard Drew/The Associated Press)

January 10, 2017 – A Lisa Page email shows direct evidence of investigative leaking and bias – IG Horowitz later finds no bias

Within the small group conducting the 2016 FBI investigation of the Trump campaign, the Steele Dossier was called “Crown Material“.  A name relating to Christopher Steele’s British intelligence position. [James Comey testimony to congress]

The “Crown Material” has become more interesting recently against the backdrop of U.S. Attorney John Durham seeking the documents and communication from former CIA Director John Brennan and former FBI Director James Comey [SEE HERE] where John Brennan wanted the Crown Material (Steele Dossier) included the 2017 Intelligence Community Assessment.

However, there’s a coded email from Lisa Page, on January 10th, 2017, that might prove to be even more valuable for Mr. Durham as he investigates a possible conspiracy therein:

SOURCE: Page 365 of pdf

Note the highlighted box text in the email from Peter Strzok to members of the small group.

CNN update – Per Rich, CNN to publish C material today betweeen 4 and 5″

The “C material” is a reference to “Crown Material”, and when put into context of the date and email participants this tells a remarkably explosive story.

FBI lawyer Lisa Page is forwarding an origination email from Peter Strzok and informing the FBI small group: Peter Strzok, Bill Priestap, Jonathan Moffa and Jennifer Boone, that “We have lots of details from [Mike] Kortan” for a briefing at 3:45 pm on January 10th.

“Kortan” is FBI Asst. Director of Media Comms Michael Kortan, who appears in multiple emails and text messages coordinating communication with the small group media allies.

However, for the context of this specific email, Peter Strzok has initiated contact with CNN to leak a story… and Strzok is informing the group that CNN will publish the “C Material”, or a story predicated on the Steele Dossier, on January 10th, 2017, between 4 and 5 pm.   That is Jake Tappers’ hour for broadcast.

What “C Material” did FBI Agent Peter Strzok leak to CNN, that FBI Spokesperson Mike Kortan confirmed for the FBI?

Here’s the January 10th, 2017, story from Tapper.  WATCH:

There is no doubt the FBI small group shared the information about the Steele Dossier with the CNN stenographers in a collaborative effort to generate the illusion of enhanced credibility for the Steele Dossier; a document they knew was demonstrably fraudulent, yet they relied upon it for the Carter Page FISA application.

That would be a clear “conspiracy”.

I find it curious that IG Horowitz could not find this email in his latest investigation.

Additionally, the Lisa Page FBI email, highlighting an internal “conspiracy”, becomes even more interesting when overlaying the third conspiracy referral previously mentioned by Devin Nunes:

The third conspiracy referral is less specific and pertains to evidence collected that shows a small group of government officials engaged in “global classified intelligence leaks” to the U.S. media and other entities and/or persons. (link)

My hunch is that email from Lisa Page is part of the evidence Nunes collected to show how the FBI manufactured “global classified intelligence leaks” to U.S. media.

(Read more: Conservative Treehouse, 12/20/2019) (Archive)

January 12, 2017 – Flynn’s defense claims there is a letter from UK National Security Advisor Sir Mark Lyall Grant that invalidates Steel info, undermines Russiagate, and is being suppressed

Sir Mark Lyall Grant resigns as UK’s National Security Advisor in February 2017. (Credit: Reuters)

On page 30 of Sidney Powell’s most recent court filing on behalf of Lt. General Flynn, she states there is a letter written by the UK’s National Security Advisor, Sir Mark Lyall Grant,  that questions Christopher Steele’s credibility, undermines Russiagate, and it is being suppressed. The letter was hand-delivered to the incoming National Security team in New York. Powell writes:

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.

Anthony Ferrante speaks at the International Conference on Cyber Security at Fordham College, August 2019. (Credit: Chris Taggart)

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.

Jordan Rae Kelly and Robert Mueller (Credit: public domain)

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)

January 20, 2017 – April 2017: James Comey has a mole in the White House, keeping tabs on President Trump and his aides

Anthony Ferrante (Credit: public domain)

“Former FBI Director James Comey had an inside man at the White House, feeding the bureau information about President Trump and his aides in 2017.

Now this individual, who after leaving the government was hired by BuzzFeed to verify parts of British ex-spy Christopher Steele’s dossier, may be tied to an investigation into alleged surveillance abuses by the DOJ and the FBI being conducted by Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz.

This previously unreported mole in the White House appears in a new report by RealClearInvestigations that explored possible misconduct by Comey for what two U.S. officials described as essentially “running a covert operation against” the president even as he was assuring Trump he was not the subject of any investigation.

Anthony Ferrante, a longtime FBI official, worked as a cybersecurity adviser on the National Security Council. Officials said Ferrante was working in the White House even while the FBI held him on reserve status. All the while, he was sharing information about Trump and his aides back to FBI headquarters.

One former National Security Council official said Ferrante’s unique position was highly irregular.

“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],” the official said, adding that the NSC division supervisor was “not allowed to get rid of Ferrante” and that the arrangement appeared to be “in direct conflict with the no-contact policy between the White House and the Department of Justice.”

Ferrante left the White House in April 2017, not long before Trump fired Comey as FBI director. (Read more: Washington Examiner, July 22, 2019)

January 24-February 15, 2017: Tracking the original Flynn FD-302 report that mysteriously disappears

(Credit: CentipedeNation)

“FBI Agents Peter Strzok and Joe Pientka interviewed National Security Advisor Michael Flynn on January 24, 2017. According to documents presented in the court case, agent Peter Strzok did the questioning and agent Joe Pientka took most of the notes.

Following the interview agent Pientka then took his hand-written notes and generated an official FD-302; an FBI report of the interview itself. There has been a great deal of debate over the first draft, the original FD-302 as it was written by Joe Pientka. In the case against Flynn the DOJ prosecutors never presented the original Pientka 302.

On May 2, 2017, the DOJ, using new information gathered by U.S. Attorney Jeff Jensen, declassified and released a segment of James Comey testimony that was previously hidden.  Within the transcript Comey says Pientka wrote the Flynn 302 on January 24th immediately following the interview. Screengrab below – (pdf here).

That January 24, 2017, version of the 302 is the one that has gone missing.

(Timeline editor’s note: I’m including recently released text messages between Strzok and Page that may have relevance to this time)

People defending the FBI have even said it never existed.  However, the testimony of FBI Director James Comey proves the 302 was drafted on January 24th.

Additionally, recent evidence from Brady material turned over to the defense by auditing attorney Jeff Jensen showed FBI lawyer Lisa Page and FBI Agent Peter Strzok rewriting, editing and shaping the 302 on February 10, 2017, more than two weeks later:

Lisa Page is “pissed off” because Peter Strzok previously edited the 302 and she says he “didn’t even attempt to make this cogent and readable.”

Peter Strzok replies back to Lisa Page that he was “trying to completely re-write the thing so as to save Joe’s voice” because Joe Pientka was the actual author.

Peter Strzok is re-writing the interview notes of Pientka in order to construct the framework to accuse Flynn of lying. Lisa Page is editing the re-write to make it more cogent and readable.

The question has remained: Where is the original 302 report as written by Pientka?

While the question(s) around the missing original 302 have yet to be reconciled, one possible path to discover its location and a copy of its original content lies in the testimony of Sally Yates. Former DAG Sally Yates testified to Congress that after the Flynn interview DOJ-National Security Division:

“The DOJ-National Security Division received a detailed readout from the FBI agents who had interviewed Flynn.” Yates said she felt “it was important to get this information to the White House as quickly as possible.”

Yates is describing the Pientka 302. The Pientka 302 could have been received at the DOJ-NSD later in the evening of January 24th, or perhaps the morning of the 25th. Either is possible because Yates was having meetings about the topic.

The calendar of DOJ-NSD Associate Deputy AG Tashina Gauhar shows meetings with Sally Yates which align with the discussions of the Flynn interview and Yates receiving a summary on the 24th and the detail on the 25th:

Schedule of Associate Deputy Attorney General Tashina Gauhar

In the DOJ motion to dismiss the case against Flynn, the records indicate Yates received a summary of the interview the night of the 24th, and the full detailed record came on the morning of January 25th:

Aligning with what Sally Yates previously described, James Comey admits the FD-302 draft was written on January 24th, exactly as Sally Yates is describing:

Together with DOJ-NSD head Mary McCord, Sally Yates used the 302 from Joe Pientka to travel to the White House on January 26th and brief White House counsel Don McGahn about the Flynn interview contrast against the content of the previously captured call between Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak and Lt. Gen Mike Flynn.

If the FBI search for the original Pientka 302 is mysteriously impossible, perhaps the DOJ should go and get the version that was received by the DOJ-NSD on the evening of January 24th, or the morning of January 25th, 2017.

Sally Yates had the original Pientka FD-302 report

Yates testimony below:

Wednesday January 25th, 2017, – The Department of Justice, National Security Division, (at this timeframe Mary McCord was head of the DOJ-NSD) – received a detailed readout from the FBI agents who had interviewed Flynn. Yates said she felt “it was important to get this information to the White House as quickly as possible.”

Thursday January 26th – (morning) Sally Yates called White House Counsel Don McGahn first thing that morning to tell him she had “a very sensitive matter” that had to be discussed face to face. McGahn agreed to meet with Yates later that afternoon.

Thursday January 26th – (afternoonSally Yates traveled to the White House along with a senior member of the DOJ’s National Security Division, “who was overseeing the matter”, that is Mary McCord. This was Yates’ first meeting with McGahn in his office, which also acts as a sensitive compartmented information facility (SCIF).

Yates said she began their meeting by laying out the media accounts and media statements made by Vice President Mike Pence and other high-ranking White House officials about General Flynn’s activity “that we knew not to be the truth.

According to Sally Yates testimony, she and Mary McCord presented all the information to McGahn so the White House could take action that they deemed appropriate. When asked by McGahn if Flynn should be fired, Yates answered, “that really wasn’t our call.”

Yates also said her decision to notify the White House counsel had been discussed “at great length.” According to her testimony: “Certainly leading up to our notification on the 26th, it was a topic of a whole lot of discussion in DOJ and with other members of the intel community.”

Friday January 27th – (morning) White House Counsel Don McGahn called Yates in the morning and asked if she could come back to his office.

Friday January 27th – (late afternoonAccording to her testimony, Sally Yates returned to the White House late that afternoon. One of McGahn’s topics discussed was whether Flynn could be prosecuted for his conduct.

Specifically, according to Yates, one of the questions *McGahn asked Yates: “Why does it matter to DOJ if one White House official lies to another?” She explained that it “was a whole lot more than that,” and reviewed the same issues outlined the prior day.

McGahn then expressed his concern that taking any action might interfere with the FBI investigation of Flynn, and Yates said it wouldn’t: “It wouldn’t really be fair of us to tell you this and then expect you to sit on your hands,” Yates claims to have told McGahn.

McGahn asked if he could look at the underlying evidence of Flynn’s conduct, and she said they would work with the FBI over the weekend and “get back with him on Monday morning.”

Friday January 27th, 2017 – (evening) In what appears to be only a few hours later, President Trump is having dinner with FBI Director James Comey where President Trump asked if he was under investigation. Trump was, but to continue the auspices of the ongoing investigation, Comey lied and told him he wasn’t.

Sally Yates received the original Flynn 302 (January 25th) and then went to the White House and informed Don McGahn (January 26th) about the nature of the interview.

The Flynn 302 was edited by Page and Strzok on February 10th.  The 302 was changed and altered to match the FBI claims of a discrepancy.  Flynn was fired on Feb 13th.  The Flynn 302 was debated again on Feb 14th and entered into the record on February 15th.

Sally Yates was fired, and later testified to congress on May 8, 2017.  She modified her testimony to avoid an admission that she held the original 302; likely because she knew the 302 was rewritten in February.

Bottom line the Flynn 302 was written on January 24, 2017.  James Comey, Andew McCabe and Sally Yates all saw it.” (Conservative Treehouse, 5/15/2020)  (Archive)

January 30, 2017 – Danchenko tells FBI the info he shared with Steele was “bar talk over beers”…then they classify it as “secret”

Christopher Steele leaves the High Court in London following a hearing in the libel case brought against him by Russian businessman Aleksej Gubarev, July 22, 2020. A key sub-source for material in the Steele dossier has been unmasked: Igor Danchenko, a Ukraine-born think-tank analyst. (Credit: Victoria Jones/PA/AP)

(…) Danchenko was another matter. The FBI first interviewed him in late January 2017 after he was identified as Steele’s subsource. His interview was documented on an electronic communication, or EC, an internal FBI communication, and not on an FD-302, which is used to document interviews of witnesses. Nor was it logged on a specific source report form. Since it was made under a proffer agreement with his attorney present — meaning nothing he said could be used directly against him in court — Danchenko must have believed he was in legal jeopardy. This would make him not a traditional source, and certainly not someone who would be promised confidentiality indefinitely. If he continued cooperating with the FBI after the initial interview, he would have been considered a cooperating witness. Yes, the FBI would try to protect his identity, but no promises would be made — and not forever.

Critics who claim that Attorney General William Barr has recklessly declassified this FBI electronic communication, putting Danchenko and other sources — and future source operations — in peril are wrong. Steele was a “non-U.S. Person,” and not an FBI source when he was de facto working for the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary Clinton campaign to develop opposition research against Donald Trump. Steele subcontracted this work to Danchenko, also not a government agent or source, who, by his own admission during the FBI interview, provided what he categorized as “bar talk over beers” back to Steele. The fact that this kind of information in an FBI communication was classified as “secret” in the first place is unexplainable. How is bar talk by a collection of drinking friends a threat to the national security of the United States, the very description of what constitutes “secret” information?

The information that Danchenko provided was the last nail in the coffin of the Steele dossier, and it created a serious dilemma for the FBI. A substantial portion of the Russia collusion narrative, and all of the evidence used in a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant against former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, was no longer viable.” (Read more: The Hill, 8/01/2020)  (Archive)

January 30, 2017 – The hearsay whistleblower is overheard discussing with ally how to remove Trump

Barely two weeks after Donald Trump took office, Eric Ciaramella – the CIA analyst whose name was recently linked in a tweet by the president and mentioned by lawmakers as the anonymous “whistleblower” who touched off Trump’s impeachment – was overheard in the White House discussing with another staffer how to remove the newly elected president from office, according to former colleagues.

Sources told RealClearInvestigations the staffer with whom Ciaramella was speaking was Sean Misko. Both were Obama administration holdovers working in the Trump White House on foreign policy and national security issues. And both expressed anger over Trump’s new “America First” foreign policy, a sea change from President Obama’s approach to international affairs.

“Just days after he was sworn in they were already talking about trying to get rid of him,” said a White House colleague who overheard their conversation.

“They weren’t just bent on subverting his agenda,” the former official added. “They were plotting to actually have him removed from office.”

Sean Misko (Credit: Center For a New American Century)

Misko left the White House last summer to join House impeachment manager Adam Schiff’s committee, where sources say he offered “guidance” to the whistleblower, who has been officially identified only as an intelligence officer in a complaint against Trump filed under whistleblower laws. Misko then helped run the impeachment inquiry based on that complaint as a top investigator for congressional Democrats.

(…) Two former co-workers said they overheard Ciaramella and Misko, close friends and Democrats held over from the Obama administration, discussing how to “take out,” or remove, the new president from office within days of Trump’s inauguration. These co-workers said the president’s controversial Ukraine phone call in July 2019 provided the pretext they and their Democratic allies had been looking for.

“They didn’t like his policies,” another former White House official said. “They had a political vendetta against him from Day One.”

Their efforts were part of a larger pattern of coordination to build a case for impeachment, involving Democratic leaders as well as anti-Trump figures both inside and outside of government.

All unnamed sources for this article spoke only on the condition that they not be further identified or described. Although strong evidence points to Ciaramella as the government employee who lodged the whistleblower complaint, he has not been officially identified as such. As a result, this article makes a distinction between public information released about the unnamed whistleblower/CIA analyst and specific information about Ciaramella.” (Read more: RealClearInvestigations, 1/22/2020)  (Archive)

January 30, 2017 – An internal memo shows the FBI’s Russia collusion case fell apart in first month of Trump presidency

“The piecemeal release of FBI files in the Russia collusion investigation has masked an essential fact: James Comey’s G-men had substantially debunked the theory that Donald Trump’s campaign conspired with Moscow by the time the 45th president was settling into the Oval Office, according to declassified memos, court filings, and interviews.

And that means a nascent presidency and an entire nation were put through two more years of lacerating debate over an issue that was mostly resolved in January 2017 inside the bureau’s own evidence files. The proof is now sitting in plain view.

In rapid-fire sequence in January 2017, U.S. officials:

  • received multiple warnings about the credibility of informant Christopher Steele and his dossier;
  • affirmed key targets of the FBI counterintelligence investigation made exculpatory statements denying collusion to undercover sources;
  • concluded retired Lt. Gen. Mike Flynn, Trump’s first national security adviser, was not engaged in collusion with the Russians.

The latter revelation has mostly escaped much notice, contained in a single sentence in a once-sealed court motion filed by Flynn defense attorney Sidney Powell that requested what is known as Brady material, or evidence of innocence.

Sidney Powell appears on Fox News on November 6, 2019 to discuss the FBI admission that it has for years misattributed authorship of the notes used in preparing the FBI 302 interview summaries that were themselves altered to incriminate Flynn. (Credit: Fox News)

That motion dated Sept. 11, 2019 requested access to “an internal DOJ document dated January 30, 2017, in which the FBI exonerated Mr. Flynn of being ‘an agent of Russia.’”

Flynn’s motion is confirmed by a 2018 letter obtained by Just the News between Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s office and defense lawyers. It shows the DOJ exoneration memo was written after Flynn had been interviewed by FBI agents in January 2017 and after the government learned the former Defense Intelligence Agency chief had kept his old agency briefed on his contacts with Russia, something that weighed heavily against the notion he was aiding Moscow.

“According to an internal DOJ memo dated January 30, 2017, after the Jan. 24 interview, the FBI advised that based on the interview the FBI did not believe Flynn was acting as an agent of Russia,” Mueller’s team wrote in the letter.” (Read more: Just the News, 3/11/2020)  (Archive)

January 30, 2017 – Ten days into Trump’s presidency, the attorney for the ‘hearsay whistleblower’ tweets: “#coup has started. As one falls two more will take their place. #rebellion and #impeachment”

“A few people have started looking at the connections behind Mark Zaid, the attorney for CIA “whistleblower” Eric Ciaramella.  What is starting to emerge is evidence of what CTH outlined yesterday; the current impeachment process is part of a coup continuum, and everything around the whistleblower is part of a long-ago planned and pre-constructed operation.

Two strong examples are very poignant:

This 2017 tweet by the whistleblowers’ attorney is evidence of what we were sharing yesterday.  A point that almost everyone is missing…what is happening now with Adam Schiff and his Lawfare-contracted legal aide, Daniel Goldman, was designed last year.  The current HPSCI legislative impeachment process and every little aspect within it is the execution of a plan, just like the DOJ/FBI plan was before it in 2016, 2017, and 2018.

Mark Zaid (Credit: MSNBC)

The use of a ‘whistle-blower’ was pre-planned long ago.  The agreements between Schiff, Lawfare and the CIA ‘whistle-blower’ were pre-planned.  The changing of whistle-blower rules to assist the plan was designed long ago.

Adam Schiff and Daniel Goldman are executing a plan concocted long ago. None of the testimony is organic; all of it was planned a long time ago, long before anyone knew the names Marie Yovanovitch, Kurt Volker, Gordon Sondland or Bill Taylor.   All of this is the coordinated execution of a plan.

“The anti-Trump members of the National Security Council and U.S. State Department were always going to be used.  Throughout 2018 and 2019 embeds in the ‘resistance’ network were awaiting instructions and seeding evidence, useful information, to construct an impeachment narrative that was designed to detonate later.

When Bill Taylor is texting Gordon Sondland about a quid-pro-quo, and Sondland is reacting with ‘wtf are you talking about’, Taylor was texting by design.  He was manufacturing evidence for the narrative.  This was all a set-up. All planned.

When Marie Yovanovitch shows up to give her HPSCI deposition to Daniel Goldman with three high-priced DC lawyers: Lawrence Robbins, Laurie Rubenstein and Rachel Li Wai Suen, having just sent her statements to the Washington Post for deployment immediately prior to her appearance, Yovanovitch is doing so by design.  All planned.

Here is another example from Mark Zaid, attorney for the “Whistleblower”, just ten days after the inauguration of President Trump where he directly calls out an ongoing “coup“:

This mention of the “coup has started” is even more nefarious, and even more specific to a CTH warning, because Zaid is specifically noting that Dana Boente was/is part of the effort.

Why is that name important?  Because Dana Boente is currently FBI chief legal counsel, hired into the FBI in January 2018.  Boente is dirty.

In April of this year we outlined the evidence to show how Dana Boente was a dirty cop [SEE HERE]; and then in June of this year HPSCI ranking member Devin Nunes threatened to send criminal referrals for FBI Director Christopher Wray and FBI counsel Dana Boente [SEE HERE].

(Dirty Cops – Full Backstory)

(Conservative Treehouse, 11/06/2019)

January 31, 2017 – John Podesta sets up fundraising meetings for Fusion GPS after Trump’s election victory

(Credit: Brian Snyder/Reuters)

“Former Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta was one of Fusion GPS’s “most helpful” resources in an effort to raise money after the 2016 election to continue investigating President Donald Trump, the co-founders of the opposition research firm revealed in a book released on Nov. 26.

Glenn Simpson and Peter Fritsch, the co-founders of Fusion GPS, wrote in “Crime in Progress” that Podesta provided welcome support in early 2017 for an effort to raise money to fund The Democracy Integrity Project (TDIP), a nonprofit group former Senate Intelligence Committee staffer Daniel Jones created on Jan. 31, 2017.

Podesta agreed during a meeting with Simpson in early 2017 to contact potential donors to help arrange meetings with Fusion GPS and Jones, according to the book.

“In mid-February [2017] and then again in early March, Jones — supported by Fritsch and Simpson — took prospecting trips in the West. They didn’t know the tech community well, so before heading out, they sought some door openers and validators from the world they knew best,” the authors wrote.

“One of the most helpful” resources turned out to be Podesta, according to Simpson and Fritsch.

“Podesta agreed to contact some friends out west on Jones’s behalf and told him to drop his name in talks with other potential supporters,” they said. “It was a brave gesture: He could have easily chosen to stay out of it altogether, given the fact that he had served as Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager.” (Read more: The Daily Caller, 12/02/2019)  (Archive)

February 9, 2017 – The FBI corruption is so bad, they ask Trump to authorize his own surveillance via an Executive Order

“Last month the DOJ admitted to the FISA court that two of the four FISA warrants used against Carter Page were fraudulently obtained.

However, what the DOJ did not admit publicly was how the current FBI Chief Legal Counsel, Dana Boente, participated in obtaining the April 2017 warrant.  In hindsight, this story explains the ongoing issues within the FBI.

The original FISA application was October 21st, 2016. The first FISA renewal was January 12, 2017 (84 days from origination) and prior to the inauguration of President Trump. The second renewal was April 7, 2017 (85 days from prior renewal). The third renewal was on June 29th, 2017 (83 days from prior renewal).

The originating FISA and first renewal were authorized by the Obama administration officials.  However, it was the second renewal -now identified as fraudulent- on April 7th 2017, under the Trump administration, when the conniving FBI ran into a problem.

Here’s what happened.

On January 30th, 2017, Sally Yates was fired for refusing to defend the Trump travel ban from extremist countries.  Yates was replaced on January 31st by the U.S. Attorney from the Eastern District of Virginia (EDVA), Dana Boente.  There wasn’t an existing AG because Loretta Lynch had left.

As a result of Yates exit and Dana Boente’s entry, Boente was Acting Deputy Attorney General, and in charge until Jeff Sessions was confirmed on February 8th, 2017.

On February 9th, 2017, President Trump issued executive order 13775 changing the line of DOJ succession, moving the EDVA up, and granting Boente the full legal authority to carry out the duties of the Deputy AG until a permanent replacement was confirmed.

When Jeff Sessions became Attorney General, Dana Boente became Acting Deputy AG, a role Boente would retain until Rod Rosenstein was confirmed on April 25th, 2017. (Note: Boente also remained EDVA U.S. Attorney)

On March 2nd, 2017, Dana Boente was one of a small group who participated in a conversation that led to the recusal of Jeff Sessions from anything related to the 2016 election.  This recusal included the ongoing FBI counterintelligence investigation known as Crossfire Hurricane, which was later picked up by Robert Mueller.

The other attendees for the recusal decision-making meeting (see above schedule) included Sessions’ chief of staff Jody Hunt; Criminal Chief in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Maryland, Jim Crowell; Deputy Assistant Attorney General (DAAG) in the Department of Justice National Security Division Tash Gauhar (FISA lawyer); and Associate Deputy Attorney General Scott Schools.  [Note: Tash Gauhar was lawyer for FBI Clinton case; and Scott Schools was part of drafting Clinton exoneration letter.]

Boente, Crowell, Gauhar and Schools convinced AG Jeff Sessions he must recuse himself.  In hindsight each of the people giving Sessions advice was connected to previously corrupt activity within Main Justice that included the Clinton and Spygate operations.  Not knowing the conflict each advisor was carrying Sessions took their advice and recused himself; a big mistake.

With AG Jeff Sessions recused from anything involving the 2016 election; which included the Russia investigation; effective the evening of March 2, 2017, FBI Director James Comey now reported to Acting Deputy AG Dana Boente.

Technically, as this point in March 2017 Boente is still U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia (EDVA) and is only ‘acting’ as Deputy AG.  With Sessions recused Boente would be needed when the Carter Page FISA would be up for renewal (April, 2017).

With Sessions recused from the Russia investigation, and without a confirmed Deputy AG able to authorize, all of the material the FBI investigators needed from Main Justice would have to flow through Dana Boente.  [Note: Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein was not confirmed until April 25th.]

The January 12th FISA renewal was going to expire on April 12th, 2017 (90-days).  FBI Director James Comey had to work with and brief Dana Boente on the sensitive issues around the Russia investigation; including discussions with Boente about President Trump as a target of that investigation, and surveillance issues; if he was going to extend the FISA warrant with DOJ approval.

Toward the end of March 2017 FBI Director Comey was in discussions with Dana Boente about the issue.

We discover the hand-written notes later on as they were leaked to MSNBC, almost certainly leaked by the people within the Mueller investigation in April 2018. [You’ll see how we know in a minute]  However, at the time of the 2018 leak there was no context for the notes that Boente was taking.

It was only after the FISA application was declassified in July 2018 that Boente’s hand-written notes and the topic therein made sense.   To date no-one has connected this issue… until now.  (Pay attention to the date, Comey March 30th, 2017)

Obviously these notes are from a conversation between then Acting AG Dana Boente and FBI Director James Comey on March 30th, 2017.  It appears to be a phone call.

In hindsight the subject matter almost certainly relates to the issue of the Russia investigation, the sensitivity of administration being under that investigation, and James Comey sharing his interactions with President Trump with Dana Boente.

With Jeff Sessions recused, it is now Acting AG Dana Boente approving whatever James Comey needs from Main Justice.  James Comey wants the Carter Page FISA extended.

AG Jeff Sessions is recused (incapable); there is no Deputy AG in position; therefore the U.S. Attorney for the EDVA holds the authority to perform the duties of the office.  Dana Boente is the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia.

After the February 9th executive order initiating the change of DOJ succession was signed Dana Boente can now officially sign the Carter Page FISA application renewal.  Which is exactly what happens a week after their March 30th call when James Comey and Dana Boente sign the admittedly fraudulent FISA renewal – April 7th, 2017:

(Page #271 – Carter Page FISA Application)

Do you see what just happened here? President Trump signed an executive order that facilitated the FBI continuing to spying on his administration.

(…) So when FBI Director James Comey is making contact with Acting DAG Dana Boente on March 30th, 2017, for issues relating to the need for a FISA renewal in April 2017, the FBI was absolutely certain there was no validity to the underlying evidence within the FISA application.

Yet the FBI team was so determined to get the fraudulent FISA reauthorized, they ignored all of the evidence that undermined their objective.

Think about the scale of deceit and corruption involved.

But it doesn’t end…. it gets worse.

On April 25th, 2017, Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein is confirmed.   Rosenstein now takes over the responsibilities held by Acting DAG Dana Boente; this includes the FBI counterintelligence probe.

On May 9th, 2017, FBI Director James Comey is fired.

On May 10th, 2017, FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe opens a criminal ‘obstruction of justice investigation’ of President Trump to parallel the ongoing counterintelligence investigation into the Trump campaign and administration.

(Credit: Conservative Treehouse)

Dana Boente now becomes the Asst. Attorney General and head of the DOJ National Security Division (DOJ-NSD).  Simultaneously retaining role as U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of VA.  At that moment, guess who is Dana Boente’s legal counsel – Michael Atkinson.

Yes, that’s the same Michael Atkinson who is the current ICIG who facilitated the Whistle-blower complaint; was senior legal counsel to Dana Boente while he headed the DOJ-NSD.

On May 16th, 2017, Rosenstein takes Robert Mueller to the White House to meet President Trump. On May 17th, 2017, Rosenstein appoints the Robert Mueller special counsel probe. And we’re off to the Trump-Russia-Collusion-Obstruction races…

On June 29th, 2017, Rod Rosenstein and Andrew McCabe reauthorize that same fraudulent FISA application for Robert Mueller and his corrupt team of 19 special prosecutors and now 40 FBI agents to continue to exploit.

Dana Boente is still head of DOJ-NSD from May 11th, 2017 through the end of October 2017 when he officially announced his intent to retire.  But wait,… On January 23rd, 2018, FBI Director Christopher Wray announces Dana Boente has shifted over to the FBI to be Chief Legal Counsel (replacing James Baker).

Yes, that is correct.  As Mueller is using 19 lawyers, and 40 FBI investigators, Boente now becomes a legal adviser to Christopher Wray, inside the FBI, while the Mueller probe is ongoing….. Oh, and as you can see from his participation with Mueller, Dana Boente is also now a fact witness within the Mueller investigation.

It gets better, who do you think is in charge of the 40 FBI agents now conducting the third year of that fraudulent Mueller investigation?

Yup, the very same Dana Boente!

This is staggeringly unreal.  It’s no wonder FBI Director Christopher Wray appears detached, disconnected and completely unfazed by the scale and scope of the corrupt enterprise he is in charge of.  His own chief legal counsel was a key player in the operation to remove the president.

It always seemed odd that White House Counsel Don McGahn left in 2018; until you look at the bigger picture.  The Carter Page FISA Application was officially declassified and made public in late July 2018.  No doubt as McGahn looked at the FISA issues from his unique perspective, he likely realized in hindsight how the FISA issues crossed-over two administrations and what the executive orders on DOJ succession were really all about.

In his position as White House Counsel, Don McGahn would now be a fact witness if anyone started investigating.   Approximately two weeks after the FISA applications were declassified and made public, in August 2018, Don McGahn submitted his resignation.

PS. The deadline for the FBI and DOJ to inform the FISA Court about their sequestration and recovery effort (ie. a proverbial search for the fruit of a poisonous tree. Where is it?), was February 5th. (Read more: Conservative Treehouse, 2/13/2020)  (Archive)

February 10, 2017 – Newly released texts reveal Strzok made major edits to Flynn’s lost FD 302 report

Peter Strzok testifies to the Judiciary Committee on July 12, 2018. (Credit: Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

“Peter Strzok, former FBI head of counterintelligence operations, significantly changed an early draft of the official FBI report from its questioning of Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, newly released text messages indicate.

To this day, the FBI hasn’t shown the early draft to Flynn. An eye-witness said the draft included exculpatory information, which was removed in the final version, Flynn’s lawyer, Sidney Powell, previously said.

(…) Agents are supposed to memorialize their interviews in an FD-302 form within five days, but the earliest 302 draft Flynn was provided was dated Feb. 10, 2017.

The new text messages suggest that an earlier version of the draft existed, either produced on Feb. 10 or earlier.

“Lisa you didn’t see it before my edits that went into what I sent you,” Strzok texted after 10 p.m. on Feb. 10, 2017, to Lisa Page, his mistress and then-special counsel to FBI’s then-Deputy Director Andrew McCabe.

Strzok said he was “trying to not completely rewrite” the document “so as to save [redacted] voice.”

According to Powell, Strzok and Page were editing the Flynn 302 and Strzok was referring to the Supervisory Special Agent (SSA) who co-conducted the interview with him. The Epoch Times and other media have identified the agent as Joe Pientka.

The texts show “that there, in fact, exists an original 302 document created by SSA,” Powell said in an April 30 statement.

(…) “I’ve now found a witness who says the original 302 did in fact say that Flynn was honest with the agents and did not lie,” she told Larry O’Connor on his WMAL radio show. “So for somebody to delete that from the 302 is just beyond outrageous.”

She told The Epoch Times the witness saw the document.

The new text messages are among a number of documents recently handed over to Flynn as a result of an ongoing review of his case by Jeffrey Jensen, U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Missouri, who was directed in January to perform the review by Attorney General William Barr.

The documents revealed that an FBI official involved in the decision to interview Flynn had questioned whether the bureau was trying to catch Flynn in a lie rather than get to the truth through their questioning.” (Read more: The Epoch Times, 5/01/2020)  (Archive)

February 14, 2017 – State Dept official, Kathleen Kavalec, forwards a HuffPo article to Nellie Ohr that touts the Clinton/Steele dossier, Ohr then forwards to the FBI

On February 14, 2017, former-Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs, Kathleen Kavalec forwarded Ohr a Huffington Post article touting the Steele Dossier’s claim that an alleged deal between Russian oil company Rosneft and Trump supporter Steve Schwarzman constituted a “high crime of treason worthy of impeachment.” Ohr forwarded the article to the FBI’s Washington Field Office the same day.

(A snippet from the Huffington Post article)

Four months prior to this exchange, Kavalec had found Christopher Steele not credible because of factual inaccuracies that he had relayed to her in October 2016, as uncovered by Judicial Watch.

(Judicial Watch, 8/14/2019)

March 15, 2017 – A formal complaint is filed against McCabe for saying at an “invite only” FBI Executive Management gathering, “Fuck Flynn and then we Fuck Trump”

On Page 7 of the “Deputy Director McCabe Office of Professional Responsibility Investigation, Part 1 of 2”, there was a complaint received by the Inspection Division’s Internal Investigations Section on March 15, 2017.

The day before the complaint was received, True Pundit published the article “EXCLUSIVE: FBI’s Own Political Terror Plot; Deputy Director and FBI Brass Secretly Conspired to Wage Coup Against Flynn & Trump.”  It regards a media leak involving a statement overheard in early February 2017, allegedly made by FBI EM [Executive Management]. Specifically, the alleged comments were made by DD A. G. McCabe and pertained to General Michael T. Flynn and the POTUS.”

(Public Meme)

True Pundit:

“Mere days before Gen. Michael Flynn was sacked…” [Before February 13, 2017].

IE. “Early February 2017“.

“FBI DD McCabe gathered more than a dozen of his top FBI disciples”

I.E. “FBI EM [Executive Management]

“McCabe emphatically declared at the invite-only gathering with raised voice: Fuck Flynn and then we Fuck Trump”.

“Specifically, the alleged comments were made by DD A. G. McCabe and pertained to General Michael T. Flynn and the POTUS.”

(Read: The_War_Economy, 12/12/2018) (Archive)

April 3, 2017 – A redacted FBI official warns Strzok of a Guardian article about General Flynn that has “gotten too deep”

“On April 3, 2017, a redacted official in the FBI Washington Field Office emails Strzok a link to a Guardian article titled “Michael Flynn: New Evidence Spy Chiefs Had Concerns about Russia Ties,” saying, “Im [sic] sure you are tracking, but this has gotten too deep.” Strzok replies, “I wasn’t. WTF is this…” Strzok then forwards the exchange to Page, saying “Not great.”

(Judicial Watch, 8/28/2020)

April 26, 2017 – 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“:

And as noted, the contractor access was finally halted on April 18th, 2016.

(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)

May 8-20, 2017 – Rod Rosenstein’s communications with Eric Holder, John Huber, other senior Obama officials and the media, at the same time he appoints Mueller

Rod Rosenstein joins William Barr as he speaks during a press conference on the release of the redacted version of the Mueller Report, April 18, 2019. (Credit: Win McNamee/Getty Images)

“Judicial Watch announced today it received 382 pages of documents showing former Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein’s communications with former Obama officials, including Eric Holder and information sharing with the media in the days immediately surrounding the inception of the Mueller investigation.

These documents were obtained in response to a FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) lawsuit filed against the U.S. Department of Justice for all records of communications of Rosenstein between May 8 and May 17, 2017 (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of Justice (No. 1:19-cv-00481)).

On May 15, 2017, Public Affairs Specialist Marsha Murphy sends Rosenstein an email with the subject line “Eric Holder just called for you.” The message says: “Please call him.”

On May 16, 2017, U.S. Attorney John Huber wrote to Rosenstein: “Rod, We’re proud of you.” Later that year, Huber was chosen by then-Attorney General Sessions to head up the Clinton Foundation investigation.

(On May 17, 2017, Robert Mueller was appointed by Rosenstein as special counsel.)

The documents revealed that Rosenstein had communications with Washington Post reporter Sari Horwitz that included multiple off-the-record calls, information sharing, and smoothing over arguments with the DOJ press office.

In an email exchange on May 12, 2017, with the subject line “Off the record” Horwitz complains to Rosenstein about then-DOJ spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores yelling at her and the Washington Post’s national security editor and calling a story of theirs “bullshit.” Rosenstein replies, “I will talk to Sarah.” Horwitz adds that she is “around all night if [Rosenstein wants] to talk off the record.”

In an email exchange between May 13-16, 2017, Horwitz requests that they speak off the record again. Rosenstein replied by sending her a link to a story about him in The Baltimore Sun.

On May 18, 2017, Horwitz emails Rosenstein with the subject line, “Urgent” to ask him about President Trump being the focus of an FBI investigation: “The Washington Post has been told by very good sources that President Trump is now a focus of the FBI investigation Can I please talk to you as soon as possible on deep background?”

On May 15, 2017, Rosenstein received an email from Katherine Davis, likely the 60 Minutes producer. In it, she states: “I hope you’re handling all of this craziness this week. Am sure you are. Much to discuss. FBI finalists. And whether you are considering recusing (hoping not but lmk) Lmk when I can come and visit. Next week? You know where to reach me in the meantime.”

In the days surrounding the appointment of Robert Mueller as Special Counsel, Rosenstein received calls from multiple emails of support from former senior Obama administration officials.

On May 12, 2017, Rosenstein received an email from former Obama Special Counsel Jonathan Su: Hi Rod: I know there’s a lot going on right now, but I wanted to send you a note of support. If there’ s anything I can do to be of help, please let me know. Hope you hang in there.”

On May 13, 2017, he received a similar supportive email from former Obama White House Deputy Associate Counsel Mike Leotta with the subject line “Thinking of you and your family.” The message says: “I hope you’re hanging in there, [redacted] despite all the press attention, attacks, and contradictory claims.”

On May 14, 2017, Rosenstein emailed Judge Brett Kavanaugh for Senior D.C. District Court Judge John D. Bates’ cell phone number, three days before the appointment of Robert Mueller.

On May 16, 2017, Rosenstein received a supportive email from former Obama Deputy Attorney General, James Cole: “You have the right approach. I always found that if you concentrated on doing your job (protecting the constitution) your reputation takes care of itself.”

On May 16, 2017, the day before Mueller was appointed, scheduling emails indicate that Rosenstein spoke with both Congressman Steny Hoyer (D-MD) and then-Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI).

The day after the special counsel appointment, on May 18, 2017, Judge Bates sent an email to Rosenstein with the subject line “Great move” and the message “Well done.”

On May 20, 2017, Rosenstein requests a phone call with Obama’s former Principal Deputy Solicitor General, Neal Katyal, who was also Al Gore’s co-counsel in Bush v. Gore and recently published the book, Impeach: The Case Against Donald Trump.

“These astonishing emails show that Rod Rosenstein had many Obama/Clinton and media friends supporting him around the time he infamously appointed Robert Mueller,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.” (Read more: Judicial Watch, 2/11/2020)  (Archive)

May 10, 2017 – Andrew McCabe orders an obstruction of justice investigation into Trump, the next day he testifies there has been no interference to date

Candid shot of Andrew McCabe for his 60 Minutes interview. (Credit: CBS News)

“Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe says he ordered an obstruction of justice investigation into President Donald Trump [the day] after Trump fired FBI Director James Comey in 2017,  to ensure the Russia probe wouldn’t “vanish in the night without a trace.”

“I was very concerned that I was able to put the Russia case on absolutely solid ground in an indelible fashion that, were I removed quickly or reassigned or fired, that the case could not be closed or vanish in the night without a trace,” McCabe told CBS News in a partial interview clip aired Thursday.

(…) While it had been previously reported that an obstruction of justice probe had been opened as part of special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, McCabe’s disclosure was the first time he publicly addressed why he launched the investigation.” (Read more: US News, 2/14/2019)

The following day on May 11, 2017, McCabe testifies to the Senate Intelligence Committee and says there has been “no effort to impede our investigation to date.”

May 16, 2017 – A Judicial Watch FOIA lawsuit releases a new McCabe memo that offers new insight

“A 2019 Judicial Watch FOIA Lawsuit resulted in the release of a May 16, 2017, memo written by then-Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe. [Link Here]  At the time of the FOIA release most people focused on Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein’s willingness to wear a wire to record the President; however, the memo content actually revealed much more.

There are three aspects to the McCabe memo that warrant attention: (1) Rosenstein’s willingness to wear a wire. (2) Evidence that Rosenstein took Mueller to the White House on May 16, 2017, as a set-up to interview Mueller’s pending target; and (3) the CURRENT redactions to the memo indicate CURRENT efforts by the CURRENT AG Bill Barr to protect the corrupt intent of Rod Rosenstein. While all three points are alarming; given recent events, the last aspect is most concerning.

In order to show the significance of this FOIA release, CTH is going to present the McCabe memo in two different ways. First, by highlighting the raw memo release; and then secondly, to highlight the important context by inserting the memo into the timeline.

First, here’s the McCabe memo:

The first two substantive issues within the McCabe memo can only be accurately absorbed against the background of those two context links.

Now we can insert the McCabe memo information into the timeline. This will help better understand what was happening in/around the dates in question.

Start by noting the May 16, 2017, date of the meeting at 12:30 pm is immediately before Rod Rosenstein took Robert Mueller for an interview with President Trump in the oval office. The oval office “interview” is where Mueller reportedly left his “cell phone” at the White House.

“Crossfire Hurricane” – During 2016, after the November election, and throughout the transition period into 2017, the FBI had a counterintelligence investigation ongoing against Donald Trump. FBI Director James Comey’s memos were part of this time period as the FBI small group was gathering evidence. Then Comey was fired….

♦Tuesday May 9th – James Comey was fired at approximately 5:00pm EST. Later we discover Rod Rosenstein first contacted Robert Mueller about the special counsel appointment less than 15 hours after James Comey was fired.

♦Wednesday May 10th – From congressional testimony we know DAG Rod Rosenstein called Robert Mueller to discuss the special counsel appointment on Wednesday May 10th, 2017, at 7:45am.

(See Biggs questions to Mueller at 2:26 of video)

According to his own admissions (NBC and CBS), Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe immediately began a criminal ‘obstruction’ investigation. Wednesday, May 10th; and he immediately enlisted Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.

A few hours after the Rosenstein-Mueller phone call James Comey’s office was being searched by the SSA Whistleblower per the IG report on Comey’s memos.

♦Thursday May 11th – Andrew McCabe testified to congress. With the Comey firing fresh in the headlines. McCabe testified there had been no effort to impede the FBI investigation.

Also on Thursday May 11th, 2017, the New York Times printed an article, based on information seemingly leaked by James Comey, about a dinner conversation between the President and the FBI Director. The “Loyalty” article [link]. The IG report shows: [Daniel] Richman confirmed to the OIG that he was one of the sources for the May 11 article, although he said he was not the source of the information in the article about the Trump Tower briefing“.

♦Friday May 12th – Andrew McCabe met with DAG Rod Rosenstein to discuss the ongoing issues with the investigation and firing. Referencing the criminal ‘obstruction’ case McCabe had opened just two days before. According to McCabe:

… “[Rosenstein] asked for my thoughts about whether we needed a special counsel to oversee the Russia case. I said I thought it would help the investigation’s credibility. Later that day, I went to see Rosenstein again. This is the gist of what I said: I feel strongly that the investigation would be best served by having a special counsel.” (link)

According to Andy Biggs questioning of Mueller, on this same day, May 12th, evidence shows Robert Mueller met “in person” with Rod Rosenstein. This is the same day when SSA Whistleblower went to James Comey’s house to retrieve FBI material and both Rybicki and Comey never informed the agent about the memos:

May 12th, is the date noted by David Archey when FBI investigators had assembled all of the Comey memos as evidence. However, no-one in the FBI outside the “small group” knows about them.

♦On Saturday May 13th, 2017, another meeting between Rod Rosenstein and Robert Mueller, this time with AG Jeff Sessions also involved. [Per Andy Biggs]

♦Sunday May 14th – Comey transmitted copies of Memos 2, 4, and 6, and a partially redacted copy of Memo 7 to Patrick Fitzgerald, who was one of Comey’s personal attorneys. Fitzgerald received the email and PDF attachment from Comey at 2:27 p.m. on May 14, 2017, per the IG report.

♦Monday May 15th, McCabe states he and Rosenstein conferred again about the Special Counsel approach. McCabe: “I brought the matter up with him again after the weekend.”

On this same day was when James Rybicki called SSA Whistleblower to notify him of Comey’s memos. The memos were “stored” in a “reception area“, and in locked drawers in James Rybicki’s office.

♦Tuesday May 16th – Per the IG report: “On the morning of , Comey took digital photographs of both pages of Memo 4 with his personal cell phone. Comey then sent both photographs, via text message, to Richman.

Back in Main Justice at 12:30pm Rod Rosenstein, Andrew McCabe, Jim Crowell and Tashina Guahar all appear to be part of this meeting. I should note that alternate documentary evidence, gathered over the past two years, supports the content of this McCabe memo. Including the text messages between Lisa Page and Peter Strzok:

Sidebar: pay attention to the redactions; they appear to be placed by existing DOJ officials in an effort to protect Rod Rosenstein for his duplicity in: (A) running the Mueller sting operation at the white house on the same day; and (B) the appointment of Robert Mueller as special counsel, which was pre-determined before the Oval Office meeting.

While McCabe was writing this afternoon memo, Rod Rosenstein was taking Robert Mueller to the White House for a meeting in the oval office with President Trump and VP Mike Pence. While they were meeting in the oval office, and while McCabe was writing his contemporaneous memo, the following story was published by the New York Times (based on Comey memo leaks to Richman):

Also during the approximate time of this Oval Office meeting, Peter Strzok texts with Lisa Page about information being relayed to him by Tashina Guahar (main justice) on behalf of Rod Rosenstein (who is at the White House).

Later that night, after the Oval Office meeting – According to the Mueller report, additional events on Tuesday May 16th, 2017:

It is interesting that Tashina Gauhar was taking notes presumably involved in the 12:30pm May 16, 2017 meeting between, Jim CrowellRod Rosenstein, and Andrew McCabe. But McCabe makes no mention of Lisa Page being present.

It appears there was another meeting in the evening (“later that night”) after the visit to the White House with Robert Mueller. This evening meeting appears to be Lisa Page, Rod Rosenstein and Andrew McCabe; along with Tashina Gauhar again taking notes.

♦ Wednesday May 17th, 2017: Rod Rosenstein and Andrew McCabe go to brief the congressional “Gang-of-Eight”: Paul Ryan, Nancy Pelosi, Devin Nunes, Adam Schiff, Mitch McConnell, Chuck Schumer, Richard Burr and Mark Warner.

… […] “On the afternoon of May 17, Rosenstein and I sat at the end of a long conference table in a secure room in the basement of the Capitol. We were there to brief the so-called Gang of Eight—the majority and minority leaders of the House and Senate and the chairs and ranking members of the House and Senate Intelligence Committees. Rosenstein had, I knew, made a decision to appoint a special counsel in the Russia case.”

[…] “After reminding the committee of how the investigation began, I told them of additional steps we had taken. Then Rod took over and announced that he had appointed a special counsel to pursue the Russia investigation, and that the special counsel was Robert Mueller.” (link)

Immediately following this May 17, 2017, Go8 briefing, Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein notified the public of the special counsel appointment.

We Exit The Timeline:

Back to the memo. Notice the participants: Andrew McCabe, Rod Rosenstein, Tashina Gauhar and Jim Crowell:

Now remind ourselves about who was involved in convincing Jeff Sessions to recuse himself:

The same two people (lawyers) Tasina Guahar and Jim Crowell, were involved in recusal advice for Jeff Sessions and the “wear-a-wire” conversation a few months later.

Back to the redactions. Notice how in the McCabe memo FOIA release, the DOJ is redacting the aspects of the appointment of a special counsel.

The redaction justification: b(5) “inter-agency or intra-agency memorandums or letters which would not be available by law to a party other than an agency in litigation with the agency.” Or put another way: stuff we just don’t want to share: “personal privacy” etc.

Again, when combined with the testimony by Mueller in response to the questioning by Rep. Andy Biggs, the redacted information looks like current DOJ officials hiding the timing of the decision-making to appoint Mueller, thereby protecting Rod Rosenstein.

More motive for this scenario shows up during a statement by Matt Whitaker who appeared on Tucker Carlson television show. Whitaker outlined why Rosenstein could never admit to having said he would wear a wire at the time the story broke.

When the “wear-a-wire” story first surfaced was when DAG Rosenstein was trying to convince President Trump not to declassify any information until after the Mueller special counsel was concluded. Rosenstein’s justification for his instructions surrounded President Trump possibly obstructing justice during Mueller’s investigation.

Reminder when Rod Rosenstein convinced President Trump not to declassify the documents that were being requested by Congress (Sept. 2018):

While McCabe is a known liar, there is enough ancillary supportive information, circumstantial and direct evidence, to make the content of the McCabe memo essentially accurate.

Also, Rod Rosenstein expanded the scope of Mueller’s investigation twice, the second time in October 2017 targeting Michael Flynn Jr. Also, Rosenstein participated in the indictment of fictitious Russia trolls and a Russian catering company. Yes, all indications are that Rod Rosenstein was a willing participant in the overall McCabe/Mueller effort.  We have not been allowed to see those scope memos.

Ultimately all of the DOJ delay and hidden information under AG Bill Barr appears to have an identical motive: help protect Rod Rosenstein.

That effort continues with the lack of released information and the ongoing, internal, DOJ and FBI redactions…

….The problem for Attorney General Bill Barr is not investigating what we don’t know, but rather navigating through what ‘We The People’ are already aware of…. (link)

(Conservative Treehouse, 2/15/2020)  (Archive)

May 17, 2017 – A Rosenstein email conflicts with Mueller testimony that he was not interviewed for the FBI Director’s position

Robert Mueller is sworn in on July 24, 2019 before testifying to the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees. (Credit: Jonathan Ernst/Reuters)

“Mueller testified under oath he did NOT interview with Trump for the job of FBI Director on May 16, 2017

Yet new FOIA’d emails show, DAG Rosenstein sending an email the very next day, May 17, saying that “Mueller” has now “withdrew from consideration for FBI Director”

Mueller’s testimony to the House. Mueller is clear that he was never “applying” for the job of FBI Director, he was never under consideration, and his “interview” on May 16, 2017 was just to give his “input” on “what it would take to do the job”
(Mueller Transcript)

Rosenstein email, just released in FOIA. Mueller “withdrew from consideration for FBI Director”, sent the day after the “interview” with Trump, May 17, 2017.

(Note: Rosenstein appointed Mueller Special Counsel later that same day)

Mueller can’t “withdraw” from “consideration” for the job of FBI Director unless he was previously under consideration for the role, which he testified he wasn’t. Rosenstein was in the “interview” on May 16, so his email makes no sense if Mueller was never under consideration.

So who is wrong? Mueller, or Rosenstein (Mueller’s boss)? Because they can’t both be right, and one of them was under oath. (Undercover Huber @JohnWHuber, 8/27/2020)  (Archive)

May 23, 2017 – Brennan lies; Gowdy claims a classified email can prove Brennan insisted the Steele dossier be included in the presidential intelligence community assessment (ICA)

“The Christopher Steele dossier was called “Crown Material” by FBI agents within the small group during their 2016 political surveillance operation. The “Crown” description reflects the unofficial British intelligence aspect to the dossier as provided by Steele.

In May 2019 former House Oversight Chairman Trey Gowdy stated there are emails from former FBI Director James Comey that outline instructions from CIA Director John Brennan to include the “Crown Material” within the highly political Intelligence Community Assessment. Specifically outlined by Gowdy, the wording of the Comey email is reported to say:

…”Brennan is insisting the Crown Material be included in the intel assessment.”

 

However, on May 23rd, 2017, in testimony -under oath- to the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI) John Brennan stated [@01:54:28]:

GOWDY: Director Brennan, do you know who commissioned the Steele dossier?

BRENNAN: I don’t.

GOWDY: Do you know if the bureau [FBI] ever relied on the Steele dossier as part of any court filing, applications?

BRENNAN: I have no awareness.

GOWDY: Did the CIA rely on it?

BRENNAN: No.

GOWDY: Why not?

BRENNAN: Because we didn’t. It wasn’t part of the corpus of intelligence information that we had. It was not in any way used as a basis for the Intelligence Community Assessment that was done. Uh … it was not. (Video is cued  @01:54:28)

As Victor Davis Hanson wrote at the time:

(…) James Clapper, John Brennan, and James Comey are now all accusing one another of being culpable for inserting the unverified dossier, the font of the effort to destroy Trump, into a presidential intelligence assessment—as if suddenly and mysteriously the prior seeding of the Steele dossier is now seen as a bad thing. And how did the dossier transmogrify from being passed around the Obama Administration as a supposedly top-secret and devastating condemnation of candidate and then president-elect Trump to a rank embarrassment of ridiculous stories and fibs?

Given the narratives of the last three years, and the protestations that the dossier was accurate or at least was not proven to be unproven, why are these former officials arguing at all? Did not implanting the dossier into the presidential briefing give it the necessary imprimatur that allowed the serial leaks to the press at least to be passed on to the public and thereby apprise the people of the existential danger that they faced? (read more)

Fox News Maria Bartiromo has more knowledge of the details within the 2016 political surveillance scandal than any other MSM host. Bartiromo has followed the events very closely and now she is the go-to person for those who are trying to bring the truth behind the scandal to light.

On the morning of May 20th, 2019, on her Fox Business Network show Ms. Bartiromo outlined the current issues between Comey and Brennan. WATCH:

It certainly looks like former CIA Director John Brennan has exposed himself to perjury. However, beyond that and even more disturbing, what does this say about the political intents of a weaponized intelligence apparatus?

CTH has previously outlined how the December 29th, 2016Joint Analysis Report (JAR) on Russia Cyber Activity was a quickly compiled bunch of nonsense about Russian hacking.

The JAR was followed a week later by the January 7th, 2017Intelligence Community Assessment. The ICA took the ridiculous construct of the JAR and then overlaid a political narrative that Russia was trying to help Donald Trump.

The ICA was the brain-trust of John Brennan, James Clapper, and James Comey. While the majority of the content was from the CIA, some of the content within the ICA was written by FBI Agent Peter Strzok who held a unique “insurance policy” interest in how the report could be utilized in 2017.  NSA Director Mike Rogers would not sign up to the “high confidence” claims, likely because he saw through the political motives of the report.” (Read more: Conservative Treehouse, 10/22/2019)   (Archive)

July 17, 2017 – The improper association of Victor Pinchuk with Hillary, Bill, and Chelsea Clinton, and covered up by the US Media, DOJ and IMF

 

(Credit: John Helmer)

“Never in the field of American conflict with Russia has so much wool pulled over the eyes been owed to so few sheep.  That was during the losing presidential campaign of Hillary Clinton. Now, in the investigations of President Donald Trump and his family, it’s a case of so many sheep producing so little wool.

The case of the $13 million paid to the Clinton family by the Ukrainian oligarch Victor Pinchuk, in exchange for personal favours and escalation of the war against Russia, was reported in detail throughout 2014Click to read the opener,  and more.

Early this month there has been fresh investigation of Pinchuk’s money links with the Clintons, owing to the start of Ukrainian government inquiries into the theft of billions of dollars of International Monetary Fund (IMF) loans to Ukraine – money then transferred to  Ukrainian commercial banks including Pinchuk’s Credit Dnepr bank,  and then loaned to offshore entities controlled by Pinchuk but apparently not repaid.  Theft of the IMF money was first reported here in connection with Igor Kolomoisky’s operation of Privat Bank.

Credit Dnepr’s [Pinchuk] takings were reported here. Also on the receiving end was the IMF’s Kiev representative, Jerome Vacher. For the reporting of his relationship with Pinchuk, read this. Vacher was recently replaced in Kiev. He and the IMF management decline to explain why.

Last week, in an investigation of Pinchuk, Credit Dnepr, and the Clintons, a group known as CyberBerkut published what it says were emails hacked from the files of Pinchuk operative, Thomas Weihe. He is currently listed as head of the Pinchuk Foundation board and chief executive.  Read the emails here.

Foundation business — left: Weihe with Pinchuk; right: Pinchuk with Chelsea Clinton. (Credit: John Helmer)

The BBC’s Ukrainian service reports that CyberBerkut is a “staunchly anti-Western group which takes its name from the riot police used against protesters during the unrest in Kiev that led to the ousting of President Viktor Yanukovych. The group’s declared goal is thwarting Ukraine’s military plans and thus stopping the “genocide” that it accuses Kiev of unleashing at America’s behest. Its motto is ‘We won’t forgive or forget’, and its rhetoric closely resembles that of Russian state media.”

The Wikipedia entry for CyberBerkut calls it “a modern organized group of pro-Russian hacktivists”, with a long list of cyber operations starting in March 2014. For details, read.  On July 13, Wikileaks tweeted the CyberBerkut report but qualified its conclusions, calling them “alleged”.

Russian press pick-up has yet to reach the mainstream Moscow media,  or the English-language outlets run by Dmitry Peskov, the Kremlin press head.  If it did, they might correct factual errors in the CyberBerkut report, such as the linking of Pinchuk to the Ukrainian Delta Bank. Before its collapse in March 2015, Delta was owned by Nikolai Lagun.  Graham Stack’s investigation of Lagun’s looting of Delta Bank reveals plenty of crime, but no trace of Pinchuk.

The first Russian publication of the CyberBerkut report is on the Novorussian website, Colonel Cassad;   this is no more than a re-publication of the original text.

This is how CyberBerkut charts the relationship between the Pinchuk outlays and Clinton receipts:

CLICK TO ENLARGE

The evidence of the movement of IMF money through Credit Dnepr into the offshores, and from Pinchuk pockets into Clinton pockets,  has yet to be corroborated. What is revealed for the first time are emails between Clinton and Pinchuk operatives during the second half of 2014. These confirm the investigations, reported here three years ago, of what Pinchuk was doing to promote his steel-pipe trade with the US and his anti-Russian agenda, with the Clintons and the Obama Administration. At the same time, Pinchuk was using the demonstration of support he was procuring from them in order to boost his political power in Kiev and financial favour from the National Bank of Ukraine.

Read the emails, commencing in July of 2014:

Douglas Schoen, Pinchuk’s lobbyist in the US, does not respond to queries. Nor does Weihe, the Pinchuk Foundation apparatchik. They have made no statement challenging the authenticity of these emails. Nor have the Clinton Foundation officials who sent or received the emails, and who have been working to manage Clinton’s relationship with Pinchuk and satisfy his requests.

The three Clinton operatives, who remain at work at the foundation, are Amitabh Desai (pictured below, left), Robert Harrison (centre), and Craig Minassian (right).

Desai, according to the Clinton website, “has been with the Clinton Foundation for more than 10 years. As foreign policy adviser, Ami guides international strategy and relationships and plays a central role in shaping and executing President Clinton’s vision. This includes managing relationships with heads of state, business leaders, philanthropists, and NGOs around the globe” Before taking his job at the foundation, Desai worked for Clinton when she was a US senator, and before that, for Senator Edward Kennedy.

Last week’s report isn’t the first disclosure that in Desai’s emails he was selling access to Clinton for foreign money. More of them can be found here. Among the excerpts already published by US investigators, mainly from Freedom of Information Act pursuit of State Department files, there is no reference to Pinchuk or Ukraine. The US archive on reports of fraud at the Clinton Foundation is very large and can be combed through here. Fraud involving Pinchuk isn’t reported in this database.

(…) On November 3, the week before the election, AP broke the news that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) had been pursuing an investigation of Clinton’s government favours for foundation donations, but that the Justice Department stopped it. “Though agents believed they had grounds to move forward with an investigation, Justice Department lawyers were more skeptical. The lawyers did not direct the FBI to stop looking into the matter during the meeting, but public-corruption prosecutors in Washington expressed disinterest in a Clinton Foundation-related investigation based on the information presented.”

In all the email evidence which US media investigations pursued to expose Clinton’s foreign favour trading, there was no focus on the Pinchuk emails and the flow of Pinchuk money. Conflict of interest was the Clinton offence the US investigators were after. But in the Pinchuk case, there was another potential offence, and that was reported on February 17, 2014. Pinchuk had looted his Moscow-based Rossiya Insurance Company of up to $200 million, according to investigations by Russian insurance regulators and prosecutors, before the company’s licence was cancelled in October 2013.

The subsequent question was: did that money find its way through Pinchuk’s foundation into Clinton’s foundation, to be traded for political and personal favours?

The release of the CyberBerkut emails last week provides fresh evidence of this trading, but CyperBerkut doesn’t mention the Rossiya Insurance Company crime. As well-known as the crime was in 2013 and 2014, no US media investigator, nor any Russian government investigation has reported pursuing the Rossiya money-trail through Pinchuk’s accounts into Clinton’s. So the big question for the FBI and the Department of Justice —  what check did the Clinton Foundation carry out of the legality of the money it took from Pinchuk? – has never been asked. Or if the US Government did ask the question, the Clinton answer has been concealed.

Note: Thomas Weihe comments:  “First, it is obviously a lie that I don’t respond to queries. Every more or less professional and honest journalist gets an answer from me quickly, and I reply honestly. Second, the whole story is completely wrong. It is so wrong that individual corrections cannot improve it. Everything is invented. There is no truth to anything you say. The so-called evidence proves absolutely none of the claims you make. You should be ashamed of publishing such crap.” (Read more: John Helmer, 7/17/2017)

(Timeline editor’s note: We are excited to have received permission to republish some of Mr Helmer’s well-sourced work on Ukraine, the Clintons and Victor Pinchuk. Please be sure to read his entire article at the link provided. According to Mr. Helmer’s bio, he is 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.”)

September 8, 2017 – Susan Rice’s testimony on being out of Russiagate loop doesn’t add up

Joe Biden and Susan Rice attend a meeting in the Oval Office with Obama and Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi on April 14, 2015. (Credit: Peter Theiler/Getty Images)

“Susan Rice, the vice presidential contender with a high-profile history of questionable public statements, has another dubious claim in her past that until now has escaped scrutiny. Rice swore under oath that as President Obama’s national security adviser she was never told about the FBI’s Trump-Russia investigation. But former FBI Director James Comey testified that Rice was present when he informed Obama all about Crossfire Hurricane just weeks after the investigation was launched.

James Comey: His account of telling the White House about Crossfire Hurricane differs markedly from Susan Rice’s recollection. She testified: “We were not informed by Director Comey or the attorney general that there was an active investigation of anybody in the Trump orbit.”
(Credit:/Charles Krupa/AP)

The contradiction could lead to charges that Rice lied to Congress about a topic still of intense interest to investigators: How actively involved in the effort to spy on the Trump campaign was the inner circle of the Obama White House, including the president himself? More immediately, the question of whether Rice told the truth on Capitol Hill might damage her bid to join Joe Biden on the Democratic presidential ticket.

Rice earned a reputation for shading the truth after the 2012 terrorist attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya. She was famously dispatched to five different Sunday morning news shows to repeat false talking points: that the mob that killed four Americans – including Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens – was merely reacting to an obscure YouTube video mocking Islam.

Questions about her forthrightness were redoubled when Senate investigators found that, in the waning minutes of the Obama administration, Rice wrote a curious “memo to the file.” She sent an email to herself on the day of Donald Trump’s inauguration, and in it claimed that Obama had insisted that everything to do with Russia, whether law enforcement or counterintelligence, be done “by the book.”

President Obama and Rice: Both were present at a meeting where, the FBI’s Comey said, the Trump-Russia probe was discussed at its outset. She denied knowing about it. (Credit: Carolyn Kaster/AP)

Asked about that memo later, Rice insisted she knew nothing about the FBI’s counterintelligence probe regarding Trump and Russia, let alone anything that could be characterized as spying on the incoming administration. She had her lawyer, Kathryn Ruemmler, write a letter to Sens. Charles Grassley, Dianne Feinstein, Lindsey Graham, and Sheldon Whitehouse. “While serving as National Security Advisor, Ambassador Rice was not briefed on the existence of any FBI investigation into allegations of collusion between Mr. Trump’s associates and Russia,” Ruemmler wrote, “and she later learned of the fact of this investigation from Director Comey’s subsequent public testimony” – testimony that didn’t occur until March 20, 2017.

On Wednesday, September 8, 2017, Rice repeated that she knew nothing of the FBI’s investigation while in the White House. This time she made the claim under oath.

Rice was at the Capitol, sitting in a secure room used by the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. The official reason for the interview was to ask what the Obama administration had done to thwart Russian efforts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election. Behind those questions was a different query: Had Barack Obama’s team used the power of the presidency to spy on and smear the Trump campaign?

With the expectation of facing unfriendly questions, Rice arrived with two attorneys from the law firm Latham & Watkins.

Adam Schiff: “… [W]ould Director Comey brief you on the progress of his investigation?” he asked Rice. “No,” replied Rice under oath. (Credit: Scott Applewhite)

The Republican staffer running the interview emphasized to Rice the importance of telling the truth: “You are reminded that it is unlawful to deliberately provide false information to members of Congress or staff.” She was asked to raise her right hand and take an oath: “Madam Ambassador, do you swear or affirm that the testimony you’re about to give is the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth?”

“I do,” Rice said.

The Democrats at the interview weren’t looking to trip Rice up. But it was questions from two California Democrats in the room that Rice may regret. Rep. Adam Schiff cited the former head of the FBI: “Director Comey testified that, in July of last year [2016], he began a counterintelligence investigation into people associated with the Trump campaign and what contacts they may have had with Russia.

“That investigative responsibility,” Schiff asked Rice, “wasn’t part of your portfolio, I take it?”

“No, not at all.”

“And would Director Comey brief you on the progress of his investigation?”

“No,” said Rice. And then she elaborated. “I think it’s important for everybody to understand: We were not informed by Director Comey or the attorney general that there was an active investigation of anybody in the Trump orbit,” she said. “[I]n the Obama White House, we maintained scrupulously the firewall between people in the While House and contacts with Justice about potential or actual criminal matters. The only communication that was sanctioned in that vein was between the White House counsel and the Justice Department or the FBl.”

Eric Swalwell: “ls it fair to say that, as the national security adviser, you were not read in on active, ongoing investigations that the Department of Justice or the FBI were conducting?” Rice’s reply under penalty of perjury: “Absolutely, that’s the case.” (Credit: Alex Brandon/AP)

If that weren’t definitive enough, Rice added, “And Director Comey did not volunteer to us, not only then but through the duration of the administration, that there was an active investigation of anybody in the Trump orbit. I knew he was looking at this issue, that he was concerned about it. But he never specifically shared with me or others, to my knowledge, that such an investigation was ongoing. And I learned about it formally in the public domain after I left office.”

A little later in the closed-door Capitol Hill interview, Democratic Rep. Eric Swalwell came back to the question that Rice had already answered so definitively: “Speaking of investigations, you talked about Director Comey and the FBl,” Swalwell said to Rice. “ls it fair to say that, as the national security adviser, you were not read in on active, ongoing investigations that the Department of Justice or the FBI were conducting?”

If Rice were concerned that she might have misspoken earlier, she was presented with the opportunity to correct her testimony. She didn’t take it.

“Absolutely, that’s the case,” Rice replied. “Those were law enforcement matters. They were not things that I was privy to unless the Justice Department chose to share them with me. The Justice Department’s normal contact in the White House, at least in the Obama administration, for anything to do with law enforcement, criminal stuff, was the White House counsel.”

Rice’s testimony took place two years before the inspector general for the Justice Department, Michael Horowitz, released his report on the origins of the FBI’s Trump-Russia investigation. In that report is an admission from James Comey that contradicts Rice’s sworn statements. According to testimony obtained from Comey by Horowitz, the Obama team knew about the FBI’s investigation from nearly the start, and in detail.

A footnote from the IG report undercuts Rice’s claim of no knowledge of Crossfire Hurricane. (Credit: DOJ OIG FISA Report)

<ahref=”https://www.realclearinvestigations.com/articles/2020/07/30/susan_rices_strained_relationship_with_the_truth_strikes_again_124660.html”>(Read more: RealClearInvestigations, 7/30/2020)  (Archive)

September 19, 2017 – Rice tells House investigators why she unmasked senior Trump officials

Susan Rice tells Congressional investigators that she ‘unmasked’ Trump officials during the transition because they met with a prince from the United Arab Emirates, who hasn’t informed the US government of his travels. (Credit: Win McNamee/2012 Getty Images)

“Former national security adviser Susan Rice privately told House investigators that she unmasked the identities of senior Trump officials to understand why the crown prince of the United Arab Emirates was in New York late last year, multiple sources told CNN.

The New York meeting preceded a separate effort by the UAE to facilitate a back-channel communication between Russia and the incoming Trump White House.

The crown prince, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan, arrived in New York last December in the transition period before Trump was sworn into office for a meeting with several top Trump officials, including Michael Flynn, the president’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, and his top strategist Steve Bannon, sources said.

(…) It’s unclear precisely which Trump officials Rice discussed at the House meeting. But multiple sources have confirmed to CNN that Zayed met at the time with Flynn, Kushner and Bannon. The three-hour discussion focused on a range of issues, including Iran, Yemen and the Mideast peace process, according to two sources who insisted that opening up a back-channel with Russia was not a topic of discussion.

Still, the fact that the New York meeting occurred prior to the Seychelles session and that the UAE did not notify the Obama administration about why the crown prince was coming to the United States has raised questions in the eyes of investigators on Capitol Hill.” (Read more: CNN, 9/19/2017)

October 16, 2017 – Grassley: Mueller team mischaracterizes Trump campaign emails in court filing

Mueller and team exit the Capitol in June, 2017. (Credit: Doug Mills/The New York Times)

“The special counsel’s office fed “speculation and innuendo” about possible collusion with Russia by withholding key details from emails cited in a court filing in the case of former Trump adviser George Papadopoulos, a top Republican senator alleged in a newly released letter.

“The public deserves to have the full context for the information the Special Counsel chooses to release. The glaring lack of it feeds speculation and innuendo that distorts the facts,” Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley wrote to special counsel Robert Mueller on Oct. 16, 2017.

Grassley, who then chaired the Senate Judiciary Committee, was responding to a “statement of offense” released in the case against Papadopoulos, the Trump campaign adviser who entered a plea deal in the special counsel’s probe on Oct. 5, 2017.

Prosecutors quoted from several emails in a way that suggested top Trump campaign officials were eager to meet with Russians. But Grassley asserted that the full emails showed that campaign officials rebuffed the idea of meeting with Russians. The Iowa Republican took Mueller’s team to task for failing to correct news reports that cited the Papadopoulos court filings as evidence of possible collusion with Russia.

“It should be the goal of anyone interested in an accurate portrayal of the facts for the American people to correct the erroneous reporting,” he wrote in the letter, which was published Thursday by Fox News.” (Read more: The Daily Caller, 4/05/2019)

March 20, 2018 – Andrew McCabe is not charged for leaks and perjury because he was facing “unprecedented challengers [sic] and pressures”

“In 2018, both the Department of Justice Inspector General and FBI Office of Professional Responsibility concluded that former FBI Acting Director Andrew McCabe had “made an unauthorized disclosure to the news media and lacked candor − including under oath − on multiple occasions.”

However, internal FBI documents indicate the Department of Justice, under Attorney General Jeff Sessions, decided to give McCabe the benefit of the doubt and credit for his years of devoted service in deciding not to charge him with a crime.

The documents, obtained by the watchdog Judicial Watch, appear to show that the case against McCabe was closed on March 20, 2018, about the time he was fired from the FBI. But the decision not to charge him was not announced publicly.” (Read more: Sharyl Attkisson, 8/09/2019)

A snippet from the Justice Department’s Office of Professional Responsibility’s report on Andrew McCabe.

April 2018 – A key witness tells team Mueller that the ‘black ledger’ evidence was fabricated; Ukraine officials claim it couldn’t be corroborated

(Credit: Patriot Post)

“One of Robert Mueller’s pivotal trial witnesses told the special prosecutor’s team in spring 2018 that a key piece of Russia collusion evidence found in Ukraine known as the “black ledger” was fabricated, according to interviews and testimony.

The ledger document, which suddenly appeared in Kiev during the 2016 U.S. election, showed alleged cash payments from Russian-backed politicians in Ukraine to ex-Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort.

“The ledger was completely made up,” cooperating witness and Manafort business partner Rick Gates told prosecutors and FBI agents, according to a written summary of an April 2018 special counsel’s interview.

In a brief interview with Just the News, Gates confirmed the information in the summary. “The black ledger was a fabrication,” Gates said. “It was never real, and this fact has since been proven true.”

Gates’ account is backed by several Ukrainian officials who stated in interviews dating to 2018 that the ledger was of suspicious origins and could not be corroborated.

If true, Gates’ account means the two key pieces of documentary evidence used by the media and FBI to drive the now-debunked Russia collusion narrative — the Steele dossier and the black ledger — were at best uncorroborated and at worst disinformation. His account also raises the possibility that someone fabricated the document in Ukraine in an effort to restart investigative efforts on Manafort’s consulting work or  to meddle in the U.S. presidential election.” (Read more: JustTheNews, 2/06/2020)  (Archive) 

June 14, 2018 – FBI Director Wray commits to the institutional cover-up of gross misconduct by former and current DOJ and FBI officials

(…) “FBI Director Wray lost all credibility in June of 2018 when he participated in a structured press conference intended to diminish the IG report on the institutional issues with the FBI.   It was then obvious Wray was committed to the institutional cover-up of gross misconduct by former and current DOJ and FBI officials.

At the conclusion of that June 14, 2018press conference an earlier unscheduled meeting on January 3rd, 2018, between Christopher Wray, Rod Rosenstein and House Speaker Paul Ryan then began to make a lot more sense.

During that January 2018 meeting FBI Director Christopher Wray, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and House Speaker Paul Ryan formed an alliance against HPSCI Chairman Devin Nunes.

January 3rd, 2018 – WASHINGTON DC – Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and FBI Director Chris Wray made an unannounced visit to Speaker Paul Ryan’s office Wednesday as the Justice Department grapples with an increasingly hostile faction of House Republicans demanding documents related to the bureau’s Russia probe.

Rosenstein was spotted entering Ryan’s office, and a spokesman for the speaker confirmed that Rosenstein and Wray had requested the meeting. A second person familiar with the meeting said it was related to a document request issued over the summer by House intelligence committee chairman Devin Nunes. (more)

(Credit: Eric Gay/The Associated Press)

(OIG Report on FBI)

(Read more: The Conservative Treehouse, 5/08/2019)

June 27, 2018 – Strzok testimony reveals DOJ and Clinton lawyers struck secret deal to block FBI access to Clinton Foundation Emails

Bill and Hillary Clinton (Credit: public domain)

“The Justice Department and Hillary Clinton’s legal team “negotiated” an agreement that blocked the FBI from accessing emails on Clinton’s homebrew server related to the Clinton Foundation, according to a transcript of recently released testimony from last summer by former FBI special agent Peter Strzok.

“Under questioning from Judiciary Committee General Counsel Zachary Somers, Strzok acknowledged that Clinton’s private personal email servers contained a mixture of emails related to the Clinton Foundation, her work as secretary of state and other matters.

Were you given access to [Clinton Foundation-related] emails as part of the investigation?” Somers asked

We were not. We did not have access,” Strzok responded. “My recollection is that the access to those emails were based on consent that was negotiated between the Department of Justice attorneys and counsel for Clinton.” – Fox News

Strzok added that “a significant filter team” was employed at the FBI to “work through the various terms of the various consent agreements.”

“According to the attorneys, we lacked probable cause to get a search warrant for those servers and projected that either it would take a very long time and/or it would be impossible to get to the point where we could obtain probable cause to get a warrant,” said Strzok.

(…) Later in his testimony last summer, Strzok said that agents were able to access “the entire universe” of information on the servers by using search terms to probe their contents – saying “we had it voluntarily.”

“What’s bizarre about this, is in any other situation, there’s no possible way they would allow the potential perpetrator to self-select what the FBI gets to see,” said former Utah Rep. Jason Chaffetz – former chair of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee until 2017 and current contributor to Fox News. “The FBI should be the one to sort through those emails — not the Clinton attorneys.

Chaffetz suggested that the goal of the DOJ was to “make sure they hear no evil, see no evil — they had no interest in pursuing the truth.”

“The Clinton Foundation isn’t supposed to be communicating with the State Department anyway,” said Chaffetz. “The foundation — with her name on it — is not supposed to be communicating with the senior officials at the State Department.” (Read more: Zero Hedge, 3/15/2019)  (Strzok Transcript)

June 27, 2018 – Peter Strzok deleted ‘personal’ communications with Lisa Page

Peter Strzok (Credit: public domain)

“Former FBI official Peter Strzok told Congress in 2018 that he deleted “personal” communications he had with his mistress, former FBI attorney Lisa Page.

“As a fact of the matter, following the — at some point, I — you know, it was related to personal reasons — deleted all those,” Strzok told lawmakers on June 27, 2018, according to a transcript of the testimony released Thursday.

“But they were the personal communications, not the work ones,” added Strzok, who acknowledged having an extramarital affair with Page.

Aitan Goelman, an attorney for Strzok, told The Daily Caller News Foundation on Thursday that Strzok deleted the messages before he was removed from the Mueller team.

“Pete deleted personal communications from his personal iPhone before and unrelated to these investigations,” said Goelman, who added in a follow-up comment that the deletions were made prior to July 27, 2017, when Strzok was kicked off the Mueller probe.

Goelman did not provide a specific date for the deletions.” (Read more: The Daily Caller, 3/14/2019)

July 13, 2018 – Lisa Page discusses the DOJ influence over the FBI’s Clinton email investigation

(Credit: State of the Nation)

(…) “Page also repeatedly noted a tension between the FBI and DOJ, noting that the DOJ was far more cautious in their approach to matters and was ultimately responsible for the decision not to prosecute in the Clinton case.

Another aspect that developed in the dynamic between the DOJ and the FBI was pressure from the department to place additional people into the FBI’s investigation. Page noted that “as soon as the planning started to begin to interview some of the more high-profile witness, not just Mrs. Clinton but also Huma Abedin, Cheryl Mills, Jake Sullivan, and her sort of core team, the department wanted to change the sort of structure and the number of people who were involved.”

In particular, David Laufman, a deputy assistant attorney general and head of counterintelligence for the DOJ’s National Security Division at the time, pushed extensively to be present for the higher profile interviews. As Page noted, this quickly spiraled into a problem for the FBI:

“Once we started talking about including David, then the U.S. Attorney’s Office also wanted to participate in the interviews, although they had participated in virtually none by that point. And so, then the U.S. Attorney’s Office was pushing to have the AUSAs [Assistant U.S. Attorney], who were participating in the Clinton investigation, also participate.”

“And so now, all of a sudden, we were going from our standard two and two to this burgeoning number of people.”

Apparently, Laufman felt so strongly that he went to his boss, George Toscas, the deputy assistant attorney general in the National Security Division, who then approached McCabe directly.

The DOJ’s ongoing influence was felt in other ways as well. Cheryl Mills and Heather Samuelson, both fact witnesses, were allowed to attend Clinton’s interview as her attorneys. As Page admitted, “I would agree with you, that it is not typically appropriate or operationally necessary to have fact witnesses attend the interview.”

The decision to allow attendance of fact witnesses during Clinton’s interview came from the DOJ, although Page said she wasn’t certain who had made the decision. She noted that the FBI protested the move but were overridden, so the decision must have come from a senior level within the DOJ.” (The Epoch Times, 1/21/2019)

July 13, 2018 – Lisa Page admits Obama DOJ ordered stand-down on Clinton email prosecution

“Former FBI lawyer Lisa Page admitted under questioning from Texas Republican Rep. John Ratcliffe last summer that “the FBI was ordered by the Obama DOJ not to consider charging Hillary Clinton for gross negligence in the handling of classified information,” the congressman alleged in a social media post late Tuesday, citing a newly unearthed transcript of Page’s closed-door testimony.

(Credit: Twitter)

Page and since-fired FBI Special Agent Peter Strzok, who were romantically involved, exchanged numerous anti-Trump text messages in the lead-up to the 2016 presidential election, and Republicans have long accused the bureau of political bias. But Page’s testimony was perhaps the most salient evidence yet that the Justice Department improperly interfered with the FBI’s supposedly independent conclusions on Clinton’s criminal culpability, Ratcliffe alleged.

“So let me if I can, I know I’m testing your memory,” Ratcliffe began as he questioned Page under oath, according to a transcript excerpt he posted on Twitter. “But when you say advice you got from the Department, you’re making it sound like it was the Department that told you: You’re not going to charge gross negligence because we’re the prosecutors and we’re telling you we’re not going to —”

Page interrupted: “That is correct,” as Ratcliffe finished his sentence, ” — bring a case based on that.” (Read more: Fox News, 3/13/2019)

July 21, 2018 – The FISA applications relied on hearsay from tertiary sources

“The newly released FISA applications also confirm a fourth significant fact: To obtain the surveillance warrant, the DOJ and FBI relied on unverified hearsay from sub-sources (i.e., Steele’s sources) of unknown reliability.

While the government may rely on unverified information provided by an informant who has a history of providing reliable information, to establish probable cause with evidence coming from a source of unknown reliability, the government must corroborate that information. The FISA applications make no mention of corroboration of the sub-sources’ claims concerning Page’s purported conversations with two Russian agents.

Further, the FISA applications reveal that the DOJ only established Steele’s reliability, not that of “sub-sources.” But as former federal prosecutor Andrew McCarthy first highlighted in February 2018:

The only reliability that counts is the reliability of the factual informants, not of the investigator who purports to channel the informants. The judge wants to know why the court should believe the specific factual claims: Was the informant truly in a position to witness what is alleged, and if so, does the informant have a track record of providing verified information? The track record of the investigator who locates the sources is beside the point. A judge would need to know whether Steele’s sources were reliable, not whether Steele himself was reliable.

While we do not know what lay behind the redacted portions of the applications, it seems clear from the placement, context, size of the blackouts that the FBI did not include information in the application either establishing the sub-sources’ reliability or detailing any efforts to corroborate Page’s claimed collusion with the Russian agents.” (Read more: The Federalist, 7/23/2018)  (Archive)

August 30, 2018 – The Justice Department discloses there were no FISA court hearings held on Carter Page warrants

“Judicial Watch today announced that in response to a Judicial Watch Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit, the Justice Department (DOJ) admitted in a court filing last night that the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court held no hearings on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) spy warrant applications targeting Carter Page, a former Trump campaign part-time advisor who was the subject of four controversial FISA warrants.

In the filing the Justice Department finally revealed that the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court held no hearings on the Page FISA spy warrants, first issued in 2016 and subsequently renewed three times:

(National Security Division) FOIA consulted (Office of Intelligence) … to identify and locate records responsive to [Judicial Watch’s] FOIA request…. [Office of Intelligence] determined … that there were no records, electronic or paper, responsive to [Judicial Watch’s] FOIA request with regard to Carter Page. [Office of Intelligence] further confirmed that the [Foreign Surveillance Court] considered the Page warrant applications based upon written submissions and did not hold any hearings.

The Department of Justice previously released to Judicial Watch the heavily redacted Page warrant applications. The initial Page FISA warrant was granted just weeks before the 2016 election. (Read more: Judicial Watch, 8/31/2018) (Archive)

September 21, 2018 – Records show a DOJ effort to craft response to reports on Rosenstein wearing wire and invoking 25th Amendment

(Credit: Judicial Watch)

“Judicial Watch today released 14 pages of records from the Department of Justice showing officials’ efforts in responding to media inquiries centering on talks within the DOJ/FBI allegedly invoking the 25th Amendment to “remove” President Donald Trump from office and former Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein offering to wear a “wire” to record his conversations with the president.

The records show that, following a September 21, 2018report on Rosenstein suggesting he would wear a wire to secretly record Trump and his discussions on using the 25th Amendment, Rosenstein sought to ensure the media would have “difficulty” finding anyone in the DOJ to comment and a concerted effort within the DOJ to frame the reporting as “inaccurate” and “factually incorrect.”

The records show DOJ officials had also discussed characterizing Rosenstein’s reported offer of wearing a wire to record Trump as merely “sarcastic.”

Additionally, the records show DOJ Public Affairs officer Sarah Isgur Flores, after conferring with other top DOJ officials and Rosenstein’s office about her email exchange with New York Times reporter Adam Goldman, waited 12 hours to forward the email exchange to DOJ Chief of Staff Matthew Whitaker. Former White House Chief of Staff John Kelly had referred to Whitaker as the president’s “eyes and ears” in the DOJ.

Justice Department public affairs officer, Sarah Isgur Flores (r), is hired by CNN as a political editor in early 2019. (Credit: YouTube/CNN)

The records obtained by Judicial Watch include a September 21, 2018email from Assistant U.S. Attorney (DOJ/NSD) Harvey Eisenberg to Rosenstein informing the DAG that Washington Post reporter Ellen Nakashima had called inquiring about a New York Times report on the 25th Amendment/wire discussion, Rosenstein responds:

“Thanks! Hopefully, we are being successful, and the reporters are having difficulty finding anybody to comment about things. [Remainder of email redacted.]” Apparently in response to the redacted portion of Rosenstein’s reply, Eisenberg responds, “I’m aware. Besides letting you know, [redacted]. My best to you and the family.” Rosenstein replies, “I don’t mean about me. [Redacted.]”

(Read more: Judicial Watch, 9/11/2019)

 

Oct. 31, 2018 – The FBI learned Information ‘that might bear’ on Christopher Steele’s credibility, lawyer told Congress

The recently released redacted version of the Mueller Report. (Credit: Win McNamee/Getty Images)

“A former FBI attorney who worked on the Russia investigation told Congress last year the bureau learned information about dossier author Christopher Steele “that might bear on his credibility as a source.”

Trisha Anderson, the former principal deputy general counsel, said in a closed-door interview that meetings were held at the FBI with then-Deputy Director Andrew McCabe and the team working on the investigation to discuss Steele, a former MI6 officer who investigated President Donald Trump on behalf of the Clinton campaign and DNC.

Steele provided information from his dossier to the FBI, State Department and members of the press.

“There were meetings with Mr. McCabe about the Russia investigation that involved discussions of the various reports that were generated by Chris Steele that we had received, both with respect to the content of the reports as well as what we had learned about Christopher — we, I’m sorry — the FBI investigative team had learned about facts that might bear on his credibility as a source,” Anderson said in the Oct. 31, 2018 interview, a transcript of which was obtained by The Daily Caller News Foundation.

“And what were those facts? You had mentioned the contents. More specifically, what were these discussions about? But start with the credibility issues,” a congressional staffer asked Anderson.

Anderson did not say when the meetings occurred. Nor did she say what the possible credibility issues might have been.

When asked for further details, an FBI attorney intervened to say that Anderson could not answer more questions because they “pertain to matters that are being looked at by the special counsel and its investigation.”

At some point after relying on Steele as a confidential source, FBI officials were told that Steele was working on behalf of the Clinton campaign and DNC to investigate Trump. The former British spy had been hired in June 2016 by Fusion GPS, an opposition research firm.

(…) The Justice Department’s office of the inspector general is reportedly investigating the FBI’s use of Steele as a source as part of a broader probe into possible abuse of the FISA system. The New York Times reported on Friday that intelligence community officials determined at some point in 2017 that some of Steele’s allegations were either likely wrong, or based on exaggeration by Steele’s sub-sources.” (Read more: The Daily Caller, 4/26/2019)

November 24, 2018 – Donations to Clinton Foundation plunge after Hillary’s defeat in the 2016 election

(Credit: ROFLBOT)

“In the year after Hillary Clinton’s presidential defeat, donors seemed to abandon the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation, with contributions plummeting nearly 58 percent.

The $36 million nosedive in donations has come to light as Republican legislators plan to hold hearings on the results of a federal corruption investigation into the non-profit next month.

Federal authorities have long been probing the non-profit over allegations of “pay to play.” Specifically, the FBI investigation focused on whether any donations made to the foundation were linked to policy decisions made while Hillary Clinton was secretary of state from 2009 to 2013, according to published reports.

The foundation has vigorously and repeatedly denied any wrongdoing.

Contributions plunged from $62,912,331 in 2016 to $26,566,825 in 2017, recently released federal tax filings show.

Revenue from speeches given by the Clintons also fell from a high of $3.6 million in 2015 to just under $300,000 in 2017. In 2016, during the presidential campaign, the non-profit took in no earnings from speeches, tax filings show. (Read more: The New York Post, 11/24/2018)

December 19, 2018 – Lynch testimony reveals bias and intent for failing to give Trump defensive briefing

Loretta Lynch (Credit: Moriah Ratner/The Hill)

“The defensive briefing, after all, is a procedure that is often given to presidential candidates, elected officials and even U.S. businesses that have either been unwittingly approached by foreign actors attempting to gain trust and befriend those in position of influence.

The briefing allows the government to protect the candidates, specifically if there is substantial information or knowledge to suggest that someone has targeted an unwitting American for information. If the FBI or intelligence agencies suspect foreign adversaries may be trying to penetrate a presidential campaign, as those FBI and DOJ sources suggested in testimony to lawmakers, it would then be required to warn those affected, a senior former intelligence official told SaraACarter.com.

Why? Because foreign adversaries like China and Russia for example, and even allies, will attempt to glean information – or favor – from unwitting persons with access to senior level officials. The access can assist those nation’s own national interest or provide access for intelligence collection.

In the case of Trump, the FBI gave only a general counterintelligence briefing but did not provide information to the campaign that the FBI believed there were specific counterintelligence threats. For example, the FBI’s concern over campaign advisors George Papadopolous, Carter Page and then concerns over former national security advisor Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn.“It is an essential task of the FBI and the intelligence community to give a defensive briefing to a presidential candidate when a foreign adversary is attempting to penetrate or make contact with someone in the campaign,” said a former senior intelligence official. “If the FBI and DOJ were so concerned about Carter Page and (George) Papadopolous why didn’t they brief Trump when he became a candidate? The fact that they didn’t is very revealing. If they gave defensive briefing to the Clinton campaign then I think we have the answer.

Bruce Ohr’s 268-page testimony, released last week by Georgia Rep. Doug Collins reveals the machinations of the FBI’s investigation into the Trump campaign and the players involved. Ohr’s testimony coupled with testimony provided by former U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch, which has not been released but reviewed by this reporter, along with former FBI General Counsel James Baker’s testimony reveals a startling fact: everyone appeared to say they were concerned the Russian’s were penetrating the Trump campaign but no one at the DOJ or FBI authorized a defensive briefing.” (Read more: Sarah Carter, 3/14/2019)

January 21, 2019 – Death of Russiagate: Mueller team ties to Mifsud’s network

“In April last year, Disobedient Media broke coverage of the British involvement in the Trump-Russia collusion narrative, asking why All Russiagate Roads Lead To London, via the quasi-scholar Joseph Mifsud and others.

Chris Blackburn (Credit: Twitter)

The issue was also raised by WikiLeaks’s Julian Assange, just days before the Ecuadorian government silenced him last March. Assange’s Twitter thread cited research by Chris Blackburn, who spoke with Disobedient Media on multiple occasions covering Joseph Mifsud’s ties to British intelligence figures and organizations, as well as his links to Hillary Clinton’s Presidential campaign, the FBI, CIA, and the private cyber-security firm Crowdstrike.

We return, now, to this issue and specifically the research of Chris Blackburn, to place the final nail in the coffin of the Trump-Russia collusion charade. Blackburn’s insights are incredible not only because they return us to the earliest reporting on the role of British intelligence figures in manufacturing the Trump-Russia collusion narrative, but because they also implicate members of Mueller’s investigation. What we are left with is an indication of collusion between factions of the US and UK intelligence community in fabricating evidence of Trump-Russia collusion: a scandal that would have rocked the legacy press to its core, if Western establishment-backed media had a spine.

In Disobedient Media’s previous coverage of Blackburn’s work, he described his experience in intelligence:

“I’ve been involved in numerous investigations that involve counter-intelligence techniques in the past. I used to work for the 9/11 Families United to Bankrupt Terrorism, one of the biggest tort actions in American history. I helped build a profile of Osama bin Laden’s financial and political network, which was slightly different to the one that had been built by the CIA’s Alec Station, a dedicated task force which was focused on Osama bin Laden and Al-Qaeda. Alec Station designed its profile to hunt Osama bin Laden and disrupt his network. I thought it was flawed. It had failed to take into account Osama’s historical links to Pakistan’s main political parties or that he was the figurehead for a couple of organizations, not just Al-Qaeda.”

“I also ran a few conferences for US intelligence leaders during the Bush administration. After the 9/11 Commission published its report into the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon it created a public outreach program. The US National Intelligence Conference and Exposition (Intelcon) was one of the avenues it used. I was responsible for creating the ‘View from Abroad’ track. We had guidance from former Senator Slade Gorton and Jamie Gorelick, who both sat on the 9/11 Commission. We got leaders such as Sir John Chilcot and Baroness Pauline Neville Jones to come and help share their experiences on how the US would be able to heal the rifts after 9/11.”

“The US intelligence community was suffering from severe turf wars and firewalls, which were hampering counter-terrorism efforts. They were concentrating on undermining each other rather than tackling terrorism. I had mainly concentrated on the Middle East, but in 2003 I switched my focus to terrorism in South Asia.”

Counter Terrorism, Not Counter Intelligence, Sparked Probe

In an article published by The Telegraph last November, the paper acknowledged the following:

“It forces the spotlight on whether the UK played a role in the FBI’s investigation launched before the 2016 presidential election into Trump campaign ties to the Kremlin… Mr. Trump’s allies and former advisers are raising questions about the UK’s role in the start of the probe, given many of the key figures and meetings were located in Britain… One former top White House adviser to Mr. Trump made similar insinuations, telling this newspaper: “You know the Brits are up to their neck.” The source added on the Page wiretap application: “I think that stuff is going to implicate MI5 and MI6 in a bunch of activities they don’t want to be implicated in, along with FBI, counter-terrorism and the CIA.” [Emphasis Added]

The article cites George Papadopoulos, who asked why the “British intelligence apparatus was weaponized against Trump and his advisers.” Papadopoulos has also addressed the issue at length via Twitter. In response to the Telegraph’s coverage of the issue, Chris Blackburn wrote via Twitter: “The Telegraph story on Trump Russia acknowledges that activities involving counter-terrorism are at the heart of the scandal…not counter-intelligence. If the [London Centre for International Law Practice] was British state, not private, some Commonwealth countries are going to be seriously pissed off.”

Blackburn spoke with Disobedient Media, saying: “If you factor in the dreadful reporting to discredit Joseph Mifsud and leaks, it is pretty clear something rather strange happened to George Papadopoulos during the campaign while he was shuttling around Europe and the Middle East. He was working with people who have intelligence links at the London Centre of International Law Practice. A recent article in The Telegraph also alludes to MI5, MI6, and CIA using counter-terrorism assets which would tie into the London Centre of International Law Practice (LCILP), and its sister organizations, doing counter-terrorism work for the Australian, UK and US governments. They quote anonymous officials who believe that their intelligence agencies used counter-terrorism personnel to kick start the investigation/scandal.” [Emphasis Added]

Blackburn discussed this differentiation with Disobedient Media: “Counter-terrorism is obviously involved in more kinetic, violent political actions-concerning mass casualty events, bombings, assassinations, poisonings, and hacking. But, the lines are blurring between them. Counter-intelligence cases have been known to stretch for decades- often relying on nothing more than paranoia and suspicion to fuel investigations. Counter-terrorism is also a broader discipline as it involves tactical elements like hostage rescue, crime scene investigations, and explosive specialists. Counter-Terrorism is a collaborative effort with counter-terrorism officers working closely with local and regional police forces and civic organizations. There is also a wider academic field around countering violent, and radical ideology which promotes terrorism and insurgencies. Cybersecurity has become the third major discipline in intelligence. The London Center of International Law Practice, the mysterious intelligence company that employed both Papadopoulos and Mifsud, had also been working in that area.”

Continuing, Blackburn pinpointed the significance of defining counter-terrorism as the starting point of the investigation, saying: “It shows that there is a high probability that intelligence was deliberately abused to make Papadopoulos’ activities look like they were something else. As counter-terrorism and counterintelligence are close in tactics and methods, it would seem that they were used because they share the same skill sets – covert evidence gathering and deception. It’s basically sleight of hand. A piece of theatre would be more precise. However, we don’t know if the FBI knew it was real or make-believe. It’s more likely that the CIA played the FBI with the help of close allies who were suspicious and frightened of a Trump presidency.”

Mueller’s Team And Joseph Mifsud

Zainab Ahmad, a member of Mueller’s legal team, is the former Assistant United States Attorney in the Eastern District of New York. As pointed out by Blackburn, Ahmad attended a Global Center on Cooperative Security event in 2017. In recent days, Blackburn wrote via Twitter: “Zainab Ahmad is a major player in the Russiagate scandal at the DOJ. Does she work for SC Mueller? She was at a GCCS event in May 2017. Arvinder Sambei, a co-director of the [London Centre of International Law Practice], worked with Joseph Mifsud, [George Papadopoulos] and [Simona Mangiante]. She’s a GCCS consultant.”

Zainab Ahmad (Credit: The Combatting Terrorism Center, West Point)

Blackburn told this author: “Zainab Ahmad was one of the first DOJ prosecutors to have seen the Steele dossier. In May 2017, she attended a counter-terrorism conference in New York with the Global Center on Cooperative Security (GCCS), an organization which Joseph Mifsud, the alleged Russian spy, had been working within London and Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.”

“Richard Barrett, the Former Chief of Counter-Terrorism at MI6, Britain’s foreign intelligence department traveled with Mifsud to Saudi Arabia to give a talk on terrorism in 2017. Ex-CIA officers, US Defense, and US Treasury officials were also there. The London Centre of International Law Practice’s relationship to the Global Center had been established in 2014. The Global Center on Cooperative Security made Martin Polaine and Arvinder Sambei consultants, they then became directors at the London Centre of International Law Practice.”

“The Global Center on Cooperative Security’s first major UK conference was at Joseph Mifsud’s London Academy of Diplomacy (LAD). Mifsud then followed Arvinder Sambei and Nagi Idris over to the London Centre of International Law Practice. Sources have told me that Mifsud was moonlighting as a specialist on counter-terrorism and Islamism while working at LAD which explains why he went to work in counter-terrorism after LAD folded.”

“I don’t think it’s a coincidence that Global Center on Cooperative Security is connected to various elements that popped up in the Papadopoulos case. The fact that a prosecutor on Mueller’s team was at Global Center before Mueller was appointed as special counsel is also troubling.”

Days ago, The Hill reported on Congressional testimony by Bruce Ohr, revealing that when served as a DOJ official, he warned FBI and DOJ figures that the Steele dossier was problematic and linked to the Clintons. Critically, The Hill writes:

“Those he briefed included Andrew Weissmann, then the head of DOJ’s fraud section; Bruce Swartz, longtime head of DOJ’s international operations, and Zainab Ahmad, an accomplished terrorism prosecutor who, at the time, was assigned to work with Lynch as a senior counselor. Ahmad and Weissmann would go on to work for Mueller, the special prosecutor overseeing the Russia probe.” [Emphasis Added]

This point is essential, as it not only describes Ahmad’s role in Mueller’s team but places her at a crucial pre-investigation meeting.

Arvinder Sambei (Credit: Public International Law Advisory Group)

Last year, Blackburn noted the connection between Mifsud and Arvinder Sambei, writing: “LCILP director and FBI counsel, works with Mike Smith at the Global Center. They ran joint counter-terrorism conferences and training with Mifsud’s London Academy. Sambei then brought Mifsud over to the [London Centre of International Law Practice]. [Global Center works with Aussies, UK and US State too.]

Sambei has been described elsewhere as a “Former practising barrister, Senior Crown Prosecutor with the Crown Prosecution Service of England & Wales, and Legal Adviser at the Permanent Joint Headquarters (PJHQ), Ministry of Defence.” [British spelling has been retained]

That Sambei has been so thoroughly linked to organizations where Mifsud was a central figure is yet another cause of suspicion regarding allegations that Joseph Mifsud was a shadowy, unknown Russian agent until the summer of 2016. She is also a direct link between Robert Mueller and Mifsud.

Blackburn wrote via Twitter: “Arvinder Sambei helped to organize LCILP’s counter-terrorism and corruption events. She used her contacts in the US to bring in Middle Eastern government officials that were seen to be vulnerable to graft. Lisa Osofsky, former FBI Deputy General Counsel, was working with her.” Below, Arvinder is pictured at a London Centre of International Law Practice (LCILP) event.

(Credit: Chris Blackburn/Twitter)

As Chris Blackburn told this author: “Mifsud and Papadopoulos’s co-director Arvinder Sambei was also the former FBI British counsel working 9/11 cases for Robert Mueller. She also runs a consultancy which deals with Special Investigative Measure (SIMs) which is just a posh description for covert espionage and evidence gathering. She has worked for major intelligence and national law agencies in the past. She wore two hats as a director of London Centre and a consultant for the Global Center on Cooperative Security (GCCS), a counter-terrorism think tank which is sponsored by the Australia, Canada, UK and US governments. Alexander Downer’s former Chief of Staff while at the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade now works for the Global Center. Mifsud was also due to meet with Australian private intelligence figures in Adelaide in March 2016. So. Australia is certainly a major focus for the investigation.” [Emphasis Added]

Below, former FBI Deputy General Counsel Lisa Osofsky is pictured at a London Centre for International Law Practice event. Osofsky also served as the Money Laundering Reporting Officer with Goldman Sachs International. Since 2018, she has served as the Director of the UK’s Serious Fraud Office(SFO).

Lisa Osofsky, pictured at an LCILP event. (Credit: Chris Blackburn/Twitter)

An Embarrassment For John Brennan?

Disobedient Media previously reported that Robert Hannigan, then head of British spy agency GCHQ, flew to Washington DC to share ‘director-to-director’ level intelligence with then-CIA Chief John Brennan in the summer of 2016. This writer noted that “The Guardian reported Hannigan’s announcement that he would step down from his leadership position with the agency just three days after the inauguration of President Trump, on 23 January 2017. Jane Mayer, in her profile of Christopher Steele published in the New Yorker, also noted that Hannigan had flown to Washington D.C. to personally brief the then-CIA Director John Brennan on alleged communications between the Trump campaign and Moscow. What is so curious about this briefing “deemed so sensitive it was handled at director-level” is why Hannigan was talking director-to-director to the CIA and not Mike Rogers at the NSA, GCHQ’s Five Eyes intelligence-sharing partner.”

Blackburn told Disobedient Media: “Former Congressman Trey Gowdy, who has seen most of the information gathered by Congress from the intelligence community concerning the Russia investigation, said that if President Trump were to declassify files and present the truth to the American public, it would “embarrass John Brennan.” I think that is pretty concrete for me, but it’s not definitive. I know the polarization and spin in Washington has become perverse, but that statement is pretty specific for me. If Brennan is involved, it is most probably through Papadopoulos who sparked off the ‘official’ investigation at the FBI. He also made sure the Steele dossier was spread through the US government.”

Blackburn added: “Chris Steele was also working on FIFA projects, and a source has told me that he was working to investigate the Russian and Qatari World Cup bids. The London Centre of International Law Practice has been working with Majed Garoub, the former Saudi legal representative of FIFA, the world governing body for soccer. He’s also been working against the Qatari bid. Steele likes to get paid twice for his investigations.”

ChrisBlackburn/Twitter

“Mifsud has also been associated with Prince Turki the former Saudi intelligence chief, Mifsud and the London Academy of Diplomacy used to train Saudi diplomats and intelligence figures while Turki was the Saudi Ambassador to London. Turki is a close friend of Bill Clinton and John Brennan. Nawaf Obaid was also courting Mifsud and tried to get him a cushy job working with CNN’s Freedom Project at Link Campus in Rome. He also knows John Brennan. Intelligence agencies like to give out professional gifts like this plum academic position for completing missions. In the US, it is widely known that intelligence agencies gift the children of assets to get them into prestigious Ivy League schools.”

At a minimum, we can surmise that Mifsud was not a Russian agent, but was an asset of Western intelligence agencies. We are left with the impression that the Mifsud saga served as a ploy, whether he participated knowingly or not. It seems reasonable to conclude that the gambit was initially developed with the participation of John Brennan and UK intelligence. Following this, Mueller inherited and developed the Mifsud narrative thread into the collusion soap opera we know today.

Ultimately, we are faced with the reality that British and US interests worked together to fabricate a collusion scandal to subvert a US Presidency, and in doing so, intentionally raised tensions between the West and a nuclear-armed power.”

(Disobedient Media/Elizabeth Vos, 1/21/2019)  (Archive)

(Disobedient Media’s website appears to be down and I hope it’s just temporary. Elizabeth Vos volunteered with our group in the early days of this project and we appreciate her permission to let us publish her superb articles.)

February 8, 2018 – Adam Schiff recruits two former National Security Council aides who worked with the hearsay whistleblower

Abigail Grace (l), Adam Schiff (c), Sean Misko (r) (Credit: The Washington Examiner)

“House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff recruited two former National Security Council aides who worked alongside the CIA whistleblower at the NSC during the Obama and Trump administrations, the Washington Examiner has learned.

Abigail Grace, who worked at the NSC until 2018was hired in February, while Sean Misko, an NSC aide until 2017, joined Schiff’s committee staff in August, the same month the whistleblower submitted his complaint.

(…) Grace, 36, was hired to help Schiff’s committee investigate the Trump White House. That month, Trump accused Schiff of “stealing people who work at White House.” Grace worked at the NSC from 2016 to 2018 in U.S.-China relations and then briefly at the Center for a New American Security think tank, which was founded by two former senior Obama administration officials.

A Schiff aide commented in February: “We have hired staff for a variety of positions, including the committee’s oversight work and its investigation. Although none of our staff has come directly from the White House, we have hired people with prior experience on the National Security Council staff for oversight of the agencies, and will continue to do so at our discretion.” Schiff himself said, “If the president is worried about our hiring any former administration people, maybe he should work on being a better employer.”

Misko, 37, worked in the Obama administration as a member of the secretary of state’s policy planning staff under deputy chief of staff Jake Sullivan, who became Hillary Clinton’s top foreign policy official during her 2016 presidential campaign. In 2015, Misko was the director for the Gulf states at the NSC, remaining there into the Trump administration’s first year.

A source familiar with Grace’s work at the NSC told the Washington Examiner, “Abby Grace had access to executive privilege information, and she has a duty not to disclose that information. She is not authorized to reveal that information.”

The same source said that Misko had not been trusted by Trump appointees. “There were a few times where documents had been signed off for final editing before they go to the national security adviser for signature,” the source said. “And he actually went in and made changes after those changes were already finished. So he basically tried to insert, without his boss’ approval. (Read more: The Washington Examiner, 10/11/2019) (Archive)

February 2019 – A new document reveals Ukraine officials had already reopened probe of Hunter Biden-linked firm months before Trump phone call

“A newly unearthed document shows that Ukrainian officials had opened a new probe into the firm linked to Hunter Biden months before President Trump’s phone call with that country’s leader, contributor John Solomon reported late Tuesday.

Solomon said Tuesday on “Hannity” that the U.S. government knew Ukraine was planning to look again into activities at Burisma Holdings, an energy company that employed then-Vice President Joe Biden’s son as a member of its board of directors, early this year. The report is noteworthy because President Trump has been accused by Democrats of threatening in July to withhold foreign aid to Ukraine unless its new president pursued an investigation into the company and the younger Biden’s role there.

“The U.S. government had open-source intelligence and was aware as early as February of 2019 that the Ukrainian government was planning to reopen the Burisma investigation,” he claimed. “This is long before the president ever imagined having a call with President Zelensky,” he added, noting Petro Poroshenko was still Ukraine’s president at that time.

“This is a significant shift in the factual timeline.”

Solomon said the information he obtained, including documents shown on “Hannity” Tuesday, was omitted from a U.S. intelligence community whistleblower’s complaint lodged against Trump last month.

Solomon said that NABU — an FBI-like anti-corruption agency in Ukraine — requested the probe into Burisma and owner Mykola Zlochevsky be reopened earlier this year. The investigation then went forward, Solomon said. The new probe later resulted in a “Notice of Suspicion” being filed, alleging the existence of “illicit funds” running through the firm, Solomon also claimed.” (Read more: Fox News, 10/09/2019)

March 11, 2019 – Clinton Foundation Whistleblowers Doyle and Moynihan petition for trial with a U.S. Tax Court

LarryDoyle and John Moynihan appear before the House Oversight Committee on December 13, 2018. (Credit: CSpan)

“In a December 2018 Congressional hearing on Not-for-Profit Charities with a Specific Case Study on the Clinton Foundation, our nation was introduced to two private individuals who had undertaken a multi-year investigative probe of the 43rd President’s foundation.

Larry Doyle and John Moynihan informed those observing that they filed a formal Whistleblower Submission replete with a hundred-plus formal exhibits in excess of 6,000 pages of evidence with the Internal Revenue Service on the Clinton Foundation in August 2017. They further testified that they had submitted the same materials to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and selected US Attorneys in the Department of Justice as well and that their documents included:

  • reviews of the foundation’s tax returns and those of the foundation’s donors
  • reviews including audits of the foundation’s programs and operations, foreign and domestic
  • email exchanges between foundation executives and foreign government officials
  • contracts with foreign governments and engagements with other public and private entities
  • reviews of partnerships with an array of private companies, private universities, and other 501c3 public charities
  • interviews with both current and former senior Clinton Foundation officials
  • reviews of state registration materials
  • documents covering the foundation’s own internal reviews

(…) These whistleblowers informed those watching that the IRS had issued a Preliminary Denial of their Submission shortly before they provided their riveting testimony to the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee during that December 13, 2018 hearing. During that hearing, Moynihan specifically emphasized that their submission was “a tax claim”. Moynihan also informed those on the committee that depending on how the IRS ruled that the two whistleblowers would have other causes of action that they could and would pursue including filing an appeal to the US Tax Court if, in fact, they received a Final Denial from the IRS.

Well, it appears that these two ‘financial bounty hunter’ whistleblowers have done just that. How is that appeal playing out? It looks like over the course of the last few months Doyle and Moynihan have been in the midst of an extensive array of motions and responses, many filed under seal, going back and forth with IRS Counsel in the course of their having their day in the US Tax Court v the Internal Revenue Service.  Those interested in the case can track it via this US Tax Court site.” (Read more: Zero Hedge, 2/10/2020)  (Archive)

March 20, 2019 – Glenn Simpson, Christopher Steele and Dan Jones are running an elaborate media influence operation, pitching the Russia collusion and Trump impeachment narratives

Glenn Simpson (Credit: Pablo Martinez Monsivais/The Associated Press)

“Key Democratic operatives and private investigators who tried to derail Donald Trump’s campaign by claiming he was a tool of the Kremlin have rebooted their operation since his election with a multimillion-dollar stealth campaign to persuade major media outlets and lawmakers that the president should be impeached.

The effort has successfully placed a series of questionable stories alleging secret back channels and meetings between Trump associates and Russian spies, while influencing related investigations and reports from Congress.

The operation’s nerve center is a Washington-based nonprofit called The Democracy Integrity Project, or TDIP. Among other activities, it pumps out daily “research” briefings to prominent Washington journalists, as well as congressional staffers, to keep the Russia “collusion” narrative alive.

TDIP is led by Daniel J. Jones, a former FBI investigator, Clinton administration volunteer and top staffer to California Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein. It employs the key opposition-research figures behind the salacious and unverified dossier: Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson and ex-British intelligence officer Christopher Steele. Its financial backers include the actor/director Rob Reiner and billionaire activist George Soros.

Christopher Steele (Credit: Victoria Jones/The Associated Press)

The project’s work has been largely shrouded in mystery. But a months-long examination by RealClearInvestigations, drawn from documents and more than a dozen interviews, found that the organization is running an elaborate media-influence operation that includes driving and shaping daily coverage of the Russia collusion theory, as well as pushing stories about Trump in the national media that attempt to tie the president or his associates to the Kremlin.

The group also feeds information to FBI and congressional investigators, and then tells reporters that authorities are investigating those leads. The tactic adds credibility to TDIP’s pitches, luring big media outlets to bite on stories. It mirrors the strategy federal authorities themselves deployed to secure FISA warrants to spy on the Trump campaign: citing published news reports of investigative details their informants had leaked to the media to bolster their wiretap requests.

Five days a week, TDIP  emails a newsletter to influential Democrats and prominent Beltway journalists under the heading “TDIP Research” – which summarizes the latest “collusion” news, and offers “points of interest” to inspire fresh stories regarding President Trump’s alleged ties to Moscow.

Daniel J. Jones (Credit: The Guardian)

Recipients of the TDIP reports include staffers at the New York Times and Washington Post and investigative reporters at BuzzFeed, ProPublica and McClatchy, as well as news producers at CNN and MSNBC, according to a source familiar with the project’s email distribution list. Democratic aides on Capitol Hill also subscribe to the newsletter.

The briefings typically run several pages and include an “Executive Summary” and links to court documents and congressional testimony, letters and memos, as well as new articles and videos.

The Steele dossier and impeachment are common themes in the reports, which generally spin news events against Trump, copies of the newsletter obtained by RCI show. A March 13 TDIP bulletin, for instance, highlighted former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort’s sentencing without informing readers that Special Counsel Robert Mueller closed the case without any collusion accusation against Manafort, who was punished for personal financial crimes.

A Feb. 12 briefing led with an NBC News exclusive report on the findings of the Senate Intelligence Committee’s two-year Russia probe. But it misstated what the news was — that both Democrats and Republicans agreed with the conclusion that there was “no factual evidence of collusion” between the Trump campaign and Russia – claiming instead that Democrats “rejected” the conclusion.

“What’s significant about them is they’re totally one-sided,” said a veteran reporter with a major  newspaper who is plugged into the national security beat in Washington and insisted on anonymity. “It’s really just another way of adding fuel to the fire of the whole Russia collusion thing.”

Jones’ project doesn’t just spin the news. Its more ambitious goal is to make news by essentially continuing the Clinton-funded investigation into alleged Trump/Russia ties that began in 2016, and then sharing findings with news outlets, congressional investigators and federal agents.” (Read much more: RealClearInvestigations, 3/20/2019)

March 20, 2019 – As Russia collusion fades, a Ukrainian plot to help Clinton emerges

Yuriy Lutsenko (Credit: Hill TV/Rising)

“After nearly three years and millions of tax dollars, the Trump-Russia collusion probe is about to be resolved. Emerging in its place is newly unearthed evidence suggesting another foreign effort to influence the 2016 election — this time, in favor of the Democrats.

Ukraine’s top prosecutor divulged in an interview aired Wednesday on Hill.TV that he has opened an investigation into whether his country’s law enforcement apparatus intentionally leaked financial records during the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign about then-Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort in an effort to sway the election in favor of Hillary Clinton.

The leak of the so-called black ledger files to U.S. media prompted Manafort’s resignation from the Trump campaign and gave rise to one of the key allegations in the Russia collusion probe that has dogged Trump for the last two and a half years.

Ukraine Prosecutor General Yurii Lutsenko’s probe was prompted by a Ukrainian parliamentarian’s release of a tape recording purporting to quote a top law enforcement official as saying his agency leaked the Manafort financial records to help Clinton’s campaign.

The parliamentarian also secured a court ruling that the leak amounted to “an illegal intrusion into the American election campaign,” Lutsenko told me. Lutsenko said the tape recording is a serious enough allegation to warrant opening a probe, and one of his concerns is that the Ukrainian law enforcement agency involved had frequent contact with the Obama administration’s U.S. Embassy in Kiev at the time.

“Today we will launch a criminal investigation about this and we will give legal assessment of this information,” Lutsenko told me.

Lutsenko, before becoming prosecutor general, was a major activist against Russia’s influence in his country during the tenure of Moscow-allied former President Viktor Yanukovych. He became chief prosecutor in 2016 as part of anti-corruption reforms instituted by current President Petro Poroshenko, an ally of the U.S. and Western countries.

(…) Furthermore, the mystery of how the Manafort black ledger files got leaked to American media has never been solved. They surfaced two years after the FBI investigated Manafort over his Ukraine business activities but declined to move forward in 2014 for lack of evidence.

We now have strong evidence that retired British spy Christopher Steele began his quest in what ultimately became the infamous Russia collusion dossier with a series of conversations with top Justice Department official Bruce Ohr between December 2015 and February 2016 about securing evidence against Manafort.

We know the FBI set up shop in the U.S. embassy in Kiev to assist its Ukraine–Manafort inquiry — a common practice on foreign-based probes — while using Steele as an informant at the start of its Russia probe. And we know Clinton’s campaign was using a law firm to pay an opposition research firm for Steele’s work in an effort to stop Trump from winning the presidency, at the same time Steele was aiding the FBI.

Those intersections, coupled with the new allegations by Ukraine’s top prosecutor, are reason enough to warrant a serious, thorough investigation.” (Read more: The Hill, 3/20/2019)

March 21, 2019 – Judicial Watch uncovers more classified emails on Clinton’s unsecure server

Clinton speaks to a CNN reporter during a 2016 primary campaign event. (Credit: CNN)

“Judicial Watch today announced it received 756 pages of newly uncovered emails that were among the materials former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton tried to delete or destroy, several of which were classified and were transmitted over her unsecure, non-“state.gov” email system.

Hillary Clinton repeatedly stated that the 55,000 pages of documents she turned over to the State Department in December 2014 included all of her work-related emails. In response to a court order in another Judicial Watch case, she declared under penalty of perjury in 2015 that she had “directed that all my emails on clintonemail.com in my custody that were or are potentially federal records be provided to the Department of State, and on information and belief, this has been done.”

In 2017, the FBI uncovered 72,000 pages of documents Clinton attempted to delete or did not otherwise disclose. Until the court intervened and established a new deadline, the State Department had been slow-walking the release of those documents at a rate that would have required Judicial Watch and the American people to wait until at least 2020 to see all the releasable Clinton material. The production of documents in this case is now concluded with the FBI being only able to recover or find approximately 5,000 of the 33,000 government emails Hillary Clinton took and tried to destroy.

Judicial Watch obtained the documents in response to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit filed on May 6, 2015, after the State Department failed to respond to a March 4, 2015, FOIA request (