May 12, 2019 – President Trump Calls Out FBI Director Christopher Wray: “the director is protecting the coup gang”…and then there’s Dana Boente
“President Trump indicates he is well aware of the intents and motives of FBI Director Christopher Wray covering for the illegal coup effort:
President Trump may have been aware of Chris Wray’s corrupt disposition prior to today; however, this is the first visible indication he understands the internecine organization of it. Hopefully we can start the countdown clock to Wray’s exit.
Next up, Chris Wray’s #1 strategic hire, current FBI Legal Counsel Dana Boente.
In 2015 the DOJ-OIG (office of inspector general) requested oversight of the DOJ National Security Division. It was Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates who responded with a lengthy 58 page legal explanation saying, essentially, ‘nope – not allowed.’ (PDF HERE) All of the DOJ is subject to oversight, except the DOJ-NSD.
When John Carlin resigned as Asst. Attorney General in charge of the DOJ National Security Division in October 2016 he was replaced by Principal Deputy Asst. Attorney General and Chief of Staff, Mary McCord. After President Trump took office on January 20th, 2017, Sally Yates was Acting AG and Mary McCord was in charge of the DOJ-NSD.
Yates and McCord were the two Main Justice officials who then engaged with White House Counsel Don McGahn on January 26th, 2017, regarding the General Flynn FBI interview conducted on January 24th. The Trump-Russia Collusion Conspiracy was the headline.
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.
With his shift to Main Justice Dana Boente was Acting Attorney General, and Mary McCord was Asst. AG in charge of the DOJ-NSD. Boente was in the Acting AG position from Jan 31st, 2017, until Jeff Sessions was confirmed on February 8th, 2017.
When Jeff Sessions became AG, Dana Boente became Acting Deputy AG, a role he would retain until Rod Rosenstein was confirmed on April 25th, 2017. [Mary McCord remained head of the DOJ-National Security Division]
On March 2nd, 2017, Dana Boente was one of the 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.]
The Main Justice group influenced Jeff Sessions to recuse.
With AG Jeff Sessions recused on March 2, 2017, FBI Director James Comey now reported to Acting Deputy AG Dana Boente. [Technically, Boente is still EDVA U.S. Attorney and is only ‘acting’ as Deputy AG] Additionally, on March 31st, 2017, President Trump signs executive order 13787 making the U.S. EDVA Attorney the 3rd in line for DOJ succession.
Question: If Dana Boente was appointed “Acting Attorney General” on January 31st, 2017 (he was), then why did Don McGahn need to draw up XO 13787 on March 31st, 2017… especially after confirmed AG Jeff Sessions was already in place Feb 9th?
The answer likely has to do with a sign-off needed for FISA.
See the issue?
How does somebody (unknown) advise White House Counsel Don McGahn to draw up an executive order so that Boente can sign a FISA…. without telling Don McGahn the reason why AG Sessions can’t sign off on the FISA? See the issue now?
In the period between March 2nd and April 25th – With AG Sessions recused, and without a Deputy AG confirmed, Dana Boente is simultaneously:
- U.S. Attorney for EDVA
- Acting Deputy AG.
- Acting AG for all issues related to Sessions recusal.
It is James Comey and Dana Boente who sign the April 2017 FISA renewal for Carter Page.
This dynamic would later become important as notes Boente took from conversations with James Comey became evidence for Mueller’s expanded obstruction investigation. (March 2, 2017 Mary McCord is still head of DOJ-NSD.)
Somehow Acting Deputy AG Dana Boente’s personal and handwritten notes were mysteriously leaked to MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow. (Read more: Conservative Treehouse, 5/12/2019)
- Carter Page
- Christopher Wray
- Crossfire Hurricane
- Dana Boente
- Department of Justice
- DOJ National Security Division
- Don McGahn
- Donald Trump
- Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI)
- FISA Title-1 surveillance warrant
- James Comey
- Jeff Sessions
- Jim Crowell
- Jody Hunt
- John Carlin
- Lt. General Michael Flynn
- Mary McCord
- May 2019
- Mueller Special Counsel Investigation
- Robert Mueller
- Sally Yates
- Scott Schools
- Tash Gauhar
- Trump Russia collusion
July 13, 2018 – Lisa Page on John Carlin’s role
(…) “John Carlin was an assistant attorney general and head of the DOJ’s National Security Division (NSD). He had previously served as chief of staff to then-FBI Director Robert Mueller.
Carlin announced his resignation the day after he filed the government’s proposed 2016 Section 702 certifications. This filing would be subject to intense criticism from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) following disclosures made by then-National Security Agency Director Mike Rogers. Significant changes to the handling of raw FISA data would result.
Carlin was succeeded by Mary McCord–who would later accompany acting AG Sally Yates to see White House counsel Don McGahn about Trump’s national security adviser, Gen. Michael Flynn.
Page was asked at several points regarding influence from political appointees. At one point in the discussion, she singled out Carlin—and what she had to say proved interesting:
“I do know that at least John Carlin, for example, who is a political appointee, was kept abreast of the sort of investigative activity that was going on. And the only reason I know this is because when there was conflicts between us and DOJ, John might call over to—John Carlin might call over to Andy McCabe, and sort of make his team’s pitch, and then Andy would, you know, sort of the back-and-forth would go on. So it is clear that John had, was getting some sort of briefing, but he was not, it was, it never occurred by the FBI, which is, in my view, atypical.”
In response to a question asking who was McCabe’s direct counterpart at the DOJ on the investigation, Page responded, “it would have been John. It was either John Carlin or George Toscas who would have, who would have reached out to Mr. McCabe.”
The congressional staffer who was doing this particular line of questioning appeared to attempt to mitigate the information just revealed by Page:
“Numerous witnesses have confirmed to us that George Toscas, a career prosecutor, was in charge of the day-to-day operation of DOJ on this investigation. And that Carlin and other political folks above him had briefings certainly, so they had knowledge but didn’t have input in the investigation.”
“Do you have any personal knowledge of John Carlin, Loretta Lynch, Sally Yates, or other political appointees at the DOJ issuing orders on how to conduct the Midyear investigation?” Page was asked.
Page answered that she had “no personal knowledge of that.” Despite the attempts to shift the conversation, these admissions are notable.
Carlin was a very senior official within the DOJ. He was also Toscas’s boss. It was Toscas who was contacted by New York prosecutors (possibly former U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara) involved in the Anthony Weiner investigation regarding the Clinton emails found on Weiner’s computer. In response, Toscas contacted McCabe, his counterpart at the FBI, ultimately forcing McCabe to inform Comey of the existence of Clinton emails on Weiner’s laptop.” (Read more: The Epoch Times, 1/21/2018)
January, 2017 – The DOJ/FBI intelligence operation against Lt. General Michael Flynn
(…) “On January 3rd, 2017, the new congressional year began. SSCI Vice-Chair Dianne Feinstein abdicated her position within the Gang-of-Eight, and turned over the reigns to Senator Mark Warner. Warner was now the vice-chair of the SSCI and a Go8 member.
On January 6th, 2017, the Obama White House published the Intelligence Community Assessment, and declared:
We assess Putin and the Russian Government aspired to help President-elect Trump’s election chances when possible by discrediting Secretary Clinton and publicly contrasting her unfavorably to him. All three agencies agree with this judgment. CIA and FBI have high confidence in this judgment; NSA has moderate confidence. (pdf link)
It is not coincidental the ICA was “high confidence” by Brennan and Clapper; and less confidence by Mike Rogers (NSA).
With the Flynn Dec. 29, 2016, transcript in hand, the DOJ and FBI began aiding the Logan Act narrative with Obama intelligence officials supporting the Russia Conspiracy claims and decrying anyone who would interfere or counter the official U.S. position.
On January 14th, 2017, the content of the communication between Flynn and Kislyak was leaked to the Washington Post by an unknown entity. Likely the leak came from the FBI’s counterintelligence operation; the same unit previously carrying out the 2016 campaign spying operations. [Andrew McCabe is highly suspected]
The FBI CoIntel group (Strzok, McCabe etc.), and the DOJ-NSD group (Yates, McCord etc.) were the largest stakeholders in the execution of the insurance policy phase because they were the epicenter of spygate, fraudulent FISA presentations and the formation of the Steele Dossier.
The media leak of the Flynn conversation with Kislyak was critical because the DOJ/FBI were pushing a political narrative. This was not about legality per se’, this effort was about establishing the framework for a preexisting investigation, based on a false premise, that would protect the DOJ and FBI. The investigation they needed to continue evolved into the Mueller special counsel. This was all insurance.
The Flynn-Kislyak leak led to Vice-President Mike Pence being hammered on January 15th, 2017, during a CBS Face the Nation interview about Trump campaign officials in contact with Russians. Pence was exceptionally unprepared to answer the questions and allowed the media to blend questions about campaign contacts with necessary, and entirely appropriate, transition team contacts.
•Sunday January 15th, 2017 – VP-elect Mike Pence appears on Face The Nation. [Transcript Here]
JOHN DICKERSON: But there’s a distinction between that feeling about the press and legitimate inquiry, as you say, that the Senate Intelligence Committee is doing.
Just to button up one question, did any advisor or anybody in the Trump campaign have any contact with the Russians who were trying to meddle in the election?
MIKE PENCE: Of course not. And I think to suggest that is to give credence to some of these bizarre rumors that have swirled around the candidacy. (link)
*NOTE* The incoming administration was under a false-narrative siege created by the media. At the time (early Jan, 2017) ‘any contact’ with Russians was evidence of meddling/election-collusion with Russians. VP-elect Mike Pence poorly answered the question from Dickerson from a very defensive position.
The toxic media environment and Mike Pence speaking poorly during a Face The Nation interview now became a much bigger issue.
Once Vice-President Mike Pence made the statement that Flynn had no contact with anyone from Russia etc. any contradictory statement from Flynn would make Pence appear compromised. Michael Flynn is now contrast against Pence’s false point without clarification. As National Security Advisor Flynn was interviewed by the FBI on January 24th, nine days after Pence made his comments.
- Tuesday January 24th – Lt. Gen. Mike Flynn was interviewed at the WH by the FBI.
During this ambush interview, disguised as a meeting, FBI Agent Peter Strzok and FBI Agent Joe Pientka were contrasting Vice-President-elect Pence’s statements to CBS against the known action of Mike Flynn. [Flynn has three options: either (1) Flynn contradicts Pence, or (2) he tells a lie; or (3) Flynn explains Pence misspoke, those were his options.]
How Flynn responded to the line of inquiry, and explained/reconciled the difference between Pence’s statement on Jan 15th and what actually took place on December 29th, 2016, is why the FBI ended up with the initial conclusion that Flynn wasn’t lying.
It is within this dynamic where the FD-302 reports, written by Strzok and Pientka, then became the subject of political manipulation by Asst. FBI Director Andrew McCabe.
The FBI knew the content of the Flynn call with Sergey Kislyak because they were listening in. The FBI were intercepting those communications. So when Pence said no-one had any contact on January 15th, the FBI crew IMMEDIATELY knew they had an issue to exploit.
We see the evidence of the FBI knowing they had an issue to exploit, and being very nervous about doing it, in the text messages between Lisa Page and FBI Agent Peter Strzok who would end up doing the questioning of Flynn.
The day before the Flynn interview:
♦January 23, 2017, the day before the Flynn interview, Lisa Page says: “I can feel my heart beating harder, I’m so stressed about all the ways THIS has the potential to go fully off the rails.” Weird!
♦Strzok replies: “I know. I just talked with John, we’re getting together as soon as I get in to finish that write up for Andy (MCCABE) this morning.” Strzok agrees with Page about being stressed that “THIS” could go off the rails… (Strzok’s meeting w Flynn the next day)
So it’s the day before they interview Flynn. Why would Page & Strzok be stressed about “THIS” potentially going off the rails? The answer is simple: they knew the content of the phone call between Mike Flynn and Sergey Kislyak because they were listening in, and they were about to exploit the Pence statement to CBS. In essence they were admitting to monitoring Flynn, that’s why they were so nervous. They were planning and plotting with Andrew McCabe about how they were going to exploit the phone-tap and the difference in public statements by VP Mike Pence.
There’s a good possibility Flynn was honest but his honesty contradicted Pence’s national statement on CBS; and Flynn likely tried to dance through a needle without being overly critical of VP-elect Pence misspeaking. Remember, the alternative: if Flynn is brutally honest, the media now runs with a narrative about Vice-President Pence as a national liar.
- 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) 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 – (afternoon) Sally 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 afternoon) According 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.[*If you consider that McGahn was trying to thread the needle between Mike Pence’s poorly worded response to CBS, and Michael Flynn’s FBI questioning that came after Pence’s statement, McGahn would see the no-win situation Flynn was in during that inquisition.]
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.
This why the issue of how the FBI agents write the 302 summary of the Flynn interview becomes such an important facet. We see that dynamic again playing out in the messages between Lisa Page and Peter Strzok; with Andrew McCabe providing the guidance.” (Read more: Conservative Treehouse, 4/29/2019)
- Andrew McCabe
- Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)
- Don McGahn
- FD 302 manipulations
- Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI)
- FISA Abuse
- Intelligence Community Assessment (ICA)
- James Clapper
- James Comey
- Jennifer Boone
- Joe Pientka
- John Brennan
- Lisa Page
- Lt. General Michael Flynn
- Mary McCord
- Mike Pence
- Peter Strzok
- Russia collusion
- Sergey Kislyak
- Trump campaign
December 29, 2016 – March 30, 2017: A timeline of General Michael Flynn events
December 29 2016 – General Michael Flynn speaks to the Russian Ambassador. The conversation takes place the same day that outgoing President Barack Obama imposes sanctions against Russia for suspected hacking of Democrats’ emails during the election.
The conversation is recorded by intelligence agencies and later reviewed by the FBI. Recording or releasing Americans’ conversations is prohibited without written approval from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA). The existence of recorded conversations and the contents of the conversation are barred from public release by classification rules and privacy laws.
December 29 2016 – Obama announces sanctions on Russia.
December 30 2016 – Russian leader Vladimir Putin addresses Obama’s sanctions by not expelling any U.S. officials. Putin’s lack of retaliatory action prompts some to later conclude that Flynn relayed a message regarding the sanctions in his December 29th conversation with the Russian Ambassador.
January 3 2017 – Loretta Lynch signs Section 2.3 of Executive Order 12333 – Procedures for the Availability or Dissemination of Raw Signals Intelligence Information by the NSA – into effect. This order is significant. As I note in, The Suspicious Timing of Obama’s NSA Data-Sharing Order:
Prior to the formal signing of Section 2.3 it appears that there existed more latitude within the White House in regards to collection of information on the Trump Campaign. However, once signed into effect, Section 2.3 granted broad latitude in regards to inter-agency sharing of information. By the time the new order was signed, the information was already in the Obama White House’s possession.
The new order, had it been implemented earlier, might have restricted White House access to information regarding the Trump Team. Once signed, it granted broad latitude to inter-agency sharing of information already held.
Importantly, the transcript of Flynn’s call was already in the possession of the Obama White House.
January 4 2017 – Mike Flynn informs transition White House Counsel Don McGahn that he is under federal investigation for work as a paid lobbyist to Turkey.
Jan 12 2017 – Mike Flynn’s Dec 29 2016 call is leaked to Washington Post. The article portrays Flynn as undermining Obama’s Russian sanctions.
Jan 15 2017 – VP Pence appears on Face the nation to defend Flynn’s calls – five days before the inauguration of President Trump.
January 19 2017 – The New York Times reports, on the eve of Inauguration Day, that several agencies — the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Central Intelligence Agency, the National Security Agency and the Treasury Department are monitoring several associates of the Trump campaign suspected of Russian ties.
January 19 2017 – Obama’s top intelligence and law-enforcement deputies meet to talk about Flynn’s conversation with Kislyak, according to a Feb 13 article in the Washington Post.
January 20 2017 – Inauguration.
January 23 2017 – Acting Attorney General Sally Yates increases pressure on FBI Director Comey regarding Mike Flynn – telling Comey that Flynn could be vulnerable to blackmail.
January 23 2017 – The Washington Post reports that the FBI intercepted a conversation in late December 2016 between Michael Flynn and Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak. The intercept is supposedly part of routine spying on the ambassador.
January 23 2017 – The FBI reports nothing unlawful in content of Flynn call. Having listened to the tapes, the FBI clears General Michael Flynn of any wrongdoing in his conversations with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak. Flynn did not violate the Logan Act by attempting to influence US foreign policy.
January 24 2017 – Mike Flynn is interviewed at the White House by the FBI. It is during this interview that Flynn supposedly lies to the FBI – despite having his calls already cleared by the FBI. The surprise – and unscheduled – interview is conducted by Peter Strzok.
January 25 2017 – The Department of Justice receives a detailed briefing on Flynn from the FBI.
January 26 2017 – Yates contacts White House Counsel McGahn who agrees to meet with Yates the same day.
January 26 2017 – Sally Yates meets with McGahn. She also brings Mary McCord – Acting Assistant Attorney General – and Head of the DOJ’s National Security Division.
Yates later testifies the meeting surrounds General Flynn’s phone calls and his FBI Interview. She also testifies that Flynn’s call and subsequent interview “was a topic of a whole lot of discussion in DOJ and with other members of the intel community.”
January 27 2017 – McGahn calls Yates and asks if she can come back to his office.
January 27 2017 – Yates returns to the White House without McCord. McGahn asks to examine the FBI’s evidence on Flynn. Yates says she will respond by Monday.
To my knowledge, Yates fails to provide McGahn with the FBI’s evidence on Flynn.
Sally Yates became Acting Attorney General on January 20, 2017, after Loretta Lynch left office upon President Trump’s inauguration. On January 30, 2017, President Trump fired Yates for refusing to enforce the Travel Ban.
January 27 2017 – (evening) President Trump has dinner with FBI Director James Comey. President Trump asks Director Comey if he is under investigation, BUT President Trump does not ask about the Flynn investigation at this meeting.
January 30 2017 – President Trump fires Acting Attorney General Sally Yates for refusing to enforce the Travel Ban.
February 2 2017 – Details of conversations between President Trump, the Australian Prime Minister, and the Mexican President are leaked – portraying the calls as contentious. Both Australia and Mexico denied the calls were contentious.
February 8 2017 – In an interview with the Washington Post, Michael Flynn denies having discussed sanctions with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.
February 8 2017 – Jeff Sessions is confirmed as Attorney General.
The articles are confusing and some details contradictory.
February 13 2017 – The Washington Post reports that Acting Attorney General Sally Yates warned the White House in January that General Michael Flynn may be vulnerable to Russian blackmail, due to his conversations with Ambassador Kislyak.
February 13 2017 – Mike Flynn resigns as National Security Advisor after it was revealed he had misled Vice President Mike Pence about phone conversations he had with Sergey Kislyak, the Russian ambassador to the United States.
February 14 2017 – The New York Times reports that members of the Trump campaign had “repeated contacts with senior Russian intelligence officials” – according to four anonymous sources. The Trump campaign denies the claims – and the Times admits that there is “no evidence” of cooperation or collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians.
February 15 2017 – Former intelligence officer John Schindler, now a journalist, tweets about escalating hostility in the Intelligence Community to Trump’s Presidency.
Now we go nuclear. IC war going to new levels. Just got an EM fm senior IC friend, it began: “He will die in jail.”https://t.co/e6FxCclVqT
— John Schindler (@20committee) February 15, 2017
March 1 2017 – the NYT inadvertently reported on why the Obama Administration wanted a last minute January 3, 2017 rule change that allowed for intra-agency sharing of globally intercepted personal communications. In a piece titled “Obama Administration Rushed to Preserve Intelligence of Russian Hacking“, it was made clear that the Obama Administration was sharing information broadly and at low levels of security classification:
In the Obama administration’s last days, some White House officials scrambled to spread information about Russian efforts to undermine the presidential election — and about possible contacts between associates of President-elect Donald J. Trump and Russians — across the government.
For more on this important detail, see: The Suspicious Timing of Obama’s NSA Data-Sharing Order.
March 30 2017 – Mike Flynn offers to testify in exchange for immunity. He makes the offer to the FBI and the House and Senate intelligence Communities. There are no takers of his offer.
Per Flynn’s lawyer:
General Flynn certainly has a story to tell, and he very much wants to tell it, should the circumstances permit.
The Washington feeding frenzy was stunning at this point in time. The Obama/Clinton Russia-Trump narrative was in full swing.
Fast-forward to today so we can add a further twist to the whole mess:
— The Hill (@thehill) December 2, 2017
This was immediately scoffed at – but ask yourself, why would the White House risk making this statement without proof.
Then this video from January 13, 2017, suddenly surfaced:
Obama State Dept: We have no problem with General Flynn and the incoming administration contacting foreign officials pic.twitter.com/FwZDaHU8lO
— Jack Posobiec ?? (@JackPosobiec) December 2, 2017
Flynn knew his calls were being recorded. He engaged in nothing illegal on these calls. Flynn knew he had done nothing illegal.
Flynn had no legal obligation to speak with the FBI.
But he did so anyway.
(Reposted with special permission.)
September 26, 2016: John Carlin, the former NSD head who enables the FBI’s Carter Page FISA warrant
John Carlin was an Assistant Attorney General – and Head of the Department of Justice’s National Security Division (NSD).
On September 27, 2016, Carlin announced his resignation. He formally left the NSD on October 15, 2016. Carlin had been named Acting Assistant Attorney General in March 2013 and was confirmed in the spring of 2014.
Carlin had previously served as chief of staff to then-FBI Director Robert S. Mueller.
Carlin announced his resignation exactly one day after he filed the Government’s proposed 2016 Section 702 certifications. His signature can be found on page 31.
This filing would be subject to intense criticism from the FISA Court following disclosures made by NSA Director Rogers. Significant changes to the handling of raw FISA data would result.
Section 702 is part of the broader FISA Act and permits the government to target for surveillance foreign persons located outside the United States for the purpose of acquiring foreign intelligence information.
Instead of issuing individual court orders, Section 702 requires the Attorney General and the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) to provide the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) with annual certifications that specify categories of foreign intelligence information the government is authorized to acquire pursuant to Section 702.
The Attorney General and the Director of National Intelligence must also certify that Intelligence Community elements will follow targeting procedures and minimization procedures that are approved by the FISC as part of the annual certification.
The National Security Division and Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) are jointly required to routinely review all Intelligence Agency U.S. person queries of content to ensure the Section 702 queries satisfy the legal standard.
The NSD – with notice to the ODNI – is required to report any incidents of Agency noncompliance or misconduct to the FISA Court.
Again, John Carlin was Head of the NSD.
At the time Carlin’s sudden resignation went mostly unnoticed.
But there was more to the story.
Here is the official explanation as provided by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence:
After submitting its 2016 Certifications in September 2016, the Department of Justice and ODNI learned, in October 2016, about additional information related to previously reported compliance incidents and reported that additional information to the FISC. The NSA also self-reported the information to oversight bodies, as required by law. These compliance incidents related to the NSA’s inadvertent use of U.S. person identifiers to query NSA’s “upstream” Internet collection acquired pursuant to Section 702.
The FISA Court was more direct in a 99-page April 26, 2017 unsealed FISA Court Ruling.
On October 24, 2016, the government orally apprised the Court of significant non-compliance with the NSA’s minimization procedures involving queries of data acquired under Section 702 using U.S. person identifiers. The full scope of non-compliant querying practices had not been previously disclosed to the Court. Two days later, on the day the Court otherwise would have had to complete its review of the certifications and procedures, the government made a written submission regarding those compliance problems…and the Court held a hearing to address them.
Here’s what actually happened:
(Read more: themarketswork.com, 5/21/2018)
- about queries
- Department of Justice
- DOJ National Security Division
- Don McGahn
- FISA 702 certifications
- FISA 702 violations
- John Carlin
- Judge Rosemary Collyer
- Lt. General Michael Flynn
- Mary McCord
- minimization procedures
- Office of Director of National Intelligence (ODNI)
- Robert Mueller
- Sally Yates
- September 2016
- U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC)