Spygate

January 17, 2020 – John Durham is investigating a ‘strong paper trail’ during the months before Mueller appointment

“A trail of documents has reportedly led Attorney General William Barr’s handpicked federal prosecutor to focus his inquiry into the origins of the Russia investigation on the first several months of President Trump’s tenure.”

John Durham is zeroing in on the period spanning from January 2017, when Trump took office, to May of that year. A “strong” paper trail,   has led the investigation into possible misconduct by federal law enforcement and intelligence officials to that time frame.

Barr and Durham have traveled around the world for the investigation, and Durham’s team has already asked witnesses about possible anti-Trump bias among former FBI officials. The secretive DOJ inquiry includes scrutiny of former CIA Director John Brennan, former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, former FBI special agent Peter Strzok, and British ex-spy Christopher Steele.

Little else is known about the investigation other than that Durham is exploring whether a crime was committed by Kevin Clinesmith, a former FBI lawyer who was found by the Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz to have altered a document during the FBI’s efforts to obtain a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrant renewal to continue wiretapping onetime Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.

The period of time under scrutiny by Durham also covers a leak to reporters that federal prosecutors in D.C. are investigating. The Russian intelligence document under scrutiny, word of which made its way into press reports in the spring of 2017, factored into former FBI Director James Comey’s handling of the FBI investigation into former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s email server, and Comey himself appears to be the focus of that inquiry. Comey was fired in May 2017, after which Mueller was appointed special counsel to lead the Russia investigation.

Barr says, “We have to be careful about the way we collect evidence. And we have to make sure that we have enough evidence to justify our actions. And we’re not going to cut corners in that respect,”  . “You know, there’s some people who think this thing is going to drop in a few weeks. That’s not the case. I see this, perhaps, reaching an important watershed perhaps in the late spring, early summer.” (Read more: The Washington Examiner, 1/17/2020)  (Archive)

December 26, 2019 – Judicial Watch sues the CIA and DOJ for the communications of Eric Ciaramella

Eric Ciaramella’s name appears in William Taylor’s transcript and is mistakenly released by the House Intelligence Committee.

“Judicial Watch announced today that it filed Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuits against both the DOJ and CIA for communications of CIA employee Eric Ciaramella, who reportedly worked on Ukraine issues while on detail to both the Obama and Trump White Houses.

The lawsuit against the DOJ was filed after it failed to respond to November 2019 FOIA requests seeking communications between Ciaramella and former FBI agent Peter Strzok, former FBI Attorney Lisa Page, former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, and/or the Special Counsel’s Office (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of Justice (No. 1:19-cv-03809)).

Judicial Watch filed suit against the CIA after it failed to respond to  FOIA requests seeking all of Ciaramella’s emails from June 1, 2016, to November 12, 2019 (Judicial Watch v. Central Intelligence Agency (No. 1:19-cv-03807)).

Ciaramella’s name appears in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report on the 2016 presidential election, in reference to two emails Ciaramella sent to then-Chief of Staff John Kelly and other officials, describing a meeting between President Trump, Russian foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Foreign Minister Sergey Kislyak:

In the morning on May 10, 2017, President Trump met with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak in the Oval Office.468 

###

468… (5/9/17 White House Document, “Working Visit with Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov of Russia”) … (5/10/17 Email, Ciaramella to Kelly et al.). The meeting had been planned on May 2, 2017, during a telephone call between the President and Russian President Vladimir Putin, and the meeting date was confirmed on May 5, 2017, the same day the President dictated ideas for the Comey termination letter to Stephen Miller…. (5/10/17 Email, Ciaramella to Kelly et al.).

Information about this phone call was subsequently leaked to The New York Times.

Ciaramella is widely reported as the person who filed the whistleblower complaint that triggered the impeachment proceedings. His name reportedly was “raised privately in impeachment depositions, according to officials with direct knowledge of the proceedings, as well as in at least one open hearing held by a House committee not involved in the impeachment inquiry.”

“There is significant public interest, thanks to the Obama Spygate scandal and the related abusive impeachment of President Trump, in what Eric Ciaramella was up to,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “CIA operative Ciaramella is documented to be involved in the Russia collusion investigation and was a key CIA operative on Ukraine in the both the Obama and Trump White Houses. Our lawsuits are designed to break through the unprecedented cover-up of his activities.” (Read more: Judicial Watch, 12/26/2019)  (Archive)

December 18, 2019 – The Horowitz Report & testimony provide historic condemnation of FBI’s surveillance actions—Jeff Carlson

Amidst the media spin about the recent Department of Justice IG report, what is the real bottom line? What does it mean for the FBI and its future?

Did Inspector General Horowitz really find that there was no bias in the opening of the Russia probe?

And, doing a deep dive into the Horowitz report and Horowitz’s testimony in the Senate hearing that followed, what’s the most important information that was revealed?

This is American Thought Leaders 🇺🇸, and I’m Jan Jekielek.

In this episode, we’ll sit down with Epoch Times columnist Jeff Carlson, a key contributor to The Epoch Times who was instrumental in our coverage of the Spygate scandal, and creation of The Epoch Times’ iconic Spygate poster. He is a CFA® Charterholder who worked for 20 years as an analyst and portfolio manager in the high-yield bond market.

CORRECTION: During a discussion (beginning at the 37:35 mark) of the two separate trips to Italy in August and late September 2019, that were made by AG Barr and US Attorney Durham, I mistakenly stated the year as being 2016. Both trips, along with AG Barr’s communications with officials in the UK and Australia, all occurred during 2019.

December 10, 2019 – Full Interview: Barr criticizes IG Report on the Russia investigation

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

(Transcript: RealClearPolitics, 12/10/2019)  (Archive)

December 9, 2019 – The DOJ IG report misses yet another lie from the FBI

“Left-leaning politicians and the press spent more than three years pushing the Russia collusion hoax. Yet, following the inspector general’s release of his 478-page report on Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) abuse, after making quick mention of the top-line findings, the media moved on. As a result, much has been missed, including one significant misrepresentation contained in all four of the Carter Page FISA applications—an inaccuracy even the IG’s team overlooked.

Two passages, separated by more than 50 pages, when read together reveal an eighth significant inaccuracy and omission from the first FISA application, and one repeated in the later three renewals: Steele’s sources and sub-sources were not ones he used or developed during his time with the British intelligence service MI6, contrary to the impression created in the FISA applications.

This detail was dropped in a footnote in the IG report, following this text: “Steele told us he had a source network in place with a proven ‘track record’ that could deliver on Fusion GPS’s requirements. Steele added that this source network previously had furnished intelligence on Russian interference in European affairs.”

The relevant footnote, footnote 214, then read: “Steele told us that this source network did not involve sources from his time as a [redacted] and was developed entirely in the period after he retired from government service.” The redacted language undoubtedly referred to Steele’s British intelligence work.

That Steele’s “source network did not involve sources from his time” with British intelligence proves extremely significant when considered in tandem with the details the IG provided about the FISA application process in general, and the specifics of the Page FISA applications.” (Read more: The Federalist, 1/02/2020)  (Archive)

December 9, 2019 – IG FISA report footnote 474 – Confidential Human Source w/ Delta file was inside Trump campaign

“CTH was always curious why one specific member of the Trump campaign and transition team was abruptly departed (Nov 15, 2016) immediately after the visit by NSA Director Mike Rogers was scheduled, and two-days prior to their meeting.  It’s a weedy question, likely only considered by those who were watching closely at the time…

However, perhaps Inspector General Michael Horowitz has provided some background on the move. [Page 336, 337, fn #474]

Based on the arc of the post-election timeline described in the segment of the report that touches upon “non-tasked” Confidential Human Sources (CHSs), beginning page 336; and based on other information in/around the specific CHS described; there’s a very strong likelihood we can identify this one.

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Mike Rogers (l) and the committee’s ranking Democrat, Rep. C.A. “Dutch” Ruppersberger (r), on October 8, 2012. (Credit: J. Scott Applewhite/The Associated Press)

From Politico, November 15, 2016:

Former House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers has resigned from Donald Trump’s presidential transition team.

“It was a privilege to prepare and advise the policy, personnel and agency action teams on all aspects of the national security portfolio during the initial pre-election planning phase,” Rogers said in a statement Tuesday. “Our work will provide a strong foundation for the new transition team leadership as they move into the post-election phase, which naturally is incorporating the campaign team in New York who drove President-elect Trump to an incredible victory last Tuesday.” (Politico, 11/15/2016)

As more Americans are now aware of how deep the intelligence community operates in/around DC politicians, it is worth remembering exactly how this happens.

The modern intelligence apparatus has a history of leveraging/turning compromised politicians into assets for an agenda most Americans are only now starting to grasp. Former HPSCI Chairman Mike Rogers was in place during the 2012 joint CIA/State Department Benghazi operation controlled by Hillary Clinton and Leon Panetta, code name: Operation Zero Footprint.

Congressman Rogers was part of the group who covered for Hillary Clinton and Leon Panetta in the outcome of Benghazi. Rogers motives on both fronts (cover Benghazi and surveillance of Trump) are part of the old fashioned motive, money.  Mike Rogers’ wife, Kristi Clemens Rogers, was the president and CEO of Aegis LLC a “security” defense contractor – and her connections delivered a $10 billion contract with the State Dept.

In the height of the scrutiny over Benghazi HPSCI Chairman Mike Rogers and Ranking Member Dutch Ruppersberger authored a quick, and widely rebuked, intelligence committee report that provided the first line of defense for Clinton, Obama and Panetta.  The media seized on the Rogers/Ruppersberger report to set the narrative.

Immediately following their efforts, Mike Rogers and Dennis Ruppersberger resigned from congress.  Mike and his wife Kristi riding off into the sunset with multi-millions of wealth from the secured Aegis contract. [Oh yeah, and Kristi retired too]

This is how the deep state operates and the Rogers example is a typical highlight for how enmeshed interests of the intelligence community, politicians and the individual can resurface when needed.  With the background explained, you can easily see how the Deep State 2016 presidential election interests would merge with the interests of Mike and Kristi Rogers influence/affluence.

Oh yes, at the time…. the Deep State media was also fully engaged: (Read more: Conservative Treehouse, 12/24/2019)  (Archive)

December 9, 2019 – The IG FISA report writes McCabe pushed the “Golden Showers” hoax and Comey approved its inclusion in the intel report

(Credit: Aaron Klein/Breitbart)

“An email proves disgraced ex-FBI Director James Comey personally approved an FBI effort to have the wild and unsubstantiated “golden showers” claim about President Trump included in the material to be considered for publication in the U.S. Intelligence Community’s official report on alleged Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

The Comey email, which has not received media attention until now, was revealed inside the Justice Department’s recently released 476-page Inspector General report on the FBI’s Russia collusion investigation.

The IG report further discloses a separate email in which Andrew McCabe, who served under Comey as the FBI’s deputy director, specifically wanted dossier author Christopher Steele’s unverified “pee” charges against Trump to be included in the body of the January 6, 2017, U.S. Intelligence Community report, known as the ICA, assessing alleged Russian interference efforts.

McCabe opposed a CIA compromise to only reference Steele’s controversial dossier in an appendix of the ICA report, with McCabe arguing for it to be included in the body of the report where it would clearly get more attention.

(…) In an email to Strzok, McCabe and others, Comey described a phone call he had with then Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, writing that he told Clapper to include the Steele reports.

“Looks okay to me,” Comey wrote, approving of the FBI submission that encompassed Steele’s dossier charges.

Comey’s email continued:

FYI: During a secure call last night on this general topic, I informed the DNI that we would be contributing the [Steele] reporting (although I didn’t use that name) to the IC [Intelligence Community] effort. I stressed that we were proceeding cautiously to understand and attempt to verify the reporting as best we can, but we thought it important to bring it forward to the IC effort.

Comey went on to document that he vouched for Steele’s so-called sources while admitting that he didn’t tell Clapper about FBI efforts to verify the claims. The FBI at the time could not verify the charges.

Comey wrote:

I told him the source of the material, which included salacious material about the President-Elect, was a former [REDACTED] who appears to be a credible person with a source and sub-source network in position to report on such things, but we could not vouch for the material. (I said nothing further about the source or our efforts to verify).”

(Read more: Breitbart, 1/12/2020)  (Archive)

December 9, 2019 – The IG FISA report reveals Brennan lied to the House Intelligence Committee

John Brennan (Credit: Wikimedia Commons)

“The new report from Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz confirmed former CIA Director John Brennan lied to Congress about whether the dossier authored by Christopher Steele was used in the Obama administration’s Intelligence Community Assessment (ICA).

The ICA, a report conducted by intelligence officials in 2016 on Russian election interference, was used to brief President Barack Obama and President-elect Donald Trump in January 2017. According to the IG report, there was significant discussion by top intelligence officials as to whether the unverified Steele dossier should be included in the main body of the ICA report, summarized in an appendix, or even included at all.

FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe said that “he felt strongly that the Steele election reporting belonged in the body of the ICA, because he feared that placing it in an appendix was ‘tacking it on’ in a way that would ‘minimiz[e]’ the information and prevent it from being properly considered.”

Ultimately, the ICA included a short summary and assessment of the dossier, which was incorporated in an appendix. “In the appendix, the intelligence agencies explained that there was ‘only limited corroboration of the source’s reporting’ and that Steele’s election reports were not used ‘to reach analytic conclusions of the CIA/FBI/NSA assessment,’” the IG report states.

A few months later, on May 23, 2017, when testifying before the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, Brennan categorically denied that the CIA relied on the Steele dossier for the ICA report. Here is the full exchange with former Rep. Trey Gowdy: (Video is cued to begin at the appropriate time)

(Read more: The Federalist, 12/11/2019)  (Archive)

December 9, 2019 – The IG FISA Report reveals the main source of the Clinton/DNC/Steele dossier is the subject of an “open FBI counterintelligence investigation” – FISA court is not told

Photo of John McCain with “Source D-Source E” of Steele Dossier — Sergei Millian. (Credit: Paul Sperry/Facebook)

“One of the more shocking facts from the FISA report is that there was only one person who supplied information to Christopher Steele and he said that the information he provided was all garbage.

“The primary sub-source stated that his information came from word of mouth and hearsay and a conversation he had with friends over beers.

Steele’s sub-source was Sergei Millian. Millian’s comments were used for three years to spy on candidate and President Trump and to put the country through corrupt investigations as a result. It all was garbage, Comey, Obama, Mueller, the whole lot knew it was.

Now we see that the subject of the entire Trump sham, Millian, was under investigation at the time he was used as the main source to spy on Trump.

He was “the subject of an open FBI counterintelligence investigation”. This was never shared with the courts.

The Daily Caller reports:

Steele’s claim rested in part on his belief that Deripaska had “no contact with any of his sources” for the dossier. But Deripaska did have contact with a businessman who Steele told the FBI was an unwitting source for most of the dossier’s most eye-popping claims.

Oleg Deripaska (r), CNBC anchor Julia Chatterley (c), and Sergei Millian,  June, 2017. (Credit: CNBC)

Deripaska and the unwitting source, Sergie [sic] Millian, were photographed speaking to each other on June 17, 2016 at an economic forum in St. Petersburg. Steele wrote the first memo of his dossier three days later.

Steele claimed that Millian, who is referred to as Person 1 in the IG report, unwittingly provided information to his main information collector, who is identified as Primary Sub-Source. Millian has long denied being a source for the dossier.

Steele’s primary source disavowed some of Steele’s reporting during an interview with FBI agents in January 2017. The IG report said that the source said that he shared “rumor and speculation” about Donald Trump and members of the campaign with Steele, who reported them as fact in the dossier.

The Crossfire Hurricane team failed to disclose the source’s derogatory comments about Steele in applications to renew surveillance against Page.

Priestap, the former counterintelligence official who oversaw Crossfire Hurricane, told the IG he saw “no indication whatsoever” as of May 2017 that Russia had funneled disinformation through Steele.

Steele’s sub-source was Sergie [sic] Millian.  Millian’s comments were used for three years to spy on candidate and President Trump and to put the country through corrupt investigations as a result.

(FISA Report – pg. 164)

(Read more: The Gateway Pundit, 12/16/2019)  (Archive)

November 22, 2019 – Durham probe expands to Pentagon office that contracted FBI spy Stephan Halper

(Credit: Conservative Treehouse)

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

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

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

(…) According to the DoD Inspector General’s report the Office of Net Assessment (ONA) Contracting Officer’s Representatives (CORs) “did not maintain documentation of the work performed by Professor Halper or any communication that ONA personnel had with Professor Halper; therefore, ONA CORs could not provide sufficient documentation that Professor Halper conducted all of his work in accordance with applicable laws and regulations. We determined that while the ONA CORs established a file to maintain documents, they did not maintain sufficient documentation to comply with all the FAR requirements related to having a complete COR.” (Read more: Sara Carter, 11/22/2019)   (Archive)