Softpanorama

Home Switchboard Unix Administration Red Hat TCP/IP Networks Neoliberalism Toxic Managers
May the source be with you, but remember the KISS principle ;-)
Skepticism and critical thinking is not panacea, but can help to understand the world better

Ukraine-gate as Russiagate 2.0: an "all in" counterattack on Trump attempt to investigate origins of RussiaGate

The head of the CIA-linked STRATFOR called Ukraine “the most blatant coup in history.

Obama/Brennan faction in CIA and FBI,  the nest of neocon vipers in the State Department and "FullOfSchiff" gang in House of Representatives sense their last chance to depose Trump using the intelligence services leaker;
 or, at least, improve Dems election chances ("Pelosi Gambit")

News Nancy Pelosi impeachment gambit Recommended Links Ciaramella as potential fake whistleblower, the sacrificial pawn for Brennan Obama administration participation in the intelligence services putsch against Trump MSM as attack dogs of color revolution Senate Trial and its effect of 2020 elections Blob attacks Trump: Viper nest of neocons in state department fuels Ukraingate Alexander Vindman role in Ukrainegate
Alexandra Chalupa role in fueling Russiagate House Democrats attempt to backstab Barr and derail his investigation into the origin of Russiagate Adam Schiff Witch Hunt The demagogy of constitutional law professor Pamela Karlan Coordinated set of leaks as a color revolution tool FBI and CIA contractor Crowdstrike and very suspicious DNC leak saga Brennan elections machinations Fake News scare and US NeoMcCartyism Creepy neocon Joe Biden and fleecing of Ukraine
Post-Russiagate remorse -- the second Iraq WDM fiasco  Poroshenko presidency Civil war in Ukraine Nulandgate UA officials role in fueling Russiagate and Ukrainegate Ukrainian Security Services role in Spygate (aka Russiagate) Ukraine debt enslavement Yovanovich and her fake drama Fiona Hill as Soros mole in Trump administration
Russiagate -- the attempt to entrap Trump with Russia ties by CIA, FBI, MI6 and Clinton mafia Strzokgate Steele dossier Special Prosecutor Mueller and his fishing expedition "Seventeen agencies" memo about Russian influence on elections Joseph Misfud and MI6 connection to Russiagate FBI contractor Fusion GPS Anti Trump Hysteria  Wiretaps of Trump and his associates during Presidential elections
Is national security state in the USA gone rogue ? History of American False Flag Operations Color revolutions Amorality and criminality of neoliberal elite  Audacious Oligarchy and "Democracy for Winners" Rosenstein and appointment of the special prosecutor Anti-Russian hysteria in connection emailgate and DNC leak The problem of control of intelligence services in democratic societies  
US and British media are servants of security apparatus MSM as fake news industry Media-Military-Industrial Complex Neoconservatism New American Militarism Elite Theory And the Revolt of the Elite      
Control of the MSM during color revolution is like air superiority in the war The Deep State The Iron Law of Oligarchy Principal-agent problem Pope Francis on danger of neoliberalism Militarism and reckless jingoism of the US neoliberal elite Skeptic Quotations Politically Incorrect Humor Hypocrisy and Pseudo-democracy

Introduction

 
From Slate: "
The Seekers abandoned their jobs, possessions, and spouses to wait for the flying saucer, but neither the aliens nor the apocalypse arrived. After several uncomfortable hours on the appointed day, Martin received a “message” saying that the group “had spread so much light that God had saved the world from destruction.” The group responded by proselytizing with a renewed vigour. According to Festinger, they resolved the intense conflict between reality and prophecy by seeking safety in numbers. “If more people can be persuaded that the system of belief is correct, then clearly, it must, after all, be correct.”
... [for members of the cult] "prophecies, per se, almost never fail. They are instead component parts of a complex and interwoven belief system which tends to be very resilient to challenge from outsiders. While the rest of us might focus on the accuracy of an isolated claim as a test of a group’s legitimacy, those who are part of that group—and already accept its whole theology—may not be troubled by what seems to them like a minor mismatch. A few people might abandon the group, typically the newest or least-committed adherents, but the vast majority experience little cognitive dissonance and so make only minor adjustments to their beliefs. They carry on, often feeling more spiritually enriched as a result.
"FullOfSchiff" people should be viewed as the members of a new hardcore cult of "Russian collision"
 

After it sponsored 2014 coup d'état which brought to power far right nationalists (which would have come to power in any case via next Parliamentary election, as Yanukovich has almost no chances to win them), the West, and first of all the USA,  is not going to make a prosperous paradise out of Ukraine. The collective West is only interested in stripping it of anything of value, and using it to inflict damage on Russia as weakening Russia is the geostrategic goal of Washington. The USA were instrumental in unleashing the civil war in Donbass. In the meantime the standard of living in Ukraine dropped at least two times, while currency dropped 3 times, While 2018 and 2019 looks like some stabilization on a very low level, it now is a debt slave and as such can go down much further.

Barr investigation was getting closer to understanding the role of Ukraine in Russiagate. While the issue of Biden criminality and corruption was important, timing was very bad, and being an impulsive person and a very bad diplomat  Trump in his phone call with Zelensky provided the Deep State an excellent opportunity for the counterattack. And it followed with the ferocity that actually surprised many observers.

Like in Russiagate the pretext was completely fake: semi-senile Biden does not represent any danger to Trump as an opponent in the 2020 election: he is a Hillary-style  corrupt classic neoliberal, and as such is very vulnerable to Trump attacks.  On a lighter note: Can you imagine the epic word salad that would be a Trump/Biden debate?

As such Biden is definitely preferable by "team Trump" then Sanders, Warren of Tulsi as an  opponent for Trump in 2020 election. And it was very a very stupid idea to try to undermine him because now Trump is probably facing Warren in the national elections -- a more formidable and far more dangerous opponent which can attract disaffected Trump voters, because her program reminds them Trump unfulfilled 2016 promises and first of all jobs and better Social protection from unemployment and critical illnesses. Just reading his promises by Warren can have a devastating effect of Trump.

So the working hypothesis should be that here Trump mixed vengeance with a honest desire to investigate corruption of a high level US official. During the Obama presidency, Biden was the US proconsul for Ukraine, and not only he was involved in many corruption schemes, he was heavily involved in February 2014 coups d'état. The head of the CIA-linked STRATFOR called Ukraine “the most blatant coup in history.” Several thousand Ukrainians were killed over a million displaced. Ukraine lost several territories.

In Ukraine the USA deviated from its longstanding policy of supporting constitutional order governance, allied with far right nationalists and smashed the constitutional order installing marionette far right government ( Nulandgate ) . On the part of the USA this was done to achieve geopolitical goals of weakening Russia. On the part of EU this was done for expanding EU economic “Lebensraum” into xUSSR space.  Subsequent Provisional Government of Yatsenyuk-Turchinov, and President Poroshenko were just the USA/EU marionette. Poroshenko was a known agent of US influence in Ukraine even before the February 2014 events. So it is not surprising that during 2016 campaign he acted as Clinton stooge and willing Russiagate helper.

A very plausible version of the story is as following (The Plundering of Ukraine by Corrupt American Democrats, by Israel Shamir - The Unz Review): 

After the 2014 coup, IMF demanded to raise the price of gas for the domestic consumer to European levels, and the new president Petro Poroshenko obliged them. The prices went sky-high. The Ukrainians were forced to pay many times more for their cooking and heating; and huge profits went to coffers of the gas companies. Instead of raising taxes or lowering prices, President Poroshenko demanded the gas companies to pay him or subsidise his projects. He said that he arranged the price hike; it means he should be considered a partner.

Burisma Gas company had to pay extortion money to the president Poroshenko. Eventually its founder and owner Mr Nicolai Zlochevsky decided to invite some important Westerners into the company’s board of directors hoping it would moderate Poroshenko’s appetites. He had brought in Biden’s son Hunter, John Kerry, Polish ex-President Kwasniewski; but it didn’t help him.

Poroshenko became furious that the fattened calf may escape him, and asked the Attorney General Shokin to investigate Burisma trusting some irregularities would emerge. AG Shokin immediately discovered that Burisma had paid these ‘stars’ between 50 and 150 thousand dollar per month each just for being on the list of directors. This is illegal by the Ukrainian tax code; it can’t be recognised as legitimate expenditure.

At that time Biden the father entered the fray. He called Poroshenko and gave him six hours to close the case against his son. Otherwise, one billion dollars of the US taxpayers’ funds won’t pass to the Ukrainian corruptioners. Zlochevsky, the Burisma owner, paid Biden well for this conversation: he received between three and ten million dollars, according to different sources.

AG Shokin said he can’t close the case within six hours; Poroshenko sacked him and installed Mr Lutsenko in his stead. Lutsenko was willing to dismiss the case of Burisma, but he also could not do it in a day, or even in a week. Biden, as we know, could not keep his trap shut: by talking about the pressure he put on Poroshenko, he incriminated himself. Meanwhile Mr Shokin gave evidence that Biden put pressure on Poroshenko to fire him, and now it was confirmed. The evidence was given to the US lawyers in connection with another case, Firtash case.

... ... ...

Two years ago, (that is already under President Trump) the United States began to investigate the allocation of 3 billion dollars; it was allocated in 2014, in 2015, in 2016; one billion dollars per year. The investigation showed that the documents were falsified, the money was transferred to Ukraine, and stolen. The investigators tracked each payment, discovered where the money went, where it was spent and how it was stolen.

As a result, in October 2018, the U.S. Department of Justice opened a criminal case for “Abuse of power and embezzlement of American taxpayers’ money”. Among the accused there are two consecutive Finance Ministers of the Ukraine, Mrs Natalie Ann Jaresko who served 2014-2016 and Mr Alexander Daniluk who served 2016-2018, and three US banks. The investigation caused the USAID to cease issuing grants since August 2019. As Trump said, now the US does not give away money and does not impose democracy.

The money was allocated with the flagrant violation of American law. There was no risk assessment, no audit reports. Normally the USAID, when allocating cash, always prepares a substantial package of documents. But the billions were given to Ukraine completely without documents. The criminal case on the embezzlement of USAID funds had been signed personally by the US Attorney General, so these issues are very much alive.

Sam Kislin was involved in this investigation. He is a good friend and associate of Giuliani, Trump’s lawyer and an ex-mayor of New York. Kislin is well known in Kiev, and I have many friends who are Sam’s friends [said Tsarev]. I learned of his progress, because some of my friends were detained in the United States, or interrogated in Ukraine. They briefed me about this. It appears that Burisma is just the tip of the scandal, the tip of the iceberg. If Trump will carry on, and use what was already initiated and investigated, the whole headquarters of the Democratic party will come down. They will not be able to hold elections. I have no right to name names, but believe me, leading functionaries of the Democratic party are involved.

Poroshenko was aware of that; he gave orders to declare Sam Kislin persona non grata. Once the old man (he is over 80) flew into Kiev airport and he was not allowed to come in; he spent the night in detention and was flown back to the US next day. Poroshenko had been totally allied with Clinton camp.

Of course, mentioning Biden in his phone call was a strategic mistake, and Trump now will pay the price.  Obama/Brennan faction  was not sleeping and realized that it can golden opportunity for the counterattack. 

The real reason of this recent bout of rage by the Deep State against Trump is probably that there are the multiple skeletons in the Ukrainian closets left after 2016 elections  (especially related to CrowdStrike as well as getting dirt of Trump via Alexandra Chalupa.)  After Barr visit to Italy, the Deep staters felt the real danger and acted accordingly: they launched a pre-emptive attack as the offence is the best form of defense.  In other words they want to sink  Barr and Durham  investigation into the roots of the Trump-Russia collusion hoax.

Looks like John Brennan went out of channels to solicit Five Eyes help in running sting operations. It is perfectly appropriate that Barr is seeking cooperation from Australia, Italy and Ukraine in pursuing possible criminal misconduct by FBI, CIA and other Federal employees. And the role of CrowdStrike in unleashing Russiagate should be investigated  as some facts suggest that they converted internal leak of DNC document in Russian intrusion by running a false flag operation, possibly from their Ukrainian servers.  In other words it was Crowdstrike specialists who broke into those servers with the specific goal to implicate Russians.  Now with Ukrainian material it became more plausible that while DNC was a leak by and disgruntled insider (possible Seth Rich), there was an subsequent to the leak additional operation of CIA with the goal to frame  Russia in the leak in which Ukrainians participated. False flag operations are  CIA specialty.

But it was much less  appropriate for Trump to touch the issue of biden corruption in his conversation with Zelensky, while he is on the campaign trail. this matter belongs tothe Department of justice which is obligated to investigate corruption of US officials in foreign territories due to the existence  of the  Foreign Corrupt Practices Acc of 1977

All-in-all Ukrainegate is probably more of a product of the sufferings on John Brennan and Co after the collapse of Mueller witch hunt -- a preemptive counterattack against Barr investigation of Russiagate origins.

"Foreign influence on the USA elections"  part of Ukrainegate is a complete fake

The most funny thing in this story is that Ukraine can't exert any foreign influence as n no way it is an independent country. So the "foreign influence" claim  is just a sad, cruel joke. Since 2014 coup d'état (aka EuroMaydan  color revolution, courtesy of Victoria "F*ck EU" Nuland) is fully controlled from Washington. So any reference about "foreign power" here is completely hypocritical.

Tha means that for all all practical purposes Ukrainegate should be viewed as Russiagate 2.0. It is a continuation of CIA/FBI/State Department  attempts to depose Trump under false pretences. It helps CIA-democrats to hide evidence and create another constant pressure point on Trump. They also expect that the impeachment investigation in the House will put enough dirt of Trump to increase their chances in 2020 election.

As s side effect of Ukrainegate is that it sanctified arms supplies to Ukraine as the issue that enjoy bipartisan consensus. While Trump behave way too clumsy and sleazy,  the wisdom of supplying arms to Ukraine to prolong war in Donbass is greatly suspect.  Obama who initiated the 2014 coup d'état in Ukraine later tried to avoid supplied arms to Ukraine despite the pressure from hawks in his cabinet, Only under Trump Ukraine got Javelins which no might end in God know which hands.

In his Sept. 29, 2019 post "CIA sets terms for Democrats: impeachment inquiry into Trump’s crimes’, Joseph Kishore reports:

“The scandal over the Ukraine call has been instigated by the intelligence agencies. It was a CIA agent in the White House who prepared the report that is the basis of the inquiry. It was the decision by a group of Democrats drawn from the military and intelligence agencies that led Pelosi and Schiff, both with longstanding ties to these same agencies, to shift from their previous opposition to impeachment."

The more interesting thing is, why did Pelosi agreed to the impeachment inquiry? Of course, it removed Biden from the list of contenders, which is probably good because he's lost it. But more importantly it creates real and sustainable anti-Trump sentiment among electorate. She wants a nominee who will keep the status quo and defeat Trump.  Looks like they are currently putting all the apples in the Warren bucket. But Warren promises are far to the left of any establishment stooge and unless she is co-opted like Trump, think might became interesting.

Christopher Neiweem who is a GOP strategist said for all we know the Warren campaign could be pushing the story hoping indirectly take down both Biden and Trump.

Intelligence community strikes back

The catalyst for impeachment is the alleged CIA whistleblower and the team of intelligence community officials he is going to bat for. Trump picked a fight with the wrong crowd. Now, they’re fighting back, with the Constitution in one hand and evidence of Trump’s corruption in the other. Game on.

You might call this team, collectively, “Deep State Throat.” They’re a deep state, all right, but not like Trump thinks. They’re not rogues. They’re patriots. Let’s just buckle up and watch how this plays out over the coming weeks and months.

To me, the whistleblower appears to have taken a leadership role [ of the whole team ], sticking his neck out to protect subordinates in the intelligence community while conveying their information to appropriate authorities through appropriate channels. It’s easy to see how the intelligence community inspector general steered it to the Congressional Intelligence Committees, under the cover of great credibility

The sentence "They’re a deep state, all right, but not like Trump thinks. They’re not rogues. They’re patriots." is pure bullshit. They are rogues. They've anointed themselves as "saviors of democracy". Ignoring the fact that democracy requires elections, not deep state manipulation. Like it or not, Trump won the 2016 election under the rules in place at the time. While his actions as the President raise many objections, nothing he had done rises to an impeachable offense. And nobody has the right to overturn that election except voters in the next election. So this is nothing but a Praetorian guard coup against the president. in best Rome traditions.

Trump is a horrible president who is doing some very bad things, but this issue is not one on which Dems could built a solid impeachment case. It amounts to an attempted coup. Trumps "crimes" were to ask that Ukraine cooperate with the Attorney General's investigations. Anyone that has seen Biden's disgusting, arrogant comments at the Council on Foreign Relations would have to agree with Trump that it "sounds horrible." If you want evidence of withholding aid for political purposes you need look no farther than Biden and Obama. What sickens me, however, is how completely the MSM bough this narrative. They never mention Biden's comments at the Council of Foreign Relations. They never mention that the fired Prosecutor General testified that he was fired because he made Biden unhappy. They misconstrue, they misdirect and they simply lie. This, unfortunately, is not new. Recall Russiagate and the lead up to the invasion of Iraq, among other things. Trump is often called a fascist, but compared to John Brennon, John Bolton, their like-minded colleagues and their enablers, Trump is a rank and incompetent amateur whose great sin is to fuck up the US descent into neofascism.

Interestingly, the same neocon/neolib alliance which endorsed George W. Bush's case for war with Iraq is pretty much the same alliance that is now, all these years later, braying for confrontation with Russia. Including the same cast of characters reading from the Iraq-war era playbook.

The prevailing sentiment of the media establishment during the months prior to the disastrous March 2003 invasion of Iraq was that of certainty: George Tenet's now infamous assurance to President Bush, that the case against Iraq was a "slam drunk," was essentially what major newspapers and television news outlets were telling the American people at the time.

The Bush administration cynically engaged in what we would today call a "disinformation campaign against its own citizens" by planting false stories abroad, safe in the knowledge that these stories would "bleed over" and be picked up by the American press.

The Bush II neocons were able to launder what were essentially "fake news" stories, such as the aluminum tubes fabrication , by leaking to Michael R. Gordon and Judith Miller of The New York Times. We see the  same set of well coordinated leaks here.

By 2002, no one had any right to be surprised by what Bush and Cheney were up to; since at least 1898 (when the U.S. declared war on Spain under the pretense of the fabricated Hearst battle cry "Remember the Maine!") American governments have repeatedly lied in order to promote their agenda abroad. And in 2002-3, the media walked in lock step with yet another administration in pushing for an unnecessary and costly war.

Like The New York Times, The Washington Post also relentlessly pushed the administration's case for war with Iraq. According to the journalist Greg Mitchell , "By the Post 's own admission, in the months before the war, it ran more than 140 stories on its front page promoting the war." All this, while its editorial page assured readers that the evidence Colin Powell presented to the United Nations on Iraq's WMD program was "irrefutable." According to the Post, it would be "hard to imagine" how anyone could doubt the administration's case.

But the Post was hardly alone in its enthusiasm for Bush's war. Among the most prominent proponents of the Iraq war was The New Yorker's Jeffrey Goldberg , who, a full year prior to the invasion, set out to link Saddam Hussein and Al Qaeda. Writing for The New Yorker in March 2002, Goldberg retailed former CIA Director James Woolsey's opinion that "It would be a real shame if the C.I.A.'s substantial institutional hostility to Iraqi democratic resistance groups was keeping it from learning about Saddam's ties to Al Qaeda in northern Iraq."

Indeed, according to Goldberg , "The possibility that Saddam could supply weapons of mass destruction to anti-American terror groups is a powerful argument among advocates of regime change," while Saddam's "record of support for terrorist organizations, and the cruelty of his regime make him a threat that reaches far beyond the citizens of Iraq."

We see Deja Vu All Over Again in  case of a smooth transition of Russiagate into Russiagate 2.0 (aka Ukrainegate).

From Ukraine With Love: The real story of Biden corruption

In Ukraine the USA deviated from its longstanding policy of supporting constitutional order governance, allied with far right nationalists and smashed the constitutional order installing marionette far right government ( Nulandgate ) . On the part of the USA this was done to achieve geopolitical goals of weakening Russia. On the part of EU this was done for expanding EU economic "Lebensraum" into xUSSR space.

After the coup the fleecing of Ukrainian population by the new team of oligarchs who supported the coup started and the USA politicians and Ukrainian diaspora jointed this with great enthusiasm.  As the result the standard of living in Ukraine dropped at least to the half of very low level that existed in  2014 and currency depreciated ~300% (or 60% per year, although the process was uneven). Now Ukraine is the poorest country in Europe.

When DemoRats (Clinton wing of Democratic Party) dusted off and added Joe Biden to the already overclouded roster of candidates  (and falsified polls to show that he is a leader and thus artificially created a following for his candidacy), that was clearly a move directed on reelection of Trump, a very favorable for Trump event.  And it is true that DemoRats are afraid of Bernie Sanders more then of Trump.

In September three House committees announced earlier this month that they were investigating whether Trump used the withholding of military aid as leverage to get Ukraine’s new President Volodymyr Zelenskiy to probe the Bidens — an allegation that has been bolstered by a  "whistle-blower"( this person is not a whistle-blower but a leaker, as we are talking about potentially criminal actions by Biden which falled under Foreign Corrupt Practices Act , and which do deserve investigation both by the Ukrainian side and the Department of Justice)  complaint from inside the  intelligence community. Which makes it similar to Steele dossier. 

Democrats risked to discover that in the released transcript Trump did not cross the line and at this point you can say good-buy to Creepy Joe as the leader of the pack, if not as a candidate. So it could well be  that the "whistle-blower" is Warren sympathizer within the intelligence community and the whole operation was devised  to prop-up Warren and hurt Trump in best Russiagate style. Looks like powerful faction within the intelligence community clearly had a candidate in 2016. Do they also have one in 2020?

The US authorities now are obligated to conduct a full-scale inquiry of Biden behavior, but what is even worse tis that it will add a lot of additional air time to allegations about Biden criminality, linking their party’s 2020 presidential front-runner to Clinton family corruption.

The last thing Democrats want is another candidate on the defensive, after Trump was rolled over Hillary 2016.”  Also in view of the scandal voters may think Biden not only just too old to be the President, but that maybe that he carries was too much neoliberal baggage. The whistleblower incident is more likely to end the political career of Biden. The whole matter involving his son’s foreign business dealings not only raises unflattering questions but also provides plenty of reminders about his life in the swamp. Trump practically has been defined by his ability to outlive Democratic “witch hunts.'”

Trump probably will crush Creepy Joe even with all the negative factors he now has, or will acquire.  Creepy Joe (as WaPo nicknamed him) has three major skeletons in the closet:

  1. his narcoaddict son magically escaped justice when a crack pipe was found in his rental car
  2. Biden role in Ukrainian events which are disgusting if not outright criminal. Later after the EuroMaydan events he instrumental if firing Ukrainian Chief Persecutor to squash investigating of gas company Burisma (where his some do some reason got a position in the board of the company) which paid around $50K a month to his son) and his son financial dealings with China.  So his son fleeced impoverished Ukraine where standard living dropped 2-3 times after Euromaydan, which was converted into the debt slave of the  West and where most population live of $2 a day or less.

    The fact of the matter is that Hunter wasn’t on the board because of his expertise in Eastern European energy issues. He’s part of a long tradition of nepotism when family members of influential politicians profiting off a sense that it’s politically and economically useful to cultivate these connections.

    not to mention his past as the  "mentor" of Yanukovich whom he later backstabbed
  3. His China dealings also need careful investigation, and interpretation of some actions by Biden family in view of trade war with China might be very damaging for Biden.

At night on September 24, 2019 Pelosi  have announced they will pursue impeachment charges against President Trump because an unverified, hearsay whistleblower made a complaint about a phone call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenski. 

In response Trump published the transcript of the call. Trump’s move to release the un-redacted transcripts of the phone call was the right move. But Dems did not stop. They just moved goalposts.

There are few hard facts: a leak claims a whistleblower in the intelligence community believes that during a July 25 phone call, Trump made unspecified “promises” to the Ukrainian president in return for his investigating Biden family corruption. The whistleblower did not have direct knowledge of what was said, and may have read a transcript or summary. Trump knew the call was monitored by multiple people yet said whatever he said anyway

The actual words matter a lot. If this whole thing looks like a dance around some flippant statement by the president about investigating corruption that may involve the Biden family turning it into a quid pro quo accusation, it will fail spectacularly with voters. If we all have to become whistleblower law experts the same way we all were obstruction experts just a few weeks ago, it fails.

Yet while the actual words matter, it should not be lost that none of what Trump was supposed to have really done — using military aid to get dirt on Biden — happened.  

No one claims the Ukrainians investigated Biden at Trump’s demand (and Dems insist there was no Biden wrongdoing anyway, so an investigation would be for naught). It is thus a big problem in this narrative that the long-promised military aid to the Ukraine was only delayed and then paid out, as if the bribe was given for nothing in return—which makes it hardly a bribe. Trump is apparently bad at bribing. Even though he made the decision to temporarily withhold the aid for some reason, the Ukrainians were never even told about it until weeks after the “extortion” phone call, meaning nobody’s arm got knowingly twisted. So no bribe was given, or to the Ukrainians’ knowledge, no money withheld.

In previous case FBI plot to entrap Trump with Moscow hotel  led to the Dems claim that they see a smoking gun. But there is no body on the ground under the muzzle. So will this devolve into another complicated thought crime, another “conspiracy” to commit without the committal?

“No explicit quid pro quo is necessary to betray your country,” helpfully tweeted Adam Schiff, chair of the House Intelligence Committee, a member of Congress Pro-isreal lobby. He does not even understand how right he is.

People became way too cynical following the collapse of Russiagate for Dems to have any level of success in derailing Trump.

Hunter Biden’s American-based firm, Rosemont Seneca Partners LLC, was hired by the Ukrainian natural gas firm, Burisma Holdings in 2014. They gave Hunter Biden a seat on their board and paid Biden’s firm an average of $166,000 a month during his employment with them. The problem? Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin in the Ukraine started a widespread corruption probe into Burisma Holdings with specific plans to look at all board members – including Joe Biden’s son.  (Source)

As Vice President, Joe Biden traveled to Ukraine to give them the news that the United States was going to be granting Ukraine $1 Billion in loan guarantees. While there, he threatened to pull the guarantees if they did not fire Prosecutor Shokin, who was investigating the firm Biden’s son was a board member of. (Source)

Sure enough, Ukraine folded in order to not risk losing the loan guarantees and fired Prosecutor Shokin. The corruption investigation into Burisma Holdings was abandoned and no charges were brought against the firm or Hunter Biden. Last year, Joe Biden bragged on video about personally strong-arming the Ukrainians into firing the prosecutor. (Source)

Is military assistance to Ukraine in the USA national interest, or this is a dangerous continuation of neocon foreign policy

The US neocons announced "iron support" for military assistance to Ukraine. They noted that Washington views military support for Kiev as serving the USA  national interest.

“Support by the United States for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine remains iron, and the US sees support for Ukraine through military assistance as an important national interest,” the US embassy in Kiev said.

On September 12, 2019 the US Senate Committee on Costs approved the allocation of $ 250 million to Ukraine to support the country's armed forces.  In other words the USA continue Cold War2 increasing the danger of World War III which would wipe our both the USA and Russia from the face of the Earth.

The interesting part of this phase of Cold War II is the role of intelligence agencies in unleashing and sustaining it. Which made intelligence agencies  an important political force in the USA, and as such the slide of the USA to the neofascist model of governance, which is reflected in the term the Deep State.  Barann is the face of those tendencies.  

Due to Ukraine-gate Biden is down and soon will be out Warren emerged as the most probable nominee

The most logical reading of the situation, based on known facts is that Biden gone, the corporate Dems such as Kamala Harris are much weaker..

Biden got in big trouble and the most natural path for him is down and put. He can't recover from the barrage of Ukraine-related dirt and deny his connection to his narcoaddict son; Ukraine+China factor will sink him sooner or later.

Warren looks like the net beneficiary of Pelosi initiated impeachment hearrings. This is the only silver lining in this dark cloud.

But please note that "Full of Schiff" candidates, the candidates that endorsed the impeachment (the list that includes Warren, only Tulsi has thecorage to abstain) might sill later regret jumping into this bandwagon. Because resulting polarization greatly favors Trump. Here we again will be completely distracted from real and complex issues facing the country into yet another senseless mud slinging match courtesy to Obama/Brennan faction in CIA. And that favors Trump.

With some PR skills Trump now can definitely present Warren as "yet another corrupt neoliberal"  hell bent of trating corruption within Dem Party, including the corruption of Clinton family differently from everybody else, ruthless female opportunist who tries to capitalize on her identity and resorts to dirty tricks to get to power. Or, worse, as a malleable pretender without any spine. Iether already controlled by the establishment, or candidate which establishment will have for lunch in two or three months since inauguration (as happened with Trump ;-)

Both variants pose some danger for her candidacy.

The Damocles sword of Senate trial hangs over Schiff

President Trump said he wants an impeachment trial in the Senate if the House impeaches him. If Republiucan  senators, who will control this process want that can drag Pelosi, Schiff and company via all the Obama and intelligence agencies dirt  and completely destroy Dems chances of winning 2020 depicting them as plotter, who wanted to overthrow legitimately elected President by any means possible.

Speaking to Fox & Friends the president claimed he wants a trial in the Senate. Host Brian Kilmeade responded, “You want a trial?” Trump replied, “Oh, I would! Look, number one, they should never, ever impeach. I watched, I watched five people on your network yesterday say there’s nothing here. Andy McCarthy, how about Ken, special prosecutor,” Trump said. Kilmeade interjected: “Ken Starr.” “Special counsel. Ken Starr, he was fantastic, he said there’s nothing here. So ready? Number one, there should never be an impeachment. This is not an impeachment,” Trump concluded.

The president's remarks come a day after White House counsel Pat Cipollone signaled during a meeting with key Senate Republicans that Trump has concluded he has more to gain politically from presenting a detailed defense at trial than from the GOP preventing a trial from happening at all.

 


Top Visited
Switchboard
Latest
Past week
Past month

NEWS CONTENTS

Old News ;-)

Home 2099 2020 2019 2018 2017

For the list of top articles see Recommended Links section

[Jul 30, 2020] USA threatens German Nord Stream 2 contractors

Jul 30, 2020 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

MOSCOWEXILE July 27, 2020 at 2:17 am

USA drohen deutschen Auftragnehmern von Nord Stream 2
Stand: 08:32 Uhr

USA threatens German Nord Stream 2 contractors
Status: 08:32 a.m.

https://www.welt.de/wirtschaft/plus212234259/Nord-Stream-2-USA-drohen-deutschen-Auftragnehmern.html?cid=onsite.onsitesearch

Die Welt: США угрожают европейским подрядчикам "Северного потока -- 2"
26 июля 2020

https://yandex.ru/turbo/s/ria.ru/20200726/1574926306.html?promo=navbar&utm_referrer=https%3A%2F%2Fzen.yandex.com

MOSCOW, July 26 – RIA Novosti. The US authorities are increasing pressure on German and European companies involved in the construction of Nord Stream 2, Die Welt newspaper writes, citing sources.

The newspaper notes that the American side has held two videoconferences with gas pipeline contractors from Germany and other European countries to "indicate the far-reaching consequences of their further participation in the project". The conferences were attended by representatives of the US Department of State, Treasury and Department of Energy.

Sources told the newspaper that American officials "have made it very clear that they want to prevent the completion of Nord Stream 2".

The Empire hath spoken!

MARK CHAPMAN July 27, 2020 at 1:35 pm

I suppose the Germans could crumble like cheese, but I personally think it is very unlikely, since doing so would mean total dependence on the United States, with its whims and its 'loyalty tests'. Not necessarily in energy, because Europe would still have to rely heavily on Russia; the United States would be satisfied – for the moment – with Russia continuing to supply its present amounts, provided they went through Ukraine as they do now, so that Russia has to help finance Ukraine's slow development as a US project dedicated to Russia's undoing. But America knows it cannot ever replace Russian supply, although it would ideally like to take more and more market share as its own production (theoretically) continues to increase. It just adamantly does not want Ukraine taken out of the equation, because Ukraine is like a rheostat that Washington can turn up or down as necessary.

No, the USA cannot replace Russian gas, but if Germany gives in now, Washington will run it as a wholly-owned subsidiary for as far as the eye can see. And I believe Germany knows it.

MOSCOWEXILE July 27, 2020 at 11:46 pm

The German foreign minister was making suitable noises for the USA yesterday, saying that in order to rejoin G7, Russia must firstly clean up its relations with Banderastan -- read: stop its "aggression" towards the Ukraine and return the Crimea to its rightful "owner".

The Kremlin responded that it has no intention of rejoining G7.

No mention off the German minister about the Ukraine not complying with the Minsk agreement, about the Ukraine government waging war against its citizens, its stopping the water supply to the Crimea etc., etc. just Big Bad Russia the "Aggressor State" that must learn how to behave itself according "International Law".

MOSCOWEXILE July 27, 2020 at 3:34 am

RT

Russia beating United States in battle for China's huge energy market
July 27, 2020, 11:12 GMT

https://www.rt.com/business/495949-russia-outpaces-us-lng-china/

MOSCOWEXILE July 27, 2020 at 3:36 am

Unbelievable!

They're turning down "Freedom Molecules"?

MARK CHAPMAN July 27, 2020 at 3:37 pm

So it would appear. But it should not be at all surprising – except maybe to Washington – that you cannot shit on China day and night and call it all sorts of unpleasant names, and then expect the sun to come up on happy business partners China and the USA next day. China shares with Russia an imperative that it be respected; you don't have to like it, but you must speak respectfully and politely about it, and limit your accusations to what you can prove.

Washington likes to unload the mockery by the truckload, and then, when it's time to do business, say "Aw, shucks – I were just funnin'", and have business go forward as if the insults had never been voiced. Or, worse yet, insist that it is sticking to its positions, but you must do business with it anyway because it is the world leader and there is nowhere else to turn.

Natural Gas in the USA is at what is referred to as a 'messy bottom', and both production and sales are below year-over-year average. Yet it is plain – they say so, in so many words – that America expects sales growth to come from China and India.

"The International Energy Agency expects LNG, the main driver of international gas trade, to expand by 21% in 2019-2025, reaching 585 billion cubic meters annually. The growth will come from China and India, the IEA said in its Gas 2020 report published Wednesday. Trade will increase at a slower pace than liquefaction capacity additions, limiting the prospects of a tighter market, it said in the report."

https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/markets/shell-ceo-says-lng-market-will-recover-to-pre-virus-levels/ar-BB15imQu

I think he's probably right that the natural gas market will expand by a significant number. I'm just not sure the USA will play much of a part in it. And China is on solid ground, no matter how much America screams and roars; Russian gas is cheaper, and the logistics chain is short and reliable.

WARREN July 28, 2020 at 5:31 pm

https://platform.twitter.com/embed/index.html?dnt=true&embedId=twitter-widget-1&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1288112640493928449&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fthenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com%2F2020%2F07%2F05%2Fhow-to-make-a-brick-from-straw-and-bullshit%2F&siteScreenName=wordpressdotcom&theme=light&widgetsVersion=9066bb2%3A1593540614199&width=550px


MARK CHAPMAN July 28, 2020 at 6:06 pm

Obviously, for this group, 'bridging the gap' in 'threat perception' does NOT mean coaxing Poland and Lithuania to realize that Nord Stream II is just a commercial venture. It means coaxing France and Germany to accept and amplify Poland and Lithuania's paranoia and loathing of Russia. Equally obviously, America's determination to be Europe's Daddy with the LNG is just a commercial venture. Nothing political about it, and if the USA ever found itself in the position where it could leverage its energy sales to Europe to make Europe do things it otherwise would not do willingly, why, it would never use that power. Only the Russians weaponize energy.

The 'panel' is simply a parade of Atlanticists, a neoconservative wet dream. There are no realists there. Fortunately, US approval of the project is not required.


[Jul 26, 2020] Steele's -Primary Subsource- Was Alcoholic Russian National Who Worked With Trump Impeachment Witness At Brookings

Jul 26, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Steele's "Primary Subsource" Was Alcoholic Russian National Who Worked With Trump Impeachment Witness At Brookings by Tyler Durden Sat, 07/25/2020 - 16:50 Twitter Facebook Reddit Email Print

Authored by Paul Sperry via RealClearInvestigations.com,

The mysterious "Primary Subsource" that Christopher Steele has long hidden behind to defend his discredited Trump-Russia dossier is a former Brookings Institution analyst -- Igor "Iggy" Danchenko, a Russian national whose past includes criminal convictions and other personal baggage ignored by the FBI in vetting him and the information he fed to Steele , according to congressional sources and records obtained by RealClearInvestigations. Agents continued to use the dossier as grounds to investigate President Trump and put his advisers under counter-espionage surveillance.

The 42-year-old Danchenko, who was hired by Steele in 2016 to deploy a network of sources to dig up dirt on Trump and Russia for the Hillary Clinton campaign, was arrested, jailed and convicted years earlier on multiple public drunkenness and disorderly conduct charges in the Washington area and ordered to undergo substance-abuse and mental-health counseling, according to criminal records.

me title=

Fiona Hill: She worked at the Brookings Institution with dossier "Primary Subsource" Igor "Iggy" Danchenko (top photo), and testified against President Trump last year during impeachment hearings. AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta

In an odd twist, a 2013 federal case against Danchenko was prosecuted by then-U.S Attorney Rod Rosenstein, who ended up signing one of the FBI's dossier-based wiretap warrants as deputy attorney general in 2017.

Danchenko first ran into trouble with the law as he began working for Brookings - the preeminent Democratic think tank in Washington - where he struck up a friendship with Fiona Hill, the White House adviser who testified against Trump during last year's impeachment hearings. Danchenko has described Hill as a mentor, while Hill has sung his praises as a "creative" researcher.

Hill is also close to his boss Steele, who she'd known since 2006 . She met with the former British intelligence officer during the 2016 campaign and later received a raw, unpublished copy of the now-debunked dossier.

It does not appear the FBI asked Danchenko about his criminal past or state of sobriety when agents interviewed him in January 2017 in a failed attempt to verify the accuracy of the dossier, which the bureau did only after agents used it to obtain a warrant to surveil Trump campaign adviser Carter Page. The opposition research was farmed out by Steele, working for Clinton's campaign, to Danchenko, who was paid for the information he provided.

https://lockerdome.com/lad/13084989113709670?pubid=ld-dfp-ad-13084989113709670-0&pubo=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.zerohedge.com&rid=www.zerohedge.com&width=890

A newly declassified FBI summary of the FBI-Danchenko meeting reveals agents learned that key allegations in the dossier, which claimed Trump engaged in a "well-developed conspiracy of cooperation" with the Kremlin against Clinton, were largely inspired by gossip and bar talk among Danchenko and his drinking buddies, most of whom were childhood friends from Russia.

The FBI memo is heavily redacted and blacks out the name of Steele's Primary Subsource. But public records and congressional sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity, confirm the identity of the source as Danchenko.

In the memo, the FBI notes that Danchenko said that he and one of his dossier sources "drink heavily together." But there is no apparent indication the FBI followed up by asking Danchenko if he had an alcohol problem, which would cast further doubt on his reliability as a source for one of the most important and sensitive investigations in FBI history.

The FBI declined comment. Attempts to reach Danchenko by both email and phone were unsuccessful.

The Justice Department's watchdog recently debunked the dossier's most outrageous accusations against Trump, and faulted the FBI for relying on it to obtain secret wiretaps. The bureau's actions, which originated under the Obama administration, are now the subject of a sprawling criminal investigation led by special prosecutor John Durham.

Rod Rosenstein: In an odd twist, a 2013 drunkenness case against Danchenko was prosecuted by then-U.S Attorney Rod Rosenstein, who ended up signing one of the FBI's dossier-based wiretap warrants as deputy attorney general in 2017. (Greg Nash/Pool via AP)

One of the wiretap warrants was signed in 2017 by Rosenstein, who also that year appointed Special Counsel Robert Mueller and signed a "scope" memo giving him wide latitude to investigate Trump and his surrogates. Mueller relied on the dossier too. As it happens, Rosenstein also signed motions filed in one of Danchenko's public intoxication cases, according to the documents obtained by RCI.

In March 2013 -- three years before Danchenko began working on the dossier -- federal authorities in Greenbelt, Md., arrested and charged him with several misdemeanors, including "drunk in public, disorderly conduct, and failure to have his [2-year-old] child in a safety seat," according to a court filing . The U.S. prosecutor for Maryland at the time was Rosenstein, whose name appears in the docket filings .

The Russian-born Danchenko, who was living in the U.S. on a work visa, was released from jail on the condition he undergo drug testing and "participate in a program of substance abuse therapy and counseling," as well as "mental health counseling," the records show. His lawyer asked the court to postpone his trial and let him travel to Moscow "as a condition of his employment." The Russian trips were granted without objection from Rosenstein. Danchenko ended up several months later entering into a plea agreement and paying fines.

In 2006, Danchenko was arrested in Fairfax, Va., on similar offenses, including "public swearing and intoxication," criminal records show. The case was disposed after he paid a fine.

At the time, Danchenko worked as a research analyst for the Brookings Institution, where he became a protégé of Hill. He collaborated with her on at least two Russian policy papers during his five-year stint at the think tank and worked with another Brookings scholar on a project to uncover alleged plagiarism in Russian President Vladimir Putin's doctoral dissertation -- something Danchenko and his lawyer boasted about during their meeting with FBI agents. (Like Hill, the other scholar, Clifford Gaddy, was a Russia hawk. He and Hill in 2015 authored "Mr. Putin: Operative in the Kremlin," a book strongly endorsed by Vice President Joe Biden at the time.)

"Igor is a highly accomplished analyst and researcher," Hill noted on his LinkedIn page in 2011.

"He is very creative in pursuing the most relevant of information and detail to support his research."

Strobe Talbott of Brookings with Hillary Clinton: He connected with Christopher Steele and passed along a copy of his anti-Trump dossier to Fiona Hill. AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster

Hill also vouched for Steele, an old friend and British intelligence counterpart. The two reunited in 2016, sitting down for at least one meeting. Her boss at the time, Brookings President Strobe Talbott, also connected with Steele and passed along a copy of his anti-Trump dossier to Hill. A tough Trump critic, Talbott previously worked in the Clinton administration and rallied the think tank behind Hillary.

Talbott's brother-in-law is Cody Shearer, another old Clinton hand who disseminated his own dossier in 2016 that echoed many of the same lurid and unsubstantiated claims against Trump. Through a mutual friend at the State Department, Steele obtained a copy of Shearer's dossier and reportedly submitted it to the FBI to help corroborate his own.

In August 2016, Talbott personally called Steele, based in London, to offer his own input on the dossier he was compiling from Danchenko's feeds. Steele phoned Talbott just before the November election, during which Talbott asked for the latest dossier memos to distribute to top officials at the State Department. After Trump's surprise win, the mood at Brookings turned funereal and Talbott and Steele strategized about how they "should handle" the dossier going forward.

During the Trump transition, Talbott encouraged Hill to leave Brookings and take a job in the White House so she could be "one of the adults in the room" when Russia and Putin came up. She served as deputy assistant to the president and senior director for European and Russian affairs on the National Security Council from 2017 to 2019.

She left the White House just before a National Security Council detailee who'd worked with her, Eric Ciaramella, secretly huddled with Democrats in Congress and alleged Trump pressured the president of Ukraine to launch an investigation of Biden and his son in exchange for military aid. Democrats soon held hearings to impeach Trump, calling Hill as one of their star witnesses.

Congressional investigators are taking a closer look at tax-exempt Brookings, which has emerged as a nexus in the dossier scandal. As a 501(c)(3) non-profit, the liberal think tank is prohibited from lobbying or engaging in political campaigns. Gryffindor/Wikimedia

Under questioning by Republican staff, Hill disclosed that Steele reached out to her for information about a mysterious individual, but she claimed she could not recall his name. She also said she couldn't remember the month she and Steele met.

"He had contacted me because he wanted to see if I could give him a contact to some other individual, who actually I don't even recall now, who he could approach about some business issues," Hill told the House last year in an Oct. 14 deposition taken behind closed doors.

Congressional investigators are reviewing her testimony, while taking a closer look at tax-exempt Brookings, which has emerged as a nexus in the dossier scandal.

Registered with the IRS as a 501(c)(3) non-profit, the liberal think tank is prohibited from lobbying or engaging in political campaigns. Specifically, investigators want to know if Brookings played any role in the development of the dossier.

"Their 501(c)(3) status should be audited, because they are a major player in the dossier deal," said a congressional staffer who has worked on the investigation into alleged Russian influence.

Hill, who returned to Brookings as a senior fellow in January, could not be reached for comment. Brookings did not respond to inquiries.

Ghost Employee

As a former member of Britain's secret intelligence service, Steele hadn't traveled to Russia in decades and apparently had no useful sources there . So he relied entirely on Danchenko and his supposed "network of subsources," which to its chagrin, the FBI discovered was nothing more than a "social circle."

It soon became clear over their three days of debriefing him at the FBI's Washington field office - held just days after Trump was sworn into office - that any Russian insights he may have had were strictly academic.

Danchenko confessed he had no inside line to the Kremlin and was "clueless" when Steele hired him in March 2016 to investigate ties between Russia and Trump and his campaign manager.

Christopher Steele, former British spy, leaving a London court this week in a libel case brought against him by a Russian businessman. Dossier source Danchenko's drinking pals fed him a tissue of false "rumor and speculation" for pay -- which Steele, in turn, further embellished with spy-crafty details and sold to his client as "intelligence." (Victoria Jones/PA via AP)

Desperate for leads, he turned to a ragtag group of Russian and American journalists, drinking buddies (including one who'd been arrested on pornography charges) and even an old girlfriend to scare up information for his London paymaster, according to the FBI's January 2017 interview memo, which runs 57 pages. Like him, his friends made a living hustling gossip for cash, and they fed him a tissue of false "rumor and speculation" -- which Steele, in turn, further embellished with spy-crafty details and sold to his client as "intelligence."

Instead of closing its case against Trump, however, the FBI continued to rely on the information Danchenko dictated to Steele for the dossier, even swearing to a secret court that it was credible enough to renew wiretaps for another nine months.

One of Danchenko's sources was nothing more than an anonymous voice on the other end of a phone call that lasted 10-15 minutes.

Danchenko told the FBI he figured out later that the call-in tipster, who he said did not identify himself, was Sergei Millian, a Belarusian-born realtor in New York. In the dossier, Steele labeled this source "an ethnic Russian close associate of Republican U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump," and attributed Trump-Russia conspiracy revelations to him that the FBI relied on to support probable cause in all four FISA applications for warrants to spy on Trump adviser Carter Page -- including the Mueller-debunked myth that he and the campaign were involved in "the DNC email hacking operation."

Danchenko explained to agents the call came after he solicited Millian by email in late July 2016 for information for his assignment from Steele. Millian told RCI that though he did receive an email from Danchenko on July 21, he ignored the message and never called him.

"There was not any verbal communications with him," he insisted. "I'm positive, 100%, nothing what is claimed in whatever call they invented I could have said."

NEVER MISS THE NEWS THAT MATTERS MOST

ZEROHEDGE DIRECTLY TO YOUR INBOX

Receive a daily recap featuring a curated list of must-read stories.

Millian provided RCI part of the email, which was written mostly in Russian. Contact information at the bottom of the email reads:

Igor Danchenko
Business Analyst
Target Labs Inc.
8320 Old Courthouse Rd, Suite 200
Vienna, VA 22182
+1-202-679-5323

At the time, Danchenko listed Target Labs, an IT recruiter run by ethnic-Russians, as an employer on his resumé. But technically, he was not a paid employee there. Thanks to a highly unusual deal Steele arranged with the company, Danchenko was able to use Target Labs as an employment front.

It turns out that in 2014, when Danchenko first started freelancing regularly for Steele after losing his job at a Washington strategic advisory firm, he set out to get a security clearance to start his own company. But drawing income from a foreign entity like Steele's London-based company, Orbis Business Intelligence, would hurt his chances.

So Steele agreed to help him broker a special "arrangement" with Target Labs, where a Russian friend of Danchenko's worked as an executive, in which the company would bring Danchenko on board as an employee but not put him officially on the payroll. Danchenko would continue working for Steele and getting paid by Orbis with payments funneled through Target Labs. In effect, Target Labs served as the "contract vehicle" through which Danchenko was paid a monthly salary for his work for Orbis, the FBI memo reveals.

Though Danchenko had a desk available to use at Target Labs, he did most of his work for Orbis from home and did not take direction from the firm. Steele continued to give him assignments and direct his travel. Danchenko essentially worked as a ghost employee at Target Labs.

Asked about it, a Target Labs spokesman would only say that Danchenko "does not work with us anymore."

Brian Auten: He wrote the memo on the FBI's interview with the Primary Subsource, which is silent about Danchenko's criminal record. Patrick Henry College

Some veteran FBI officials worry Moscow's foreign intelligence service may have planted disinformation with Danchenko and his network of sources in Russia. At least one of them, identified only as "Source 5" in the FBI memo, was described as having a Russian "kurator," or handler.

"There are legions of 'connected' Russians purveying second- and third-hand -- and often made-up -- due diligence reports and private intelligence," said former FBI assistant director Chris Swecker. "Putin's intelligence minions use these people well to plant information."

Danchenko has scrubbed his social media account. He told the FBI he deleted all his dossier-related electronic communications, including texts and emails, and threw out his handwritten notes from conversations with his subsources.

In the end, Steele walked away from the dossier debacle with at least $168,000, and Danchenko earned a large undisclosed sum.

The FBI interview memo, which is silent about Danchenko's criminal record, was written by FBI Supervisory Intelligence Analyst Brian Auten, who was called out in the Justice inspector general report for ignoring inconsistencies, contradictions, errors and outright falsehoods in the dossier he was supposed to verify.

It was also Auten's duty to vet Steele and his sources. Auten sat in on the meetings with Danchenko and also separate ones with Steele. He witnessed firsthand the countless red flags that popped up from their testimony. Yet Auten continued to tout their reliability as sources, and give his blessing to agents to use their dossier as probable cause to renew FISA surveillance warrants to spy on Page.

As RCI first reported, Auten teaches a national security course at a Washington-area college on the ethics of such spying .

me name=

[Jul 26, 2020] 'Very serious threats'- US reportedly ramps up pressure on Nord Stream 2 contractors -- RT Business News

Jul 26, 2020 | www.rt.com

'Very serious threats': US reportedly ramps up pressure on Nord Stream 2 contractors 26 Jul, 2020 08:12 Get short URL © Nord Stream 2 / Axel Schmidt 123 Follow RT on RT The US government has made further attempts to force European firms to ditch the Russian-led Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project, Welt am Sonntag reported, citing people familiar with talks on the issue.

According to the newspaper, officials from US Department of State, the Treasury Department, as well as the Department of Energy approached European contractors to make sure they fully understand the consequences of staying in the project. Up to a dozen officials reportedly held at least two online conferences with representatives of the firms in recent days.

ALSO ON RT.COM Russia's Nord Stream 2 pipeline will significantly cut gas prices in Europe, energy consultancy says

Speaking in a "friendly" manner, the US side stressed that it wanted to prevent completion of Nord Stream 2, observers of the online talks said. "I believe the threat is very, very serious," one of them revealed to the German outlet.

Those threats are consistent with comments by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo last week, in which he warned that companies involved in the project had better "get out now" or risk facing penalties under Section 232 of the notorious Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA).

READ MORE 'Attempted extortion': Germany reaffirms commitment to Russian gas project despite US threats

Apart from Russia's energy major Gazprom, which is developing the project, five European companies have joined. Those are France's Engie, Austria's OMV, the UK-Dutch company Royal Dutch Shell, as well as Wintershall and Germany's Uniper.

Speaking to Welt am Sonntag, the latter called US attempts to undermine the "important infrastructure project" a clear intervention into European sovereignty.

Earlier this week, the US House of Representatives approved an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act, meant to expand US sanctions on companies involved in installing Russia's Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline. According to one of the sponsors of the bill, the measures can target companies facilitating or providing vessels, insurance, port facilities, or tethering services for those vessels, as well as to those providing certification for Nord Stream 2.

Both European businesses and government officials have repeatedly decried US attempts to meddle in European energy policy by sanctioning Nord Stream 2, with some even calling on Brussels to work on countermeasures.

Moscow has also lambasted Washington's move, calling it unfair competition. Earlier this week, presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that Russia will develop a new strategy for completion of the project if Washington proceeds with new punitive measures.

[Jul 23, 2020] Egypt approves Libya deployment, risking clash with Turkey - HoustonChronicle.com

Jul 23, 2020 | www.houstonchronicle.com

CAIRO (AP) -- Egypt's parliament on Monday authorized the deployment of troops outside the country, a move that could escalate the spiraling war in Libya after the president threatened military action against Turkish-backed forces in the oil-rich country.

A troop deployment in Libya could bring Egypt and Turkey, close U.S. allies that support rival sides in the conflict, into direct confrontation.

[Jul 16, 2020] 'Canada Adopts America First Foreign Policy,' US State Dept boasted in 2017, with appointment of FM Chrystia Freeland by Ben Norton

Jul 16, 2020 | thegrayzone.com

The US embassy in Ottawa boasted in a March 2017 memo, "Canada Adopts 'America First' Foreign Policy," just after PM Trudeau appointed hard-line hawk Chrystia Freeland as foreign minister.

The US State Department boasted in a declassified memo in March 2017 that Canada had adopted an "America first" foreign policy.

The cable was authored just weeks after the centrist government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau appointed Chrystia Freeland as foreign minister. The former editor of the major international news agency Reuters, Freeland has pushed for aggressive policies against states targeted by Washington for regime change, including Venezuela, Russia, Nicaragua, Syria, and Iran.

The State Department added that Trudeau had promoted Freeland "in large part because of her strong U.S. contacts," and that her "number one priority" was working closely with Washington.

Under Freeland, the granddaughter of a Ukrainian Nazi propagandist, Canada has strongly campaigned against Russia, strengthened its ties with Saudi Arabia and Israel, and played a key role in the US-led right-wing coup attempt in Venezuela.

The memo offers the most concrete evidence to date that the United States sees Ottawa as an imperial subject and considers Canadian foreign policy as subordinate to its own.

Canada 'Prioritizing U.S. Relations, ASAP'

On March 6, 2017, the US embassy in Canada's capital of Ottawa sent a routine dispatch to Washington entitled "Canada Adopts 'America First' Foreign Policy."

Almost all of the now declassified document is redacted. But it includes several pieces of revealing information.

The cable notes that the Canadian government would be "Prioritizing U.S. Relations, ASAP." It also says to "Expect lncreased Engagement."

US State Department Canada adopts America first foreign policy email

The only section that is not redacted notes that the Trudeau administration "upgraded Canada's approach to the bilateral relationship."

"PM Trudeau promoted former Minister of International Trade Chrystia Freeland to Foreign Minister in large part because of her strong U.S. contacts, many developed before she entered politics," the cable says.

"Her mandate letter from the PM listed her number one priority as maintaining 'constructive relations' with the United States," the memo continues.

"Trudeau then added to her responsibilities for U.S. affairs, giving her responsibility for U.S.-Canada trade, an unprecedented move in the Canadian context," the State Department wrote.

Chrystia Freeland's 'key role' in Venezuela coup attempt

Foreign Minister Freeland has worked closely with the US government to advance its belligerent policies, especially those that target independent and leftist governments that refuse to submit to Washington's diktat.

Under Freeland's leadership, Canada took the lead in the plot to destabilize Venezuela this January. The Associated Press reported on how Ottawa joined Washington and right-wing Latin American governments in carefully planning the putsch.

Two weeks before coup leader Juan Guaidó declared himself "interim president," Freeland personally called him to "congratulate him on unifying opposition forces in Venezuela."

The AP reported: "Playing a key role behind the scenes was Lima Group member Canada, whose Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland spoke to Guaido the night before Maduro's searing-in ceremony to offer her government's support should he confront the socialist leader."

In 2017, Freeland helped to establish the Lima Group, an alliance of Canada and right-wing governments in Latin America that coalesced to push regime change in Venezuela. Because the US is not a member, Freeland has ensured that the Lima Group will act in Washington's interests and advance North American imperial power in the region.

Canada's former ambassador to Venezuela, Ben Rowswell, criticized the coup-plotting to the newspaper The Globe and Mail. "It's an unusual move for any country to comment on who the president of another country should be," he said, "to have countries that represent two-thirds of the population of Latin America do it in minutes shows there was a remarkable alignment that's got to be nearly unprecedented in the history of Latin America."

Trudeau and Freeland have repeatedly called for the overthrow of the elected Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro.

Canadian mining corporations , which are already heavily exploiting Honduras , have been desperate to get access to Venezuela's substantial mineral reserves .

A Canadian hawk

Chrystia Freeland strongly supports sanctions against Western enemies and is a vocal advocate of unilaterally seizing the assets of foreign leaders deemed by Washington to be "dictators."

She has pushed this "America first" foreign policy especially hard in Latin America and the Middle East.

In addition to imposing brutal sanctions on Venezuela , helping the US maintain a crippling economic blockade of the country, the Trudeau government has also sanctioned Nicaragua , whose democratically elected socialist government survived a violent right-wing onslaught in 2018 . Freeland has echoed the Trump administration's harsh rhetoric against Nicaragua's Sandinista government.

Canada has also followed the US in expanding the economic attack against Syria, part of a renewed effort to destabilize the government of Bashar al-Assad. Weeks after Freeland was promoted, Ottawa pushed through a new round of sanctions against Damascus .

Freeland has also joined Washington in its campaign to suffocate Iran. The Canadian foreign minister has refused to re-establish diplomatic ties with Tehran.

At the same time, Freeland strengthened ties with the far-right government of Benjamin Netanyahu, pledging Canada's "ironclad" support for Israel .

Nazi propagandist's granddaughter

In Canada, Chrystia Freeland is perhaps best known for her anti-Russia campaigning. She has expressed her country's "unwavering" support for Ukraine and boasted that she is "ready to impose costs on Russia." The Trudeau administration has imposed several rounds of harsh sanctions on Russia .

While she has staunchly supported Ukraine, Freeland obscured the fact that she was the granddaughter of a fascist Ukrainian Nazi collaborator who edited a propaganda newspaper that was founded and overseen by Nazi Germany. Shockingly, the paper was founded after the Nazi regime stole the publication's presses and offices from a Jewish publisher, whom it then killed in a death camp.

Freeland knew about her grandfather's Nazi collaboration , but tried to hide this embarrassing fact by falsely branding it as " Russian disinformation ." The Canadian government even went so far as to expel a Russian diplomat who dared to publicize the truth about her Nazi lineage.

From the heights of journalism to electoral politics

Before entering formal politics as a member of Canada's centrist Liberal Party in 2013, Chrystia Freeland spent decades in journalism. She worked for major American, British, and Canadian corporate media outlets.

After years shaping Western news coverage inside Ukraine and Russia, Freeland was promoted in 2010 to her highest position of all: global editor-at-large of Reuters , a major international news agency that has vast global influence.

Freeland cut her teeth doing anti-Russia reporting for the corporate press. She won awards for her puff pieces on the anti-Putin oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky.

In 2000, Freeland published a book, titled "Sale of the Century: The Inside Story of the Second Russian Revolution." The book's blurb notes that it documents "the country's dramatic, wrenching transition from communist central planning to a market economy," praising "Russia's capitalist revolution."

This was after Russia was looted by oligarchs empowered by Washington, and following the excess deaths of 3 to 5 million of its most vulnerable citizens due to the US-orchestrated demolition of the country's social welfare state.

More pro-US operatives in Canada's Trudeau government

The declassified State Department cable also touts several other appointees in the government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as key US proxies.

The Canadian government selected a retired lieutenant general, Andrew Leslie, who the memo notes "has extensive ties to U.S. military leaders from his tours in Afghanistan," as a parliamentary secretary at Global Affairs Canada, giving him "responsibility for relations with the United States."

"PM Trudeau also elevated Transport Minister Mare Garneau -- who also brings strong U.S. ties from a career as an astronaut and nine years in Houston -- to head the Canada-U.S. Cabinet Committee," the document adds.

The Trudeau government took what the State Department happily noted was an "unprecedented" decision to hold weekly meetings of the Canada-US Cabinet Committee, "even without a formal agenda, as ministers engage in freewheeling discussions of strategy and share information, in addition to making policy decisions."

Prime Minister Trudeau campaigned on a progressive platform, but has continued governing Canada with many of the same center-right, neoliberal policies of previous administrations. He has almost without exception followed the US lead on major foreign-policy decisions, while aggressively building fossil-fuel pipelines at home.

Because Trudeau is from Canada's centrist Liberal Party and has to maintain a veneer of resistance against the far-right US president, the State Department memo notes that Ottawa's former Conservative Prime Minister Brian Mulroney serves as "Trudeau's 'Trump Whisperer.'"

Totally ignored by media

This US State Department cable was first uncovered and publicized by the Communist Party of Canada on July 2.

The memo, which was drafted by Nathan Doyel, a political officer at the embassy at the time, was declassified and published on May 31, 2019, in response to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request.

It can be clearly seen on the US State Department website , with the subject line "CANADA ADOPTS 'AMERICA FIRST' FOREIGN POLICY."

US State Department Canada adopts America first foreign policy

No media outlets have reported on this cable. Indeed, its discovery has been entirely ignored by the North American press corps.

Commenting on the document, the Canadian communist party wrote on social media , "If a formerly classified internal memo came out from the Russian or Chinese foreign ministry titled CANADA ADOPTS RUSSIA FIRST FOREIGN POLICY or CANADA ADOPTS CHINA FIRST FOREIGN POLICY, would the Canadian media be interested in that story?"

The party added, "In light of repeated insistence by the federal government that Canadians can expect foreign interference in elections and institutions, does such a memo merit further investigation by the Canadian media?"

Ben Norton

Ben Norton is a journalist, writer, and filmmaker. He is the assistant editor of The Grayzone, and the producer of the Moderate Rebels podcast, which he co-hosts with editor Max Blumenthal. His website is BenNorton.com and he tweets at @ BenjaminNorton .

[Jul 16, 2020] The Danes have set August 3rd as the restart date

Jul 16, 2020 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

MOSCOWEXILE July 6, 2020 at 3:38 am

Дания разрешила использовать новые суда для прокладки "Северного потока – 2"

STOCKHOLM, July 6. / TASS /. At the request of Nord Stream 2 AG, the Danish Energy Agency (DEA) has given permission that vessels with anchor positioning be used on an unfinished section of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline southeast of Bornholm Island. This was announced on Monday in a departmental press release.

https://tass.ru/ekonomika/8893439
https://yandex.ru/turbo/s/tass.ru/ekonomika/8893439?promo=navbar&utm_referrer=https%3A%2F%2Fzen.yandex.c

MARK CHAPMAN July 6, 2020 at 8:41 am

Ha, ha! I expect the Danes had their wetted finger to the wind, and were reasonably quick to observe Merkel's kiss-off of the United States when it did the inadvisable, and went ahead with more sanctions to try to prevent completion of the pipeline. Might be too late to start construction this summer, though – we're into the cod-spawning season now. Maybe they could do part of it at the other end, or something.

MOSCOWEXILE July 6, 2020 at 11:58 am

The Danes have set August 3rd as the restart date because that's when the Baltic cod stop doing their thing.

MOSCOWEXILE July 6, 2020 at 12:10 pm

No, not after the spawning season has stopped -- I think that must have just been a load of bollocks of an excuse for blocking further work -- but when the time allowed for an appeal against the Danish govt decision has elapsed:

К достройке газопровода приступят после истечения срока обжалования обновленного разрешения Дании -- 3 августа.

The completion of the gas pipeline will begin after the expiration of the appeal period for the renewed Denmark permit -- August 3./

https://m.gazeta.ru/business/2020/07/06/13142635.shtml

MOSCOWEXILE July 6, 2020 at 3:41 am

Send in the a United States Navy!!!

Europe must be saved from Russian gas weaponization!

Let the US freedom gas molecules ring!

[Jul 16, 2020] If Pompeo has a functioning brain, he should realize that all these blatant efforts to reserve markets for America by sanctioning all its competitors out of the picture is having the opposite effect, and frightening customers away from becoming dependent on American products

Jul 16, 2020 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

MOSCOWEXILE July 15, 2020 at 7:58 am

Fat bully boy speaks for Bully Boy state:

"Today the Department of State is updating the public guidance for CAATSA authorities to include Nord Stream 2 and the second line of TurkStream 2. This action puts investments or other activities that are related to these Russian energy export pipelines at risk of US sanctions. It's a clear warning to companies aiding and abetting Russia's malign influence projects and will not be tolerated. Get out now or risk the consequences".

Pompeo speaking at a press conference today.

CAATSA -- Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act

So Russia and Turkey are "adversaries" of the USA?

In what way?

Do these states wish to wage war against the USA?

Is it adversarial to United States interest to compete economically with the hegemon?

MOSCOWEXILE July 15, 2020 at 7:59 am

Link to above:

https://sputniknews.com/world/202007151079893067-us-plans-to-add-nord-stream-2-turkstream-to-list-of-projects-to-be-sanctioned/

MARK CHAPMAN July 15, 2020 at 3:51 pm

Who cares? Really, is Pompeo still scary? If he has a functioning brain, he should realize that all these blatant efforts to reserve markets for America by sanctioning all its competitors out of the picture is having the opposite effect, and frightening customers away from becoming dependent on American products which might be withheld on a whim when America wants political concessions. 'Will not be tolerated' – what a pompous ass. Sanction away. The consequence is well-known to be seizure of assets held in the United States or an inability to do business in the United States. That will frighten some into submission – like the UK, which was threatened with the cessation of intelligence-sharing with the USA (sure you can spare it?) if it did not drop Huawei from its 5G networks. But others will take prudent steps to limit their exposure to such threats, in the certain knowledge that if they work, they will encourage the USA to use the technique again.

[Jul 13, 2020] The Danish Energy Agency (DEA) has announced a deadline after which it will be possible to begin work on completing the Russian Nord Stream-2 gas export pipeline

Jul 13, 2020 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

MOSCOWEXILE July 6, 2020 at 8:05 am

The Danish Energy Agency (DEA) has announced a deadline after which it will be possible to begin work on completing the Russian Nord Stream-2 gas export pipeline, RIA Novosti reported with reference to the regulator's statement.

https://yandex.ru/turbo/s/lenta.ru/news/2020/07/06/restart/?promo=navbar&utm_referrer=https%3A%2F%2Fzen.yandex.c

Over to you Uncle Sam!

MOSCOWEXILE July 6, 2020 at 10:52 pm

Apart from this below, I have found nothing in the UK and German media about Denmark's giving the go-ahead for the final stage of NS2 construction:

NATURAL GAS 06 Jul 2020 | 09:44 UTC London
Denmark approves use of ships with anchors to lay Nord Stream 2 gas link

https://www.spglobal.com/platts/en/market-insights/latest-news/natural-gas/070620-denmark-approves-use-of-ships-with-anchors-to-lay-nord-stream-2-gas-link

I wonder why?

If you search through the web, you find reports in the Western media about Denmark giving its approval in 2019. It reneged on that decision. . But nothing on the Danish decision the other day.

Because the USA must never appear as a "loser".?

[Jul 08, 2020] Impeachment Witness Vindman Quits Over 'White House Bullying' -

Jul 08, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman - who was accused of being coached by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff during testimony when he told House committees that he "did not think it was proper" for President Trump to ask Ukrainian President Volodomyr Zelensky to investigate former VP Joe Biden during a July 25 phone call - is retiring from the US Army after over 21 years, according to CNN .

Vindman has endured a "campaign of bullying, intimidation, and retaliation" spearheaded by the President following his testimony in the impeachment inquiry last year, according to his attorney, Amb. David Pressman. - CNN

Last November, Vindman admitted to violating the chain of command when he reported his concerns over a July 25 phone call between President Trump and Ukrainian President Volodomyr Zelensky, in which Trump requested an investigation into Joe Biden and his son Hunter over corruption.

Vindman, a NSC Ukraine expert (who was asked three times to become their Defense Minister), claimed he had no idea that Burisma, a natural gas company which paid Hunter to sit on its board, routed over $3 million to accounts tied to Hunter Biden .

... ... ...

Vindman fell under scrutiny during the impeachment - and has been accused of leaking knowledge of the July 25 call with Zelensky to the whistleblower whose complaint (after consulting with Adam Schiff's office) sparked Trump's impeachment.

[Jul 08, 2020] Alexander Vindman, Trump impeachment witness, retires from military

This arrogant and clueless neocon got only part of he deserved. He decided to play big politics and was burned, although not as badly as he should be. So far he escaped prison.
Notable quotes:
"... History will remember him as an incompetent, arrogant, office gossip ..."
"... ! Both he and his brother should have been charged with mishandling classified information! ..."
Jul 08, 2020 | www.foxnews.com

Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman , a key impeachment witness against President Trump , retired from the Army Wednesday, with his lawyer citing "a campaign of bullying, intimidation and retaliation" for cutting short his military career.

... ... ...

Sen. Tammy Duckworth, D-Ill., last Thursday announced her intention to block Senate confirmations for 1,123 senior U.S. Armed Forces promotions until Defense Secretary Mark Esper confirms he will not block the "expected and deserved" promotion for Vindman , an Iraq war veteran.

Duckworth, also an Iraq War veteran who served as a helicopter pilot, accused Trump of trying to politicize the armed forces.


nlocker Leader 23s

Good riddance to traitorous rubbish. See ya, MR. Vindman.

RustynFL Leader 24s

The House of Representatives' sham impeachment inquiry was an act of political revenge a) for losing the 2016 presidential election, and b) for impeaching Bill Clinton. It's as simple as that. V. looked like he had trouble remembering what he was told to say. Wasn't three rehearsals enough? He lied when he called it a "demand.' What demand? No demand. "Favor." V didn't follow the chain of command. Then lies about it being a busy day. NO. He was told what to say and who to go to. No officer can trust a subordinate that leaks, goes public, etc for political or personal gain. No one trusts a man that should be charged with sedition.

ᴅᴇsᴛʀᴜᴄᴛɪᴠᴇ-ᴀʟᴛʀᴜɪsᴛs Leader 26s

That next chapter should be prison.

useyourhead19 Leader 31s

Bullying like doing everything possible to undermine a presidency

IveSeenthisbefore Leader 46s

This is a traitor! A very bad person who never accepted President Trump in his heart.

RobertKearney45 Leader 1m

History will remember him as an incompetent, arrogant, office gossip of classified imformation! Both he and his brother should have been charged with mishandling classified information!

oldmarine83 Leader 1m

Well now that that lying sack of poo is leaving, he can take that job of Defense Minister of Ukraine. That's want he wants. Hopefully he will renounce his citizenship in America and not receive a penny in retirement pay if he take that position in a foreign country. Don't need people like him in the military. Need to sack EVERY Democrat in Congress. And any Obama holdovers. Let them know what the unemployment line is like and how it works. Cut the "retirement" pay also, since they REALLY HAVE NEVER WORKED since they went to the house or senate.

nlocker Leader 16s ArizonaConservative738

Vindman broke the chain of command, leaked classified information, and helped the Dems try to overthrow the President. He deserves prison.

[Jul 03, 2020] I don't think we can assume that even now Trump actually has control of the FBI; it is still in hands of Obama faction

Highly recommended!
FBI does have strong levers on Trump. This is the essence of the "Deep State" concept -- intelligence agencies became unhinged and work as a powerful political actors.
Notable quotes:
"... Thank you Mina, yes that or the deep state throwing down the gauntlet. I don't think we can assume that Trump actually has control of the FBI. If he did he would likely have deep sixed the Democrazis through the Awan family spy and blackmail scam. But he didn't. They and Debbie Wasserman Shultz were protected/had dirt on DT. ..."
Jul 03, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org
uncle tungsten , Jul 3 2020 7:08 utc | 107

Mina #101

Maxwell's arrest makes me wonder if it is not about Trump throwing down the gauntlet?

Thank you Mina, yes that or the deep state throwing down the gauntlet. I don't think we can assume that Trump actually has control of the FBI. If he did he would likely have deep sixed the Democrazis through the Awan family spy and blackmail scam. But he didn't. They and Debbie Wasserman Shultz were protected/had dirt on DT.

If the kiddy fiddlers get outed following Ghislaine dropping some of her likely thousands of hours of home movies then that includes Trump and Biden.

In the fetid atmosphere of accusations against pussy grabbers and finger f#ckers and hair sniffers neither could survive. The pack will run rabid.

Is there a woman in the house? Yes, they cried AND she has experience!! Plus the campaign will be televised and it would be a virtual campaign because Covid. No need to rig audience, the polls or the balllot.

[Jul 02, 2020] Was Nikolai Yezhov (head of the NKVD from 1936 to 1938) an inspiration for Pelosi: she now claims tha the USA should sanction Russia for alleged bounty scheme

It is not just senility. Looks like Ukrainegate is not enough for her and she wants to throw kitchen sink at Trump. Charging for "alleged" action is directly from Stalin's NKVD practice
Jul 02, 2020 | www.msn.com

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Thursday called for US sanctions against Russia's intelligence service over bounties that it reportedly offered Taliban militants to kill American soldiers in Afghanistan.

[Jul 01, 2020] Control freaks that cannot even control their own criminal impulses!

Highly recommended!
Jul 01, 2020 | www.unz.com

No Friend Of The Devil , says:

Control freaks that cannot even control their own criminal impulses!

...They suffer from god-complexes, since they do not believe in God, they feel an obligation to act as God, and decide the fates of over 7 billion people, who would obviously be better off if the PICs were sent to the Fletcher Memorial Home for Incurable Tyrants!

[Jun 30, 2020] Diaspora Communities- Influencing U.S. Foreign Policy - Wilson Center

Jun 30, 2020 | www.wilsoncenter.org

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. View our privacy policy .

ACCEPT Skip to main content CLOSE SEARCH SUPPORT Wilson Center SUPPORT MENU SHARE EVENT Diaspora Communities: Influencing U.S. Foreign Policy

Thomas Ambrosio, Assistant Professor of Political Science, North Dakota State University;Yossi Shain, Professor of Comparative Government and Diaspora Politics, Georgetown University DATE & TIME Jun. 23, 2003 3:00pm – 4:00pm EVENT SPONSORS Africa Program AFRICA PROGRAM Asia Program ASIA PROGRAM Middle East Program MIDDLE EAST PROGRAM DIASPORA COMMUNITIES: INFLUENCING U.S. FOREIGN POLICY

Thomas Ambrosio, Assistant Professor of Political Science, North Dakota State University and Yossi Shain, Professor of Comparative Government and Diaspora Politics, Georgetown University

In an age marked by the greater ease of communication and travel, recent research on ethnic groups and conflict has begun to examine the influence of diaspora groups. Of particular interest are their efforts to affect political environments in their "home" and host countries through their remittance of funds, lobbying and the dissemination of information. Dr. Thomas Ambrosio, Assistant Professor at North Dakota University presented material from his recent edited volume Ethnic Identity Groups and U.S. Foreign Policy. Commentary was provided by Yossi Shain, Professor at Georgetown and Tel Aviv Universities, author of "Marketing the American Creed Abroad: Diasporas in the U.S. and their Homelands" and a contributor to Ambrosio's book. The meeting marked what moderator Carla Koppell, Interim Director of the Wilson Center's Conflict Prevention Project called, "a relatively new area of analysis and dialogue for the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars."

Ambrosio, stated that as we seek to understand diaspora groups and their influence on U.S. foreign policy, the question is not should ethnic groups influence foreign policy but how they effect foreign policy, what are their goals and why do they mobilize. He began his presentation by defining ethnic identity groups as "politically relevant social divisions based on a shared sense of cultural distinctiveness." This would include racial, religious, national and ethnic identities. Ethnic identity groups often form institutions that effect U.S. foreign policy or ethnic communities abroad, most commonly in the form of ethnic lobbies.

These ethnic lobbies seek to influence U.S. policy in three ways. First, by framing the issues "they help set the terms of debate" or "put items on the country's agenda." Second, they are a source of information and analysis that provide a great deal of information to members of Congress and serve as a resource for other branches of government and non-governmental organizations, and shaping general perspectives. Finally, ethnic group lobbies provide policy oversight. "They examine the policies of the U.S. government, propose policies, write letters and [are] involved in electioneering activities."

Ambrosio cautioned, that we must not believe that the effort by "ethnic groups to influence U.S. foreign policy is new." It has a long history but "has become increasingly active in recent years." To illustrate, he presented five periods of ethnic lobbying in the United States--Pre-WWI, WWI, Cold War, post-Cold war, and post-September 11.

Since before WWI, there has been a "steady rise in the number of ethnic groups in the U.S. mobilizing to influence the foreign policy process." Both the WWI and Cold War periods saw an explosion in the number of interest groups affecting domestic and foreign policy. According to Ambrosio, however, it was the post-Cold War period that gave way to a real increase in American multiculturalism. U.S. interests during this period were not clearly defined, and the Congress had more influence than the Executive Branch over policy-making. That balance of power according to Ambrosio allowed ethnic lobbying groups greater access to policy-makers and potential influence in policy formation. Since September 11 quite the opposite is true; there is a re-centralization of foreign policy in the White House. That re-centralization is restricting influence over policy.

Ambrosio concluded by suggesting several areas for future research. First, the question of the legitimacy of ethnic group influence on foreign policy deserves some attention. Second, more case study analysis is need. In Ambrosio's view, we need to look at specific groups, and why or how they influence policy. In particular, greater attention should be paid to the case of Muslim Americans. Third, is the need to examine the relationship between ethnic and non-ethnic interest groups. For instance, Ambrosio suggested that a comparison of the influence of "the Oil lobby versus the Armenian lobbies over the issue of Nagorno-Karabakh and Azerbaijan" could provide some interesting insights. Fourth, the reliance on natives for intelligence information should be examined more closely. In the case of Iraq, there is the question of "how Iraq exiles influence U.S. foreign policy." Finally, the export of American values must be better understood. Further research could help the U.S. government mobilize diaspora groups in the United States to deal with growing anti-Americanism throughout the world.

Shain, began by commenting that while the topic of diaspora group influence on U.S. foreign policy is important, "it is perhaps an overblown topic." He agreed with Ambrosio that the idea of transnational influence on U.S. foreign policy is not new. However, Shain contends that people have always been wary of such influences. The topic, according to Shain, became more salient in the 1990's with the end of the Cold War when the "us versus them posture was no longer in existence." It was also a time when more people began "shuttling back and forth," retaining greater ties to their home country. According to Professor Shain, the question is "who really speaks [in U.S. foreign policy]?" This was the period of increasing American multiculturalism; the identity of the U.S. itself was changing. As a result, attention to issues reflected the makeup of the U.S. For instance, before September 11, relations between the United States and Mexico in the age of NAFTA, had center stage.

Shain suggested that while ethnic Americans mobilize to influence U.S. foreign policy, their ability to do so is quite limited. Ethnic lobbies have more often been used to market American ideals in their home countries or to "democratize their countries of origin." When they do have influence, it has generally been at the electoral level in connection with a domestic issue, or when an issue is of little importance to the administration. Professor Shain continued contending that the influence of ethnic lobbies relies on their ability to advance a message that resonates with the American values and ideals. This is one reason he believes Arab-Americans have had difficulty influencing U.S. foreign policy; there is a perception that they are attempting to influence policy in ways that would be contrary to American values. When issues promoted by an ethnic lobby are priorities, and are in line with the administration, ethnic lobbies have the greatest influence in policy oversight.

According to Shain there are several issues that warrant future research and understanding. The first is to understand the explosion of Islam in the United States; rather than lobbying for national country interests, there is greater mobilization around religious beliefs. According to Shain, this has little to do with ethnic lobbies; rather it is a question of who is mobilizing communities. This is a difficult question to examine because, depending on the time period, different people will speak for a community. Another issue for further study involves tracking and better understanding economic influence. For example, donations for Israel at the same time support local organizations and Jewish-American issues; financial support drives diaspora politics. At the same time, many country economies depend on money sent from abroad; this gives diasporas a greater say in their "home" countries. "When you do any politics in Haiti, there is the 10th department... the 10th department is here. This is the community that can mobilize and has money."

The final issue for further study according to Shain is the concept of identity in America. While there is identity as an American, many still "retain some affinity and memories" of their home country. This is particularly galvanizing where there is still instability in the country of origin. Shain concluded that the subject of the influence of diaspora communities in the U.S. was most important in regard to identity in America. "Identity is critical for America because the American makeup has always been changing." "The market, democracy and human rights are much more on the minds of ethnic groups as they relate to their country of origin,"concluded Shain.

Carla Koppell, Conflict Prevention Project, Interim Director, 202-691-4083
Drafted by Channa Threat HOSTED BY Africa Program AFRICA PROGRAM

The Africa Program works to address the most critical issues facing Africa and U.S.-Africa relations, build mutually beneficial U.S.–Africa relations, and enhance knowledge and understanding about Africa in the United States. The Program achieves its mission through in-depth research and analyses, including our blog Africa Up Close, public discussion, working groups, and briefings that bring together policymakers, practitioners, and subject matter experts to analyze and offer practical options for tackling key challenges in Africa and in U.S.-Africa relations. Read more Asia Program ASIA PROGRAM

The Asia Program promotes policy debate and intellectual discussions on U.S. interests in the Asia-Pacific as well as political, economic, security, and social issues relating to the world's most populous and economically dynamic region. Read more Middle East Program MIDDLE EAST PROGRAM

The Wilson Center's Middle East Program serves as a crucial resource for the policymaking community and beyond, providing analyses and research that helps inform U.S. foreign policymaking, stimulates public debate, and expands knowledge about issues in the wider Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. Read more TAGGED SERIES EVENT FEEDBACK

https://www.google.com/recaptcha/api2/anchor?ar=1&k=6LeDdekUAAAAAMiDvHxjEfgp-swTmnPTq6BGogo4&co=aHR0cHM6Ly93d3cud2lsc29uY2VudGVyLm9yZzo0NDM.&hl=en&type=image&v=NMoy4HgGiLr5NAQaEQa2ho8X&theme=light&size=normal&cb=lz519vn6uwwo EXPLORE MORE BROWSE INSIGHTS & ANALYSIS PREVIOUS NEXT Matías Kulfas (Part 1) VIDEO ECONOMICS AND GLOBALIZATION Benjamin Gedan Interviews Argentina's Minister of Productive Development Matías Kulfas (Part 1) Desna Chernihiv players sit on a bench keeping a safe quarantine distance during the Ukrainian Premiere League game against Shakhtar at NSC Olympiyskyi stadium in Kyiv BLOG POST CORONAVIRUS Ukraine's Dilemma Amid the Pandemic: Depopulation and its Effects on the Ukrainian Economy By Mark Temnycky on June 23, 2020 The Expert Take ARTICLE ECONOMICS AND GLOBALIZATION The Future of the North American Workforce in a COVID-19 Scenario By Earl Anthony Wayne on June 22, 2020 Image - Argentina layoffs BLOG POST ECONOMICS AND GLOBALIZATION Default, the Day After By Aníbal Nicolás Saldías on June 19, 2020 Mexico, North America, and Workforce Development - Remarks by Earl Anthony Wayne to the American Chamber of Commerce in Mexico ARTICLE ECONOMICS AND GLOBALIZATION Mexico, North America, and Workforce Development - Remarks by Earl Anthony Wayne to the American Chamber of Commerce in Mexico By Earl Anthony Wayne on June 18, 2020 Beyond the COVD-19 Horizon PUBLICATION U.S. FOREIGN POLICY Beyond the COVID-19 Horizon US Security Starts in the Arctic THE HILL SECURITY AND DEFENSE US Security Starts in the Arctic Think 7 USA 2020: Report of the Think 7 Summit Report Cover Page PUBLICATION GLOBAL HEALTH Think 7 USA 2020: Report of the Think 7 Summit The panelists on the Zoom conference call. BLOG POST CORONAVIRUS Event Recap: Economic Implications of COVID-19 for South Asia By Lesley Lu on June 10, 2020 Americas 360 Logo AUDIO CORONAVIRUS Pandemic Politics in the Americas Line for bank supermarket in Rio de Janeiro Brazil BLOG POST ECONOMICS AND GLOBALIZATION Brazil's Post-Pandemic Economy By The Brazilian Report on June 5, 2020 Wilson Center

One Woodrow Wilson Plaza
1300 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20004-3027

Visit the Wilson Center Phone: (202) 691-4000 Contact Us Sign up for email updates SUBMIT © 2020 The Wilson Center. All Rights Reserved

[Jun 16, 2020] Veteran CIA Analyst- How An Internet 'Persona' Helped Birth Russiagate -

Jun 16, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Veteran CIA Analyst: How An Internet 'Persona' Helped Birth Russiagate


by Tyler Durden Tue, 06/16/2020 - 19:25 Twitter Facebook Reddit Email Print

Authored by Ray McGovern via ConsortiumNews.com,

Four years ago on June 15, 2016, a shadowy Internet persona calling itself "Guccifer 2.0" appeared out of nowhere to claim credit for hacking emails from the Democratic National Committee on behalf of WikiLeaks and implicate Russia by dropping "telltale" but synthetically produced Russian "breadcrumbs" in his metadata.

Thanks largely to the corporate media, the highly damaging story actually found in those DNC emails – namely, that the DNC had stacked the cards against Bernie Sanders in the party's 2016 primary – was successfully obscured .

The media was the message; and the message was that Russia had used G-2.0 to hack into the DNC, interfering in the November 2016 election to help Donald Trump win.

me frameborder=

Almost everybody still "knows" that – from the man or woman in the street to the forlorn super sleuth, Special Counsel Robert Swan Mueller III, who actually based indictments of Russian intelligence officers on Guccifer 2.0.

Blaming Russia was a magnificent distraction from the start and quickly became the vogue.

The soil had already been cultivated for "Russiagate" by Democratic PR gems like Donald Trump "kissing up" to former KGB officer Vladimir Putin and their "bromance" (bromides that former President Barack Obama is still using). Four years ago today, "Russian meddling" was off and running – on steroids – acquiring far more faux-reality than the evanescent Guccifer 2.0 persona is likely to get.

Here's how it went down :

  • June 12: WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange announced he had "emails related to Hillary Clinton which are pending publication."
  • June 14: DNC contractor CrowdStrike tells the media that malware has been found on the DNC server and claims there is evidence it was injected by Russians.
  • June 15: Guccifer 2.0 arises from nowhere; affirms the DNC/CrowdStrike allegations of the day before; claims responsibility for hacking the DNC; claims to be a WikiLeaks source; and posts a document that forensic examination shows was deliberately tainted with "Russian fingerprints." This to "corroborate" claims made by CrowdStrike executives the day before.

about:blank

me frameborder=

Adding to other signs of fakery, there is hard evidence that G-2.0 was operating mostly in U.S. time zones and with local settings peculiar to a device configured for use within the US , as Tim Leonard reports here and here .)

Leonard is a software developer who started to catalog and archive evidence related to Guccifer 2.0 in 2017 and has issued detailed reports on digital forensic discoveries made by various independent researchers – as well as his own – over the past three years. Leonard points out that WikiLeaks said it did not use any of the emails G2.0 sent it, though it later published similar emails, opening the possibility that whoever created G2.0 knew what WikiLeaks had and sent it duplicates with the Russian fingerprints .

As Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS) told President Trump in a memorandum of July 24, 2017, titled "Was the 'Russian Hack' an Inside Job?":

"We do not think that the June 12, 14, & 15 timing was pure coincidence. Rather, it suggests the start of a pre-emptive move to associate Russia with anything WikiLeaks might have been ready to publish and to 'show' that it came from a Russian hack."

We added this about Guccifer 2.0 at the time:

"The recent forensic studies fill in a critical gap. Why the FBI neglected to perform any independent forensics on the original 'Guccifer 2.0' material remains a mystery – as does the lack of any sign that the 'hand-picked analysts' from the FBI, CIA, and NSA, who wrote the misnomered 'Intelligence Community' Assessment dated January 6, 2017, gave any attention to forensics."

Guccifer 2.0 Seen As a Fraud

In our July 24, 2017 memorandum we also told President Trump that independent cyber investigators and VIPs had determined "that the purported 'hack' of the DNC by Guccifer 2.0 was not a hack, by Russia or anyone else. Rather it originated with a copy (onto an external storage device – a thumb drive, for example) by an insider. Information was leaked to implicate Russia. We do not know who or what the murky Guccifer 2.0 is. You may wish to ask the FBI. " [Emphasis added.].

Right. Ask the FBI. At this stage, President Trump might have better luck asking Attorney General William Barr, to whom the FBI is accountable – at least in theory. As for Barr, VIPs informed him in a June 5, 2020 memorandum that the head of CrowdStrike had admitted under oath on Dec. 5, 2017 that CrowdStrike has no concrete evidence that the DNC emails published by WikiLeaks on July 22, 2016 were hacked – by Russia or by anyone else. [Emphasis added.] This important revelation has so far escaped attention in the Russia-Russia-Russia "mainstream" media (surprise, surprise, surprise!).

Back to the Birth of G-2

It boggles the mind that so few Americans could see Russiagate for the farce it was. Most of the blame, I suppose, rests on a thoroughly complicit Establishment media. Recall: Assange's announcement on June 12, 2016 that he had Hillary Clinton-related emails came just six weeks before the Democratic convention. I could almost hear the cry go up from the DNC: Houston, We Have a Problem!

Here's how bad the problem for the Democrats was. The DNC emails eventually published by WikiLeaks on July 22, 2016, just three days before the Democratic convention, had been stolen on May 23 and 25. This would have given the DNC time to learn that the stolen material included documents showing how the DNC and Clinton campaign had manipulated the primaries and created a host of other indignities, such that Sanders' chances of winning the nomination amounted to those of a snowball's chance in the netherworld.

Clinton at the 2016 convention, via Wikimedia Commons.

To say this was an embarrassment would be the understatement of 2016. Worse still, given the documentary nature of the emails and WikiLeaks' enviable track record for accuracy, there would be no way to challenge their authenticity. Nevertheless, with the media in full support of the DNC and Clinton, however, it turned out to be a piece of cake to divert attention from the content of the emails to the "act of war" (per John McCain) that the Russian "cyber attack" was said to represent .

The outcome speaks as much to the lack of sophistication on the part of American TV watchers, as it does to the sophistication of the Democrats-media complicity and cover-up. How come so few could figure out what was going down?

It was not hard for some experienced observers to sniff a rat. Among the first to speak out was fellow Consortium News columnist Patrick Lawrence, who immediately saw through the Magnificent Diversion. I do not know if he fancies duck hunting, but he shot the Russiagate canard quite dead – well before the Democratic convention was over.

Magnificent Diversion

In late July 2016, Lawrence was sickened, as he watched what he immediately recognized as a well planned, highly significant deflection. The Clinton-friendly media was excoriating Russia for "hacking" DNC emails and was glossing over what the emails showed ; namely, that the Clinton Dems had pretty much stolen the nomination from Sanders.

It was already clear even then that the Democrats, with invaluable help from intelligence leaks and other prepping to the media, had made good use of those six weeks between Assange's announcement that he had emails "related to Hillary Clinton" and the opening of the convention.

The media was primed to castigate the Russians for "hacking," while taking a prime role in the deflection. It was a liminal event of historic significance, as we now know. The "Magnificent Diversion" worked like a charm – and then it grew like Topsy.

Lawrence said he had "fire in the belly" on the morning of July 25 as the Democratic convention began and wrote what follows pretty much "in one long, furious exhale" within 12 hours of when the media started really pushing the "the Russians-did-it" narrative.

Patrick Lawrence

Below is a slightly shortened text of his article :

"Now wait a minute, all you upper-case "D" Democrats. A flood light suddenly shines on your party apparatus, revealing its grossly corrupt machinations to fix the primary process and sink the Sanders campaign, and within a day you are on about the evil Russians having hacked into your computers to sabotage our elections

Is this a joke? Are you kidding? Is nothing beneath your dignity? Is this how lowly you rate the intelligence of American voters?

Clowns. Subversives. Do you know who you remind me of? I will tell you: Nixon, in his famously red-baiting campaign – a disgusting episode – during his first run for the Senate, in 1950. Your political tricks are as transparent and anti-democratic as his, it is perfectly fair to say.

I confess to a heated reaction to events since last Friday [July 22] among the Democrats, specifically in the Democratic National Committee. I should briefly explain

The Sanders people have long charged that the DNC has had its fingers on the scale, as one of them put it the other day, in favor of Hillary Clinton's nomination. The prints were everywhere – many those of Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who has repeatedly been accused of anti-Sanders bias. Schultz, do not forget, co-chaired Clinton's 2008 campaign against Barack Obama. That would be enough to disqualify her as the DNC's chair in any society that takes ethics seriously, but it is not enough in our great country. Chairwoman she has been for the past five years.

Last Friday WikiLeaks published nearly 20,000 DNC email messages providing abundant proof that Sanders and his staff were right all along. The worst of these, involving senior DNC officers, proposed Nixon-esque smears having to do with everything from ineptitude within the Sanders campaign to Sanders as a Jew in name only and an atheist by conviction.

NEVER MISS THE NEWS THAT MATTERS MOST

ZEROHEDGE DIRECTLY TO YOUR INBOX

Receive a daily recap featuring a curated list of must-read stories.

Wasserman fell from grace on Monday. Other than this, Democrats from President Obama to Clinton and numerous others atop the party's power structure have had nothing to say, as in nothing, about this unforgivable breach. They have, rather, been full of praise for Wasserman Schultz. Brad Marshall, the D.N.C.'s chief financial officer, now tries to deny that his Jew-baiting remark referred to Sanders. Good luck, Brad: Bernie is the only Jew in the room.

The caker came on Sunday, when Robby Mook, Clinton's campaign manager, appeared on ABC's "This Week" and CNN's "State of the Union" to assert that the D.N.C.'s mail was hacked "by the Russians for the purpose of helping Donald Trump." He knows this – knows it in a matter of 24 hours – because "experts" – experts he will never name – have told him so.

What's disturbing to us is that experts are telling us that Russian state actors broke into the DNC, stole these emails, and other experts are now saying that Russians are releasing these emails for the purpose of helping Donald Trump.

Is that what disturbs you, Robby? Interesting. Unsubstantiated hocus-pocus, not the implications of these events for the integrity of Democratic nominations and the American political process? The latter is the more pressing topic, Robby. You are far too long on anonymous experts for my taste, Robby. And what kind of expert, now that I think of it, is able to report to you as to the intentions of Russian hackers – assuming for a sec that this concocted narrative has substance?

Making lemonade out of a lemon, the Clinton campaign now goes for a twofer. Watch as it advances the Russians-did-it thesis on the basis of nothing, then shoots the messenger, then associates Trump with its own mess – and, finally, gets to ignore the nature of its transgression (which any paying-attention person must consider grave).

Preposterous, readers. Join me, please, in having absolutely none of it. There is no "Russian actor" at the bottom of this swamp, to put my position bluntly. You will never, ever be offered persuasive evidence otherwise.

Reluctantly, I credit the Clinton campaign and the DNC with reading American paranoia well enough such that they may make this junk stick. In a clear sign the entire crowd-control machine is up and running, The New York Times had a long, unprofessional piece about Russian culprits in its Monday editions. It followed Mook's lead faithfully: not one properly supported fact, not one identified "expert," and more conditional verbs than you've had hot dinners – everything cast as "could," "might," "appears," "would," "seems," "may." Nothing, once again, as to the very serious implications of this affair for the American political process.

Now comes the law. The FBI just announced that it will investigate – no, not the DNC's fraudulent practices (which surely breach statutes), but "those who pose a threat in cyberspace." it is the invocation of the Russians that sends me over the edge. My bones grow weary

We must take the last few days' events as a signal of what Clinton's policy toward Russia will look like should she prevail in November. Turning her party's latest disgrace into an occasion for another round of Russophobia is mere preface, but in it you can read her commitment to the new crusade.

Trump, to make this work, must be blamed for his willingness to negotiate with Moscow. This is now among his sins. Got that? Anyone who says he will talk to the Russians has transgressed the American code. Does this not make Hillary Clinton more than a touch Nixonian?

I am developing nitrogen bends from watching the American political spectacle. One can hardly tell up from down. Which way for a breath of air?"

A year later Lawrence interviewed several of us VIPs, including our two former NSA technical directors and on Aug. 9, 2017 published an article for The Nation titled, "A New Report Raises Big Questions About Last Year's DNC Hack."

Lawrence wrote, "Former NSA experts, now members of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPs), say it wasn't a hack at all, but a leak – an inside job by someone with access to the DNC's system."

And so it was. But, sadly, that cut across the grain of the acceptable Russia-gate narrative at The Nation at the time. Its staff, seriously struck by the HWHW (Hillary Would Have Won) virus, rose up in rebellion. A short time later, there was no more room at The Nation for his independent-minded writing.


Drop-Hammer , 2 hours ago

His name was (((Seth Rich))).

zoomie92 , 1 hour ago

Direct USB download to chip or portable HD was the only way to get those download speed shown on the file metadata. This has been proven in multiple independent ways. But the press is filled with ******* retards - and so is the country.

Franko , 1 hour ago

Rest in Peace Mr Seth.

I believe many US officials have enough and want to tell the others about this.

Question:were they should be go to spread the news?To which country before been assasinated?

To end like Julian Assange or like Snowden?

belogical , 2 hours ago

...Gucifer had much less to do with this than the Obama admin. They were using the intelligence community for no good and as their crimes became visible they had to commit bigger and bigger crimes to cover them up. In the end a large part of the DOJ, FBI and Obama admin should be held accountable for this, but when you get this high they likely won't. You can already see Lindsey Graham of the deep state finally holding hearing to spin the narrative before the Durham probe becomes public. Unfortunate but only a few will get their hands slapped and the true person, Obama who deserve to be prosecuted will likely skate.

PedroS , 2 hours ago

Crowdstrike. The owners should be in jail for their role.

Slaytheist , 2 hours ago

Crowdstrike IS Guccifer.

They were ordered by the criminal DNC org to cover the fact that the data was downloaded internally, in order to hide the connection to the Podesta/Clinton ordered hit on person who did it - Seth Rich.

Weedlord Bonerhitler , 3 hours ago

The computer of a DNC operative named Warren Flood was used to disseminate the Guccifer 2.0 disinfo tranche. Adam Carter had the analysis IIRC.

Giant Meteor , 3 hours ago

Always good to hear from Ray!

philipat , 39 minutes ago

Tick tock, still no indictments and soon the campaign will be in full swing so that everything will be attacked as "political". Is Durham done?

[Jun 03, 2020] Rule of law in Murrika is kaput

Highly recommended!
Jun 16, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

freedommusic , 23 minutes ago link

DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Agent Smith, you testified that the Russians hacked the DNC computers, is that correct?

FBI AGENT JOHN SMITH: That is correct.

DEF ATT: Upon what information did you base your testimony?

AGENT: Information found in reports analyzing the breach of the computers.

DEF ATT: So, the FBI prepared these reports?

AGENT: (cough) . (shift in seat) No, a cyber security contractor with the FBI.

DEF ATT: Pardon me, why would a contractor be preparing these reports? Do these contractors run the FBI laboratories where the server was examined?

AGENT: No.

DEF ATT: No? No what? These contractors don't run the FBI Laboratories?

AGENT: No. The laboratories are staffed by FBI personnel.

DEF ATT: Well I don't understand. Why would contractors be writing reports about computers that are forensically examined in FBI laboratories?

AGENT: Well, the servers were not examined in the FBI laboratory.

(silence)

DEF ATT: Oh, so the FBI examined the servers on site to determine who had hacked them and what was taken?

AGENT: Uh .. no.

DEF ATT: They didn't examine them on site?

AGENT: No.

DEF ATT: Well, where did they examine them?

AGENT: Well, uh .. the FBI did not examine them.

DEF ATT: What?

AGENT: The FBI did not directly examine the servers.

DEF ATT: Agent Smith, the FBI has presented to the Grand Jury and to this court and SWORN AS FACT that the Russians hacked the DNC computers. You are basing your SWORN testimony on a report given to you by a contractor, while the FBI has NEVER actually examined the computer hardware?

AGENT: That is correct.

DEF ATT: Agent Smith, who prepared the analysis reports that the FBI relied on to give this sworn testimony?

AGENT: Crowdstrike, Inc.

DEF ATT: So, which Crowdstrike employee gave you the report?

AGENT: We didn't receive the report directly from Crowdstrike.

DEF ATT: What?

AGENT: We did not receive the report directly from Crowdstrike.

DEF ATT: Well, where did you find this report?

AGENT: It was given to us by the people who hired Crowdstrike to examine and secure their computer network and hardware.

DEF ATT: Oh, so the report was given to you by the technical employees for the company that hired Crowdstrike to examine their servers?

AGENT: No.

DEF ATT: Well, who gave you the report?

AGENT: Legal counsel for the company that hired Crowdstrike.

DEF ATT: Why would legal counsel be the ones giving you the report?

AGENT: I don't know.

DEF ATT: Well, what company hired Crowdstrike?

AGENT: The Democratic National Committee.

DEF ATT: Wait a minute. Let me get this straight. You are giving SWORN testimony to this court that Russia hacked the servers of the Democratic National Committee. And you are basing that testimony on a report given to you by the LAWYERS for the Democratic National Committee. And you, the FBI, never actually saw or examined the computer servers?

AGENT: That is correct.

DEF ATT: Well, can you provide a copy of the technical report produced by Crowdstrike for the Democratic National Committee?

AGENT: No, I cannot.

DEF ATT: Well, can you go back to your office and get a copy of the report?

AGENT: No.

DEF ATT: Why? Are you locked out of your office?

AGENT: No.

DEF ATT: I don't understand. Why can you not provide a copy of this report?

AGENT: Because I do not have a copy of the report.

DEF ATT: Did you lose it?

AGENT: No.

DEF ATT: Why do you not have a copy of the report?

AGENT: Because we were never given a final copy of the report.

DEF ATT: Agent Smith, if you didn't get a copy of the report, upon what information are you basing your testimony?

AGENT: On a draft copy of the report.

DEF ATT: A draft copy?

AGENT: Yes.

DEF ATT: Was a final report ever delivered to the FBI?

AGENT: No.

DEF ATT: Agent Smith, did you get to read the entire report?

AGENT: No.

DEF ATT: Why not?

AGENT: Because large portions were redacted.

DEF ATT: Agent Smith, let me get this straight. The FBI is claiming that the Russians hacked the DNC servers. But the FBI never actually saw the computer hardware, nor examined it? Is that correct?

AGENT: That is correct.

DEF ATT: And the FBI never actually examined the log files or computer email or any aspect of the data from the servers? Is that correct?

AGENT: That is correct.

DEF ATT: And you are basing your testimony on the word of Counsel for the Democratic National Committee, the people who provided you with a REDACTED copy of a DRAFT report, not on the actual technical personnel who supposedly examined the servers?

AGENT: That is correct.

DEF ATT: Your honor, I have a few motions I would like to make at this time.

PRESIDING JUDGE: I'm sure you do, Counselor. (as he turns toward the prosecutors) And I feel like I am in a mood to grant them.

( source )

hooligan2009 , 14 minutes ago link

Brilliant! that sums it up nicely. of course, if the servers were not hacked and were instead "thumbnailed" that leads to a whole pile of other questions (including asking wiileaks for their source and about the murder of seth rich).

[May 27, 2020] Brennan ears over Guccifer 2.0 mask -- CIA is the most probable origin of Gussifer 2.0

If DNC was hack not a leak, then NSA would have all information about the hack.
May 27, 2020 | consortiumnews.com

www.youtube.com/watch?v=_j1qOs0dE4I


P. Michael Garber , May 26, 2020 at 22:21

I'm afraid it won't matter how thorough the alternative media debunking of Russiagate becomes – as long as mainstream media sticks to the story, the neoliberal majority will too, because it is like catnip to them, absolving responsibility for the defeat, casting Clinton as the victim of an evil foreign despot, and delegitimizing Trump. Truth is tossed to the wind by this freight train of powerful interests.

I have little hope Barr and Durham will indict anyone high level.

Ray twice mentioned something about Sanders getting hosed again in the 2020 primary. I thought it seemed weird how suddenly the primary was declared "over." If there is evidence of DNC shenanigans in 2020, that would be a very interesting and timely topic.

Mark McCarty , May 25, 2020 at 21:25

On June 12, Assange announces Wikileaks will soon be releasing "emails pertinent to Hillary". On June 14th, Crowdstrike announces: someone, probably the Russians, has hacked the DNC and taken a Trump opposition research document; the very next day, G2.0 makes his first public appearance and posts the DNC's Trump oppo research document, with "Russian fingerprints" intentionally implanted in its metadata. (We now know that he had actually acquired this from PODESTA's emails, where it appears as an attachment – oops!) Moreover, G2.0 announces that he was the source of the "emails pertinent to Hillary" – DNC emails – that Assange was planning to release.

This strongly suggests that the G2.0 persona was working in collusion with Crowdstrike to perpetrate the hoax that the GRU had hacked the DNC to provide their emails to Wikileaks. Consistent with this, multiple cyberanalyses point to G2.0 working at various points In the Eastern, Central, and Western US time zones. (A mere coincidence that the DNC is in the eastern zone, and that Crowdstrike has offices in the central and western zones?)

If Crowdstrike honestly believed that the DNC had been hacked by the GRU, would there have been any need for them to perpetrate this fraud?

It is therefore reasonable to suspect, as Ray McGovern has long postulated, that Crowdstrike may have FAKED a GRU hack, to slander Russia and Assange, while distracting attention from the content of the released emails.

As far as we know, the only "evidence" that Crowdstrike has for GRU being the perpetrator of the alleged hack is the presence of "Fancy Bear" malware on the DNC server. But as cyberanalysts Jeffrey Carr and George Eliason have pointed out, this software is also possessed by Ukrainian hackers working in concert with Russian traitors and the Atlantic Council – with which the founders of Crowdstrike are allied.

Here's a key question: When Assange announced the impending release of "emails pertinent to Hillary" on June 12, how did Crowdstrike and G2.0 immediately know he was referring to DNC emails? Many people – I, for example – suspected he was referring to her deleted Secretary of State emails.

Here's a reasonable hypothesis – Our intelligence agencies were monitoring all communications with Wikileaks. If so, they could have picked up the communications between SR and Wikileaks that Sy Hersh's FBI source described. They then alerted the DNC that their emails were about to leaked to Wikileaks. The DNC then contacted Crowdstrike, which arranged for a "Fancy Bear hack" of the DNC servers. Notably, cyberanalysts have determined that about 2/3 of the Fancy Bear malware found on the DNC servers had been compiled AFTER the date that Crowdstrike was brought in to "roust the hackers".

Of course, this elaborate hoax would have come to grief if the actual leaker had come forward. Which might have had something to do with the subsequent "botched robbery" in which SR was slain.

Tim , May 25, 2020 at 20:33

How does the murder of the DNC staffer fit in?

Linda Wood , May 26, 2020 at 23:00

DNC staffer Seth Rich was murdered on July 10, 2016, amid contoversy over who provided DNC emails to Wikileaks and over a pending lawsuit concerning voter suppression during the 2016 primaries. Wikileaks offered a $20,000 reward for information about his murder, leading some to believe he was their source for the DNC emails. He was reported to have been a potential witness in the voter suppression lawsuit filed the day after his death.

mockingbirdpaper (dot) com/content/local-activist-files-suit-access-exit-polling-data-dead-witness-blocks-path-truth

[May 26, 2020] Who Deserves Impeachment More - Trump Or Schiff

May 26, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

... ... ...

But now let's take a look at Schiff's sins and see how they compare. Back in 2017, he was the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee and therefore the man Democrats counted on to lead the charge that Trump had colluded with the Kremlin in order to steal the election. He did so with gusto. Quoting from a dossier prepared by ex-British MI6 agent Christopher Steele, he regaled a March 2017 committee hearing with tales of how Russia bribed Trump adviser Carter Page by offering him a hefty slice of a Russian natural-gas company known as Rosneft and of how Russian agents boosted Trump's political fortunes by hacking Hillary Clinton's emails and passing them on to WikiLeaks . Conceivably, such acts could have been purely coincidental, Schiff acknowledged.

"But it is also possible," he went on, "maybe more than possible, that they are not coincidental, not disconnected, and not unrelated, and that the Russians used the same techniques to corrupt U.S. persons that they have employed in Europe and elsewhere. We simply don't know, not yet, and we owe it to the country to find out."

Hours later, he assured MSNBC that the evidence of collusion was "more than circumstantial." Nine months after that, he informed CNN's Jake Tapper that the case was no longer in doubt: "The Russians offered help, the campaign accepted help, the Russians gave help, and the president made full use of that help." In February 2018, he told reporters: "There is certainly an abundance of non-public information that we've gathered in the investigation. And I think some of that non-public evidence is evidence on the issue of collusion and some on the issue of obstruction."

The press lapped it up .

But now, thanks to the May 7 release of 57 transcripts of secret testimony – transcripts, by the way, that Schiff bottled up for months – we have a better idea of what such "non-public information" amounts to.

The answer: nothing.

A parade of high-level witnesses told the intelligence committee that either they didn't know about collusion or lacked evidence even to venture an opinion. Not one offered the contrary view that collusion was true.

"I never saw any direct empirical evidence that the Trump campaign or someone in it was plotting [or] conspiring with the Russians to meddle with the election," testified ex-Director of National Intelligence James Clapper. Obama Attorney General Loretta Lynch told the committee that no one in the FBI or CIA had informed her that collusion had taken place. Sally Yates, acting attorney general during the Obama-Trump transition, was similarly noncommittal. So were Obama speechwriter Ben Rhodes and former acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe. David Kramer, a prominent neocon who helped spread word of the Steele dossier in top intelligence circles, was downright apologetic: "I'm not in a position to really say one way or the other, sir. I'm sorry."

But rather than admit that the investigation had turned up nothing, Schiff lied that it had – not once but repeatedly.

Let that sink in for a moment. Collusion dominated the headlines from the moment Buzzfeed published the Steele dossier on Jan. 10, 2017, to the release of the Muller report on Apr. 18, 2019. That's more than two years, a period in which newspapers and TV were filled with Russia, Russia, Russia and little else. Thanks to the uproar, acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein secretly discussed using the Twenty-fifth Amendment to force Trump out of office, while an endless parade of newscasters and commentators assured viewers that the president's days were numbered because " the walls are closing in ."

Schiff's only response was to egg it on to greater and greater heights. Even when Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller issued his no-collusion verdict – "the investigation did not establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities," his report said – Schiff insisted that there was still "ample evidence of collusion in plain sight."

"I use that word very carefully," he said, "because I also distinguish time and time again between collusion, that is acts of corruption that may or may not be criminal, and proof of a criminal conspiracy. And that is a distinction that Bob Mueller made within the first few pages of his report. In fact, every act that I've pointed to as evidence of collusion has now been borne out by the report. "

So Trump colluded with the Kremlin, but in a non-criminal way? Even if Mueller got Schiff in a headlock and screamed in his ear, "No collusion, no collusion," the committee chairman would presumably reply: "See? He said it – collusion."

The man is an unscrupulous liar, in other words, someone who will say anything to gain attention and fatten his war chest, which is why contributions flowing to his re-election campaign have risen from under $1 million a year to $10.5 million since the Russia furor began. The man talks endlessly about the Constitution, patriotism, his father's heroic service in the military, and so on. But the only thing Adam Schiff really cares about is himself.

Trump's sins are manifold. But with unerring accuracy, Schiff managed to zero in on the one sin that didn't take place. Considering that the $391 million was destined for ultra-right military units whose members sport neo-Nazi regalia and SS symbols as they battle pro-Russian separatists in the eastern Ukraine, Schiff's crimes are just as bad, if not worse. Ladies and gentlemen, we give you the next candidate for impeachment, the congressman from Hollywood – Adam Schiff!

[May 24, 2020] Guccifer 2.0 was always John Brennan 1.0

Highly recommended!
Images deleted.
False flag operation by CIA or CrowdStrike as CIA constructor: CIA ears protrude above Gussifer 2.0 hat.
Notable quotes:
"... Guccifer 2.0 fabricated evidence to claim credit for hacking the DNC (using files that were really Podesta attachments) . ..."
"... Guccifer 2.0’s Russian breadcrumbs mostly came from deliberate processes & needless editing of documents . ..."
"... Guccifer 2.0’s Russian communications signals came from the persona choosing to use a proxy server in Moscow and choosing to use a Russian VPN service as end-points (and they used an email service that forwards the sender’s IP address, which made identifying that signal a relatively trivial task.) ..."
"... A considerable volume of evidence pointed at Guccifer 2.0’s activities being in American timezones (twice as many types of indicators were found pointing at Guccifer 2.0’s activities being in American timezones than anywhere else). ..."
"... The American timezones were incidental to other activities (eg. blogging , social media , emailing a journalist , archiving files , etc) and some of these were recorded independently by service providers. ..."
"... A couple of pieces of evidence with Russian indicators present had accompanying locale indicators that contradicted this which suggested the devices used hadn’t been properly set up for use in Russia (or Romania) but may have been suitable for other countries (including America) . ..."
"... On the same day that Guccifer 2.0 was plastering Russian breadcrumbs on documents through a deliberate process, choosing to use Russian-themed end-points and fabricating evidence to claim credit for hacking the DNC, the operation attributed itself to WikiLeaks. ..."
"... Guccifer 2.0 chose to use insecure communications to ask WikiLeaks to confirm receipt of “DNC emails” on July 6, 2016. Confirmation of this was not provided at that time but WikiLeaks did confirm receipt of a “1gb or so” archive on July 18, 2016. ..."
"... The alleged GRU officer we are told was part of an operation to deflect from Russian culpability suggested that Assange “may be connected with Russians”. ..."
"... Guccifer 2.0 fabricated evidence to claim credit for hacking the DNC, covered itself (and its files) in what were essentially a collection of “Made In Russia” labels through deliberate processes and decisions made by the persona, and, then, it attributed itself to WikiLeaks with a claim that was contradicted by subsequent communications between both parties. ..."
"... While we are expected to accept that Guccifer 2.0’s efforts between July 6 and July 18 were a sincere effort to get leaks to WikiLeaks, considering everything we now know about the persona, it seems fair to question whether Guccifer 2.0’s intentions towards WikiLeaks may have instead been malicious. ..."
"... Guccifer 2.0 was always John Brennan 1.0 ..."
"... Was Guccifer II part of the Stefan Halper organization that lured Papadopoulos and maliciously maligned others? ..."
"... I believe Guccifer 2.0 was created by the CIA to falsely pin blame on the Russians for info that Seth Rich gave to WikiLeaks. Read for yourself: http://g-2.space/ ..."
May 24, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Tim Leonard via ConsortiumNews.com,

Why would an alleged GRU officer - supposedly part of an operation to deflect Russian culpability - suggest that Assange “may be connected with Russians?”

In December, I reported on digital forensics evidence relating to Guccifer 2.0 and highlighted several key points about the mysterious persona that Special Counsel Robert Mueller claims was a front for Russian intelligence to leak Democratic Party emails to WikiLeaks:

On the same day that Guccifer 2.0 was plastering Russian breadcrumbs on documents through a deliberate process, choosing to use Russian-themed end-points and fabricating evidence to claim credit for hacking the DNC, the operation attributed itself to WikiLeaks.

This article questions what Guccifer 2.0’s intentions were in relation to WikiLeaks in the context of what has been discovered by independent researchers during the past three years.

Timing

On June 12, 2016, in an interview with ITV’s Robert Peston, Julian Assange confirmed that WikiLeaks had emails relating to Hillary Clinton that the organization intended to publish. This announcement was prior to any reported contact with Guccifer 2.0 (or with DCLeaks).

On June 14, 2016, an article was published in The Washington Post citing statements from two CrowdStrike executives alleging that Russian intelligence hacked the DNC and stole opposition research on Trump. It was apparent that the statements had been made in the 48 hours prior to publication as they referenced claims of kicking hackers off the DNC network on the weekend just passed (June 11-12, 2016).

On that same date, June 14, DCLeaks contacted WikiLeaks via Twitter DM and for some reason suggested that both parties coordinate their releases of leaks. (It doesn’t appear that WikiLeaks responded until September 2016).

On June 15, 2016, Guccifer 2.0 appeared for the first time. He fabricated evidence to claim credit for hacking the DNC (using material that wasn’t from the DNC), used a proxy in Moscow to carry out searches (for mostly English language terms including a grammatically incorrect and uncommon phrase that the persona would use in its first blog post) and used a Russian VPN service to share the fabricated evidence with reporters. All of this combined conveniently to provide false corroboration for several claims made by CrowdStrike executives that were published just one day earlier in The Washington Post.

[CrowdStrike President Shawn Henry testified under oath behind closed doors on Dec. 5, 2017 to the U.S. House intelligence committee that his company had no evidence that Russian actors removed anything from the DNC servers. This testimony was only released earlier this month.]

First Claim Versus First Contact

On the day it emerged, the Guccifer 2.0 operation stated that it had given material to WikiLeaks and asserted that the organization would publish that material soon:

By stating that WikiLeaks would “publish them soon” the Guccifer 2.0 operation implied that it had received confirmation of intent to publish.

However, the earliest recorded communication between Guccifer 2.0 and WikiLeaks didn’t occur until a week later (June 22, 2016) when WikiLeaks reached out to Guccifer 2.0 and suggested that the persona send any new material to them rather than doing what it was doing:

[Excerpt from Special Counsel Mueller’s report. Note: “stolen from the DNC” is an editorial insert by the special counsel.]

If WikiLeaks had already received material and confirmed intent to publish prior to this direct message, why would they then suggest what they did when they did? WikiLeaks says it had no prior contact with Guccifer 2.0 despite what Guccifer 2.0 had claimed.

Needing To Know What WikiLeaks Had

Fortunately, information that gives more insight into communications on June 22, 2016 was made available on April 29, 2020 via a release of the Roger Stone arrest warrant application.

Here is the full conversation on that date (according to the application):

@WikiLeaks: Do you have secure communications?

@WikiLeaks: Send any new material here for us to review and it will have a much higher impact than what you are doing. No other media will release the full material.

@GUCCIFER_2: what can u suggest for a secure connection? Soft, keys, etc? I’m ready to cooperate with you, but I need to know what’s in your archive 80gb? Are there only HRC emails? Or some other docs? Are there any DNC docs? If it’s not secret when you are going to release it?

@WikiLeaks: You can send us a message in a .txt file here [link redacted]

@GUCCIFER_2: do you have GPG?

Why would Guccifer 2.0 need to know what material WikiLeaks already had? Certainly, if it were anything Guccifer 2.0 had sent (or the GRU had sent) he wouldn’t have had reason to inquire.

The more complete DM details provided here also suggest that both parties had not yet established secure communications.

Further communications were reported to have taken place on June 24, 2016:

@GUCCIFER_2: How can we chat? Do u have jabber or something like that?

@WikiLeaks: Yes, we have everything. We’ve been busy celebrating Brexit. You can also email an encrypted message to office@wikileaks.org. They key is here.

and June 27, 2016:

@GUCCIFER_2: Hi, i’ve just sent you an email with a text message encrypted and an open key.

@WikiLeaks: Thanks.

@GUCCIFER_2: waiting for ur response. I send u some interesting piece.

Guccifer 2.0 said he needed to know what was in the 88GB ‘insurance’ archive that WikiLeaks had posted on June 16, 2016 and it’s clear that, at this stage, secure communications had not been established between both parties (which would seem to rule out the possibility of encrypted communications prior to June 15, 2016, making Guccifer 2.0’s initial claims about WikiLeaks even more doubtful).

Claims DCLeaks Is A Sub-Project Of WikiLeaks

On June 27, 2016, in an email chain to the Smoking Gun (exposing Guccifer 2.0 apparently being in the Central US timezone), Guccifer 2.0 claimed that DCLeaks was a “sub-project” of WikiLeaks.

There’s no evidence to support this. “Envoy le” is also a mistake as standard French emails read: “Envoye le.” Claims allegedly made by Guccifer 2.0 in a Twitter DM to DCLeaks on September 15, 2016 suggest that he knew this was nonsense:

There was no evidence of WikiLeaks mentioning this to Guccifer 2.0 nor any reason for why WikiLeaks couldn’t just send a DM to DCLeaks themselves if they had wanted to.

(It should also be noted that this Twitter DM activity between DCLeaks and Guccifer 2.0 is alleged by Mueller to be communications between officers within the same unit of the GRU, who, for some unknown reason, decided to use Twitter DMs to relay such information rather than just communicate face to face or securely via their own local network.)

Guccifer 2.0 lied about DCLeaks being a sub-project of WikiLeaks and then, over two months later, was seen trying to encourage DCLeaks to communicate with WikiLeaks by relaying an alleged request from WikiLeaks that there is no record of WikiLeaks ever making (and which WikiLeaks could have done themselves, directly, if they had wanted to).

The ‘About 1GB’ / ‘1Gb or So’ Archive

On July 4, 2016, Guccifer 2.0 contacted WikiLeaks:

@GUCCIFER_2: hi there, check up r email, waiting for reply.

This was followed up on July 6, 2016 with the following conversation:

@GUCCIFER_2: have you received my parcel?

@WikiLeaks: Not unless it was very recent. [we haven’ t checked in 24h].

@GUCCIFER_2: I sent it yesterday, an archive of about 1 gb. via [website link]. and check your email.

@WikiLeaks: Wil[l] check, thanks.

@GUCCIFER_2: let me know the results.

@WikiLeaks: Please don’t make anything you send to us public. It’s a lot of work to go through it and the impact is severely reduced if we are not the first to publish.

@GUCCIFER_2: agreed. How much time will it take?

@WikiLeaks: likely sometime today.

@GUCCIFER_2: will u announce a publication? and what about 3 docs sent u earlier?

@WikiLeaks: I don’t believe we received them. Nothing on ‘Brexit’ for example.

@GUCCIFER_2: wow. have you checked ur mail?

@WikiLeaks: At least not as of 4 days ago . . . . For security reasons mail cannot be checked for some hours.

@GUCCIFER_2: fuck, sent 4 docs on brexit on jun 29, an archive in gpg ur submission form is too fucking slow, spent the whole day uploading 1 gb.

@WikiLeaks: We can arrange servers 100x as fast. The speed restrictions are to anonymise the path. Just ask for custom fast upload point in an email.

@GUCCIFER_2: will u be able to check ur email?

@WikiLeaks: We’re best with very large data sets. e.g. 200gb. these prove themselves since they’re too big to fake.

@GUCCIFER_2: or shall I send brexit docs via submission once again?

@WikiLeaks: to be safe, send via [web link]

@GUCCIFER_2: can u confirm u received dnc emails?

@WikiLeaks: for security reasons we can’ t confirm what we’ve received here. e.g., in case your account has been taken over by us intelligence and is probing to see what we have.

@GUCCIFER_2: then send me an encrypted email.

@WikiLeaks: we can do that. but the security people are in another time zone so it will need to wait some hours.

@WikiLeaks: what do you think about the FBl’ s failure to charge? To our mind the clinton foundation investigation has always been the more serious. we would be very interested in all the emails/docs from there. She set up quite a lot of front companies. e.g in sweden.

@GUCCIFER_2: ok, i’ll be waiting for confirmation. as for investigation, they have everything settled, or else I don’t know how to explain that they found a hundred classified docs but fail to charge her.

@WikiLeaks: She’s too powerful to charge at least without something stronger. s far as we know, the investigation into the clinton foundation remains open e hear the FBI are unhappy with Loretta Lynch over meeting Bill, because he’s a target in that investigation.

@GUCCIFER_2: do you have any info about marcel lazar? There’ve been a lot of rumors of late.

@WikiLeaks: the death? [A] fake story.

@WikiLeaks: His 2013 screen shots of Max Blumenthal’s inbox prove that Hillary secretly deleted at least one email about Libya that was meant to be handed over to Congress. So we were very interested in his co-operation with the FBI.

@GUCCIFER_2: some dirty games behind the scenes believe Can you send me an email now?

@WikiLeaks: No; we have not been able to activate the people who handle it. Still trying.

@GUCCIFER_2: what about tor submission? [W]ill u receive a doc now?

@WikiLeaks: We will get everything sent on [weblink].” [A]s long as you see \”upload succseful\” at the end. [I]f you have anything hillary related we want it in the next tweo [sic] days prefable [sic] because the DNC is approaching and she will solidify bernie supporters behind her after.

@GUCCIFER_2: ok. I see.

@WikiLeaks: [W]e think the public interest is greatest now and in early october.

@GUCCIFER_2: do u think a lot of people will attend bernie fans rally in philly? Will it affect the dnc anyhow?

@WikiLeaks: bernie is trying to make his own faction leading up to the DNC. [S]o he can push for concessions (positions/policies) or, at the outside, if hillary has a stroke, is arrested etc, he can take over the nomination. [T]he question is this: can bemies supporters+staff keep their coherency until then (and after). [O]r will they dis[s]olve into hillary’ s camp? [P]resently many of them are looking to damage hilary [sic] inorder [sic] to increase their unity and bargaining power at the DNC. Doubt one rally is going to be that significant in the bigger scheme. [I]t seems many of them will vote for hillary just to prevent trump from winning.

@GUCCIFER_2: sent brexit docs successfully.

@WikiLeaks: :))).

@WikiLeaks: we think trump has only about a 25% chance of winning against hillary so conflict between bernie and hillary is interesting.

@GUCCIFER_2: so it is.

@WikiLeaks: also, it’ s important to consider what type of president hillary might be. If bernie and trump retain their groups past 2016 in significant number, then they are a restraining force on hillary.

[Note: This was over a week after the Brexit referendum had taken place, so this will not have had any impact on the results of that. It also doesn’t appear that WikiLeaks released any Brexit content around this time.]

On July 14, 2016, Guccifer 2.0 sent an email to WikiLeaks, this was covered in the Mueller report:

It should be noted that while the attachment sent was encrypted, the email wasn’t and both the email contents and name of the file were readable.

The persona then opted, once again, for insecure communications via Twitter DMs:

@GUCCIFER_2: ping. Check ur email. sent u a link to a big archive and a pass.

@WikiLeaks: great, thanks; can’t check until tomorrow though.

On July 17, 2016, the persona contacted WikiLeaks again:

@GUCCIFER_2: what bout now?

On July 18, 2016, WikiLeaks responded and more was discussed:

@WikiLeaks: have the 1 Gb or so archive.

@GUCCIFER_2: have u managed to extract the files?

@WikiLeaks: yes. turkey coup has delayed us a couple of days. [O]therwise all ready[.]

@GUCCIFER_2: so when r u about to make a release?

@WikiLeaks: this week. [D]o you have any bigger datasets? [D]id you get our fast transfer details?

@GUCCIFER_2: i’ll check it. did u send it via email?

@WikiLeaks: yes.

@GUCCIFER_2: to [web link]. [I] got nothing.

@WikiLeaks: check your other mail? this was over a week ago.

@GUCCIFER_2:oh, that one, yeah, [I] got it.

@WikiLeaks: great. [D]id it work?

@GUCCIFER_2:[I] haven’ t tried yet.

@WikiLeaks: Oh. We arranged that server just for that purpose. Nothing bigger?

@GUCCIFER_2: let’s move step by step, u have released nothing of what [I] sent u yet.

@WikiLeaks: How about you transfer it all to us encrypted. [T]hen when you are happy, you give us the decrypt key. [T]his way we can move much faster. (A]lso it is protective for you if we already have everything because then there is no point in trying to shut you up.

@GUCCIFER_2: ok, i’ll ponder it

Again, we see a reference to the file being approximately one gigabyte in size.

Guccifer 2.0’s “so when r u about to make a release?” seems to be a question about his files. However, it could have been inferred as generally relating to what WikiLeaks had or even material relating to the “Turkey Coup” that WikiLeaks had mentioned in the previous sentence and that were published by the following day (July 19, 2016).

The way this is reported in the Mueller report, though, prevented this potential ambiguity being known (by not citing the exact question that Guccifer 2.0 had asked and the context immediately preceding it.

Four days later, WikiLeaks published the DNC emails.

Later that same day, Guccifer 2.0 tweeted: “@wikileaks published #DNCHack docs I’d given them!!!”.

Guccifer 2.0 chose to use insecure communications to ask WikiLeaks to confirm receipt of “DNC emails” on July 6, 2016. Confirmation of this was not provided at that time but WikiLeaks did confirm receipt of a “1gb or so” archive on July 18, 2016.

Guccifer 2.0’s emails to WikiLeaks were also sent insecurely.

We cannot be certain that WikiLeaks statement about making a release was in relation to Guccifer 2.0’s material and there is even a possibility that this could have been in reference to the Erdogan leaks published by WikiLeaks on July 19, 2016.

Ulterior Motives?

While the above seems troubling there are a few points worth considering:

  • There is a considerable volume of evidence that contradicts the premise of Guccifer 2.0 being a GRU operation.
  • The persona lied about WikiLeaks and even stated that Assange “may be connected with Russians”.
  • Guccifer 2.0’s initial claim about sending WikiLeaks material (and that they would publish it soon) appears to have been made without justification and seems to be contradicted by subsequent communications from WikiLeaks.
  • If the archive was “about 1GB” (as Guccifer 2.0 describes it) then it would be too small to have been all of the DNC’s emails (as these, compressed, came to 1.8GB-2GB depending on compression method used, which, regardless, would be “about 2GB” not “about 1GB”). If we assume that these were DNC emails, where did the rest of them come from?
  • Assange has maintained that WikiLeaks didn’t publish the material that Guccifer 2.0 had sent to them. Of course, Assange could just be lying about that but there are some other possibilities to consider. If true, there is always a possibility that Guccifer 2.0 could have sent them material they had already received from another source or other emails from the DNC that they didn’t release (Guccifer 2.0 had access to a lot of content relating to the DNC and Democratic party and the persona also offered emails of Democratic staffers to Emma Best, a self-described journalist, activist and ex-hacker, the month after WikiLeaks published the DNC emails, which, logically, must have been different emails to still have any value at that point in time).
  • On July 6, 2016, the same day that Guccifer 2.0 was trying to get WikiLeaks to confirm receipt of DNC emails (and on which Guccifer 2.0 agreed not to publish material he had sent them), the persona posted a series of files to his blog that were exclusively DNC email attachments.
  • It doesn’t appear any further communications were reported between the parties following the July 18, 2016 communications despite Guccifer 2.0 tweeting on August 12, 2016: “I’ll send the major trove of the #DCCC materials and emails to #wikileaks keep following…” and, apparently, stating this to The Hill too.
  • As there are no further communications reported beyond this point it’s fair to question whether getting confirmation of receipt of the archive was the primary objective for Guccifer 2.0 here.
  • Even though WikiLeaks offered Guccifer 2.0 a fast server for large uploads, the persona later suggested he needed to find a resource for publishing a large amount of data.
  • Despite later claiming he would send (or had sent) DCCC content to WikiLeaks, WikiLeaks never published such content and there doesn’t appear to be any record of any attempt to send this material to WikiLeaks.
  • Digital forensics evidence places Guccifer 2.0 in the Eastern (US) timezone on July 6, 2016, the day on which he was trying to get WikiLeaks to confirm receipt of DNC emails.

Considering all of this and the fact Guccifer 2.0 effectively covered itself in “Made In Russia” labels (by plastering files in Russian metadata and choosing to use a Russian VPN service and a proxy in Moscow for it’s activities) on the same day it first attributed itself to WikiLeaks, it’s fair to suspect that Guccifer 2.0 had malicious intent towards WikiLeaks from the outset.

If this was the case, Guccifer 2.0 may have known about the DNC emails by June 30, 2016 as this is when the persona first started publishing attachments from those emails.

Seth Rich Mentioned By Both Parties

WikiLeaks Offers Reward

On August 9, 2016, WikiLeaks tweeted:

In an interview with Nieuwsuur that was posted the same day, Julian Assange explained that the reward was for a DNC staffer who he said had been “shot in the back, murdered”. When the interviewer suggested it was a robbery Assange disputed it and stated that there were no findings.

When the interviewer asked if Seth Rich was a source, Assange stated, “We don’t comment on who our sources are”.

When pressed to explain WikiLeaks actions, Assange stated that the reward was being offered because WikiLeaks‘ sources were concerned by the incident. He also stated that WikiLeaks were investigating.

Speculation and theories about Seth Rich being a source for WikiLeaks soon propagated to several sites and across social media.

Guccifer 2.0 Claims Seth Rich As His Source

On August 25, 2016, approximately three weeks after the reward was offered, Julian Assange was due to be interviewed on Fox News on the topic of Seth Rich.

On that same day, in a DM conversation with the actress Robbin Young, Guccifer 2.0 claimed that Seth was his source (despite previously claiming he obtained his material by hacking the DNC).

Why did Guccifer 2.0 feel the need to attribute itself to Seth at this time?

[Note: I am not advocating for any theory and am simply reporting on Guccifer 2.0’s effort to attribute itself to Seth Rich following the propagation of Rich-WikiLeaks association theories online.]

Special Counsel Claims

In Spring, 2019, Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who was named to investigate Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. general election, delivered his final report.

It claimed:

Guccifer 2.0 contradicted his own hacking claims to allege that Seth Rich was his source and did so on the same day that Julian Assange was due to be interviewed by Fox News (in relation to Seth Rich).

No communications between Guccifer 2.0 and Seth Rich have ever been reported.

Suggesting Assange Connected To Russians

In the same conversation Guccifer 2.0 had with Robbin Young where Rich’s name is mentioned (on August 25, 2016), the persona also provided a very interesting response to Young mentioning “Julian” (in reference to Julian Assange):

The alleged GRU officer we are told was part of an operation to deflect from Russian culpability suggested that Assange “may be connected with Russians”.

Guccifer 2.0’s Mentions of WikiLeaks and Assange

Guccifer 2.0 mentioned WikiLeaks or associated himself with their output on several occasions:

  1. June 15, 2016: claiming to have sent WikiLeaks material on his blog.
  2. June 27, 2016: when he claimed DCLeaks was a sub-project of WikiLeaks.
  3. July 13, 2016: Joe Uchill of The Hill reported that Guccifer 2.0 had contacted the publication and stated: “The press gradually forget about me, [W]ikileaks is playing for time and have some more docs.”
  4. July 22nd, 2016: claimed credit when WikiLeaks published the DNC leaks.
  5. August 12, 2016: It was reported in The Hill that Guccifer 2.0 had released material to the publication. They reported: “The documents released to The Hill are only the first section of a much larger cache. The bulk, the hacker said, will be released on WikiLeaks.”
  6. August 12, 2016: Tweeted that he would “send the major trove of the #DCCC materials and emails to #wikileaks“.
  7. September 15, 2016: telling DCLeaks that WikiLeaks wanted to get in contact with them.
  8. October 4, 2016: Congratulating WikiLeaks on their 10th anniversary via its blog. Also states: “Julian, you are really cool! Stay safe and sound!”. (This was the same day on which Guccifer 2.0 published his “Clinton Foundation” files that were clearly not from the Clinton Foundation.)
  9. October 17, 2016: via Twitter, stating “i’m here and ready for new releases. already changed my location thanks @wikileaks for a good job!”

Guccifer 2.0 also made some statements in response to WikiLeaks or Assange being mentioned:

  1. June 17, 2016: in response to The Smoking Gun asking if Assange would publish the same material it was publishing, Guccifer 2.0 stated: “I gave WikiLeaks the greater part of the files, but saved some for myself,”
  2. August 22, 2016: in response to Raphael Satter suggesting that Guccifer 2.0 send leaks to WikiLeaks, the persona stated: “I gave wikileaks a greater part of docs”.
  3. August 25, 2016: in response to Julian Assange’s name being mentioned in a conversation with Robbin Young, Guccifer 2.0 stated: “he may be connected with Russians”.
  4. October 18, 2016: a BBC reported asked Guccifer 2.0 if he was upset that WikiLeaks had “stole his thunder” and “do you still support Assange?”. Guccifer 2.0 responded: “i’m glad, together we’ll make America great again.”.

Guccifer 2.0 fabricated evidence to claim credit for hacking the DNC, covered itself (and its files) in what were essentially a collection of “Made In Russia” labels through deliberate processes and decisions made by the persona, and, then, it attributed itself to WikiLeaks with a claim that was contradicted by subsequent communications between both parties.

Guccifer 2.0 then went on to lie about WikiLeaks, contradicted its own hacking claims to attribute itself to Seth Rich and even alleged that Julian Assange “may be connected with Russians”.

While we are expected to accept that Guccifer 2.0’s efforts between July 6 and July 18 were a sincere effort to get leaks to WikiLeaks, considering everything we now know about the persona, it seems fair to question whether Guccifer 2.0’s intentions towards WikiLeaks may have instead been malicious.


xxx 2 minutes ago (Edited)

Everything involving the Russian hoax was set up by the Deep States around the world. Implicate, discredit and destroy all those like Rich, Assange, Flynn and those who knew the truth. Kill the messenger....literally.

xxx 10 minutes ago

here's what really happened:

an American hacker breached Podesta's gmail on March 13 2016 and then uploaded it to Wikileaks via Tor sometime between April and May.

the NSA and CIA have hacked into Wikileaks' Tor file server to watch for new leaks to stay ahead of them to prepare. they saw Podesta's emails leaked and launched a counter infowar operation.

Brennan's CIA created the Guccifer 2.0 persona, with phony Russian metadata artifacts, using digital forgery techniques seen in Vault7. Crowdstrike was already on the premises of DNC since 2015, with their overly expensive security scanner watching the DNC network. Crowdstrike had access to any DNC files they wanted. CIA, FBI and Crowdstrike colluded to create a fake leak of DNC docs through their Guccifer 2.0 cutout. they didn't leak any docs of high importance, which is why we never saw any smoking guns from DNC leaks or DCLeaks.

you have to remember, the whole point of this CIAFBINSA operation has nothing to do with Hillary or Trump or influencing the election. the point was to fabricate criminal evidence to use against Assange to finally arrest him and extradite him as well as smear Wikileaks ahead of the looming leak of Podesta's emails.

if CIAFBINSA can frame Assange and Wikileaks as being criminal hackers and/or Russian assets ahead of the Podesta leaks, then they can craft a narrative for the MSM to ignore or distrust most of the Podesta emails. and that is exactly what happened, such as when Chris Cuomo said on CNN that it was illegal for you to read Wikileaks, but not CNN, so you should let CNN tell you what to think about Wikileaks instead of looking at evidence yourself.

this explains why Guccifer 2.0 was so sloppy leaving a trail of Twitter DMs to incriminate himself and Assange along with him.

if this CIAFBINSA entrapment/frame operation ever leaks, it will guarantee the freedom of Assange.

xxx 11 minutes ago

According to Wikipedia, "Guccifer" is Marcel Lazar Lehel, a Rumanian born in 1972, but "Guccifer 2.0" is someone else entirely.

Is that so?

xxx 20 minutes ago (Edited)

The guy from Cyrptome always asserted Assange was some type of deep state puppet, that he was connected somehow. This wouldn't be news to me and its probably why he was scared as hell. The guy is as good as dead, like S. Hussein. Seth Rich was just a puppet that got caught in the wrong game. He was expendable obviously too because well he had a big mouth, he was expendable from the beginning. Somebody mapped this whole **** out, thats for sure.

xxx 28 minutes ago

I am sick and tired of these Deep State and CIA-linked operations trying to put a wrench in the prosecution of people who were engaged in a coup d'etat.

xxx 29 minutes ago

********

xxx 33 minutes ago

At this point what difference does it make? We are all convinced since 2016. It is not going to convince the TDS cases roaming the wilderness.

No arrests, no subpoenas, no warrants, no barging in at 3 am, no perp walks, no tv glare...

Pres. Trump is playing a very risky game. Arrest now, or regret later. And you won't have much time to regret.

The swamp is dark, smelly and deep,

And it has grudges to keep.

xxx 37 minutes ago

Meanwhile- Guccifer 1.0 is still?

- In prison?

- Released?

- 48 month sentence in 2016. Obv no good behavior.

Nice article. Brennan is the dolt he appears.

xxx 41 minutes ago

+1,000 on the investigative work and analyzing it.

Sadly, none of the guilty are in jail. Instead. Assange sits there rotting away.

xxx 44 minutes ago

Why would an alleged GRU officer - supposedly part of an operation to deflect Russian culpability - suggest that Assange "may be connected with Russians?"

Because the AXIS powers of the CIA, Brit secret police and Israeli secret police pay for the campaign to tie Assange to the Russians...

xxx 45 minutes ago

@realDonaldTrump

A lot of interest in this story about Psycho Joe Scarborough. So a young marathon runner just happened to faint in his office, hit her head on his desk, & die? I would think there is a lot more to this story than that? An affair? What about the so-called investigator? Read story!

xxx 45 minutes ago

Why make it harder than it is? Guccifer II = Crowdstrike

xxx 51 minutes ago

Guccifer 2.0 was always John Brennan 1.0

xxx 58 minutes ago (Edited)

Was Guccifer II part of the Stefan Halper organization that lured Papadopoulos and maliciously maligned others?

xxx 1 hour ago

"His name was Seth Rich." The unofficial motto of ZeroHedge...

xxx 1 hour ago

James Guccifer Clapper.

xxx 1 hour ago

Mossad. And their subsidiary CIA.

xxx 1 hour ago

Crowd Strike CEO'S admission under oath that they had no evidence the DNC was hacked by the Russians should make the Russian Hoax predicate abundantly clear.

Justice for Seth Rich!

xxx 1 hour ago

Any influence Assange had on the election was so small that it wouldn't move the needle either way. The real influence and election tampering in the US has always come from the scores of lobbyists and their massive donations that fund the candidates election runs coupled with the wildly inaccurate and agenda driven collusive effort by the MSM. Anyone pointing fingers at the Russians is beyond blind to the unparalleled influence and power these entities have on swaying American minds.

xxx 1 hour ago

ObamaGate.

xxx 1 hour ago (Edited)

Uugh ONCE AGAIN... 4chan already proved guccifer 2.0 was a larp, and the files were not "hacked", they were leaked by Seth Rich. The metadata from the guccifer files is different from the metadata that came from the seth rich files. The dumb fuckers thought they were smart by modifying the author name of the files to make it look like it came from a russian source. They were so ******* inept, they must have forgot (or not have known) to modify the unique 16 digit hex key assigned to the author of the files when they were created..... The ones that seth rich copied had the system administrators name (Warren Flood) as the author and the 16 digit hex key from both file sources were the same - the one assigned to warren flood.

Really sloppy larp!!!

xxx 1 hour ago

This link has all the detail to show Guccifer 2.0 was not Russia. I believe Guccifer 2.0 was created by the CIA to falsely pin blame on the Russians for info that Seth Rich gave to WikiLeaks. Read for yourself: http://g-2.space/

xxx 1 hour ago

This is what people are. Now the species has more power than it can control and that it knows what to do with.

What do you think the result will be?

As for these games of Secret - it's more game than anything truly significant. The significant exists in the bunkers, with the mobile units, in the submarines. Et. al.

But this is a game in which some of the players die - or wish they were dead.

xxx 1 hour ago

And.....?

Public figures and political parties warrant public scrutiny. And didn't his expose in their own words expose the democrats, the mass media, the bureaucracy to the corrupt frauds that they are?

xxx 1 hour ago

Other than the fact that they didn't steal the emails (unless you believe whistleblowers are thief's, one mans source is another mans thief, it's all about who's ox is being gored and you love "leaks" don't you? As long as they work in your favor. Stop with the piety.

xxx 15 minutes ago

That's not the story at all. Did you just read this article?

The democrats were super duper corrupt (before all of this).

They fucked around to ice Bernie out of the primary.

A young staffer Seth Rich knew it and didn't like it. He made the decision to leak the info to the most reputable org for leaks in the world Wikileaks.

IF the DNC had been playing fair, Seth Rich wouldn't have felt the need to leak.

So, the democrats did it to themselves.

And then they created Russiagate to cover it all up.

And murdered a young brave man ... as we know.

xxx 1 hour ago

Assange, another problem Trump failed to fix.

xxx 1 hour ago

Sounds like it came from the same source as the Trump dossier ... MI5.

[May 24, 2020] Guccifer 2.0's Hidden Agenda : looks like Gussifer 2.0 was a false flag operation designed to smear WikiLeaks and distract from the content of the stolen by Seth Rich or some other insider DNC emails

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... With the entirety of Russigate finally collapsing under the enormous weight and stench of its own BS, the picture that is beginning to emerge for me is one of an insider deep-state psy-op designed to cover for the crimes committed by the DNC, the Clinton Foundation and the 2016 Hillary campaign; kill for the foreseeable future any progressive threat to the neo-liberal world order; and take down a president that the bipartisan DC and corporate media elite fear and loathe. And why do they fear him? Because he is free to call them out on certain aspects of their criminality and corruption, and has. ..."
"... Hubris, cynicism and a basic belief in the stupidity of the US public all seem to have played a part in all this, enabled by a corporate media with a profit motive and a business model that depends on duping the masses. ..."
"... Anyone who still believes in democracy in the USA has his head in the sand (or someplace a lot smellier). ..."
"... The corruption in the USA is wide and deep and trump is NOT draining the swamp. ..."
"... A further point: the Mueller report insinuates that G2.0 had transferred the DNC emails to Wikileaks as of July 18th, and Wikileaks then published them on July 22nd. This is absurd for two reasons: There is no way in hell that Wikileaks could have processed the entire volume of those emails and attachments to insure their complete authenticity in 4 days. ..."
"... Indeed, when Crowdstrike's Shawn Henry had been chief of counterintelligence under Robert Mueller, he had tried to set Assange up by sending Wikileaks fraudulent material; fortunately, Wikileaks was too careful to take the bait. ..."
May 24, 2020 | consortiumnews.com

Daniel P , May 23, 2020 at 13:34

Fascinating, important and ultimately deeply disturbing. This is why I come to Consortium News.

With the entirety of Russigate finally collapsing under the enormous weight and stench of its own BS, the picture that is beginning to emerge for me is one of an insider deep-state psy-op designed to cover for the crimes committed by the DNC, the Clinton Foundation and the 2016 Hillary campaign; kill for the foreseeable future any progressive threat to the neo-liberal world order; and take down a president that the bipartisan DC and corporate media elite fear and loathe. And why do they fear him? Because he is free to call them out on certain aspects of their criminality and corruption, and has.

Hubris, cynicism and a basic belief in the stupidity of the US public all seem to have played a part in all this, enabled by a corporate media with a profit motive and a business model that depends on duping the masses.

Anonymous , May 22, 2020 at 12:01

These convos alone look like a script kiddie on IRC doing their low functioning version of sock puppetry. Didn't know anyone at all fell for that

Ash , May 22, 2020 at 17:21

Because smooth liars in expensive suits told them it was true in their authoritative TV voices? Sadly they don't even really need to try hard anymore, as people will evidently believe anything they're told.

Bob Herrschaft , May 22, 2020 at 12:00

The article goes a long way toward congealing evidence that Guccifer 2.0 was a shill meant to implicate Wikileaks in a Russian hack. The insinuation about Assange's Russian connection was over the top if Guccifer 2.0 was supposed to be a GRU agent and the mention of Seth Rich only contradicts his claims.

OlyaPola , May 22, 2020 at 10:40

Spectacles are popular.Although less popular, the framing and derivations of plausible belief are of more significance; hence the cloak of plausible denial over under-garments of plausible belief, in facilitation of revolutions of immersion in spectacles facilitating spectacles' popularity.

Some promoters of spectacles believe that the benefits of spectacles accrue solely to themselves, and when expectations appear to vary from outcomes, they resort to one-trick-ponyness illuminated by peering in the mirror.

Skip Scott , May 22, 2020 at 08:35

This is a great article. I think the most obvious conclusion is that Guccifer 2.0 was a creation to smear wikileaks and distract from the CONTENT of the DNC emails. The MSM spent the next 3 years obsessed by RussiaGate, and spent virtually no effort on the DNC and Hillary's collusion in subverting the Sander's campaign, among other crimes.

I think back to how many of my friends were obsessed with Rachel Madcow during this period, and how she and the rest of the MSM served the Empire with their propaganda campaign. Meanwhile, Julian is still in Belmarsh as the head of a "non-state hostile intelligence service," the Hillary camp still runs the DNC and successfully sabotaged Bernie yet again (along with Tulsi), and the public gets to choose between corporate sponsored warmonger from column A or B in 2020.

Anyone who still believes in democracy in the USA has his head in the sand (or someplace a lot smellier).

Guy , May 22, 2020 at 12:19

Totally agree .The corruption in the USA is wide and deep and trump is NOT draining the swamp.

Cal Lash , May 22, 2020 at 01:20

I take it the mentioned time zones are consistent with Langley.

treeinanotherlife , May 22, 2020 at 00:34

"Are there only HRC emails? Or some other docs? Are there any DNC docs?"

G2 is fishing to see if Wiki has DNC docs. Does not say "any DNC docs I sent you". And like most at time thought Assange's "related to hillary" phrase likely (hopefully for some) meant Hillary's missing private server emails. For certain G2 is not an FBI agent>s/he knows difference between HRC and DNC emails.

Thank you for fantastic work.

Mark McCarty , May 21, 2020 at 22:24

A further point: the Mueller report insinuates that G2.0 had transferred the DNC emails to Wikileaks as of July 18th, and Wikileaks then published them on July 22nd. This is absurd for two reasons: There is no way in hell that Wikileaks could have processed the entire volume of those emails and attachments to insure their complete authenticity in 4 days.

Indeed, it is reasonable to expect that Wikileaks had been processing those emails since at least June 12, when Assange announced their impending publication. (I recall waiting expectantly for a number of weeks as Wikileaks processed the Podesta emails.) Wikileaks was well aware that, if a single one of the DNC emails they released had been proved to have been fraudulent, their reputation would have been toast. Indeed, when Crowdstrike's Shawn Henry had been chief of counterintelligence under Robert Mueller, he had tried to set Assange up by sending Wikileaks fraudulent material; fortunately, Wikileaks was too careful to take the bait.

Secondly, it is inconceivable that a journalist as careful as Julian would, on June 12th, have announced the impending publication of documents he hadn't even seen yet. And of course there is no record of G2.0 having had any contact with Wikileaks prior to that date.

It is a great pleasure to see "Adam Carter"'s work at long last appear in such a distinguished venue as Consortium News. It does credit to them both.

Skip Edwards , May 22, 2020 at 12:33

How can we expect justice when there is no justification for what is being done by the US and British governments to Julian Assange!

[May 22, 2020] The CIA's Murderous Practices, Disinformation Campaigns, and Interference in Other Countries Shape the World Order and U.S. Politics by Glenn Greenwald

Notable quotes:
"... Democrats, early in Trump's presidency, saw clearly that the CIA had become one of Trump's most devoted enemies, and thus began viewing them as a valuable ally. Leading out-of-power Democratic foreign policy elites from the Obama administration and Clinton campaign joined forces not only with Bush/Cheney neocons but also former CIA officials to create new foreign policy advocacy groups designed to malign and undermine Trump and promote hawkish confrontation with nuclear-armed Russia. Meanwhile, other ex-CIA and Homeland Security officials, such as John Brennan and James Clapper, became beloved liberal celebrities by being hired by MSNBC and CNN to deliver liberal-pleasing anti-Trump messaging that, on a virtually daily basis, masqueraded as news . ..."
"... the current function ..."
May 22, 2020 | theintercept.com

In his extraordinary election-advocating op-ed, Hayden, Bush/Cheney's CIA chief, candidly explained the reasons for the CIA's antipathy for Trump: namely, the GOP candidate's stated opposition to allowing CIA regime change efforts in Syria to expand as well as his opposition to arming Ukrainians with lethal weapons to fight Russia (supposedly "pro-Putin" positions which, we are now all supposed to forget, Obama largely shared ). As has been true since President Harry Truman's creation of the CIA after World War II, interfering in other countries and dictating or changing their governments -- through campaigns of mass murder, military coups, arming guerrilla groups, the abolition of democracy, systemic disinformation, and the imposition of savage despots -- is regarded as a divine right, inherent to American exceptionalism. Anyone who questions that or, worse, opposes it and seeks to impede it (as the CIA perceived Trump was) is of suspect loyalties at best.

The CIA's antipathy toward Trump continued after his election victory. The agency became the primary vector for anonymous illegal leaks designed to depict Trump as a Kremlin agent and/or blackmail victim. It worked to ensure the leak of the Steele dossier that clouded at least the first two years of Trump's presidency. It drove the scam Russiagate conspiracy theories. And before Trump was even inaugurated, open warfare erupted between the president-elect and the agency to the point where Democratic Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer explicitly warned Trump on the Rachel Maddow Show that he was risking full-on subversion of his presidency by the agency:

This turned out to be one of the most prescient and important (and creepy) statements of the Trump presidency: from Chuck Schumer to Rachel Maddow - in early January, 2017, before Trump was even inaugurated: pic.twitter.com/TUaYkksILG

-- Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) April 8, 2019
Democrats, early in Trump's presidency, saw clearly that the CIA had become one of Trump's most devoted enemies, and thus began viewing them as a valuable ally. Leading out-of-power Democratic foreign policy elites from the Obama administration and Clinton campaign joined forces not only with Bush/Cheney neocons but also former CIA officials to create new foreign policy advocacy groups designed to malign and undermine Trump and promote hawkish confrontation with nuclear-armed Russia. Meanwhile, other ex-CIA and Homeland Security officials, such as John Brennan and James Clapper, became beloved liberal celebrities by being hired by MSNBC and CNN to deliver liberal-pleasing anti-Trump messaging that, on a virtually daily basis, masqueraded as news .

The all-consuming Russiagate narrative that dominated the first three years of Trump's presidency further served to elevate the CIA as a noble and admirable institution while whitewashing its grotesque history. Liberal conventional wisdom held that Russian Facebook ads, Twitter bots and the hacking and release of authentic, incriminating DNC emails was some sort of unprecedented, off-the-charts, out-of-the-ordinary crime-of-the-century attack, with several leading Democrats (including Hillary Clinton) actually comparing it to 9/11 and Pearl Harbor . The level of historical ignorance and/or jingostic American exceptionalism necessary to believe this is impossible to describe. Compared to what the CIA has done to dozens of other countries since the end of World War II, and what it continues to do , watching Americans cast Russian interference in the 2016 election through online bots and email hacking (even if one believes every claim made about it) as some sort of unique and unprecedented crime against democracy is staggering. Set against what the CIA has done and continues to do to "interfere" in the domestic affairs of other countries -- including Russia -- the 2016 election was, at most, par for the course for international affairs and, more accurately, a trivial and ordinary act in the context of CIA interference. This propaganda was sustainable because the recent history and the current function of the CIA has largely been suppressed. Thankfully, a just-released book by journalist Vincent Bevins -- who spent years as a foreign correspondent covering two countries still marred by brutal CIA interference: Brazil for the Los Angeles Times and Indonesia for the Washington Post -- provides one of the best, most informative and most illuminating histories yet of this agency and the way it has shaped the actual, rather than the propagandistic, U.S. role in the world.

Entitled "The Jakarta Method: Washington's Anticommunist Crusade and the Mass Murder Program that Shaped Our World," the book primarily documents the indescribably horrific campaigns of mass murder and genocide the CIA sponsored in Indonesia as an instrument for destroying a nonaligned movement of nations who would be loyal to neither Washington nor Moscow. Critically, Bevins documents how the chilling success of that morally grotesque campaign led to its being barely discussed in U.S. discourse, but then also serving as the foundation and model for clandestine CIA interference campaigns in multiple other countries from Guatemala, Chile, and Brazil to the Philippines, Vietnam, and Central America: the Jakarta Method.

Our newest episode of SYSTEM UPDATE, which debuts today at 2:00 p.m. on The Intercept's YouTube channel , is devoted to a discussion of why this history is so vital: not just for understanding the current international political order but also for distinguishing between fact and fiction in our contemporary political discourse. In addition to my own observations on this topic, I speak to Bevins about his book, about what the CIA really is and how it has shaped the world we still inhabit, and why a genuine understanding of both international and domestic politics is impossible without a clear grasp on this story.

[May 21, 2020] Press Conference "NEW FACTS OF INTERNATIONAL CORRUPTION AND EXTERNAL GOVERNANCE OF UKRAINE

May 21, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Curmudgeon , May 20 2020 18:42 utc | 25

Press Conference "NEW FACTS OF INTERNATIONAL CORRUPTION AND EXTERNAL GOVERNANCE OF UKRAINE"

English CC
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iaE9OZ89bnQ

[May 20, 2020] Russiagate skunk Evelyn Farkas is emotionally exhausted by correct claims that she blatantly lied to Mika Brzezinski

Was it Crowdstrike that had shown her the forensics data? This McCarthyist dog just keeps lying and keeps digging. The Obama administration was as shameless as they were crooked.
"They all sound like kids that got caught raiding the cookie jar making up wild tales of innocence with cookie crumbs all over their faces."
Notable quotes:
"... Opening your eyes wider while speaking doesn't make you look more intense, credible, and believable... ..."
"... (((They))) are taught from birth to "lie to, cheat, rob, enslave, and kill, with impunity" all Americans they call "Goyim, a mindless herd of cattle, sub-human animals." ..."
"... Ah Evelyn, Evelyn! You're just an exposed resistance tool HRC campaign hack doubling downer unemployed TDS afflicted congress woman wannabe who has no shame no principals and no alibi. Lots of love and kisses to Bezos/WaPo for letting them share your pain with us. Here at the disinfo clearinghouse you couldn't get elected dog catcher. ..."
May 18, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

...Meanwhile, Poor Evelyn's campaign staff has become " emotionally exhausted " after her Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts have been "overwhelmed with a stream of vile, vulgar and sometimes violent messages" in response to the plethora of conservative outlets which have called her out for Russia malarkey.

There is evidence that Russian actors are contributing to these attacks. The same day that right-wing pundits began pumping accusations, newly created Russian Twitter accounts picked them up. Within a day, Russian " disinformation clearinghouses " posted versions of the story . Many of the Twitter accounts boosting attacks have posted in unison, a sign of inauthentic social media behavior.

We assume Zero Hedge is included in said ' disinformation clearinghouses ' Farkas fails to expound on.

She closes by defiantly claiming "I wasn't silenced in 2017, and I won't be silenced now."

No Evelyn, nobody is silencing you. You're being called out for your role in the perhaps the largest, most divisive hoax in US history - which was based on faulty intelligence that includes CrowdStrike admitting they had no proof of that Russia exfiltrated DNC emails, and Christopher Steele's absurd dossier based on his 'Russian sources.'


MrAToZ, 1 minute ago

What's with the bug eyes on these crooks?

Kurpak, 27 seconds ago

Opening your eyes wider while speaking doesn't make you look more intense, credible, and believable...

It makes you look ******* insane.

iAmerican10, 8 minutes ago (Edited)

(((They))) are taught from birth to "lie to, cheat, rob, enslave, and kill, with impunity" all Americans they call "Goyim, a mindless herd of cattle, sub-human animals."

... ... ...

otschelnik, 35 minutes ago

Ah Evelyn, Evelyn! You're just an exposed resistance tool HRC campaign hack doubling downer unemployed TDS afflicted congress woman wannabe who has no shame no principals and no alibi. Lots of love and kisses to Bezos/WaPo for letting them share your pain with us. Here at the disinfo clearinghouse you couldn't get elected dog catcher.

[May 20, 2020] Phone Calls Between Biden And Ukraine's Poroshenko Leaked; Details $1 Billion Quid Pro Quo To Fire Burisma Prosecutor Zero

Highly recommended!
May 20, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Phone Calls Between Biden And Ukraine's Poroshenko Leaked; Details $1 Billion "Quid Pro Quo" To Fire Burisma Prosecutor by Tyler Durden Wed, 05/20/2020 - 05:12 Leaked phone calls between Joe Biden and former Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko explicitly detail the quid-pro-quo arrangement to fire former Ukrainian Prosecutor General Victor Shokin - who Poroshenko admits did nothing wrong - in exchange for $1 billion in US loan guarantees (which Biden openly bragged about in January, 2018 ).

https://www.youtube.com/embed/Q0_AqpdwqK4?start=3118

The calls were leaked by Ukrainian MP Andrii Derkach , who says the recordings of "voices similar to Poroshenko and Biden" were given to him by investigative journalists who claim Poroshenko made them.

Shokin was notably investigating Burisma, the Ukrainian energy company that hired Biden's son, Hunter, to sit on its board. Shokin had opened a case against Burisma's founder, Mykola Zlochevsky, who granted Burisma permits to drill for oil and gas in Ukraine while he was Minister of Ecology and Natural Resources. In January, 2019, Shokin stated in a deposition that there were five criminal cases against Zlochevesky, including money laundering, corruption, illegal funds transfers, and profiteering through shell corporations while he was a sitting minister.

Viktor Shokin

The leaked calls begin on December 3, 2015 , when former Secretary of State John Kerry starts laying out the case to fire Shokin - who he says "blocked the cleanup of the Prosecutor Generals' Office," and sated that Biden "is very concerned about it," to which Poroshenko replies that the newly reorganized prosecutor general's office (NABU) won't be able to pursue corruption charges, and that it may be difficult to fire Shokin without cause.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/EbmDLhJ43cU

Later in the leaked audio on February 18, 2016 - less than three months after the Kerry conversation - Poroshenko delivers some "positive news."

"Yesterday I met with General Prosecutor Shokin," says Poroshenko. And despite of the fact that we didn't have any corruption charges, we don't have any information about him doing something wrong, I specially asked him - no, it was day before yesterday - I specially asked him to resign. In, uh, as his, uh, position as a state person. And despite of the fact that he has a support in the power. And as a finish of my meeting with him, he promised to give me the statement on resignation. And one hour ago he bring me the written statement of his resignation . And this is my second step for keeping my promises. "

To which Biden replied: "I agree."

https://www.youtube.com/embed/EbmDLhJ43cU?start=246

Four weeks later on March 22, 2016, Biden says "Tell me that there is a new government and a new Prosecutor General. I am prepared to do a public signing of the commitment for the billion dollars. "

Poroshenko tells Biden that one of the leading candidates is the man who replaced Shokin, Yuriy Lutsenko who later said in a deposition that Hunter Biden and his business partners were receiving millions of dollars in compensation from Burisma.

Then, on May 13, 2016, Biden congratulates Poroshenko on "getting the new Prosecutor General," saying that it will be "critical for him to work quickly to repair the damage Shokin did."

" And I'm a man of my word ," Biden adds. "And now that the new Prosecutor General is in place, we're ready to move forward to signing that one billion dollar loan guarantee ."

Poroshenko thanks Biden for the support, and says that it was a "very tough challenge and a very difficult job."

Shokin, meanwhile, filed a criminal complaint against Biden in Kiev this February, in which he writes:

During the period 2014-2016, the Prosecutor General's Office of Ukraine was conducting a preliminary investigation into a series of serious crimes committed by the former Minister of Ecology of Ukraine Mykola Zlotchevsky and by the managers of the company "Burisma Holding Limited "(Cyprus), the board of directors of which included, among others, Hunter Biden, son of Joseph Biden, then vice-president of the United States of America.

The investigation into the above-mentioned crimes was carried out in strict accordance with Criminal Law and was under my personal control as the Prosecutor General of Ukraine.

Owing to my firm position on the above-mentioned cases regarding their prompt and objective investigation, which should have resulted in the arrest and the indictment of the guilty parties, Joseph Biden developed a firmly hostile attitude towards me which led him to express in private conversations with senior Ukrainian officials, as well as in his public speeches, a categorical request for my immediate dismissal from the post of Attorney General of Ukraine in exchange for the sum of US $ 1 billion in as a financial guarantee from the United States for the benefit of Ukraine.

* * *

And while we cannot verify the authenticity of the recordings with absolute certainty, we now have the audio revealing how the deed was orchestrated.

[May 18, 2020] About Evelyn Farkas political activity

May 18, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Dr Anon 36 minutes ago

Another woman who should be at home taking care of her husband, home and children.

mtumba, 29 minutes ago

What the **** do you have against husbands and children?

rockstone, 44 minutes ago

She closes by defiantly claiming "I wasn't silenced in 2017, and I won't be silenced now."

By all means Evelyn, keep talking. Especially after your lawyers tell you to shut up.

[May 16, 2020] A model democrat

Highly recommended!
May 16, 2020 | www.youtube.com

Absaalookemensch , 1 week ago

Adam Schiff is a model Democrat. He has no integrity, decency, honesty. He's a model Democrat.

[May 16, 2020] Rep Zeldin calls on Adam Schiff to resign

May 16, 2020 | www.youtube.com

George Powe , 5 days ago

Schiff resign? He should be tried for TREASON and EXECUTED!

CheapSkateSimmer , 5 days ago

Schiffty Schiff needs to answer questions under oath.

Tim Nobody , 1 day ago (edited)

Adam Schiff knew the truth and when on TV everyday and lied to the American people. He should be ran out of DC..

HugsBach , 5 days ago

Adam Schif needs to be impeached, criminal prosecution, perjury too!

[May 16, 2020] John Solomon 'Everything about the Schiff-show is falling apart' - YouTube

May 16, 2020 | www.youtube.com

Rosco Coltrane , 2 days ago (edited)

Why isn't Schiff in Jail. Isn't Barry's Alumni worried about the rule of law?

Juju Rellama , 2 days ago

She [Amb. Yovanovitch's] hated Trump. Blamed him for her failed career. Whistleblowers don't have long careers

Will Hunt , 2 days ago

Nothing but lies for 4 years from Dems. Pathetic and disgusting. A Coup, Imagine that?

mark spannar , 2 days ago

She needs to be put in jail. The American people demand and deserve justice .

Cy Todd , 2 days ago (edited)

"Wasn't completely honest"... mistress of understatements. She lied. The left's narrative is imploding. Corrupt Ambassador, and the left whined when she was fired. Belongs in prison... in Ukraine.

fiddlemastr jay , 2 days ago

Yovanovitch is just another piece of Rhodes Scholar trash.

ZW , 2 days ago

Is she lied she better be charged with a flipping crime. Time to stop playing coy.

RM SemFl , 2 days ago

Yovanovitch sat their and lied the whole time. Why isn't she being charged?

JDSwamp , 2 days ago

She's Princeton. The quality! The Ivy! Yovanovitch LIED under oath.

imaGINAtion , 2 days ago

During the impeachment sham hearing, Yovanovitch said she had not recall anything about the well known national scandal Burisma in Ukraine. Surprising, isn't it?

Noam Pitlik , 2 days ago

Schiff doesn't strike me as the 'fall on his sword' type. Maybe he will spill the beans someday.

Dave Wo , 2 days ago

Yeah.... Yovanovitch is a liar. Throw her in prison for lying to congress.

Vladim IANCU , 2 days ago

The entire Obama Administration was, for eight long years, a string of crimes and cover-ups by the then President and all his partners in wrongdoings. When is Lady Justice going to prevail?

[May 16, 2020] Greg Gutfeld Something has got to be done about Adam Schiff - YouTube

May 16, 2020 | www.youtube.com

terry ortiz , 1 day ago

The fake media isn't angry with their sources because the sources lied because the media were partners in crime.

[May 15, 2020] NATO v. Nord Stream 2 caucus99percent

May 15, 2020 | caucus99percent.com

NATO v. Nord Stream 2

gjohnsit on Thu, 05/14/2020 - 3:54pm After a five month delay, Russia is ready to complete the Nord Stream 2 pipeline .

The Nord Stream 2 pipeline, built to increase the flow of Russian gas into Europe's biggest economy, was thwarted five months ago after U.S. President Donald Trump imposed sanctions that forced workers to retreat. Now, after a three-month voyage circumnavigating the globe, the Akademik Cherskiy, the Russian pipe-laying vessel that's a prime candidate to finish the project, has anchored off the German port where the remaining pipeline sections are waiting to be installed...
Satellite images captured by Planet Labs inc. on May 10 show that sections of pipeline have been moved to a jetty equipped with a crane for loading. Ship-tracking data shows that a dredging vessel operated by a Nord Stream 2 contractor, as well as a Russian pipe-laying-crane ship are also in the vicinity and that the Akademik Cherskiy had moved as of Wednesday next to the jetty loaded with pipes.

In order to complete the final 100-mile stretch of Nord Stream 2, Russia effectively needs to use its own vessels due to U.S. sanctions.
The U.S. still thinks that it can stop Gazprom from finishing the pipeline, but that's insane.

Tens of billions of dollars, along with Putin's reputation as a savvy geopolitical chess master, have been invested in the pipeline project. However, Moscow is now running out of viable options. The only move left is to proceed in defiance of sanctions that will adversely affect many in the higher echelons of the Russian establishment.

This is checkmate.

Yes, this is checkmate...for Putin.
After investing billions of dollars, Gazprom would go bust if they don't finish this pipeline. So do you really think that more U.S. sanctions will give them even a moment's pause?
Sanctions are pointless now.

The question here is, why was this pipeline such a big deal?
To give you an idea, consider the recently completed Turkstream pipeline .
The Turkstream pipeline network isn't even fully integrated yet, and it's already having an impact. Who it's impacting is the key.

Although Ukraine has not been importing any Russian gas for its domestic needs since November 2015, it has signed a five-year transit contract with Gazprom for a minimum 65bcm in 2020 and 40bcm/year from 2021.

However, transit volumes have fallen 47% year on year in the first four months of 2020, amounting to 15.5bcm. The steep drop has been linked to European oversupply and low demand, but also to the lack of transit to the Balkan region after Russian exports to Turkey, Bulgaria and Greece were diverted to the new TurkStream pipeline from January 2020.

"Our transmission system can transit 110bcm of gas [annually] but this year we expect only 50-55bcm of transit," Makogon added, pointing out that volumes would drop even lower if Russia commissions Nord Stream 2 , a 55bcm/year subsea pipeline designed to link Russia directly to Germany via the Baltic Sea.

Ukraine stands to lose $3 Billion a year in transit fees from Russia once Nord Stream 2 is completed this year. This will devastate Ukraine's budget and economy.
Before you feel any sympathy for Ukraine, consider the situation that Ukraine put Russia in.

Ukraine's NATO membership ambitions were written into the Ukrainian Constitution in February 2019 via an amendment that also confirmed the goal of eventually joining the European Union.

NATO integration has remained official Ukrainian policy following the April 2019 election of President Zelenskyy. In early 2020, the country was said to be on track to secure NATO Enhanced Opportunity Partner status later in the year if the pace of reforms was maintained.

NATO's mission continues to be "destroy Russia". So you can see why Russia would feel the need to, at the very least, not help fund an enemy nation.
Plus the potential consequences of Ukraine entering NATO are terrible.

There are ongoing concerns that membership would allow Ukraine to immediately invoke Article 5 of the NATO treaty, the stipulation that an armed attack against one member state is an attack against them all.

Fortunately, the new Ukraine government of President Zelensky doesn't appear nearly so eager for a military confrontation with Russia. Plus public support for joining NATO is dropping.

If I was to make a prediction, I would say that NATO was about to experience a political setback.

[May 14, 2020] NYT Falsely Blames Russia For Cyberattack Committed By British Hacker

Chancellor Angela Merkel that stupid? "Chancellor Angela Merkel used strong words on Wednesday condemning an "outrageous" cyberattack by Russia's foreign intelligence service on the German Parliament, her personal email account included. Russia, she said, was pursuing "a strategy of hybrid warfare."
Notable quotes:
"... That alleged attack happened in 2015. The attribution to Russia is as shoddy as all attributions of cyberattacks are. ..."
"... Intelligence officials had long suspected Russian operatives were behind the attack, but they took five years to collect the evidence, which was presented in a report given to Ms. Merkel's office just last week. ..."
"... This is really funny because we recently learned that the company which investigated the alleged DNC intrusion, CrowdStrike, had found no evidence , as in zero, that a Russian hacker group had targeted the DNC or that DNC emails were exfiltrated over the Internet: ..."
"... CrowdStrike, the private cyber-security firm that first accused Russia of hacking Democratic Party emails and served as a critical source for U.S. intelligence officials in the years-long Trump-Russia probe, acknowledged to Congress more than two years ago that it had no concrete evidence that Russian hackers stole emails from the Democratic National Committee's server. ..."
"... The DNC emails were most likely stolen by its local network administrator, Seth Rich , who provided them to Wikileaks before he was killed in a suspicious 'robbery' during which nothing was taken. ..."
"... The whole attribution of case of the stolen DNC emails to Russia is based on exactly nothing but intelligence rumors and CrowdStrike claims for which it had no evidence. As there is no evidence at all that the DNC was attacked by a Russian cybergroup what does that mean for the attribution of the attack on the German Bundestag to the very same group? ..."
May 14, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

The New York Times continues its anti-Russia campaign with a report about an old cyberattack on German parliament which also targeted the parliament office of Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Merkel Is 'Outraged' by Russian Hack but Struggling to Respond
Patience with President Vladimir Putin is running thin in Berlin. But Germany needs Russia's help on several geopolitical fronts from Syria to Ukraine.

NYT Berlin correspondent Katrin Bennhold writes:

Chancellor Angela Merkel used strong words on Wednesday condemning an "outrageous" cyberattack by Russia's foreign intelligence service on the German Parliament, her personal email account included. Russia, she said, was pursuing "a strategy of hybrid warfare."

But asked how Berlin intended to deal with recent revelations implicating the Russians, Ms. Merkel was less forthcoming.

"We always reserve the right to take measures," she said in Parliament, then immediately added, "Nevertheless, I will continue to strive for a good relationship with Russia, because I believe that there is every reason to always continue these diplomatic efforts."

That alleged attack happened in 2015. The attribution to Russia is as shoddy as all attributions of cyberattacks are.

Intelligence officials had long suspected Russian operatives were behind the attack, but they took five years to collect the evidence, which was presented in a report given to Ms. Merkel's office just last week.

Officials say the report traced the attack to the same Russian hacker group that targeted the Democratic Party during the U.S. presidential election campaign in 2016.

This is really funny because we recently learned that the company which investigated the alleged DNC intrusion, CrowdStrike, had found no evidence , as in zero, that a Russian hacker group had targeted the DNC or that DNC emails were exfiltrated over the Internet:

CrowdStrike, the private cyber-security firm that first accused Russia of hacking Democratic Party emails and served as a critical source for U.S. intelligence officials in the years-long Trump-Russia probe, acknowledged to Congress more than two years ago that it had no concrete evidence that Russian hackers stole emails from the Democratic National Committee's server.
...
[CrowdStrike President Shawn] Henry personally led the remediation and forensics analysis of the DNC server after being warned of a breach in late April 2016; his work was paid for by the DNC, which refused to turn over its server to the FBI. Asked for the date when alleged Russian hackers stole data from the DNC server, Henry testified that CrowdStrike did not in fact know if such a theft occurred at all : "We did not have concrete evidence that the data was exfiltrated [moved electronically] from the DNC, but we have indicators that it was exfiltrated," Henry said.

The DNC emails were most likely stolen by its local network administrator, Seth Rich , who provided them to Wikileaks before he was killed in a suspicious 'robbery' during which nothing was taken.

The whole attribution of case of the stolen DNC emails to Russia is based on exactly nothing but intelligence rumors and CrowdStrike claims for which it had no evidence. As there is no evidence at all that the DNC was attacked by a Russian cybergroup what does that mean for the attribution of the attack on the German Bundestag to the very same group?

While the NYT also mentions that NSA actually snooped on Merkel's private phonecalls it tries to keep the spotlight on Russia:

As such, Germany's democracy has been a target of very different kinds of Russian intelligence operations, officials say. In December 2016, 900,000 Germans lost access to internet and telephone services following a cyberattack traced to Russia.

bigger

Ahem. No!

That mass attack on internet home routers, which by the way happened in November 2016 not in December, was done with the Mirai worm :

More than 900,000 customers of German ISP Deutsche Telekom (DT) were knocked offline this week after their Internet routers got infected by a new variant of a computer worm known as Mirai. The malware wriggled inside the routers via a newly discovered vulnerability in a feature that allows ISPs to remotely upgrade the firmware on the devices. But the new Mirai malware turns that feature off once it infests a device, complicating DT's cleanup and restoration efforts.
...
This new variant of Mirai builds on malware source code released at the end of September . That leak came a little more a week after a botnet based on Mirai was used in a record-sized attack that caused KrebsOnSecurity to go offline for several days . Since then, dozens of new Mirai botnets have emerged , all competing for a finite pool of vulnerable IoT systems that can be infected.

The attack has not been attributed to Russia but to a British man who offered attacks as a service. He was arrested in February 2017:

A 29-year-old man has been arrested at Luton airport by the UK's National Crime Agency (NCA) in connection with a massive internet attack that disrupted telephone, television and internet services in Germany last November. As regular readers of We Live Security will recall, over 900,000 Deutsche Telekom broadband customers were knocked offline last November as an alleged attempt was made to hijack their routers into a destructive botnet.
...
The NCA arrested the British man under a European Arrest Warrant issued by Germany's Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) who have described the attack as a threat to Germany's national communication infrastructure.

According to German prosecutors, the British man allegedly offered to sell access to the botnet on the computer underground. Agencies are planning to extradite the man to Germany, where – if convicted – he could face up to ten years imprisonment.

The British man, one Daniel Kaye, plead guilty in court and was sentenced to 18 month imprisonment :

During the trial, Daniel admitted that he never intended for the routers to cease functioning. He only wanted to silently control them so he can use them as part of a DDoS botnet to increase his botnet firepower. As discussed earlier he also confessed being paid by competitors to takedown Lonestar.

In Aug 2017 Daniel was extradited back to the UK to face extortion charges after attempting to blackmail Lloyds and Barclays banks. According to press reports, he asked the Lloyds to pay about £75,000 in bitcoins for the attack to be called off.

The Mirai attack is widely known to have been attributed to Kaye. The case has been discussed at length . IT security journalist Brian Krebs, who's site was also attacked by a Mirai bot net, has written several stories about it. It was never 'traced to Russia' or attributed it to anyone else but Daniel Kaye.

Besides that Kennhold writes of "Russia's foreign intelligence service, known as the G.R.U.". The real Russian foreign intelligence services is the SVR. The military intelligence agency of Russia was once called GRU but has been renamed to GU.

The New York Times just made up the claim about Russia hacking in Germany from absolutely nothing. The whole piece was published without even the most basic research and fact checking.

It seems that for the Times anything can be blamed on Russia completely independent of what the actually facts say.

Posted by b on May 14, 2020 at 14:38 UTC | Permalink


J Swift , May 14 2020 15:05 utc | 1

Good article!

Along the same lines, it always bothered me that among all the (mostly contrived) arguments about who might have been responsible for the alleged "hacking" of DNC as well as Clinton's emails, we never heard mentioned one single time the one third party that we absolutely KNOW had intercepted and collected all of those emails--the NSA! Never a peep about how US intelligence services could be tempted to mischief when in possession of everyone's sensitive, personal information.

Petri Krohn , May 14 2020 15:26 utc | 2
The "Fancy Bear" group (also knowns as advanced persistent threat 28) that is claimed to be behind the hacks is likely little more than the collection of hacking tools shared on the open and hidden parts of RuNet or Russian-speaking Internet. Many of these Russian-speaking hackers are actually Ukrainians .

Some of the Russian hackers also worked for the FSB, like the members of Shaltai Boltai group that were later arrested for treason. George Eliason claims Shaltai Boltai actually worked for Ukrainians. For a short version of the story read this:

Cyberanalyst George Eliason Claims that the "Fancy Bear" Who Hacked the DNC Server is Ukrainian Intelligence – In League with the Atlantic Council and Crowdstrike

Cyberanalyst George Eliason has written some intriguing blogs recently claiming that the "Fancy Bear" which hacked the DNC server in mid-2016 was in fact a branch of Ukrainian intelligence linked to the Atlantic Council and Crowdstrike. I invite you to have a go at one of his recent essays...

Patrick Armstrong , May 14 2020 15:27 utc | 3 Wow! You've done it again. I was just writing my Sitrep and thinking what an amazing coincidence it is that, just as the Russian pipelaying ship arrived to finish Nord Stream, Merkel is told that them nasty Russkies are doing nasty things. I come here and you've already solved it. Yet another scoop. Congratulations.
Brendan , May 14 2020 15:41 utc | 4
The NYT has removed that sentence about the attack on internet/phone access:

"Correction: May 14, 2020

An earlier version of this article incorrectly attributed responsibility for a 2016 cyberattack in which 900,000 Germans lost access to internet and telephone services. The attack was carried out by a British citizen, not Russia. The article also misstated when the attack took place. It was in November, not December. The sentence has been removed from the article. "

That was there for at least 13 hours from yesterday evening onwards. The page was archived this morning though before that edit:
https://web.archive.org/web/20200513221700/https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/13/world/europe/merkel-russia-cyberattack.html

Norwegian , May 14 2020 15:45 utc | 5
From this we can learn that anything can be blamed by MSM, completely independent of what the facts are. It is not limited to allegations related to Russia or China, but any and all claims by MSM that have no direct reference to provable fact.
james , May 14 2020 15:45 utc | 6
great coverage b... thank you... facts don't matter.. what matters is taking down any positive image of russia, or better - putting up a constantly negative one... of this the intel and usa msm are consistent... the sad reality is a lot of people will believe this bullshit too...

i was just reading paul robinsons blog last night - #DEMOCRACY RIP AND THE NARCISSISM OF RUSSIAGATE .. even paul is starting to getting pissed off on the insanity of the media towards russia which is rare from what i have read from him!

@ 3 patrick armstrong.. keep up the good work!! thanks for your work..

Brendan , May 14 2020 15:48 utc | 7
OK I don't know how to fix the formatting in my last link but you can look up https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/13/world/europe/merkel-russia-cyberattack.html on https://web.archive.org for 10:46 May 14 2020
m droy , May 14 2020 15:51 utc | 8
There is already a correction made to the DT attack - someone reads MofA! Shame they don't get more of their new interpretation form here.

Whole piece reads here like it started as a Merkel gets close to Russia piece, shown around to colleagues and politicians for feedback, and a ton of fake "why Merkel actually hates the Russians" nonsense was added in.

After all pretty much everyone has tapped Merkel's phone by now.

tucenz , May 14 2020 16:22 utc | 9
Fairy tales told by Danny Kaye....

[May 11, 2020] Tucker: Adam Schiff should resign

This is nationwide gaslighting by Clinton gang of neoliberals who attempted coup d'état, and Adam Schiff was just one of the key figures in this coupe d'état, king of modern Joe McCarthy able and willing to destroy a person using false evidence
What is interesting is that Tucker attacked Republicans for aiding and abetting the coup d'état against Trump
May 11, 2020 | www.youtube.com

RionE23 , 2 days ago

I'm sick of politicians getting a free pass by "resigning" no, they break the law they go to jail.. just like the rest of us.

shannon11590 , 1 day ago

Adam Schiff simply needs to be criminally prosecuted and imprisoned for the countless number of criminal acts that he committed while in Congress.

[May 11, 2020] Twin Pillars of Russiagate Crumble by Ray McGovern

Highly recommended!
So the RussiaGate was giant gaslighting of the US electorate by Clinton gang and intelligence agencies rogues.
Notable quotes:
"... For two and a half years the House Intelligence Committee knew CrowdStrike didn't have the goods on Russia. Now the public knows too. ..."
"... House Intelligence Committee documents released Thursday reveal that the committee was told two and half years ago that the FBI had no concrete evidence that Russia hacked Democratic National Committee computers to filch the DNC emails published by WikiLeaks ..."
"... Henry testifies that "it appears it [the theft of DNC emails] was set up to be exfiltrated, but we just don't have the evidence that says it actually left." ..."
"... This, in VIPS view, suggests that someone with access to DNC computers "set up" selected emails for transfer to an external storage device – a thumb drive, for example. The Internet is not needed for such a transfer. Use of the Internet would have been detected, enabling Henry to pinpoint any "exfiltration" over that network. ..."
"... Bill Binney, a former NSA technical director and a VIPs member, filed a sworn affidavit in the Roger Stone case. Binney said: "WikiLeaks did not receive stolen data from the Russian government. Intrinsic metadata in the publicly available files on WikiLeaks demonstrates that the files acquired by WikiLeaks were delivered in a medium such as a thumb drive." ..."
"... Both pillars of Russiagate–collusion and a Russian hack–have now fairly crumbled. ..."
"... Thursday's disclosure of testimony before the House Intelligence Committee shows Chairman Adam Schiff lied not only about Trump-Putin "collusion," [which the Mueller report failed to prove and whose allegations were based on DNC and Clinton-financed opposition research] but also about the even more basic issue of "Russian hacking" of the DNC. [See: "The Democratic Money Behind Russia-gate."] ..."
"... Fortunately, the cameras were still on when I approached Schiff during the Q&A: "You have every confidence but no evidence, is that right?" I asked him. His answer was a harbinger of things to come. This video clip may be worth the four minutes needed to watch it. ..."
"... Schiff and his partners in crime will be in for much tougher treatment if Trump allows Attorney General Barr and US Attorney John Durham to bring their investigation into the origins of Russia-gate to a timely conclusion. Barr's dismissal on Thursday of charges against Flynn, after released FBI documents revealed that a perjury trap was set for him to keep Russiagate going, may be a sign of things to come. ..."
May 11, 2020 | original.antiwar.com

For two and a half years the House Intelligence Committee knew CrowdStrike didn't have the goods on Russia. Now the public knows too.

House Intelligence Committee documents released Thursday reveal that the committee was told two and half years ago that the FBI had no concrete evidence that Russia hacked Democratic National Committee computers to filch the DNC emails published by WikiLeaks in July 2016.

The until-now-buried, closed-door testimony came on Dec. 5, 2017 from Shawn Henry, a protégé of former FBI Director Robert Mueller (from 2001 to 2012), for whom Henry served as head of the Bureau's cyber crime investigations unit.

Henry retired in 2012 and took a senior position at CrowdStrike, the cyber security firm hired by the DNC and the Clinton campaign to investigate the cyber intrusions that occurred before the 2016 presidential election.

The following excerpts from Henry's testimony speak for themselves. The dialogue is not a paragon of clarity; but if read carefully, even cyber neophytes can understand:

Ranking Member Mr. [Adam] Schiff: Do you know the date on which the Russians exfiltrated the data from the DNC? when would that have been?

Mr. Henry: Counsel just reminded me that, as it relates to the DNC, we have indicators that data was exfiltrated from the DNC, but we have no indicators that it was exfiltrated (sic). There are times when we can see data exfiltrated, and we can say conclusively. But in this case, it appears it was set up to be exfiltrated, but we just don't have the evidence that says it actually left.

Mr. [Chris] Stewart of Utah: Okay. What about the emails that everyone is so, you know, knowledgeable of? Were there also indicators that they were prepared but not evidence that they actually were exfiltrated?

Mr. Henry: There's not evidence that they were actually exfiltrated. There's circumstantial evidence but no evidence that they were actually exfiltrated.

Mr. Stewart: But you have a much lower degree of confidence that this data actually left than you do, for example, that the Russians were the ones who breached the security?

Mr. Henry: There is circumstantial evidence that that data was exfiltrated off the network.

Mr. Stewart: And circumstantial is less sure than the other evidence you've indicated.

Mr. Henry: "We didn't have a sensor in place that saw data leave. We said that the data left based on the circumstantial evidence. That was the conclusion that we made.

In answer to a follow-up query on this line of questioning, Henry delivered this classic: "Sir, I was just trying to be factually accurate, that we didn't see the data leave, but we believe it left, based on what we saw."

Inadvertently highlighting the tenuous underpinning for CrowdStrike's "belief" that Russia hacked the DNC emails, Henry added: "There are other nation-states that collect this type of intelligence for sure, but the – what we would call the tactics and techniques were consistent with what we'd seen associated with the Russian state."

Interesting admission in Crowdstrike CEO Shaun Henry's testimony. Henry is asked when "the Russians" exfiltrated the data from DNC.

Henry: "We did not have concrete evidence that the data was exfiltrated from the DNC, but we have indicators that it was exfiltrated." ?? pic.twitter.com/TyePqd6b5P

-- Aaron Maté (@aaronjmate) May 8, 2020

Not Transparent

Try as one may, some of the testimony remains opaque. Part of the problem is ambiguity in the word "exfiltration."

The word can denote (1) transferring data from a computer via the Internet (hacking) or (2) copying data physically to an external storage device with intent to leak it.

As the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity has been reporting for more than three years, metadata and other hard forensic evidence indicate that the DNC emails were not hacked – by Russia or anyone else.

Rather, they were copied onto an external storage device (probably a thumb drive) by someone with access to DNC computers. Besides, any hack over the Internet would almost certainly have been discovered by the dragnet coverage of the National Security Agency and its cooperating foreign intelligence services.

Henry testifies that "it appears it [the theft of DNC emails] was set up to be exfiltrated, but we just don't have the evidence that says it actually left."

This, in VIPS view, suggests that someone with access to DNC computers "set up" selected emails for transfer to an external storage device – a thumb drive, for example. The Internet is not needed for such a transfer. Use of the Internet would have been detected, enabling Henry to pinpoint any "exfiltration" over that network.

Bill Binney, a former NSA technical director and a VIPs member, filed a sworn affidavit in the Roger Stone case. Binney said: "WikiLeaks did not receive stolen data from the Russian government. Intrinsic metadata in the publicly available files on WikiLeaks demonstrates that the files acquired by WikiLeaks were delivered in a medium such as a thumb drive."

The So-Called Intelligence Community Assessment

There is not much good to be said about the embarrassingly evidence-impoverished Intelligence Community Assessment (ICA) of Jan. 6, 2017 accusing Russia of hacking the DNC.

But the ICA did include two passages that are highly relevant and demonstrably true:

(1) In introductory remarks on "cyber incident attribution", the authors of the ICA made a highly germane point: "The nature of cyberspace makes attribution of cyber operations difficult but not impossible. Every kind of cyber operation – malicious or not – leaves a trail."

(2) "When analysts use words such as 'we assess' or 'we judge,' [these] are not intended to imply that we have proof that shows something to be a fact. Assessments are based on collected information, which is often incomplete or fragmentary High confidence in a judgment does not imply that the assessment is a fact or a certainty; such judgments might be wrong." [And one might add that they commonly ARE wrong when analysts succumb to political pressure, as was the case with the ICA.]

The intelligence-friendly corporate media, nonetheless, immediately awarded the status of Holy Writ to the misnomered "Intelligence Community Assessment" (it was a rump effort prepared by "handpicked analysts" from only CIA, FBI, and NSA), and chose to overlook the banal, full-disclosure-type caveats embedded in the assessment itself.

Then National Intelligence Director James Clapper and the directors of the CIA, FBI, and NSA briefed President Obama on the ICA on Jan. 5, 2017, the day before they gave it personally to President-elect Donald Trump.

On Jan. 18, 2017, at his final press conference, Obama saw fit to use lawyerly language on the key issue of how the DNC emails got to WikiLeaks , in an apparent effort to cover his own derriere.

Obama: "The conclusions of the intelligence community with respect to the Russian hacking were not conclusive as to whether WikiLeaks was witting or not in being the conduit through which we heard about the DNC e-mails that were leaked."

So we ended up with "inconclusive conclusions" on that admittedly crucial point. What Obama was saying is that U.S. intelligence did not know -- or professed not to know -- exactly how the alleged Russian transfer to WikiLeaks was supposedly made, whether through a third party, or cutout, and he muddied the waters by first saying it was a hack, and then a leak.

From the very outset, in the absence of any hard evidence, from NSA or from its foreign partners, of an Internet hack of the DNC emails, the claim that "the Russians gave the DNC emails to WikiLeaks " rested on thin gruel.

In November 2018 at a public forum, I asked Clapper to explain why President Obama still had serious doubts in late Jan. 2017, less than two weeks after Clapper and the other intelligence chiefs had thoroughly briefed the outgoing president about their "high-confidence" findings.

Clapper replied : "I cannot explain what he [Obama] said or why. But I can tell you we're, we're pretty sure we know, or knew at the time, how WikiLeaks got those emails." Pretty sure?

Preferring CrowdStrike; 'Splaining to Congress

CrowdStrike already had a tarnished reputation for credibility when the DNC and Clinton campaign chose it to do work the FBI should have been doing to investigate how the DNC emails got to WikiLeaks . It had asserted that Russians hacked into a Ukrainian artillery app, resulting in heavy losses of howitzers in Ukraine's struggle with separatists supported by Russia. A Voice of America report explained why CrowdStrike was forced to retract that claim.

Why did FBI Director James Comey not simply insist on access to the DNC computers? Surely he could have gotten the appropriate authorization. In early January 2017, reacting to media reports that the FBI never asked for access, Comey told the Senate Intelligence Committee there were "multiple requests at different levels" for access to the DNC servers.

"Ultimately what was agreed to is the private company would share with us what they saw," he said. Comey described CrowdStrike as a "highly respected" cybersecurity company.

Asked by committee Chairman Richard Burr (R-NC) whether direct access to the servers and devices would have helped the FBI in their investigation, Comey said it would have. "Our forensics folks would always prefer to get access to the original device or server that's involved, so it's the best evidence," he said.

Five months later, after Comey had been fired, Burr gave him a Mulligan in the form of a few kid-gloves, clearly well-rehearsed, questions:

BURR: And the FBI, in this case, unlike other cases that you might investigate – did you ever have access to the actual hardware that was hacked? Or did you have to rely on a third party to provide you the data that they had collected?

COMEY: In the case of the DNC, we did not have access to the devices themselves. We got relevant forensic information from a private party, a high-class entity, that had done the work. But we didn't get direct access.

BURR: But no content?

COMEY: Correct.

BURR: Isn't content an important part of the forensics from a counterintelligence standpoint?

COMEY: It is, although what was briefed to me by my folks – the people who were my folks at the time is that they had gotten the information from the private party that they needed to understand the intrusion by the spring of 2016.

In June last year it was revealed that CrowdStrike never produced an un-redacted or final forensic report for the government because the FBI never required it to, according to the Justice Department.

By any normal standard, former FBI Director Comey would now be in serious legal trouble, as should Clapper, former CIA Director John Brennan, et al. Additional evidence of FBI misconduct under Comey seems to surface every week – whether the abuses of FISA, misconduct in the case against Gen. Michael Flynn, or misleading everyone about Russian hacking of the DNC. If I were attorney general, I would declare Comey a flight risk and take his passport. And I would do the same with Clapper and Brennan.

Schiff: Every Confidence, But No Evidence

Both pillars of Russiagate–collusion and a Russian hack–have now fairly crumbled.

Thursday's disclosure of testimony before the House Intelligence Committee shows Chairman Adam Schiff lied not only about Trump-Putin "collusion," [which the Mueller report failed to prove and whose allegations were based on DNC and Clinton-financed opposition research] but also about the even more basic issue of "Russian hacking" of the DNC. [See: "The Democratic Money Behind Russia-gate."]

Five days after Trump took office, I had an opportunity to confront Schiff personally about evidence that Russia "hacked" the DNC emails. He had repeatedly given that canard the patina of flat fact during an address at the old Hillary Clinton/John Podesta "think tank," The Center for American Progress Action Fund.

Fortunately, the cameras were still on when I approached Schiff during the Q&A: "You have every confidence but no evidence, is that right?" I asked him. His answer was a harbinger of things to come. This video clip may be worth the four minutes needed to watch it.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/SdOy-l13FEg

Schiff and his partners in crime will be in for much tougher treatment if Trump allows Attorney General Barr and US Attorney John Durham to bring their investigation into the origins of Russia-gate to a timely conclusion. Barr's dismissal on Thursday of charges against Flynn, after released FBI documents revealed that a perjury trap was set for him to keep Russiagate going, may be a sign of things to come.

Given the timid way Trump has typically bowed to intelligence and law enforcement officials, including those who supposedly report to him, however, one might rather expect that, after a lot of bluster, he will let the too-big-to-imprison ones off the hook. The issues are now drawn; the evidence is copious; will the Deep State, nevertheless, be able to prevail this time?

Ray McGovern works with Tell the Word, a publishing arm of the ecumenical Church of the Saviour in inner-city Washington. His 27-year career as a CIA analyst includes serving as Chief of the Soviet Foreign Policy Branch and preparer/briefer of the President's Daily Brief. He is co-founder of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS). This originally appeared at Consortium News .

[May 07, 2020] There's No Question It's A Fraud Fmr Trump Attorney Says Mueller Badly Misled White House, Schiff Is Nancy's Liar Zero

Highly recommended!
May 07, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com
Former Trump attorney John Dowd says it's "staggering" that former Special Counsel Robert Mueller's "so-called Dream Team would put on such a fraud," after the Wednesday release of the investigation's "scope memo" revealed that Mueller was tasked with investigating accusations from Clinton-funded operative Christopher Steele which the DOJ already knew were debunked . "In the last few days, I have been going back through my files and we were badly misled by Mueller and his senior people , particularly in the meetings that we had," Dowd told Fox News Radio host Brian Kilmeade on Thursday.

The scope memo also revealed that Mueller's authority went significantly beyond what was previously known - including "allegations that Carter Page committed a crime or crimes by colluding with Russian government officials with respect to the Russian government's efforts to interfere with the 2016 election for President of the United States, in violation of United States law," yet as John Solomon of Just The News noted on Wednesday - the FBI had already:

  • fired Steele as an informant for leaking;
  • interviewed Steele's sub-source, who disputed information attributed to him;
  • ascertained that allegations Steele had given the FBI specifically about Page were inaccurate and likely came from Russian intelligence sources as disinformation;
  • been informed repeatedly by the CIA that Page was not a Russian stooge but, rather, a cooperating intelligence asset for the United States government.

" There's no question it's a fraud I think the whole report is just nonsense and it's staggering that the so-called 'Dream Team' would put on such a fraud ," Dowd said, according to Fox News .

Dowd also discussed Connecticut U.S. Attorney John Durham's investigation into the origins of the Russia probe , which is expected to be wrapped up by the end of the summer.

"Durham has really got a load on his hands tracking all this down," Dowd said.

Durham was appointed last year by Attorney General Bill Barr to review the events leading up to Trump's inauguration. However, Durham has since expanded his investigation to cover a post-election timeline spanning the spring of 2017, when Mueller was appointed as special counsel. - Fox News

"Nancy's Liar"

Dowd also circled back to a claim by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff that there was "direct evidence" that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia during the 2016 election, despite the fact that transcripts of House Intelligence Committee interviews proving otherwise .

"Schiff doesn't release these interviews because they're going to make him a liar," said Dowd, adding "They're going to expose him and he'll be run out of town."

"He lied for months in the impeachment inquiry. He's essentially Nancy [Pelosi]'s liar and he's now going to be exposed."

[May 07, 2020] Angry Bear " "cannot remember a single International Crisis in which the United States had no global presence at all"

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... Anne Applebaum is a bitter neocon. She is furious that people no longer read the Washington Post as the authoritative voice of US foreign policy. She has apparently made a tidy fortune warning us that the Russians are coming, but she wants even more. The Washington Post still views her as an expert, but the American people, as she herself complains, are no longer interested in her worn-out fantasies. She is buried in defense industry funded think tanks and she does the bidding of her masters. Every intelligent American reader should ridicule her as the propagandist she is. ..."
"... "McMaster's dangerous China hawkishness calls to mind something that Jim Mattis said about him regarding a different issue when they served together in the Trump administration: "Oh my God, that moron is going to get us all killed." His aggressiveness towards China is not driven by an assessment of the threat from China, but comes from his tendency to advocate for aggressive measures everywhere." ..."
"... The country which spends over trillion dollars on "defense" is by definition an imperial country and its foreign policy priorities are not that difficult to discern. ..."
"... And due to well fed MIC which maintains an army of lobbyists and along with FIRE sector controls Capitol Hill this is a Catch 22 situation (we can't abandon neocon Full Spectrum Dominance doctrine and can't continue as it will bankrupt the country) which might not end well for the country. ..."
"... Note how unprepared the country was to COVID-19 epidemic. Zero strategic thinking as if the next epidemic was not in the cards at least since swine fly ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2009_swine_flu_pandemic_in_the_United_States ). ..."
"... Some experts now claim that this is criminal incompetence on the part of Trump administration. "So, what does it mean to let thousands die by negligence, omission, failure to act, in a legal sense under international law?" asked Gonsalves, an assistant professor of epidemiology of microbial diseases at the Yale School of Public Health, in a tweet Wednesday morning. https://twitter.com/gregggonsalves/status/1257988303443431425 ..."
"... Please note that Trump campaigned in 2016 on the idea of disengagement from foreign wars and abandoning the global neoliberal empire built by his predecessors as well as halting neoliberal globalization. ..."
"... And what we got? We got this warmonger McMaster, bombing Syria on false flag chemical attack pretext, conflict with Russia over North Stream II and Ukraine, and the assassination of Soleimani. Such a bait and switch. ..."
May 07, 2020 | angrybearblog.com

likbez , May 6, 2020 11:53 pm

Hi run75441,

I do not share your enthusiasm about those two authors.

Anne Applebaum is married to "Full spectrum Dominance doctrine". Like any neocon she a regular well-paid MIC prostitute

http://ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2017/may/08/neocon-anne-applebaum-give-me-money-to-fight-russian-disinformation/

Neocon Anne Applebaum has never seen a bed she did not expect to find an evil Russian lurking beneath. More than a quarter of a century after the end of the Cold War, she cannot let go of that hysterical feeling that, "The Russians Are Coming, The Russians Are Coming!" In screeching screed after screeching screech, Applebaum is, like most neocons, a one trick pony: the US government needs to spend more money to counter the threat of the month. Usually it's Russia or Putin. But it can also be China, Iran, Assad, Gaddafi, Saddam, etc.

Nothing new, nothing interesting.

Anne Applebaum is a bitter neocon. She is furious that people no longer read the Washington Post as the authoritative voice of US foreign policy. She has apparently made a tidy fortune warning us that the Russians are coming, but she wants even more. The Washington Post still views her as an expert, but the American people, as she herself complains, are no longer interested in her worn-out fantasies. She is buried in defense industry funded think tanks and she does the bidding of her masters. Every intelligent American reader should ridicule her as the propagandist she is.

As for McMaster paper see Daniel Larison take on the subject in his brilliant post "McMaster and the Myths of Empire" https://www.theamericanconservative.com/larison/mcmaster-and-the-myths-of-empire/

Here is what he said:

"McMaster's dangerous China hawkishness calls to mind something that Jim Mattis said about him regarding a different issue when they served together in the Trump administration: "Oh my God, that moron is going to get us all killed." His aggressiveness towards China is not driven by an assessment of the threat from China, but comes from his tendency to advocate for aggressive measures everywhere."

And as a China scholar McMaster is not the best choice either:

McMaster uses the same "paper tiger image" to portray China as an unstoppable aggressor that can nonetheless be stopped at minimal risk.

I have heard from other colleagues that several CN scholars met w/ McMaster before he wrote this (while working on his book) and corrected him on many issues. He apparently ignored all of their views. This is what we face people: a simple, deceptive narrative is more seductive.

-- Michael

likbez, May 7, 2020 6:22 pm

The main thrust here is the US abandoning the world to China and a much weaker Russia. I am calling for the US to play a much broader role in the world as it has economic and strategic value

The road to hell is paved with good intentions. This is definitely above my pay grade, but the problem that I see here is that it is very unclear where "a much broader role in the world" ends and where "imperial overstretch" starts.

The country which spends over trillion dollars on "defense" is by definition an imperial country and its foreign policy priorities are not that difficult to discern.

And due to well fed MIC which maintains an army of lobbyists and along with FIRE sector controls Capitol Hill this is a Catch 22 situation (we can't abandon neocon Full Spectrum Dominance doctrine and can't continue as it will bankrupt the country) which might not end well for the country.

Note how unprepared the country was to COVID-19 epidemic. Zero strategic thinking as if the next epidemic was not in the cards at least since swine fly ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2009_swine_flu_pandemic_in_the_United_States ).

Some experts now claim that this is criminal incompetence on the part of Trump administration. "So, what does it mean to let thousands die by negligence, omission, failure to act, in a legal sense under international law?" asked Gonsalves, an assistant professor of epidemiology of microbial diseases at the Yale School of Public Health, in a tweet Wednesday morning. https://twitter.com/gregggonsalves/status/1257988303443431425

Please note that Trump campaigned in 2016 on the idea of disengagement from foreign wars and abandoning the global neoliberal empire built by his predecessors as well as halting neoliberal globalization. That's how he got anti-war independents to vote for him.

And what we got? We got this warmonger McMaster, bombing Syria on false flag chemical attack pretext, conflict with Russia over North Stream II and Ukraine, and the assassination of Soleimani. Such a bait and switch.

[May 05, 2020] German Regulator Plans to Deny Nord Stream 2 Waiver from New Gas Directive

May 05, 2020 | sputniknews.com

javascript:void(0)

Handelsblatt newspaper reported, citing the draft decision of the Federal Network Agency of Germany (BNA), that the BNA intends to reject an application filed by Nord Stream 2 for an exemption of the pipeline project from the requirements of the updated EU gas directive.

The agency announced in mid-January that it had accepted applications from the Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2 operators to exempt the gas pipelines from the requirements of the EU gas directive. According to Handelsblatt, the agency earlier on Friday sent a draft decision to the parties involved in the process. The newspaper added that the BNA will accept replies from them until 8 May, after which it will "promptly" make a final decision .

The reason for the rejection of the Nord Stream 2 application was the fact that in order to exempt the gas pipeline from the updated directive, the pipeline must have been completed before May 2019. Nord Stream 2 insisted that it was necessary to not proceed from the "construction" point of this requirement, but to take into account the fact that "billions of investments had already been made in accordance with the previous legal regime by the time the new directives of the domestic gas market came into force".

The spokesman for Nord Stream 2, Jens Mueller, said in January that the project meets all the requirements for its exemption from the rules of the updated EU gas directive in Germany and that this also applies to the completion date of the project.

[May 02, 2020] Gazprom ramps up its export capacity to China via the Power of Siberia line, plans to add a second compressor station this year

May 02, 2020 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

Mark Chapman April 27, 2020 at 3:59 pm

Gazprom ramps up its export capacity to China via the Power of Siberia line, plans to add a second compressor station this year. Drill rigs at the Kovykta Field are expected to go from 7 this year to 18 next year, and the extraction flows added to the Power of Siberia capacity.

https://www.spglobal.com/platts/en/market-insights/latest-news/natural-gas/041420-russias-gazprom-eyes-capacity-increase-on-china-gas-export-link

[May 02, 2020] The servants of Washington in the EU will try to extract every last concession they can before the pipeline is completed, but they absolutely want it and will back down if they think Russia would actually give up on completing it

May 02, 2020 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

Mark Chapman May 1, 2020 at 1:41 pm

The servants of Washington in the EU will try to extract every last concession they can before the pipeline is completed, but they absolutely want it and will back down if they think Russia would actually give up on completing it. Their strategy all along was to let Russia build it, but ensure its operation fell under the control of EU regulators so that they could get plenty of gas when they needed it, but use it as a negotiating tool when they had lots in reserve, start complaining about the price and try to get more pipeline volume for competitors, variations on the ideal where the Russians would absorb all the costs of building it, but would yield all advantages of the completed pipeline to the EU. Right up until the moment the first volumes go through the pipeline, the EU is going to act as a spoiler on a project they absolutely want to be completed.

If Russia said, all right then, fuck you; Get your gas from the Americans, if that's what you want, two things would happen – one, The Donald would come in his pants, and two, Brussels would go wait wait wait wait hold on. No need to be hasty.

But they think they are in a super-strong position now, because their American pals stopped it when it was just a whisker away from completion, and gave them breathing space to renegotiate a deal that was already set, and make up a bunch of new rules using that was then, this is now for a rationale. I hope Russia does the same to them once it's complete, and says yeah, you THOUGHT that was the price, but that was then, and charges them just enough under the American price that dropping them in favour of the Americans is not feasible, but still much more than they thought they would pay.

karl1haushofer May 1, 2020 at 12:40 pm
Another setback for Nord Stream 2: https://sputniknews.com/europe/202005011079159594-german-regulator-plans-to-deny-nord-stream-2-waiver-from-new-gas-directive -- reports/

[May 02, 2020] It'd be nice to think Russia is going to complete Nord Stream II right away just to spite Washington and its endless meddling, but as we have discussed before, there really is no hurry

May 02, 2020 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

Mark Chapman April 27, 2020 at 9:27 am

That's funny; I just checked her position last night, and it said she was bound for Nakhodka, due early in July.

Yeah; making 10 knots for Nakhodka, due there July 1st. That's where she left from originally, but so far as I could make out there is nothing in Nakhodka which might lead to the belief she will be there undergoing updates and tweaks for her employment finishing Nord Stream II.

https://www.vesselfinder.com/vessels/AKADEMIK-CHERSKIY-IMO-8770261-MMSI-273399760

It'd be nice to think Russia is going to complete Nord Stream II right away just to spite Washington and its endless meddling, but as we have discussed before, there really is no hurry. Russia is locked into a new medium-term transit contract with Ukraine, the Russian state has reduced income available due to the oil-price mess and low demand owing to the 'pandemic', and would be forging ahead with work that would cost it just as much money to do now as it would later, when it likely will have more cash available. I've read the AKADEMIK CHERKSIY needs a short refit and a little updating to ready her for Nord Stream work, since being principal pipelayer for that line possibly requires some different equipment or at least some adjustments. It likely would require crewing by some more specialists, as well, and there's no reason to believe they have been aboard all this time. I suppose they could meet the ship in Nakhodka, but there is nothing at this point to suggest that.

The only thing that argues for Russia pressing ahead now is the weather, which should be entering the season when it would be best for that kind of work. Otherwise, nothing suggests Russia is in a tearing rush to get on with it. Certainly the partners have not been told anything, and they don't appear to be unduly alarmed at the lack of immediate progress.

https://neftegaz.ru/en/news/companies/523680-no-plan-b-presented-to-austria-s-omv-on-nord-stream-2-gas-link-ceo/

[Apr 17, 2020] Declassified Horowitz Footnotes Show Obama Officials Knew Steele Dossier Was Russian Disinfo Designed To Target Trump Zero He

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... Authored by Sara Carter via SaraACarter.com, ..."
"... "Having reviewed the matter, and having consulted the heads of the relevant Intelligence Community elements, I have declassified the enclosed footnotes." ..."
"... , and that they were the product of RIS (Russian Intelligence Services) ..."
Apr 17, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Sara Carter via SaraACarter.com,

Systemic FBI Effort To Legitimize Steele and Use His Information To Target POTUS

Newly declassified footnotes from Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz's December FBI report reveals that senior Obama officials, including members of the FBI's Crossfire Hurricane team knew the dossier compiled by a former British spy during the 2016 election was Russian disinformation to target President Donald Trump.

Further, the partially declassified footnotes reveal that those senior intelligence officials were aware of the disinformation when they included the dossier in the Obama administration's Intelligence Communities Assessment (ICA).

As important, the footnotes reveal that there had been a request to validate information collected by British spy Christopher Steele as far back as 2015, and that there was concern among members of the FBI and intelligence community about his reliability. Those concerns were brushed aside by members of the Crossfire Hurricane team in their pursuit against the Trump campaign officials, according to sources who spoke to this reporter and the footnotes.

The explosive footnotes were partially declassified and made public Wednesday, after a lengthy review by the Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell's office. Grenell sent the letter Wednesday releasing the documents to Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa and Sen. Ron Johnson, R- Wisconsin, both who requested the declassification.

"Having reviewed the matter, and having consulted the heads of the relevant Intelligence Community elements, I have declassified the enclosed footnotes." Grenell consulted with DOJ Attorney General William Barr on the declassification of the documents.

Grassley and Johnson released a statement late Wednesday stating "as we can see from these now-declassified footnotes in the IG's report, Russian intelligence was aware of the dossier before the FBI even began its investigation and the FBI had reports in hand that their central piece of evidence was most likely tainted with Russian disinformation."

"Thanks to Attorney General Barr's and Acting Director Grenell's declassification of the footnotes, we know the FBI's justification to target an American Citizen was riddled with significant flaws," the Senator stated. "Inspector General Michael Horowitz and his team did what neither the FBI nor Special Counsel Mueller cared to do: examine and investigate corruption at the FBI, the sources of the Steele dossier, how it was disseminated, and reporting that it contained Russian disinformation."

The Footnotes

A U.S. Official familiar with the investigation into the FBI told this reporter that the footnotes "clearly show that the FBI team was or should have had been aware that the Russian Intelligence Services was trying to influence Steele's reporting in the summer of 2016, and that there were some preferences for Hillary; and that this RIS [Russian Intelligence Services] sourced information being fed to Steele was designed to hurt Trump."

The official noted these new revelations also "undermines the ICA on Russian Interference and the intent to help Trump. It undermines the FISA warrants and there should not have been a Mueller investigation."

https://www.scribd.com/embeds/456702034/content?start_page=1&view_mode=scroll&access_key=key-FfQY6LojXtyOnkGw6OiJ

Russian's Appeared To Have Preferred Clinton

The footnotes also reveal a startling fact that go against Brennan's assessment that Russia was vying for Trump, when in fact, the Russians appeared to be hopeful of a Clinton presidency.

"The FBI received information in June, 2017 which revealed that, among other things, there were personal and business ties between the sub-source and Steele's Primary Sub-source, contacts between the sub-source and an individual in the Russian Presidential Administration in June/July 2016 [redacted] and the sub source voicing strong support for candidate Clinton in the 2016 U.S. election. The Supervisory Intel Analyst told us that the FBI did not have a Section 702 vicarage on any other Steele sub-source."

Steele's Lies

The complete four pages of the partially redacted footnotes paint a clear picture of the alleged malfeasance committed by former FBI Director James Comey, former DNI James Clapper and former CIA Director John Brennan, who were all aware of the concerns regarding the information supplied by former British spy Christopher Steele in the dossier. Steele, who was hired by the private embattled research firm Fusion GPS, was paid for his work through the Hillary Clinton campaign and Democratic National Committee. The FBI also paid for Steele's work before ending its confidential source relationship with him but then used Obama DOJ Official Bruce Ohr as a go between to continue obtaining information from the former spy.

In footnote 205, for instance, payment documents show that Steele lied about not being a Confidential Human Source.

"During his time as an FBI CHS, Steele received a total of $95,000 from the FBI," the footnote states. "We reviewed the FBI paperwork for those payments, each of which required Steele's Signed acknowledgement. On each document, of which there were eight, was the caption 'CHS payment' and 'CHS Payment Name.' A signature page was missing for one of the payments."

Footnote 350

In footnote 350, Horowitz describes the questionable Russian disinformation and the FBI's reliance on the information to target the Trump campaign as an attempt to build a narrative that campaign officials colluded with Russia. Further, the timeline reveals that Comey, Brennan and Clapper were aware of the disinformation by Russian intelligence when they briefed then President-elect Trump in January, 2017 on the Steele dossier.

"[redacted] In addition to the information in Steele's Delta file documenting Steele's frequent contacts with representatives for multiple Russian oligarchs, we identified reporting the Crossfire Hurricane team received from [redacted] indicating the potential for Russian disinformation influencing Steele' election reporting," stated the partially declassified footnote 350. "A January 12, 2017 report relayed information from [redacted] outlining an inaccuracy in a limited subset of Steele's reporting about the activities of Michael Cohen. The [redacted] stated that it did not have high confidence in this subset of Steele's reporting and assessed that the referenced subset was part of a Russian disinformation campaign to denigrate U.S. foreign relations.

A second report from the same [redacted] five days later stated that a person named in the limited subset of Steele's reporting had denied representations in the reporting and the [redacted] assessed that the person's denials were truthful. A USIC report dated February 27, 2017, contained information about an individual with reported connections to Trump and Russia who claimed that the public reporting about the details of Trump's sexual activities in Moscow during a trip in 2013 were false , and that they were the product of RIS (Russian Intelligence Services) 'infiltrate[ing] a source into the network' of a [redacted] who compiled a dossier of that individual on Trump's activities. The [redacted] noted that it had no information indicating that the individual had special access to RIS activities or information," according to the partially declassified footnote.

Looming Questions

Another concern regarding Steele's unusual activity is found in footnote 210, which states "as we discuss in Chapter Six, members of the Crossfire Hurricane Team were unaware of Steele's connections to Russian Oligarch 1."

The question remains that "Steele's unusual activity with 10 oligarch's led the FBI to seek a validation review in 2015 but one was not started until 2017," said the U.S. Official to this reporter. "Why not? Was Crossfire Hurricane aware of these concerns? Was the court made aware of these concerns? Didn't the numerous notes about sub sources and sources having links or close ties to Russian intelligence so why didn't this set off alarm bells?"

More alarming, it's clear, Supervisory Intelligence Agent Jonathan Moffa says in June 17, that he was not aware of reports that Russian Intelligence Services was aware of Steele's election reporting and influence efforts.

"However, he should have been given the reporting by UCIS" which the U.S. Official says, goes back to summer 2016.

Footnote 342 makes it clear that "in late January, 2017, a member of the Crossfire Hurricane team received information [redacted] that RIS [Russian Intelligence Services] may have targeted Orbis."

[Apr 05, 2020] Trump Fires Ukrainegate Inspector General Who Helped Initiate Impeachment

Apr 05, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

President Trump on Friday fired the intelligence community inspector general, Michael Atkinson, who brought a hearsay whistleblower complaint to Congressional Democrats, kicking off President Trump's impeachment.

Atkinson's closed-door testimony was so troubling to House Republicans that they launched an investigation into his role into what President Trump and his allies coined the 'impeachment hoax.'

Ranking member of the House Intelligence Intelligence Committee Devin Nunes (R-CA) told SarahCarter.com that transcripts of Atkinson's secret testimony would expose that he either lied or needs to make corrections to his statements to lawmakers.

Trump notified the Senate and House Intelligence Committees of his decision to fire Atkinson, according to Politico , citing two congressional officials and a copy of a letter dated April 3.

"This is to advise that I am exercising my power as president to remove from office the inspector general of the intelligence community, effective 30 days from today," wrote Trump, who added that he "no longer" has the fullest confidence in Atkinson.

"As is the case with regard to other positions where I, as president, have the power of appointment, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, it is vital that I have the fullest confidence in the appointees serving as inspectors general," Trump wrote. "That is no longer the case with regard to this inspector general."

Trump knocked Atkinson on January, noting that House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff's (D-CA) decision to withhold Atkinson's testimony was a "major problem."

....the Ukraine Hoax that became the Impeachment Scam. Must get the ICIG answers by Friday because this is the guy who lit the fuse. So if he wants to clear his name, prove that his office is indeed incompetent." @DevinNunes @MariaBartiromo @FoxNews The ICIG never wanted proof!

-- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 12, 2020

Democrats had a fit at the news, with Senate Intelligence Committee Vice Chairman Mark Warner (D-VA) calling Atkinson's firing "unconscionable" while accusing Trump (with a straight face?) of an ongoing effort to politicize intelligence.

"In the midst of a national emergency, it is unconscionable that the president is once again attempting to undermine the integrity of the intelligence community by firing yet another intelligence official simply for doing his job," wrote Warner in a statement.

Warner's House counterpart, Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) called Atkinson's firing "retribution" in the "dead of night" - adding that it's "yet another blatant attempt by the president to gut the independence of the intelligence community and retaliate against those who dare to expose presidential wrongdoing."

Senate Minority Leader Chuck 'six ways from Sunday' Schumer (D-NY) said Atkinson's firing was evidence that Trump "fires people for telling the truth," according to Politico .

Whistleblower lawyer and Disneyland aficionado Mark Zaid - who once bragged about getting security clearances for pedophiles , called the firing "delayed retaliatory action" for Atkinson's "proper handling of a whistleblower complaint."

"This action is disgraceful and undermines the integrity of the whistleblower system," said Zaid. "It is time GOP members of the Senate stand up for the rule of law and speak out against this president."

The whistleblower complaint effectively kicked off the House's impeachment inquiry, which began in late September amid allegations that Trump had solicited foreign interference in the 2020 election when he asked Ukraine's president to investigate his political opponents, including Joe Biden.

Atkinson opposed the decision by then-acting director of national intelligence Joseph Maguire to withhold the whistleblower complaint from the House and Senate intelligence committees -- in particular, Maguire's decision to seek guidance on the issue from the Justice Department, rather than turn it over to Congress as required by law. - Politico

To learn more about Atkinson, read here and here .

[Apr 02, 2020] Pelosi now looks completely idiotic with her impeachment trial

In this case Trump is right: they really take the attention of Wuhan events. Pelosi should resign of be removed.
Apr 02, 2020 | thehill.com

Abron olepi 10 hours ago

Trump is planning the blame game already. He's blaming Governors, stating that this is really a state and local issue.

And he's blaming the impeachment trials, saying they took the focus off the virus, etc. etc.

Always has to blame someone else. Oh, and Obama! Don't forget Obama!

[Mar 21, 2020] Why Is CrowdStrike Confused On 11 Key Details About The DNC 'Hack'

Mar 21, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Why Is CrowdStrike Confused On 11 Key Details About The DNC 'Hack'? by Tyler Durden Sat, 03/21/2020 - 21:20 Authored by Larry Johnson via Sic Semper Tyrannis blog,

Here is the bottom-line - despite being hired in late April (or early May) of 2016 to stop an unauthorized intrusion into the DNC, CrowdStrike, the cyber firm hired by the DNC's law firm to solve the problem, failed abysmally. More than 30,000 emails were taken from the DNC server between 22 and 25 May 2016 and given to Wikileaks. Crowdstrike blamed Russia for the intrusion but claimed that only two files were taken. A nd CrowdStrike inexplicably waited until 10 June 2016 to reboot the DNC network.

CrowdStrike, a cyber-security company hired by a Perkins Coie lawyer retained by the DNC, provided the narrative to the American public of the alledged hack of the DNC, But the Crowdstrike explanation is inconsistent, contradictory and implausible. Despite glaring oddities in the CrowdStrike account of that event, CrowdStrike subsequently traded on its fame in the investigation of the so-called Russian hack of the DNC and became a publicly traded company. Was CrowdStrike's fame for "discovering" the alleged Russian hack of the DNC a critical factor in its subsequent launch as a publicly traded company?

The Crowdstrike account of the hack is very flawed. There are 11 contradictions, inconsistencies or oddities in the public narrative about CrowdStrike's role in uncovering and allegedly mitigating a Russian intrusion (note--the underlying facts for these conclusions are found in Ellen Nakashima's Washington Post story , Vicki Ward's Esquire story , the Mueller Report and the blog of Crowdstrike founder Dmitri Alperovitch):

  1. Two different dates -- 30 April or 6 May -- are reported by Nakashima and Ward respectively as the date CrowdStrike was hired to investigate an intrusion into the DNC computer network.
  2. There are on the record contradictions about who hired Crowdstrike. Nakashima reports that the DNC called Michael Sussman of the law firm, Perkins Coie, who in turn contacted Crowdtrike's CEO Shawn Henry. Crowdstrike founder Dmitri Alperovitch tells Nakashima a different story, stating our "Incident Response group, was called by the Democratic National Committee (DNC).
  3. CrowdStrike claims it discovered within 24 hours the "Russians" were responsible for the "intrusion" into the DNC network.
  4. CrowdStrike's installation of Falcon (its proprietary software to stop breaches) on the DNC on the 1st of May or the 6th of May would have alerted to intruders that they had been detected.
  5. CrowdStrike officials told the Washington Post's Ellen Nakashima that they were, "not sure how the hackers got in" and didn't "have hard evidence."
  6. In a blog posting by CrowdStrike's founder, Dmitri Alperovitch, on the same day that Nakashima's article was published in the Washington Post, wrote that the intrusion into the DNC was done by two separate Russian intelligence organizations using malware identified as Fancy Bear (APT28) and Cozy Bear (APT29).
  7. But, Alperovitch admits his team found no evidence the two Russian organizations were coordinating their "attack" or even knew of each other's presence on the DNC network.
  8. There is great confusion over what the "hackers" obtained. DNC sources claim the hackers gained access to the entire database of opposition research on GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump. DNC sources and CrowdStrike claimed the intruders, "read all email and chat traffic." Yet, DNC officials insisted, "that no financial, donor or personal information appears to have been accessed or taken." However, CrowdStrike states, "The hackers stole two files."
  9. Crowdstrike's Alperovitch, in his blog posting, does not specify whether it was Cozy Bear or Fancy Bear that took the files.
  10. Wikileaks published DNC emails in July 2016 that show the last message taken from the DNC was dated 25 May 2016. This was much more than "two files."
  11. CrowdStrike, in complete disregard to basic security practice when confronted with an intrusion, waited five weeks to disconnect the DNC computers from the network and sanitize them.

Let us start with the very contradictory public accounts attributed to Crowdstrke's founder, Dmitri Alperovitch. The 14 June 2016 story by Ellen Nakashima of the Washington Post and the October 2016 piece by Vicki Ward in Esquire magazine offer two different dates for the start of the investigation:

When did the DNC learn of the "intrusion"?

Ellen Nakashima claims it was the end of April:

"DNC leaders were tipped to the hack in late April . Chief executive Amy Dacey got a call from her operations chief saying that their information technology team had noticed some unusual network activity... That evening, she spoke with Michael Sussmann, a DNC lawyer who is a partner with Perkins Coie in Washington. Soon after, Sussmann, a former federal prosecutor who handled computer crime cases, called Henry, whom he has known for many years. Within 24 hours, CrowdStrike had installed software on the DNC's computers so that it could analyze data that could indicate who had gained access, when and how.

Ward's timeline, citing Alperovitch, reports the alert came later, on 6 May 2016:

At six o'clock on the morning of May 6, Dmitri Alperovitch woke up in a Los Angeles hotel to an alarming email. . . . late the previous night, his company had been asked by the Democratic National Committee to investigate a possible breach of its network. A CrowdStrike security expert had sent the DNC a proprietary software package, called Falcon, that monitors the networks of its clients in real time. Falcon "lit up," the email said, within ten seconds of being installed at the DNC: Russia was in the network.

This is a significant and troubling discrepancy because it marks the point in time when CrowdStrike installed its Falcon software on the DNC server. It is one thing to confuse the 30th of April with the 1st of May. But Alperovitch gave two different reporters two different dates.

What did the "hackers" take from the DNC?

Ellen Nakashima's reporting is contradictory and wrong. Initially, she is told that the hackers got access to the entire Donald Trump database and that all emails and chats could be read. But then she is assured that only two files were taken. This was based on Crowdstrike's CEO's assurance, which was proven subsequently to be spectacularly wrong when Wikileaks published 35,813 DNC emails. How did Crowdstrike miss that critical detail? Here is Nakashima's reporting:

Russian government hackers penetrated the computer network of the Democratic National Committee and gained access to the entire database of opposition research on GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump, according to committee officials and security experts who responded to the breach.

The intruders so thoroughly compromised the DNC's system that they also were able to read all email and chat traffic, said DNC officials and the security experts. . . .

The DNC said that no financial, donor or personal information appears to have been accessed or taken, suggesting that the breach was traditional espionage, not the work of criminal hackers.

One group, which CrowdStrike had dubbed Cozy Bear, had gained access last summer (2015) and was monitoring the DNC's email and chat communications, Alperovitch said.

The other, which the firm had named Fancy Bear, broke into the network in late April and targeted the opposition research files. It was this breach that set off the alarm. The hackers stole two files, Henry said. And they had access to the computers of the entire research staff -- an average of about several dozen on any given day. . . .

CrowdStrike is continuing the forensic investigation, said Sussmann, the DNC lawyer. "But at this time, it appears that no financial information or sensitive employee, donor or voter information was accessed by the Russian attackers," he said.

The DNC emails that are posted on the Wikileaks website and the metadata shows that these emails were removed from the DNC server starting the late on the 22nd of May and continuing thru the 23rd of May. The last tranche occurred late in the morning (Washington, DC time) of the 25th of May 2016. Crowdstrike's CEO, Shawn Henry, insisted on the 14th of June 2016 that "ONLY TWO FILES" had been taken. This is demonstrably not true. Besides the failure of Crowdstrike to detect the removal of more than 35,000 emails, there is another important and unanswered question -- why did Crowdstrike wait until the 10th of June 2016 to start disconnecting the DNC server when they allegedly knew on the 6th of May that the Russians had entered the DNC network?

Crowdstrike accused Russia of the DNC breach but lacked concrete proof.

Ellen Nakashima's report reveals that Crowdstrike relied exclusively on circumstantial evidence for its claim that the Russian Government hacked the DNC server. According to Nakashima:

CrowdStrike is not sure how the hackers got in. The firm suspects they may have targeted DNC employees with "spearphishing" emails. These are communications that appear legitimate -- often made to look like they came from a colleague or someone trusted -- but that contain links or attachments that when clicked on deploy malicious software that enables a hacker to gain access to a computer. " But we don't have hard evidence, " Alperovitch said.

There is a word in English for the phrases, "Not sure" and "No hard evidence"--that word is, "assumption." Assuming that the Russians did it is not the same as proving, based on evidence, that the Russians were culpable. But that is exactly what CrowdStrike did.

The so-called "proof" of the Russian intrusions is the presence of Fancy Bear and Cozy Bear?

At first glance, Dmitri Alperovitch's blog postin g describing the Fancy Bear and Cozy Bear "intrusions" appears quite substantive. But cyber security professionals quickly identified a variety of shortcomings with the Alperovitch account. For example, this malware is not unique nor proprietary to Russia. Other countries and hackers have access to APT28 and have used it.

Skip Folden offers one of the best comprehensive analyses of the problems with the Alperovitch explanation :

No basis whatsoever :

APT28, aka Fancy Bear, Sofacy, Strontium, Pawn Storm, Sednit, etc., and APT29, aka Cozy Bear, Cozy Duke, Monkeys, CozyCar,The Dukes, etc., are used as 'proof' of Russia 'hacking' by Russian Intelligence agencies GRU and FSB respectively.

There is no basis whatsoever to attribute the use of known intrusion elements to Russia, not even if they were once reverse routed to Russia, which claim has never been made by NSA or any other of our IC.

On June 15, 2016 Dmitri Alperovitch himself, in an Atlantic Council article, gave only "medium-level of confidence that Fancy Bear is GRU" and "low-level of confidence that Cozy Bear is FSB." These assessments, from the main source himself, that either APT is Russian intelligence, averages 37%-38% [(50 + 25) / 2].

Exclusivity :

None of the technical indicators, e.g., intrusion tools (such as X-Agent, X-Tunnel), facilities, tactics, techniques, or procedures, etc., of the 28 and 29 APTs can be uniquely attributed to Russia, even if one or more had ever been trace routed to Russia. Once an element of a set of intrusion tools is used in the public domain it can be reverse-engineered and used by other groups which precludes the assumption of exclusivity in future use. The proof that any of these tools have never been reverse engineered and used by others is left to the student - or prosecutor.

Using targets :

Also, targets have been used as basis for attributing intrusions to Russia, and that is pure nonsense. Both many state and non-state players have deep interests in the same targets and have the technical expertise to launch intrusions. In Grizzly Steppe, page 2, second paragraph, beginning with, "Both groups have historically targeted ...," is there anything in that paragraph which can be claimed as unique to Russia or which excludes all other major state players in the world or any of the non-state organizations? No.

Key-Logger Consideration :

On the subject of naming specific GRU officers initiating specific actions on GRU Russian facilities on certain dates / times, other than via implanted ID chips under the finger tips of these named GRU officers, the logical assumption would be by installed key logger capabilities, physical or malware, on one or more GRU Russian computers.

The GRU is a highly advanced Russian intelligence unit. It would be very surprising were the GRU open to any method used to install key logger capabilities. It would be even more surprising, if not beyond comprehension that the GRU did not scan all systems upon start-up and in real time, including key logger protection and anomalies of performance degradation and data transmissions.

Foreign intelligence source :

Other option would be via a foreign intelligence unit source with local GRU access. Any such would be quite anti-Russian and be another nail in the coffin of any chain of evidence / custody validity at Russian site.

Stated simply, Dmitri Alperovitch's conclusion that "the Russians did it" are not supported by the forensic evidence. Instead, he relies on the assumption that the presence of APT28 and APT29 prove Moscow's covert hand. What is even more striking is that the FBI accepted this explanation without demanding forensic evidence.

Former FBI Director James Comey and former NSA Director Mike Rogers testified under oath before Congress that neither agency ever received access to the DNC server. All information the FBI used in its investigation was supplied by CrowdStrike. The Hill reported :

The FBI requested direct access to the Democratic National Committee's (DNC) hacked computer servers but was denied, Director James Comey told lawmakers on Tuesday.

The bureau made "multiple requests at different levels," according to Comey, but ultimately struck an agreement with the DNC that a "highly respected private company" would get access and share what it found with investigators.

The foregoing facts raise major questions about the validity of the Crowdstrike methodology and conclusions with respect to what happened on the DNC network. This is not a conspiracy theory. It is a set of facts that, as of today, have no satisfactory explanation. The American public deserve answers.

[Mar 21, 2020] When reading any article concerning current events (ie. Ukraine, Syria, Iran, Venezuela, or Coronavirus) consider how the The Seven Principles of Propaganda may apply

Highly recommended!
Mar 22, 2020 | https://www.moonofalabama.org

Dick | Mar 22 2020 0:48 utc | 66

When reading any article concerning current events (ie. Ukraine, Syria, Iran, Venezuela, or Coronavirus) consider how the The Seven Principles of Propaganda may apply. (repost):

  1. Avoid abstract ideas - appeal to the emotions. When we think emotionally, we are more prone to be irrational and less critical in our thinking. I can remember several instances where this has been employed by the US to prepare the public with a justification of their actions. Here are four examples:

    The Invasion of Grenada during the Reagan administration was said to be necessary to rescue American students being held hostage by Grenadian coup authorities after a coup that overthrew the government. I had a friend in the 82nd airborne division that participated in the rescue. He told me the students said they were hiding in the school to avoid the fighting by the US military, and had never been threatened by any Grenadian authority and were only hiding in the school to avoid all the fighting. Film of the actual rescue broadcast on the mainstream media was taken out of context; the students were never in danger.

    The invasion of Panama in the late 80's was supposedly to capture the dictator Manual Noriega for international crimes related to drugs and weapons. I remember a headline covered by all the media where a Navy lieutenant and his wife were detained by the police. His wife was sexually assaulted while in custody, according to the story. Unfortunately, it never happened. It was intended to get the public emotionally involved to support the action.

    The invasion of Iraq in the early 90's was preceded by a speech by a girl describing the Iraqi army throwing babies out of incubators so the equipment could be transferred to Iraq. It turns out the girl was the daughter of one of the Kuwait's ruling sheiks and the event never occurred. However, it served its purpose by getting the American public involved emotionally supporting the war.

    During the build up to the bombing campaign by NATO against Libya, a woman entered a hotel where reporters were staying claiming she was raped by several police officers of the Gaddafi security services. The report was carried by most media outlets as representative of the brutality of the Gaddafi regime. I was not able to verify if this story was true or not, but it fits the usual method employed to gain public support through propaganda for military interventions.

    The greatest emotion in us is fear and fear is used extensively to make us think irrationally. I remember growing up during the cold war having the fear of nuclear war or 'The Russians are coming!' After the cold war without an obvious enemy, it was Al Qaeda even before 911, so we had 'Al Qaeda is coming!' Now we have 'ISIS is coming!' with media blasting us with terrorist fears. Whenever I hear a government promoting an emotional issue or fear mongering, I ignore them knowing there is a hidden Truth behind the issue.

  2. Constantly repeat just a few ideas. Use stereotyped phrases. This could be stated more plainly as 'Keep it simple, stupid!' The most notorious use of this technique recently was the Bush administration. Everyone can remember 'We must fight them over there rather than over here' or my favourite 'They hate us for our freedoms'. Neither of these phrases made any rational sense despite 911. The last thing Muslims in the Middle East care about is American's freedoms, maybe it was all the bombs the US was dropping on them.
  3. Give only one side of the argument and obscure history. Watching mainstream media in the US, you can see all the news is biased to the American view as an example. This is prevalent within Australian commercial media and newspapers giving only a western view, but fortunately, we have the SBS and the ABC that are very good, certainly not perfect, at providing both sides of a story. In addition, any historical perspective is ignored keeping the citizenry focused on the here and now. Can any of you remember any news organisation giving an in depth history of Ukraine or Palestine? I cannot.
  4. Demonize the enemy or pick out one special "enemy" for special vilification. This is obvious in politics where politicians continuously criticise their opponents. Of course, demonization is more productively applied to international figures or nations such as Saddam Hussein, Osama bin Laden, Gaddafi in Libya, Assad in Syria, the Taliban and just recently Vladimir Putin over the Ukraine, Crimea and Syria. It establishes a negative emotional view of either a nation (i.e. Iran) or a known figure (i.e. Putin) making us again think emotionally, rather than rationally, making it easier to promote evil acts upon a nation or a known figure. Certainly some of these groups or individuals were less than benign, but not necessarily demons as depicted in the west.
  5. Appear humanitarian in work and motivations. The US has used this technique often to validate foreign interventions or ongoing conflicts where the term 'Right to Protect' is used for justification. Everyone should remember the many stories about the abuse of women in Afghanistan or Saddam Hussein's supposed brutality toward his people. The recent attack on Syria by the US, UK, and France was depicted as an Humanitarian intervention by the UK Government, which was far from the truth. One thing that always amazes me is when the US sends humanitarian aid to a country it is accompanied by the US military. In Haiti some years back, the US sent troops with no other country doing so. The recent Ebola outbreak in Africa saw US troops sent to the area. How are troops going to fight a medical outbreak? No doubt, they are there for other reasons.

  6. Obscure one's economic interests. Who believes the invasion of Iraq was for weapons of mass destruction? Or the constant threats against Iran are for their nuclear program? Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction and no one has presented firm evidence Iran intends to produce nuclear weapons. The West has been interfering in the Middle East since the British in the late 19th century. It is all about oil and the control over the resources. In fact, if one researches the cause of wars over the last hundred years, you will always find economics was a major component driving the rush to war for most of them.

  7. Monopolize the flow of information. This is the most important principle and mainly entails setting the narrative by which all subsequent events can be based upon or interpreted in such a way as to reinforce the narrative. The narrative does not need to be true; in fact, it can be anything that suits the monopoliser as long as it is based loosely on some event. It is critical to have at least majority control of media and the ability to control the message so the flow of information is consistent with the narrative. This has been played out on mainstream media concerning the Ukrainian conflict, Syrian conflict, and the Skirpal affair. Just over the last couple of years, we have all been subjected to propaganda in one form or another. Remember the US wanting to bomb Syria because of the sarin gas attack, it was later determined to be false (see Seymour Hersh 'Whose Sarin'). The shoot down of MH17 was immediately blamed on Russia by the west without any convincing proof (setting the narrative). It amazes me just how fast the story died after the initial saturation in the media. When I awoke that morning in July, I heard on the news PM Tony Abbot blaming Russia for the incident only hours afterward. How could he know Russia shot down the plane? The investigation into the incident had not even begun, so I suspect he was singing from the West's hymnbook in a standard setting the narrative scenario.

[Mar 12, 2020] Did Joe Biden's Former IT Guy Masquerade as Guccifer 2.0 by Larry C Johnson

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... The computer used to create the original Warren Document (dated 2008) was a US Government computer issued to the Obama Presidential Transition Team by the General Services Administration. ..."
"... The Warren Document and the 1.DOC were created in the United States using Microsoft Word software (2007) that is registered to the GSA. ..."
"... The author of both 1.doc and the PDF version is identified as "WARREN FLOOD." ..."
"... "Russian" fingerprints were deliberately inserted into the text and the meta data of "1.doc." ..."
"... This begs a very important question. Did Warren Flood actually create these documents or was someone masquerading as Warren Flood? Unfortunately, neither the Intelligence Community nor the Mueller Special Counsel investigators provided any evidence to show they examined this forensic data. More troubling is the fact that the Microsoft Word processing software being used is listed as a GSA product. ..."
"... If this was truly a Russian GRU operation (as claimed by Mueller), why was the cyber spy tradecraft so sloppy? ..."
"... The name of Warren Flood, an Obama Democrat activist and Joe Biden's former Director of Information Technology, appears in at least three iterations of these documents. Did he actually masquerade as Guccifer 2.0? If so, did he do it on his own or was he hired by someone else? These remain open questions that deserve to be investigated by John Durham, the prosecutor investigating the attempted coup against Donald Trump, and/or relevant committees of the Congress. ..."
"... There are other critical unanswered questions. Obama's Attorney General, Loretta Lynch, sent a letter to James come on July 26, 2016 about the the DNC hack. Lynch wrote concerning press reports that Russia attacked the DNC: ..."
"... A genuine investigation of the DNC hack/leak should have included interviews with all DNC staff, John Podesta, Warren Flood and Ellen Nakashima, The Washington Post reporter who broke the story of the DNC hack. Based on what is now in the public record, the FBI failed to do a proper investigation. ..."
"... Resolving who was behind Guccifer 2.0 and DCLeaks seems to me to be a rather simple investigative exercise. That is, somebody registered and bought the names of G2 and DCL. One can't have a Wordpress blog without purchasing a url. So, there is a record of this registration, right? Simply subpoena the company who sold/rented the url. ..."
"... It's now obvious that we don't have a functioning intel/justice apparatus in the U.S. This is the message sent and received by the intel/justice shops over and again. They no longer work for Americans rather they work against us. ..."
Mar 12, 2020 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Why does the name of Joe Biden's former Internet Technology guru, Warren Flood, appear in the meta data of documents posted on the internet by Guccifer 2.0? In case you do not recall, Guccifer 2.0 was identified as someone tied to Russian intelligence who played a direct role in stealing emails from John Podesta. The meta data in question indicates the name of the person who actually copied the original document. We have this irrefutable fact in the documents unveiled by Guccifer 2.0--Warren Flood's name appears prominently in the meta data of several documents attributed to "Guccifer 2.0." When this transpired, Flood was working as the CEO of his own company, BRIGHT BLUE DATA. (brightbluedata.com). Was Flood tasked to masquerade as a Russian operative?

Give Flood some props if that is true--he fooled our Intelligence Community and the entire team of Mueller prosecutors into believing that Guccifer was part of a Russian military intelligence cyber attack. But a careful examination of the documents shows that it is highly unlikely that this was an official Russian cyber operation. Here's what the U.S. Intelligence Community wrote about Guccifer 2.0 in their very flawed January 2017 Intelligence Community Assessment:

We assess with high confidence that the GRU used the Guccifer 2.0 persona, DCLeaks.com, and WikiLeaks to release US victim data obtained in cyber operations publicly and in exclusives to media outlets.

  • Guccifer 2.0, who claimed to be an independent Romanian hacker, made multiple contradictory statements and false claims about his likely Russian identity throughout the election. Press reporting suggests more than one person claiming to be Guccifer 2.0 interacted with journalists.
  • Content that we assess was taken from e-mail accounts targeted by the GRU in March 2016 appeared on DCLeaks.com starting in June.

The laxity of the Intelligence Community in dealing with empirical evidence was matched by a disturbing lack of curiosity on the part of the Mueller investigators and prosecutors. Here's the tall tale they spun about Guccifer 2.0:

On June 14, 2016, the DNC and its cyber-response team announced the breach of the DNC network and suspected theft of DNC documents. In the statements, the cyber-response team alleged that Russian state-sponsored actors (which they referred to as "Fancy Bear") were responsible for the breach. Apparently in response to that announcement, on June 15, 2016, GRU officers using the persona Guccifer 2.0 created a WordPress blog. In the hours leading up to the launch of that WordPress blog, GRU officers logged into a Moscow-based server used and managed by Unit 74455 and searched for a number of specific words and phrases in English, including "some hundred sheets," "illuminati," and "worldwide known." Approximately two hours after the last of those searches, Guccifer 2.0 published its first post, attributing the DNC server hack to a lone Romanian hacker and using several of the unique English words and phrases that the GRU officers had searched for that day.

[Apelbaum note--According to Crowdstrike and Special Counsel Mueller, both were present, APT28 AKA "Fancy Bear" and APT29 AKA "Cozy Bear".]

The claims by both the Intelligence Community and the Mueller team about Guccifer 2.0 are an astounding, incredible denial of critical evidence pointing to a U.S. actor, not a Russian or Romanian. No one in this "august" group took the time to examine the metadata on the documents posted by "Guccifer 2.0" to his website on June 15, 2016.

I wish I could claim credit for the following forensic analysis, but the honors are due to Yaacov Apelbaum. While there are many documents in the Podesta haul that match the following pattern, this analysis focuses only on a document originally created by the DNC's Director of Research, Lauren Dillon. This document is the Trump Opposition Report document.

According to Apelbaum , the Trump Opposition Report document, which was "published" by Guccifer 2.0, shows clear evidence of digital manipulation:

  1. A US based user (hereafter referred to as G2 ) operating initially from the West coast and then, subsequently, from the East coast, changes the MS Word 2007 and Operating System language settings to Russian.
  2. G2 opens and saves a document with the file name, "12192015 Trump Report - for dist-4.docx". The document bears the title, "Donald Trump Report" (which was originally composed by Lauren Dillon aka DILLON REPORT) as an RTF file and opens it again.
  3. G2 opens a second document that was attached to an email sent on December 21, 2008 to John Podesta from Sara.Latham@ptt.gov. This WORD document lists prospective nominees for posts in the Department of Agriculture for the upcoming Obama Administration. It was generated by User--Warren Flood--on a computer registered to the General Services Administration (aka GSA) named "Slate_-_Domestic_-_USDA_-_2008-12-20-3.doc", which was kept by Podesta on his private Gmail account. (I refer to this as the "WARREN DOCUMENT" in this analysis.)
  4. G2 deletes the content of the 2008 Warren Document and saves the empty file as a RTF, and opens it again.
  5. G2 copies the content of the 'Dillon Report' (which is an RTF document) and pastes it into the 2008 Warren Document template, i.e. the empty RTF document.
  6. G2 user makes several modifications to the content of this document. For example, the Warren Document contained the watermark--"CONFIDENTIAL DRAFT". G2 deleted the word "DRAFT" but kept the "CONFIDENTIAL" watermark.
  7. G2 saves this document into a file called "1.doc". This document now contains the text of the original Lauren Dillon "Donald Trump Report" document, but also contains Russian language URL links that generate error messages.
  8. G2's 1.DOC (the Word version of the document) shows the following meta data authors:
    • Created at 6/15/2016 at 1:38pm by "WARREN FLOOD"
    • Last Modified at 6/15/2016 at 1:45pm by "Феликс Эдмундович" (Felix Edmundovich, the first and middle name of Dzerzhinsky, the creator of the predecessor of the KGB. It is assumed the Felix Edmundovich refers to Dzerzhinsky.)
  9. G2 also produces a pdf version of this document almost four hours later. It is created at 6/15/201`6 at 5:54:15pm by "WARREN FLOOD."
  10. G2 first publishes "1.doc" to various media outlets and then uploads a copy to the Guccifer 2.0 WordPress website (which is hosted in the United States).

There are several critical facts from the metadata that destroy the claim that Guccifer 2.0 was a Romanian or a Russian.

  • The computer used to create the original Warren Document (dated 2008) was a US Government computer issued to the Obama Presidential Transition Team by the General Services Administration.
  • The Warren Document and the 1.DOC were created in the United States using Microsoft Word software (2007) that is registered to the GSA.
  • The author of both 1.doc and the PDF version is identified as "WARREN FLOOD."
  • The copy of "1.doc" was uploaded to a server hosted in the United States.
  • "Russian" fingerprints were deliberately inserted into the text and the meta data of "1.doc."

This begs a very important question. Did Warren Flood actually create these documents or was someone masquerading as Warren Flood? Unfortunately, neither the Intelligence Community nor the Mueller Special Counsel investigators provided any evidence to show they examined this forensic data. More troubling is the fact that the Microsoft Word processing software being used is listed as a GSA product.

If this was truly a Russian GRU operation (as claimed by Mueller), why was the cyber spy tradecraft so sloppy? A covert cyber operation is no different from a conventional human covert operation, which means the first and guiding principle is to not leave any fingerprints that would point to the origin of the operation. In other words, you do not mistakenly leave flagrant Russian fingerprints in the document text or metadata. A good cyber spy also will not use computers and servers based in the United States and then claim it is the work of a hacker ostensibly in Romania.

None of the Russians indicted by Mueller in his case stand accused of doing the Russian hacking while physically in the United States. No intelligence or evidence has been cited to indicate that the Russians stole a U.S. Government computer or used a GSA supplied copy of Microsoft Word to produce the G2 documents.

The name of Warren Flood, an Obama Democrat activist and Joe Biden's former Director of Information Technology, appears in at least three iterations of these documents. Did he actually masquerade as Guccifer 2.0? If so, did he do it on his own or was he hired by someone else? These remain open questions that deserve to be investigated by John Durham, the prosecutor investigating the attempted coup against Donald Trump, and/or relevant committees of the Congress.

There are other critical unanswered questions. Obama's Attorney General, Loretta Lynch, sent a letter to James come on July 26, 2016 about the the DNC hack. Lynch wrote concerning press reports that Russia attacked the DNC:

If foreign intelligence agencies are attempting to undermine that process, the U.S. government should treat such efforts even more seriously than standard espionage. These types ofcyberattacks are significant and pernicious crimes. Our government must do all that it can to stop such attacks and to seek justice for the attacks that have already occurred.

We are writing to request more information on this cyberattack in particular and more information in general on how the Justice Department, FBI, and NCIJTF attempt to prevent and punish these types ofcyberattacks. Accordingly, please respond to the following by August 9, 2016:

  1. When did the Department of Justice, FBI, and NCIJTF first learn of the DNC hack? Was the government aware ofthe intrusion prior to the media reporting it?
  2. Has the FBI deployed its Cyber Action Team to determine who hacked the DNC?
  3. Has the FBI determined whether the Russian government, or any other foreign
    government, was involved in the hack?
  4. In general, what actions, if any, do the Justice Department, FBI, and NCIJTF take to prevent cyberattacks on non-governmental political organizations in the U.S., such as campaigns and political parties? Does the government consult or otherwise communicate with the organizations to inform them ofpotential threats, relay best practices, or inform them ofdetected cyber intrusions.
  5. Does the Justice Department believe that existing statutes provide an adequate basis for addressing hacking crimes of this nature, in which foreign governments hack seemingly in order to affect our electoral processes?

So far no document from Comey to Lynch has been made available to the public detailing the FBI's response to Lynch's questions. Why was the Cyber Action Team not deployed to determine who hacked the DNC? A genuine investigation of the DNC hack/leak should have included interviews with all DNC staff, John Podesta, Warren Flood and Ellen Nakashima, The Washington Post reporter who broke the story of the DNC hack. Based on what is now in the public record, the FBI failed to do a proper investigation.

Recent Comments

h | 12 March 2020 at 12:08 PM

Of course sleepy Joe was in on the overall RussiaGate operation. And now another reasonable question by sleuth extraordinaire will fall into the memory hole b/c no one who has the authority and the power in DC is ever going to address, let alone, clean up and hold accountable any who created this awful mess.

Resolving who was behind Guccifer 2.0 and DCLeaks seems to me to be a rather simple investigative exercise. That is, somebody registered and bought the names of G2 and DCL. One can't have a Wordpress blog without purchasing a url. So, there is a record of this registration, right? Simply subpoena the company who sold/rented the url.

What's troubling to me is that even the most simplest investigative acts to find answers never seems to happen. Instead, more than three years later we're playing 'Whodunit.'

It's been over 3 years now and if we had a truly functioning intel/justice apparatus this simple act would have been done long ago and then made public. Yet, here we are more than three years later trying to unravel, figure out or resolve the trail of clues via metadata the pranksters left behind.

It's now obvious that we don't have a functioning intel/justice apparatus in the U.S. This is the message sent and received by the intel/justice shops over and again. They no longer work for Americans rather they work against us.

[Mar 10, 2020] The American conference in Bratislava in the Slovak Republic in April 2000 made the American goal for Europe clear: An Iron Curtain between the Baltic Sea and the Black Sea, with hopefully Russia be eventually divided or broken up into smaller states

Mar 10, 2020 | www.unz.com

Malbrough , says: Show Comment March 10, 2020 at 2:50 am GMT

In an op-ed in the Financial Times on March 4th, he [Soros] urged that "Europe must stand with Turkey over Putin's war crimes in Syria," an astonishing misreading of the situation in the region as Turkey is the aggressor while Russia is fighting to eliminate the last major terrorist enclave in Idlibt.

" Defender 2020" is a "maneuvre of shame"
by Willy Wimmer
former State Secretary at the German Ministry of Defence

"The German Chancellor, Dr Angela Merkel, is breaking a taboo by allowing German soldiers to participate in the biggest NATO manoeuvre since the end of the Cold War against Russia .

It is therefore no wonder that the German Federal Government in May 2019 did not commemorate the "Versailles" of one hundred years ago, nor did the German President do so in a commemoration ceremony for which he can be held accountable. Versailles does not only mean "the demon of revenge", but also a deliberate inability to strive for peace.

This way of thinking is expressed once again in the NATO major manoeuvre, deliberately planned for the 9 May, the day the war ended in 1945. As if the fact had needed further proof that the "NATO West" cannot make peace, it can only make war, be that war cold or hot.

The American conference in Bratislava in the Slovak Republic in April 2000 made the American goal for Europe clear: An Iron Curtain between the Baltic Sea and the Black Sea, Russia can stay anywhichwhere, and be divided or broken up into smaller states. The NATO manoeuvre called "Defender 2020" is a "manoeuvre of shame" that only serves the warmongers . "

[Mar 09, 2020] Defender of Europe 2020: a Dangerous Provocation on Russia's Border

Mar 09, 2020 | www.counterpunch.org
by Ellen Taylor At this very moment thousands of US soldiers are disembarking from troop transports in six European countries and rushing toward prepositioned munitions around Europe, to deploy weapons as swiftly as possible.

This excitement marks the beginning of "Defender Europe 2020", the largest military exercises to be staged in Europe in over 25 years. Strategists will record how swiftly our forces can reach the Russian border, and test our NATO allies.

There has already been a massive US build-up in the countries bordering Russia.

In the words of Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy, "The last 18 years of conflict built muscle memory in counterinsurgency, but with this came atrophy in other areas. We are now engaging these other muscle groups."

General Tod Wolters, Commander of US forces in Europe and of NATO, has stated, "I'm in favor of a flexible first-use (nuclear weapon) policy."

The US has withdrawn from the INF treaty.

Most diabolical and chilling of all: the exercises will come to a climax in June, which is the 75 th anniversary of Operation Barbarossa, Germany's invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941, which killed 27 million people. Russians born in 1930 turn 90 this year. They remember. The heart and soul of Russia remembers as well.

Russian Chief General Gerasimov is convinced the US is preparing for war. All it would take for an attack is one false-flag operation.

The people of the world lie in helpless ignorance. And the Doomsday clock moves 20 seconds closer to midnight.

[Mar 09, 2020] U.S. Foreign Policy and the Return to Normalcy

Notable quotes:
"... The "normalcy" to which Biden would return the U.S. is rather different. There would be a restoration of sorts, but the restoration would be that of the bankrupt bipartisan foreign policy consensus, among other things. As Emma Ashford suggested in a recent discussion , Biden's foreign policy could be described as "Make American Exceptionalism Great Again." ..."
"... Biden's rhetoric is full of the tired boilerplate rhetoric about U.S. global leadership. Biden's new article for Foreign Affairs includes quite a bit of this: ..."
"... As president, I will take immediate steps to renew U.S. democracy and alliances, protect the United States' economic future, and once more have America lead the world. This is not a moment for fear. This is the time to tap the strength and audacity that took us to victory in two world wars and brought down the Iron Curtain. ..."
"... basically, a Biden foreign policy would be "Obama but worse" https://t.co/wIZwch5Bmk ..."
"... Inasmuch as Biden is much more comfortable with the nostrums of the foreign policy establishment and with their assumptions about the U.S. role in the world than Obama was, that seems like the right conclusion. A foreign policy that is like Obama's but more conventional probably doesn't sound that bad, but we should remember that this is the same foreign policy that left the U.S. engaged in more than one illegal war and normalized illegal warfare without Congressional authorization. ..."
"... Returning to an era of "normalcy" characterized by repeated policy failures, lack of accountability, and open-ended warfare is not the kind of restoration that Americans need. It might be good enough to win the election, but it isn't going to fix what ails U.S. foreign policy. ..."
"... I hope that Sanders really takes it to Biden on the horrendous failures of the Obama/Clinton foreign policy, particularly the wrecking of Libya, Syria, and Yemen, the sheer scale of human misery that Obama, Hillary Clinton, and Biden caused, including unleashing millions of terrified refugees into Europe. I find Sanders' dalliance with communist dictatorships during the Cold War disgusting, but Biden's responsibility for implementing the Obama/Clinton foreign policy horrors is far worse. ..."
"... Unfortunately, most voters don't seem to care much about foreign policy--which is really outrageous considering it is the area in which Presidents have the greatest latitude to act unilaterally. But that is the world we live in. ..."
"... Even if he does publicly recant it, my view is that talk is cheap. Politicians will say what they think the voters want to hear. It doesn't mean they'll do it. ..."
"... Wasn't Biden the Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee, the person that maybe has done more than VP Dick C. in 2002 to start and legitimize the Iraq war? ..."
"... Bottom line is Biden is fraud and everything he and his handlers say or write must be viewed as such. ..."
Mar 09, 2020 | www.theamericanconservative.com

oe Biden's candidacy is defined by the idea that he will "restore" things to the way they were four years ago and that he will preside over a "return to normalcy" after the Trump years. The phrase "return to normalcy" has been linked to the Biden campaign for the better part of the last year. TAC 's Curt Mills commented on this after Biden's recent primary wins:

Biden then, not Trump, would be the candidate of the centennial. Like Warren Harding, he promises a return to normalcy.

The Harding comparison is quite useful because it shows how Biden's "return to normalcy" will be quite different from the one Harding proposed a century ago. Harding contrasted normalcy with "nostrums." This was a shot at the ideological fantasies of the Wilson era and the upheaval that had come with U.S. entry into WWI. This is the full quote :

America's present need is not heroics, but healing; not nostrums, but normalcy; not revolution, but restoration; not agitation, but adjustment; not surgery, but serenity; not the dramatic, but the dispassionate; not experiment, but equipoise; not submergence in internationality, but sustainment in triumphant nationality.

The "normalcy" to which Biden would return the U.S. is rather different. There would be a restoration of sorts, but the restoration would be that of the bankrupt bipartisan foreign policy consensus, among other things. As Emma Ashford suggested in a recent discussion , Biden's foreign policy could be described as "Make American Exceptionalism Great Again."

Where Harding's "normalcy" represented the repudiation of Wilsonian fantasies, Biden's would be an attempt to revive them at least in part. Harding contrasted "normalcy" with Wilson's "nostrums," but Biden's rhetoric is full of the tired boilerplate rhetoric about U.S. global leadership. Biden's new article for Foreign Affairs includes quite a bit of this:

As president, I will take immediate steps to renew U.S. democracy and alliances, protect the United States' economic future, and once more have America lead the world. This is not a moment for fear. This is the time to tap the strength and audacity that took us to victory in two world wars and brought down the Iron Curtain.

The Cold War ended thirty years ago, and it is telling that Biden does not point to any victories for the U.S. in the decades that have followed. Proponents of U.S. global "leadership" have to keep reaching farther and farther back in time to recall a time when U.S. "leadership" was successful, and they have remarkably little to say about the thirty years when they have been running things. That is what they want to "restore," but it's not clear why Americans should want to go back to a status quo ante that produced such staggering and costly failures as the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Like the early 19th century Bourbon restoration, it would be a return to power for those who had learned nothing and forgotten nothing.

John Carl Baker comments on an op-ed co-authored last year by Robert Kagan and Anthony Blinken. Blinken is now Biden's main foreign policy adviser, and that leads Baker to draw this conclusion:

So basically, a Biden foreign policy would be "Obama but worse" https://t.co/wIZwch5Bmk

-- John Carl Baker (@johncarlbaker) March 7, 2020

Inasmuch as Biden is much more comfortable with the nostrums of the foreign policy establishment and with their assumptions about the U.S. role in the world than Obama was, that seems like the right conclusion. A foreign policy that is like Obama's but more conventional probably doesn't sound that bad, but we should remember that this is the same foreign policy that left the U.S. engaged in more than one illegal war and normalized illegal warfare without Congressional authorization.

Returning to an era of "normalcy" characterized by repeated policy failures, lack of accountability, and open-ended warfare is not the kind of restoration that Americans need. It might be good enough to win the election, but it isn't going to fix what ails U.S. foreign policy.


Gaithers a day ago

"Return to normalcy" better not mean squandering any more blood or money on the Middle East. If that's what he has in mind, Biden can forget my vote.
Ellerton a day ago
I hope that Sanders really takes it to Biden on the horrendous failures of the Obama/Clinton foreign policy, particularly the wrecking of Libya, Syria, and Yemen, the sheer scale of human misery that Obama, Hillary Clinton, and Biden caused, including unleashing millions of terrified refugees into Europe. I find Sanders' dalliance with communist dictatorships during the Cold War disgusting, but Biden's responsibility for implementing the Obama/Clinton foreign policy horrors is far worse.

I'm one of those poor saps who was taken in by Trump in 2016, and I want a Democrat I can vote for. I can't see voting for someone with Biden's appalling foreign policy record. If he doesn't recant it publicly and convincingly then he will likely lose to Trump.

Clyde Schechter Ellerton a day ago
"If he doesn't recant it publicly and convincingly then he will likely lose to Trump."

I don't know about that. Unfortunately, most voters don't seem to care much about foreign policy--which is really outrageous considering it is the area in which Presidents have the greatest latitude to act unilaterally. But that is the world we live in.

Even if he does publicly recant it, my view is that talk is cheap. Politicians will say what they think the voters want to hear. It doesn't mean they'll do it. The only recantation I would find somewhat persuasive (I don't think anything would "convince" me) is if he were to state that he will appoint somebody like Sanders or Rand Paul as secretary of State and someone like Tulsi Gabbard as secretary of Defense, and staff his national security council by recruiting from the Quincy Institute. (To actually capture my vote would require additional personnel commitments, such as Elizabeth Warren for secretary of the Treasury--but that's off topic for this thread.)

Right now, I would vote for Sanders if he gets the nomination and doesn't do something between now and November to alienate me. If Biden is the nominee, barring something really drastic, I'll do my usual and find a third party candidate to vote for.

kouroi a day ago
Wasn't Biden the Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee, the person that maybe has done more than VP Dick C. in 2002 to start and legitimize the Iraq war? Just accusing Biden of voting for the Iraq war is nothing. About 70 other senators have voted for it. Biden was the legislative Architect that paved the way for the Iraq War, and in my books (keeping the UN Charter as the legal standard), he is a War Criminal.
Alan Vanneman a day ago
I realize that almost everything Biden has to say about foreign policy is abysmal, and both Sanders and Warren were much better, but neither were electable (and both were abysmal on domestic policy and trade policy). Biden may be banal, but he is not vicious, as Trump so clearly is.

Furthermore, I think the otherwise estimable Mr. Larison fails to realize that the general public does set some vague parameters for what is and what is not acceptable foreign policy, though often without knowing it. I think it quite likely that Donald Trump will "abandon" Afghanistan, just as Max Boot et al. fear, and no one who can't name the Acela stops between New York and DC will care. Trump, when he isn't assassinating people, is much less aggressive than the Obama/Clinton administration. Although he talks about regime change, he doesn't follow through. He can be talked out of withdrawing troops, but so far hasn't tried sending them in. Early in his administration he was widely praised for firing Tomahawk missiles into Syria. Why hasn't he done it again? There is nothing Trump likes so much as praise. Why abandon what seemed like a sure-fire applause line?

cka2nd Alan Vanneman a day ago
We have four years of polling saying that Sanders could beat Trump. Not every single poll, but a great majority of them.
kouroi Alan Vanneman 12 hours ago
The "electability" concept is something mostly constructed by the media. Only a very small percentage of voters come in direct contact and hear and observe the candidates. The very brief TV debates, much choreographed and controlled are no good. As such, media starts and keeps repeating this notion of electability.

As a person, presence, message, I think the most charismatic individual to show up for this presidential cycle is Tulsi Gabbard. Her showing is off the charts compared with everyone else. Beside her anti regime change message (she is not necessarily anti-war), her charisma is such a threat that she had to be excluded from the consciousness and awareness of people. And what was implanted in people's mind is that she is an Assad apologist and that she met with the blood thirsty Assad.

Mark Krvavica a day ago
I enjoy some good nostalgia, but it has no place in foreign policy.
Taras77 a day ago
Good article! Bottom line is Biden is fraud and everything he and his handlers say or write must be viewed as such.
NGPM 19 hours ago
How about restoration of the "normalcy" of bipartisan consensus on "comprehensive immigration reform" AKA a general amnesty which will likely benefit some 25 to 35 million illegal aliens plus their descendants, in practice?

It doesn't seem to make much sense harping about restoring sanity to American foreign policy when America might not even exist in 20 years.

[Mar 04, 2020] Russiagate should be viewed as classic, textbook case of gaslighting and projecting election interference

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... I tried to sorta warm people on other sites that while they were looking for Russians at the front door, the gop was coming in the bad door for some rather nasty election interference. ..."
"... Of course what we are seeing now is democrats cheating other democrats. But that reality will never be acknowledged because, hey, it never happened before. Just unintentional mistakes like in Iowa (farm folk cheating -- no way) or Brooklyn. ..."
Mar 04, 2020 | caucus99percent.com

MrWebster on Wed, 03/04/2020 - 1:00pm

What you describe is probably why Russiagate spread so easily to so many people. Nothing happened in previous elections? Everything you describe never happened as you point out. The American electoral system was and is pristine and virginal.

Until the Russians came and destroyed American democracy through social media themes, memes, and retweets.

The American electoral system was never brutally corrupted by rigged votes, voter suppression on the scale of hundreds of thousands, deliberately miscounted votes, voter fraud, etc. Americans never did to each other anything as bad as what the Russians did to Americans.

Of course, for me never worked as I worked in primaries of a democratic machine dominated city. I tried to sorta warm people on other sites that while they were looking for Russians at the front door, the gop was coming in the bad door for some rather nasty election interference.

Of course what we are seeing now is democrats cheating other democrats. But that reality will never be acknowledged because, hey, it never happened before. Just unintentional mistakes like in Iowa (farm folk cheating -- no way) or Brooklyn.

[Mar 03, 2020] Whacking Rich is a reminder to Sanders what the party establishmen is capable of

Highly recommended!
Mar 03, 2020 | www.unz.com

An alternative view that has been circulating for several years suggests that it was not a hack at all, that it was a deliberate whistleblower-style leak of information carried out by an as yet unknown party, possibly Rich, that may have been provided to WikiLeaks for possible political reasons, i.e. to express disgust with the DNC manipulation of the nominating process to damage Bernie Sanders and favor Hillary Clinton.

There are, of course, still other equally non-mainstream explanations for how the bundle of information got from point A to point B, including that the intrusion into the DNC server was carried out by the CIA which then made it look like it had been the Russians as perpetrators. And then there is the hybrid point of view, which is essentially that the Russians or a surrogate did indeed intrude into the DNC computers but it was all part of normal intelligence agency probing and did not lead to anything. Meanwhile and independently, someone else who had access to the server was downloading the information, which in some fashion made its way from there to WikiLeaks.

Both the hack vs. leak viewpoints have marshaled considerable technical analysis in the media to bolster their arguments, but the analysis suffers from the decidedly strange fact that the FBI never even examined the DNC servers that may have been involved. The hack school of thought has stressed that Russia had both the ability and motive to interfere in the election by exposing the stolen material while the leakers have recently asserted that the sheer volume of material downloaded indicates that something like a higher speed thumb drive was used, meaning that it had to be done by someone with actual physical direct access to the DNC system. Someone like Seth Rich.

... ... ...

Given all of that back story, it would be odd to find Trump making an offer that focuses only on one issue and does not actually refute the broader claims of Russian interference, which are based on a number of pieces of admittedly often dubious evidence, not just the Clinton and Podesta emails.

Which brings the tale back to Seth Rich. If Rich was indeed responsible for the theft of the information and was possibly killed for his treachery, it most materially impacts on the Democratic Party as it reminds everyone of what the Clintons and their allies are capable of.

It will also serve as a warning of what might be coming at the Democratic National Convention in Milwaukee in July as the party establishment uses fair means or foul to stop Bernie Sanders. How this will all play out is anyone's guess, but many of those who pause to observe the process will be thinking of Seth Rich.


plantman , says: Show Comment February 29, 2020 at 9:35 pm GMT

Excellent roundup.

I don't ascribe to the idea that the intel agencies kill American citizens without a great deal of thought, but in Rich's case, they probably felt like they had no choice. Think about it: The DNC had already rigged the primary against Bernie, the Podesta emails had already been sent to Wikileaks, and if Rich's cover was blown, then he would publicly identify himself as the culprit (which would undermine the Russiagate narrative) which would split the Democratic party in two leaving Hillary with no chance to win the election.

I can imagine Hillary and her intel connections looking for an alternative to whacking Rich but eventually realizing that there was no other way to deflect responsibility for the emails while paving the way for an election victory.

If Seth Rich went public, then Hillary would certainly lose.

I imagine this is what they were thinking when they decided there was really only one option.

james charles , says: Show Comment February 29, 2020 at 11:14 pm GMT
"I have watched incredulous as the CIA's blatant lie has grown and grown as a media story – blatant because the CIA has made no attempt whatsoever to substantiate it. There is no Russian involvement in the leaks of emails showing Clinton's corruption."
https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2016/12/cias-absence-conviction/

"The FBI Has Been Lying About Seth Rich"
https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/

niteranger , says: Show Comment March 1, 2020 at 12:08 am GMT
@plantman It's more than Hillary losing. It would have been easy to connect the dots of the entire plot to get Trump. Furthermore, it would have linked Obama and his cohorts in ways that the country might have exploded. This was the beginning of a Coup De'tat that would have shown the American political process is a complete joke.

... ... ...

Carlton Meyer , says: Website Show Comment March 1, 2020 at 1:04 am GMT
To understand why the DNC mobsters and the Deep State hate him, watch this great 2016 interview where Assange calmly explains the massive corruption that patriotic FBI agents refer to as the "Clinton Crime Family." This gang is so powerful that it ordered federal agents to spy on the Trump political campaign, and indicted and imprisoned some participants in an attempt to pressure President Trump to step down. It seems Trump still fears this gang, otherwise he would order his attorney general to drop this bogus charge against Assange, then pardon him forever and invite him to speak at White House press conferences.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/_sbT3_9dJY4?feature=oembed

Ron Unz , says: Show Comment March 1, 2020 at 3:18 am GMT
Well, here was my own take on the controversy a couple of years ago, and I really haven't seen anything to change my mind:

Well, DC is still a pretty dangerous city, but how many middle-class whites were randomly murdered there that year while innocently walking the streets? I wouldn't be surprised if Seth Rich was just about the only one.

Julian Assange has strongly implied that Seth Rich was the source of the DNC emails that cost Hillary Clinton the presidency. So if Seth Rich died in a totally random street killing not long afterward, isn't that just the most astonishing coincidence in all of American history?

Consider that the leaks effectively nullified the investment of the $2 billion or so that her donors had provided, and foreclosed the flood of good jobs and appointments to her camp-followers, not to mention the oceans of future graft. Seems to me that's a pretty good motive for murder.

Here's my own plausible speculation from a couple of months ago:

Incidentally, I'd guess that DC is a very easy place to arrange a killing, given that until the heavy gentrification of the last dozen years or so, it was one of America's street-murder capitals. It seems perfectly plausible that some junior DNC staffer was at dinner somewhere, endlessly cursing Seth Rich for having betrayed his party and endangered Hillary's election, when one of his friends said he knew somebody who'd be willing to "take care of the problem" for a thousand bucks

https://www.unz.com/announcement/new-software-releaseopen-thread/#comment-1959442

https://www.unz.com/isteve/was-seth-rich-murdered-by-the-russians-the-democratic-elite-or-the-democratic-base/#comment-2069185

Let's say a couple of hundred thousand middle-class whites lived in DC around then, and Seth Rich was about the only one that year who died in a random street-killing, occurring not long after the leak.

Wouldn't that seem like a pretty unlikely coincidence?

Mustapha Mond , says: Show Comment March 1, 2020 at 3:45 am GMT
"If Rich was indeed responsible for the theft of the information and was possibly killed for his treachery ."

Heroism is the proper term for what Seth Rich did. He saw the real treachery, against Bernie Sanders and the democratic faithful who expect at least a modicum of integrity from their Party leaders (even if that expectation is utterly fanciful, wishful thinking), and he decided to act. He paid for it with his life. A young, noble life.

In every picture I've seen of him, he looks like a nice guy, a guy who cared. And now he's dead. And the assholes at the DNC simply gave him a small plaque over a bike rack, as I understand it.

Seth Rich: American Hero. A Truth-Teller who paid the ultimate price.

Great reporting, Phil. Another home run.

(And thanks to Ron for chiming in. Couldn't agree more. As a Truth-Teller extraordinaire, please watch your back, Bro. And Phil, too. You both know what these murderous scum are capable of.)

Biff , says: Show Comment March 1, 2020 at 3:46 am GMT
When the FBI doesn't fully investigate a crime(DNC-emails/9-11/JFK-murder) the only conclusion is " coverup ".
John Chuckman , says: Website Show Comment March 1, 2020 at 7:31 am GMT
I suppose American security services could have been involved.

That would explain the poor police investigation and lack of information and questions answered.

But Hillary and her dirty associates were quite capable of hiring a hit.

That would also explain the lack of information, since DC, unlike any other city, is literally controlled by the Federal government.

This is a very vicious woman despite her clownishly made-up face.

Her words after Gaddafi's murder were chilling.

She is said to have been responsible too for pressuring for the final push to get Waco out of the headlines. 80 folks incinerated.

She also joked about Assange, "can't we just drone him or something?"

And there was the dirty business at Benghazi.

She is indeed a woman capable of anything. A contemporary Borgia.

Daniel Rich , says: Show Comment March 1, 2020 at 9:33 am GMT
Because the {real} killers of JFK, MLK and RFK were never detained and jailed/hanged, why would one expect a lesser known, more ordinary individual's murder [Seth] to be solved?
hobo , says: Show Comment March 1, 2020 at 10:27 am GMT
Seymour Hersh, in a taped phone conversation, claimed to have access to an FBI report on the murder. According to Hersh, the report indicated tha FBI Cyber Unit examined Rich's computer and found he had contacted Wikileaks with the intention of selling the emails.

Seymour Hersh discussing Wikileaks DNC leaks Seth Rich & FBI report ( 7 min)

https://www.youtube.com/embed/ZJpQPGeUeQY?feature=oembed

Antiwar7 , says: Show Comment March 1, 2020 at 10:33 am GMT
Another reason Assange may not want to reveal it, if Seth Rich was a source for Wikileaks, could be that Seth Rich didn't act alone, and revealing Seth's involvement would compromise the other(s).

Or it could simply be that Wikileaks has promised to never reveal a source, even after that source's death, as a promise to future potential sources, who may never want their identities revealed, to avoid the thought of embarrassment or repercussions to their associates or families.

Incidentally, they only started really going after Assange after the Vault 7 leaks of the CIA's active bag of software tricks. I think, for Assange's sake, they should instead have held on to that, and made it the payload of a dead man's switch.

Chet Roman , says: Show Comment March 1, 2020 at 11:05 am GMT
I'm not sure how credible the source is but Ellen Ratner, the sister of Assange's former lawyer and a journalist, told Ed Butowsky that Assange told her that it was Seth Rich. She asked Butowsky to contact Rich's parents. She confirms the Assange meeting in an interview, link below. Butowsky does not seem to be a credible source but Ratner does. If it was Seth Rich then I have no doubt that his brother knows the details and the family does not want to lose another son.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/_YyuWpjTbg0?feature=oembed

The story has gone nowhere.

Chet Roman , says: Show Comment March 1, 2020 at 11:42 am GMT
"According to Assange's lawyers, Rohrabacher offered a pardon from President Trump if Assange were to provide information that would attribute the theft or hack of the Democratic National Committee emails to someone other than the Russians."

Not to quibble on semantics but Rohrabacher met with Assange to ask if he would be willing to reveal the source of the emails then Rohrabacher would contact Trump and try to make deal for Assange's freedom. Rohrabacher clarified that he never talked to Trump or that he was authorized by Trump to make any offer.

The MSM has been using the "amnesty if you say it was not the Russians" narrative to hint at a coverup by Russian agent Trump. Normal for the biased MSM.

Giraldi's link "Assange did not take the offer" has nothing to do with Rohrabacher's contact. It's just a general piece on Assange acting as a journalist should act.

https://www.rohrabacher.com/news/my-meeting-with-julian-assange

Alfred , says: Show Comment March 1, 2020 at 12:01 pm GMT
@plantman I can imagine Hillary and her intel connections looking for an alternative to whacking Rich

Have you never had to deal with a psychopath? That is not the way they reason.

She would have done it in the "national interest"

DaveE , says: Show Comment March 1, 2020 at 2:21 pm GMT
I'm of the opinion Ron Unz seems to share, that Rich was not a particularly "big hitter" in the DNC hierarchy and that his murder was more likely the result of a very nasty inter-party squabble. I seem to recall a LOT of very nasty talk between the Jewish neocons in the Bush era and the decent, traditional "small-government" style Republicans who greatly resented the neocons' hijacking of the GOP for their demonic zionist agenda.

Common sense would suggest that the zionist types who have (obviously) hijacked the DNC are at least as nasty and ruthless as the neocons who destroyed any decency or fair-play within the GOP. It's not exactly hard to believe that these Murder, Inc. types (also lefties of their era) wouldn't hesitate to whack someone like Rich for merely uttering a criticism of Israel, for example.

Hell, Meyer Lansky ordered the hit-job on Bugsy Seigel for forgetting to bring bagels to a sit-down ! There was a great web-site by a mobster of that era, long since taken down, who described the story in detail. I forget the names .. but I'll see if I can't find a copy of some of the pieces posted at least a decade ago .

It's not exactly hard to imagine some very nasty words being exchanged between the Rahm Emmanuel types and decent Chicago citizens, for example, who genuinely cared for their city and weren't afraid of The Big Jew and his mobster cronies . to their detriment I'm sure.

We're talking about organized crime, here, folks. The zionists make the so-called (mostly fictitious) Sicilian Mafia look like newborn puppies. They wouldn't hesitate to whack a guy like Rich for taking their favorite space in the bicycle rack.

Rev. Spooner , says: Show Comment March 1, 2020 at 3:27 pm GMT
@John Chuckman A long time ago I read in the London Guardian ( before it's reputation was in tatters) that the witch kept a list of all who pissed her off and updated it every night.
A quick search and here it is https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2014/jan/14/hillary-clinton-hitlist-spreadsheet-grudge
Altai , says: Show Comment March 1, 2020 at 3:33 pm GMT
My only trouble with the Seth Rich thing is, it seems a bit extreme, they seem quite callous in murdering foreigners but US citizens in the US who are their staffers? If they really were prepared to go out and kill in this way, they're be a lot more suspicious deaths.

What makes the case most compelling is the very quick investigation by police that looks like they were told by somebody concerned about how the whole thing looked to close up the case nice and quickly. That and the fact that he was shot in the back, which doesn't make sense for an attempted robbery turned murder.

However, it may also be that as in so many cities in the US, murder clearance rates for street shootings (Little forensic evidence, can only go by witness accounts or through poor alibis from usual suspects and their associates. In this case there is also no connection between Rich and any possible shooter with no witnesses.) are just so very low that DC police don't bother and Seth Rich's death just happened to be one such case that attracted some scrutiny.

But then maybe for the reasons above a place like DC is perfect to just murder somebody on the street and that's why they were so brazen about it.

Ron Unz , says: Show Comment March 1, 2020 at 3:47 pm GMT
@Altai

Seth Rich's death just happened to be one such case that attracted some scrutiny.

Well, upthread someone posted a recording of a Seymour Hersh phone call that confirmed Seth Rich was the fellow who leaked the DNC emails to Wikileaks, thereby possibly swinging the presidential election to Trump and overcoming $2 billion of Democratic campaign advertising.

Shortly afterwards, he probably became about the only middle-class white in DC who died in a "random street killing" that year. If you doubt this, see if you can find any other such cases that year.

I think it is *extraordinarily* unlikely that these two elements are unconnected and merely happened together by chance.

[Mar 01, 2020] Prof. Pamela Karlan did an excellent job of laying out what the impeachment "inquiry" has been all about

Mar 01, 2020 | off-guardian.org

There were two major themes in the House impeachment testimony of Prof. Pamela Karlan of Stanford Law School that bear further discussion.

One of these themes is the extension of what I call "State Feminist" and "State Identity Politics" methods beyond academia into U.S. society and legal structures broadly.
The other theme, which goes to what is supposedly the most "urgent" reason to remove Trump, feeds into the Russia narrative -- and this was underlined again in Schiff's Jan. 22 speech.

Since the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the United States and NATO have been pressing ever-closer to Russia with high-powered weapons systems, something that presidents since George H. W. Bush have said they would not do. President Trump has distinguished himself from both Democrats and Republicans on this question. In his typically-craven style, Schiff said,

Russia is not a threat to Eastern Europe alone. Ukraine has become the de facto proving ground for just the types of hybrid warfare that the twenty-first century will become defined by: cyberattacks, disinformation campaigns, efforts to undermine the legitimacy of state institutions, whether that is voting systems or financial markets. The Kremlin showed boldly in 2016 that with the malign skills it honed in Ukraine, they would not stay in Ukraine. Instead, Russia employed them here to attack our institutions, and they will do so again."

Schiff also quoted Prof. Karlan's statement that the Ukrainians are "fighting the Russians so that we don't have to."

Schiff argued that any inquiry into what Joe and Hunter were doing in Ukraine and with Burisma now has to be set aside, and cannot be a part of the impeachment hearings, not only because it is "completely-debunked conspiracy theory," but also because Russia will "weaponize" the results of any such inquiry and deploy it against presidential candidate Joe Biden.

(Obviously we can note once again the crazy irony of the fact that, apparently, being a presidential candidate -- against Trump, that is, though certainly against Bernie Sanders as well -- is an excellent cover for abusing the Vice-President's office, but being President does not confer enough status to ask about this abuse and corruption.)

As Daniel Lazare writes at AntiWar.com:

We must all put such sentiments behind us now Russia is seeking to "weaponize" such information, according to Schiff, and deploy it "against Mr. Biden just like it did against Hillary Clinton in 2016 when Russia hacked and released emails from her presidential campaign." If Russia wants to weaponize it, then it's best for the rest of us not to breathe a word of it lest people think we've been weaponized as well.

Bottom line: we must impeach Trump, according to Schiff's epic presentation, not only because he's overstepped his proper constitutional bounds, but because he's part of a grand Russian conspiracy to spread disinformation, undercut US security, undermine faith in US intelligence agencies, and "remake the map of Europe by dent of military force."

In order to counter this all-encompassing threat, it is our patriotic duty to do the opposite by believing the CIA and redoubling US defense. If anyone tells us that Biden was guilty of a flagrant conflict of interest, we must stop up our ears because that's what Moscow wants us to think. If anyone says that the entire Russian-interference narrative is just a silly conspiracy theory based on a paucity of facts and an abundance of paranoid speculation, we must do likewise because it's just the Kremlin trying to worm its way into our minds."

"Adam Schiff's Very Scary Warmongering Speech," January 24, 2020; originalantiwar.com

*

To further emphasize, Prof. Pamela Karlan did an excellent job of laying out what the impeachment "inquiry" has been all about:

America is not just 'the last best hope,' it's also the shining city on a hill. We can't be the shining city on a hill and promote democracy around the world if we're not promoting it here at home. This is not just about our national interests to protect elections or make sure Ukraine stays strong and fights the Russians so we don't have to fight them here, but it's in our national interest to promote democracy worldwide."

The aforementioned point of no return has arrived when one has to try to explain to Democrats and leftists what is wrong with this reactionary crap -- and finding that one cannot do it. For most Democrats, in fact, there is nothing wrong with the content of this statement; what is incredibly shameful is that leftists do know what is wrong here, but they go along (trail along, that is) with the Democrats because no price is too high to pay for getting rid of Trump -- especially when they are not the people paying the price. Once again, the moving line of bullshit.

An added bit of reactionary garbage here is that Democrats and some who at least call themselves "leftists" are hailing Prof. Karlan as a feminist and Identity-Politics hero, because she is a woman and, apparently, bisexual or lesbian or something. I state this last part a bit glibly because one might wonder how this matters. But of course it does matter if you are using Identity Politics to advance both the agenda of trying to get rid of Trump, and at the same time using the impeachment agenda to put the "procedural" methods of Identity Politics on display, in the hope that contempt for and abrogation of due process can become the way things are done in general, just as they have been done in academia since the "Dear Colleagues" (Title IX) letter of 2011.

Prof. Karlan scored a brilliant point with the IdPol Left with her stunning analysis of the difference between a name and a title: "President Trump can name his son Barron, but he cannot make him a baron." To any ordinary working person Karlan simply demonstrated that it doesn't seem to take much to make one a respected genius-scholar at Yale (from which Karlan has her law degree) and Stanford. I'm sure, though, that Prof. Karlan is so smart that she knows that ordinary, deplorable people are in no position to judge what counts as wisdom in elite institutions.

Of the three constitutional scholars who were brought in to make their case for impeaching President Trump (yes, clearly, their case), the other two besides Karlan were white males -- so why people should listen to them, it's hard to know. The other scholar, Jonathan Turley from George Washington University (sniff), testified that, while he is no fan of Trump, did not vote for him, and champions a "socially liberal agenda" (his term), the case for impeachment was very weak.

Prof. Turley characterized the Democratic case against Trump as "pointillism." As a critical instrument, this seems a good deal more powerful than fomenting confusion between names and titles. (My parents named me "Bill," but they weren't expecting your waiter to bring me to you -- or were they?!) Turley argued that the dots in the Democrats' "painting" are too few and too far apart to really create a coherent picture. This had to be a horrible blow to Adam Schiff, who undoubtedly considers himself to be a veritable Courbet of politics, whereas he'd be doing good to duct tape a banana to a wall somewhere. (See Turley's editorial in the Los Angeles Times, Dec. 9, 2019.)

Note, significantly, that Turley repeatedly called for George W. Bush- administration officials to be prosecuted for war crimes, which is another way that he is out of step with the Democratic impeachers, and almost all of the Republican Party too. Prof. Turley didn't stop with the Bush II administration (that is, the Cheney/Bush administration); in a 2013, editorial, titled "Fire Eric Holder," Turley wrote:

For Obama, there has been no better sin eater than Holder. When the president promised CIA employees early in his first term that they would not be investigated for torture, it was the attorney general who shielded officials from prosecution. When the Obama administration decided it would expand secret and warrantless surveillance, it was Holder who justified it. When the president wanted the authority to kill any American he deemed a threat without charge or trial, it was Holder who went public to announce the "kill list" policy.

Last week, the Justice Department confirmed that it was Holder who personally approved the equally abusive search of Fox News correspondent James Rosen's e-mail and phone records in another story involving leaked classified information. In the 2010 application for a secret warrant, the Obama administration named Rosen as "an aider and abettor and/or co-conspirator" to the leaking of classified materials. The Justice Department even investigated Rosen's parents' telephone number, and Holder was there to justify every attack on the news media."

– USA Today, May 29, 2013.

Prof. Turley is far out of step with the neoconservative/neoliberal compact well-represented by the chummy relationship among the Bushes, Clintons, and Obamas (and nowadays Dick Cheney is more likely to be seen on CNN than Fox), in their anti-Trump coalition.

And let's remember, please let's remember, that during the 2016 campaign Trump did a truly great thing in taking Jeb Bush, G. W. Bush, and their horrible family down for lying the United States into war with Iraq. That is the kind of fire -- that is, the CIA and the "intelligence community" -- that Trump has been playing with since he entered the presidential race, and this is the heart of why he has been under very serious attack since Nov. 9, 2016, and why this impeachment nonsense occurred.

Incidentally, what Prof. Turley politely called "pointillism" is, by other names, death by a thousand cuts, or simply throwing shit at the wall to see what sticks. While Turley is out of step with the Democratic Party agenda on impeachment, there is a way in which his criticisms of the "impeachment process" were fairly mild.

In the pointillism/duct-tape banana editorial, Turley says that he "encouraged the Democrats to wait and build a more complete case." This has led to his being pilloried by anti-Trumpers, because he is not fully in lockstep. Turley said that the Democrats have to go beyond their "impressionistic case" and build instead a "realistic case":

As it stands now, with so much in the Democrats' case relying on inference, how one views the impeachment is entirely based on one's view of the president. That is the trouble with impressionistic impeachments: They leave too much in the eye of the beholder."

One would think that, with all of the surveillance capabilities that Adam Schiff apparently has access to, he would have been all set to go photorealist on Trump. That Schiff isn't even remotely a David Hockney of politics tells us two things about the Democratic agenda on impeachment:

that, apparently, they don't really have the goods on Trump (as Turley said, "This would be the first presidential impeachment to go forward with no credible (or at least uncontested) crime at its heart" ); none of this is about removing Trump from office, it is about doing as much damage to Trump as can be done on the way to November 2020. Certainly, neither of these things is any kind of revelation.

What could really be said, though, is that the system has now made a qualitative shift, toward openly declaring feelings, impressions, and unsubstantiated third-hand accounts from interested and shadowy parties, as even more of a substantive basis for important legal findings than what we used to call "evidence."

Donald (and Melania, one assumes) named their kid "Barron," clearly a sign that Trump considers himself a king or emperor figure. Who knows, maybe he does think of himself that way -- though most royal figures are not even remotely as good at connecting with ordinary people through humor as Trump is; then again, neither are most regular comedians these days, infected with TDS as they are.

But this Title IX-style theater of power cannot be what is really going on, not any more than Bill Clinton was impeached for having been orally-serviced in the Oval Office and then "lying about it." For the moment I will leave this scene with the observation that it really does seem like so much regarding the Trump phenomena comes down to whether it is really the case that there is something like the Deep State, with the CIA at its core, with an effective hold on how power operates throughout the system.

*

Lastly, on Identity Politics/Title IX-style power-plays: Okay, I felt bad about the "bisexual or lesbian or whatever" remark; it may be fair in the way I am using it, but it wasn't nice to my lesbian friends, especially. Apparently Karlan's self-description is "snarky bisexual," as reported with great excitement at pinknews.co.uk on Dec. 5 .

They lauded her as having "stole[n] the show at Donald Trump's impeachment hearing with her scathing and quick-witted put-downs." There is no end of women of actual brilliant accomplishments, and I'm sure many of them are lesbian or otherwise non-binary. Some of them are even brilliant legal scholars.

We do nothing but take away from these women (and, yes, men too, a few of whom occasionally do something worthwhile as well) when the Identity Politics path to power and fame is allowed to displace the hard work and creativity that actually makes a contribution to humanity.

[Mar 01, 2020] That the whistleblower works for the CIA is a matter of public record, not some conspiracy theory

Notable quotes:
"... The Democrats did not want Adam Schiff to have to answer questions about the whistleblower, and they don't want the whistleblower's identity to be officially revealed. Such things do not contribute to the greatest cause of our time, the destruction of Donald Trump. ..."
"... The whole point of having the House impeachment investigation proceed from the House Intelligence Committee, headed by Adam Schiff, was to send the signal that Trump is unacceptable to the nefarious powers that make up the Deep State, especially the intelligence agencies, especially the CIA. ..."
"... What a world, then, when OP Democrats are cheering on John Bolton, hoping again for a savior to their sacred resistance cause, and meanwhile they aren't too excited about Rand Paul's intervention. For sure, it is a sign that a "resistance" isn't real when it needs a savior; it's not as if the French Resistance sat back waiting for Gen. de Gaulle. In any case, in the procession of horrible reactionary figures that Democrats have embraced, Bolton is probably the worst, and that's saying quite a lot. ..."
"... People are even talking about "getting used to accepting the help of the CIA with the impeachment," and the like. (I realize I'm being repetitious here, but this stuff blows my mind, it is so disturbing.) At least they are recognizing the reality -- at least partially; that's something. But then what they do with this recognition is something that requires epic levels of TDS -- and, somehow, a great deal of the Left is going down this path. ..."
"... The USA Deep State is a Five Eyes partner and as such Trump must be given the proverbial boot for being an uneducated boor lacking political gravitas & business gravitas with his narcissistic Smoot-Hawley II 2019 trade wars. Screw the confidence man-in-chief. He is a liability for the USA and global business. Trump is not an asset. ..."
"... Almost as a by product of his 2016 victory, Trump showed up the MSM hacks for what they were, lying, partisan shills utterly lacking in any integrity and credibility. The same applies to the intrigues and corruption of the Dirty Cops and Spookocracy. They had to come out from behind the curtain and reveal themselves as the dirty, lying, seditious, treasonous, rabid criminal scum they are. The true nature of the State standing in the spotlight for all the world to see. This cannot be undone. ..."
Mar 01, 2020 | off-guardian.org

First , the whistleblower was ruled out as a possible witness -- this was essentially done behind the scenes, and in reality can be called a Deep State operation, though one exposed to some extent by Rand Paul. This has nothing to do with protecting the whistleblower or upholding the whistleblower statute, but instead with the fact that the whistleblower was a CIA plant in the White House.

That the whistleblower works for the CIA is a matter of public record, not some conspiracy theory. Furthermore, for some time before the impeachment proceedings began, the whistleblower had been coordinating his efforts to undermine Trump with the head of the House Intelligence Committee, who happens to be Adam Schiff. It is possible that the connections with Schiff go even further or deeper. Obviously the Democrats do not want these things exposed.

... ... ...

In this regard, there was a very special moment on January 29, when Chief Justice John Roberts refused to allow the reading of a question from Sen. Rand Paul that identified the alleged whistleblower. Paul then held a press conference in which he read his question.

The question was directed at Adam Schiff, who claims not to have communicated with the whistleblower, despite much evidence to the contrary. (Further details can be read at here .) A propos of what I was just saying, Paul is described in the Politico article as "a longtime antagonist of Republican leaders." Excellent, good on you, Rand Paul.

Whether this was a case of unintended consequences or not, one could say that this episode fed into the case against calling witnesses -- certainly the Democrats should not have been allowed to call witnesses if the Republicans could not call the whistleblower. But clearly this point is completely lost on those working in terms of the moving line of bullshit.

One would think that Democrats would be happy with a Republican Senator who antagonizes leaders of his own party, but of course Rand Paul's effort only led to further "outrage" on the part of Democratic leaders in the House and Senate.

The Democrats did not want Adam Schiff to have to answer questions about the whistleblower, and they don't want the whistleblower's identity to be officially revealed. Such things do not contribute to the greatest cause of our time, the destruction of Donald Trump.

However, you see, there is a complementary purpose at work here, too. The whole point of having the House impeachment investigation proceed from the House Intelligence Committee, headed by Adam Schiff, was to send the signal that Trump is unacceptable to the nefarious powers that make up the Deep State, especially the intelligence agencies, especially the CIA.

The only way these machinations can be combatted is to pull the curtain back further -- but the Republicans do not want this any more than the Democrats do, with a few possible exceptions such as Rand Paul. (As the Politico article states, Paul was chastised publicly by McConnell for submitting his question in the first place, and for criticizing Roberts in the press conference.)

What a world, then, when OP Democrats are cheering on John Bolton, hoping again for a savior to their sacred resistance cause, and meanwhile they aren't too excited about Rand Paul's intervention. For sure, it is a sign that a "resistance" isn't real when it needs a savior; it's not as if the French Resistance sat back waiting for Gen. de Gaulle. In any case, in the procession of horrible reactionary figures that Democrats have embraced, Bolton is probably the worst, and that's saying quite a lot.

... ... ...

Now we are at a moment when "the Left" is recognizing the role that the CIA and the rest of the "intelligence community" is played in the impeachment nonsense. This "Left" was already on board for the "impeachment process" itself, perhaps at moments with caveats about "not leaving everything up to the Democrats," "not just relying on the Democrats," but still accepting their assigned role as cheerleaders and self-important internet commentators. (And, sure, maybe that's all I am, too -- but the inability to distinguish form from content is one of the main problems of the existing Left.)

Now, though, people on the Left are trying to get comfortable with, and trying to explain to themselves how they can get comfortable with, the obvious role of the "intelligence community" (with, in my view, the CIA in the leading role, but of course I'm not privy to the inner workings of this scene) in the impeachment process and other efforts to take down Trump's presidency.

People are even talking about "getting used to accepting the help of the CIA with the impeachment," and the like. (I realize I'm being repetitious here, but this stuff blows my mind, it is so disturbing.) At least they are recognizing the reality -- at least partially; that's something. But then what they do with this recognition is something that requires epic levels of TDS -- and, somehow, a great deal of the Left is going down this path.

They might think about the "help" that the CIA gave to the military in Bolivia to remove Evo Morales from office. They might think about the picture of Donald Trump that they find necessary to paint to justify what they are willing to swallow to remove him from office. They might think about the fact that ordinary Democrats are fine with this role for the CIA, and that Adam Schiff and others routinely offer the criticism/condemnation of Donald Trump that he doesn't accept the findings of the CIA or the rest of the intelligence agencies at face value.

The moment for the Left, what calls itself and thinks of itself as that, to break with this lunacy has passed some time ago, but let us take this moment, of "accepting the help of the CIA, because Trump," as truly marking a point of no return.

MASTER OF UNIVE ,

The USA Deep State is a Five Eyes partner and as such Trump must be given the proverbial boot for being an uneducated boor lacking political gravitas & business gravitas with his narcissistic Smoot-Hawley II 2019 trade wars. Screw the confidence man-in-chief. He is a liability for the USA and global business. Trump is not an asset.

paul ,

Trump, Sanders and Corbyn were all in their own way agents of creative destruction. Trump tapped into the popular discontent of millions of Americans who realised that the system no longer even pretended to work in their interests, and were not prepared to be diverted down the Identity Politics Rabbit Hole.

The Deep State was outraged that he had disrupted their programme by stealing Clinton's seat in the game of Musical Chairs. Being the most corrupt, dishonest and mendacious political candidate in all US history (despite some pretty stiff opposition) was supposed to be outweighed by her having a vagina. The Deplorables failed to sign up for the programme.

Almost as a by product of his 2016 victory, Trump showed up the MSM hacks for what they were, lying, partisan shills utterly lacking in any integrity and credibility. The same applies to the intrigues and corruption of the Dirty Cops and Spookocracy. They had to come out from behind the curtain and reveal themselves as the dirty, lying, seditious, treasonous, rabid criminal scum they are. The true nature of the State standing in the spotlight for all the world to see. This cannot be undone.

For all his pandering to Adelson and the Zionist Mafia, for all his Gives to Netanyahu, Trump has failed to deliver on the Big Ticket Items. Syria was supposed to have been invaded by now, with Hillary cackling demonically over Assad's death as she did over Gaddafi, and rapidly moving on to the main event with Iran. They will not forgive him for this.

They realise they are under severe time pressure. It took them a century to gain their stranglehold over America, and this is a wasting asset. America is in terminal decline, and may soon be unable to fulfil its ordained role as dumb goy muscle serving Zionist interests. And the parasite will find it difficult to find a replacement host.

George Mc ,

Haven't you just agreed with him here?

He thinks the left died in the 1960s, over a half century ago. It's pretty simple to identify a leftist: anti-imperialist/ anti-capitalist. The Democrats are imperialists. People who vote for the Democrats and Republicans are imperialists. This article is a confused mess, that's my whole point;)

If the Democrats and Republicans (and those who vote for them) are imperialists (which they are) then the left are indeed dead – at least as far as political representation goes.

Koba ,

He's sent more troops to Iraq and Afghanistan he staged several coups in Latin America and wanted to take out the dprk and thier nukes and wants to bomb Iran! Winding down?!

sharon marlowe ,

First, an attempted assassination-by-drone on President Maduro of Venezuela happened. Then Trump dropped the largest conventional bomb on Afghanistan, with a mile-wide radius. Then Trump named Juan Guido as the new President of Venezuela in an overt coup. Then he bombed Syria over a fake chemical weapons claim. He bombed it before even an investigation was launched. Then the Trump regime orchestrated a military coup in Bolivia. Then he claimed that he was pulling out of Syria, but instead sent U.S. troops to take over Syrian oil fields. trump then assassinated Gen. Solemeni. Then he claimed that he will leave Iraq at the request of the Iraqi government, the Iraqi government asked the U.S. to leave, and Trump rejected the request. The Trump regime has tried orchestrating a coup in Iran, and a coup in Hong Kong. He expelled Russian diplomats en masse for the Skripal incident in England, before an investigation. He has sanctioned Russia, Iran, North Korea, China, and Venezuela. He has bombed Yemen, Syria, Libya, Somalia, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. Those are the things I'm aware of, but what else Trump has done in Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, and South America you can research if you wish. And now, the claim of leaving Afghanistan is as ridiculous as when he claimed to be leaving Syria and Iraq.

Dungroanin ,

Yeah yeah and 'he' gave Maduro 7 days to let their kid takeover in Venezuela! And built a wall. And got rid of obamacare and started a nuke war with Rocketman and and and ...

sharon marlowe ,

There were at least nine people killed when Trump bombed Douma.

Only a psychopath would kill people because one of its spy drones was shot down. You don't get points for considering killing people for it and then changing your mind.

People should get over Hillary and pay attention to what Trump has been doing. Why even mention what Hillary would have done in Syria, then proceed to be an apologist for what Trump has done around the world in just three years? Trump has been quite a prolific imperialist in such a short time. A second term could well put him above Bush and Obama as the 21st century's most horrible leaders on earth.

Dungroanin ,

...If you think that the potus is the omnipotent ruler of everything he certainly seems to be having some problems with his minions in the CIA, NSA, FBI..State Dept etc.

Savorywill ,

Yes, what you say is right. However, he did warn both the Syrian and Russian military of the attack in the first instance, so no casualties, and in the second attack, he announced that the missiles had been launched before they hit the target, again resulting in no casualties. When the US drone was shot down by an Iranian missile, he considered retaliation. But, when advised of likely casualties, he called it off saying that human lives are more valuable than the cost of the drone. Yes, he did authorize the assassination of the Iranian general, and that was very bad. His claims that the general had organized the placement of roadside bombs that had killed US soldiers rings rather hollow, considering those shouldn't have been in Iraq in the first place.

I am definitely not stating that he is perfect and doesn't do objectionable things. And he has authorized US forces to control the oil wells, which is against international law, but at least US soldiers are not actively engaged in fighting the Syrian government, something Hillary set in motion. However, the military does comprise a huge percentage of the US economy and there have to be reasons, and enemies, to justify its existence, so his situation as president must be very difficult, not a job I would want, that is for sure.

The potus is best described (by Assad actually) as a CEO of a board of directors appointed by the shareholders who collectively determine their OWN interests.

Your gaslighting ain't succeeding round here – Regime! So desperate, so so sad 🤣

[Feb 29, 2020] CrowdStrike s Dmitri Alperovitch by William F. Jasper

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... Clinton and her Democratic National Committee allies — which appear to have included virtually all the top-tier DNC officials — decided the best defense would be an aggressive offense. They would make a pre-emptive damage-control strike to shift media and public attention away from the content of the e-mails (which they knew would be damning) to the provenance of the e-mails. They would divert the focus away from the embarrassing, unethical, and illegal actions revealed in the e-mails to how they were obtained and by whom. ..."
"... The following day, on June 15, the “Russian hacking” narrative was reinforced by “Guccifer 2.0,” an anonymous Internet persona, who claimed that the forensics of the DNC server showed it had been tainted with “Russian fingerprints.” ..."
"... All of the above organizations — most especially the CFR — have longstanding, troubling ties to the Deep State intelligence services . Notwithstanding Alperovitch’s many elitist ties listed above, it is his connections to the Atlantic Council that are especially noteworthy, as they illustrate the extensive and dangerous interconnectedness of these private globalist organizations with think tanks, major corporations, intelligence agencies, national governments, the United Nations, and other intergovernmental organizations. These private globalist organizations form the top level of the pyramid of power of the state-within-the-state — the Deep State — and they consider themselves above the rule of law and all that stuff meant for lower mortals. ..."
"... The Atlantic Council is a staunch opponent of the Brexit, President Donald Trump, nationalist-populist movements, and the burgeoning independent media. ..."
"... The Ukrainian civil war was well orchestrated by Obama and Hillary's Deep State along with Russian Mafioso and Ukrainian neo-Nazi Stefano Bandera operatives, a dubious mercurial cult from WWII who operated for both Hitler and Stalin's armies, being responsible for the penetration of the OPC's (precursor to the CIA) early Cold War operations behind the Iron Curtain. Every freedom fighter we trained behind the Iron Curtain was immediately identified and assassinated by the KGB because of Belorussian and Ukrainian double agents trained by the OPC-CIA: ..."
"... Crowdstrike is just another US based start-up getting high on the hog of government contracts, and was keen to be there at the beginning of the Clinton presidency. The evidence from "Adam Carter" shows that Guccifer 2.0 was almost certainly a creation of Crowdstrike, in order to manufacture the story that it was a Russian hacker and not a disgruntled DNC leaker. ..."
"... The setup was in the media. On June 15 2016, Crowdstrike announced that the DNC had been hacked by the two "bears", but the only thing missing was opposition research on Donald Trump. The next day, G2 appears, "leaking" the very boring "Trump research". The problem is, that that document didn't come from the DNC leak, it came from the Podesta email leak, yet that was never revealed at the time. How did Crowdstrike know on the 15th, to say that the DNC hackers took the Trump research, and G2 appears the next day claiming to release the document, when in actuality, G2 got the "Trump" file off Podesta's machine? ..."
www.theamericanconservative.com

Dmitri Alperovitch has played a key role in diverting attention from Hillary Clinton's documented unethical, illegal, and treasonous activities with Putin to allegations of ties between Donald Trump and Putin, for which no evidence has been forthcoming. Is Alperovitch, in reality, one of Putin's best deep-cover agents?

Before the WikiLeaks announcement in 2016 that it would be releasing thousands of e-mails from the Democratic National Committee, few Americans had heard of the cybersecurity firm CrowdStrike or Dmitri Alperovitch (shown), its Russian-Ukranian cofounder and chief technology officer. He is still far from being a household name, but he remains a central figure in the ongoing “Trump-Russia collusion” investigations by Senate and House committees and Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

That WikiLeaks announcement, by the whistleblowing organization’s spokesman Julian Assange, came on June 12, a little over a month before the 2016 Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. The Hillary Clinton campaign, still facing an insurgency from staunch Bernie Sanders supporters, was thrown into a panic. The WikiLeaks release was seen as something that could seriously sabotage her march to the White House. Clinton and her Democratic National Committee allies — which appear to have included virtually all the top-tier DNC officials — decided the best defense would be an aggressive offense. They would make a pre-emptive damage-control strike to shift media and public attention away from the content of the e-mails (which they knew would be damning) to the provenance of the e-mails. They would divert the focus away from the embarrassing, unethical, and illegal actions revealed in the e-mails to how they were obtained and by whom.

As mentioned above, the WikiLeaks announcement came on June 12. Two days later, on June 14, DNC contractor CrowdStrike announced (via the Washington Post) that its forensic analysis of the DNC server had determined malware had been injected into the server — and it had been done by Russians. Not just any Russians, mind you, but agents of Vladimir Putin. Alperovitch and CrowdStrike’s Shawn Henry (a former FBI executive under Director Robert Mueller and President Obama) told the Post that their investigation revealed the DNC server had been hacked by the cyber-espionage groups known as “Fancy Bear,” allegedly associated with the Russian GRU (military intelligence) and “Cozy Bear,” allegedly associated with the FSB (the successor to the infamous Soviet KGB).

The following day, on June 15, the “Russian hacking” narrative was reinforced by “Guccifer 2.0,” an anonymous Internet persona, who claimed that the forensics of the DNC server showed it had been tainted with “Russian fingerprints.”

Hillary Clinton and her campaign chairman John Podesta, along with their DNC auxiliaries, immediately launched their brazen Russia-bashing program, claiming that Putin was interfering in our presidential election to keep her out of the White House and put his “puppet,” Donald Trump, into the Oval Office. It was precisely the kind of audacious response one would expect from Podesta, who earned notoriety as a shrewd and ruthless political operative while serving as chief of staff to President Bill Clinton. In that post, he proved his worth as the master of damage control, handling Bill Clinton’s scandals du jour cavalcade: Chinagate, Troopergate, Coffeegate, Bimbogate, etc. Besides diverting attention from the e-mails released by WikiLeaks, the Russia-Trump collusion accusations served other purposes as well. Certainly among the foremost of those purposes was that accusing Trump of colluding with Russia would bolster Hillary’s image as an anti-Putin hardliner. This was not only a move calculated to counter Hillary’s and the Democrats’ images as historically “soft on communism” and “soft on national security/national defense,” but calculated also to serve as a sort of immunity against investigation and prosecution of Bill and Hillary Clinton, John Podesta, and many others in their circle for their own well-documented corrupt, illegal, and treasonous dealings with Putin and Russia, which we have reported on extensively over many years (see here, here, and here, for example).

However, the “Trump-Russia collusion” meme would not have taken hold and could not have continued causing the political distraction and upheaval more than a year into the Trump administration simply on the strength of Clinton, Podesta, and the DNC. The ongoing campaign against President Trump has only remained viable because of the continuous support and connivance of Deep State operatives in the intelligence community and the major media.

This connivance was apparent from the start, when the DNC and CrowdStrike refused to allow official analysts from the FBI, CIA, NSA, and other agencies to examine the DNC server that was supposedly hacked by the Russians. One might expect that, in response, the “rebuffed” intelligence and law-enforcement agencies would refrain from endorsing the conclusions of a report that was obviously serving a partisan political purpose and that was based on evidence that they had not seen, because it had been purposely withheld from them. But no, the politically appointed intel chiefs lined up to parrot the Clinton/DNC/CrowdStrike line that Putin had interfered in the U.S. presidential election to torpedo Hillary Clinton and aid Donald Trump.

Phony “Fingerprints,” Phony “Hack”

Like the phony “Russia dossier” on Trump produced by Christopher Steele and Fusion GPS for Hillary Clinton and the DNC, the CrowdStrike “analysis” quickly came unraveled under expert examination. Among the many authoritative refutations of CrowdStrike’s claims are an early analysis by former top IBM executive Skip Folden, entitled “Non-Existent Foundation for Russian Hacking Charge” and “Intel Vets Challenge ‘Russia Hack’ Evidence" by Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS). The VIPS study, led by the legendary Dr. William Binney, a former technical director at the NSA, also benefitted from the input of VIPS members who were cybersecurity experts with the NSA, CIA, DIA, FBI, and military intelligence.

Among their most important finds are these two critical points:

1) The claimed “Russian fingerprints” provide no trace routing to prove that any “hacking” was done by Russian intelligence operatives. The software and methods allegedly used are commonly available and commonly used by many private individuals, criminal syndicates, and state actors. Moreover, the “Russian” traces are so crude as to be obvious plants pointing to the Russians, whereas, if Putin’s cyberspooks had actually done it, they would have done a more professional job of covering their tracks, the experts say, and;

2) The “hack” of the DNC was actually a leak, not a hack. The technical analysis of the security breach shows that the DNC e-mails were copied onto a USB device, such as a thumb drive, by someone physically at the DNC headquarters, not downloaded via a remote connection on the Internet. Thus it was a leak by someone at the DNC, not Russian hackers, who provided the data to WikiLeaks. That’s not an insignificant distinction!

In addition to the Folden and VIPS reports, other top-grade technical experts who have challenged and discredited the faux “intelligence community consensus” on the DNC hacking include:

  • Mark Maunder, CEO of cybersecurity firm Wordfence;
  • Rob Graham, CEO of Errata Security;
  • Robert M. Lee, CEO of the security company Dragos;
  • Gregory Copley, president of the International Strategic Studies Association (ISSA); and
  • Jeffrey Carr, principal consultant for 20KLeague.com, founder of Suits and Spooks, author of Inside Cyber Warfare, and a lecturer at the Army War College and the Defense Intelligence Agency.

In short, what we have is very credible technical analysis that challenges the claim of “Russian hacking” vs. a Clinton-DNC contractor who has a motive to produce a scenario that his employer is demanding. We also have the unexplained refusal of the Clinton-DNC “victims” to provide the evidence of the supposed crime to law-enforcement and intelligence authorities. Finally, and most suspiciously, we have the intelligence community (IC) that fails to demand seeing the evidence before endorsing the DNC/CrowdStrike verdict — a verdict that is obviously politically expedient.

In addition to the technical forensic analysis that discredits the “Russian hacking” charges, we also have the claims of two WikiLeaks principals involved in the DNC e-mail breach who insist that the data was obtained via an inside leak, not a Russian Hack. WikiLeaks spokesman Julian Assange has repeatedly and emphatically stated that neither Russia nor anyone associated with Russia had anything to do with providing WikiLeaks with the DNC e-mails. For many people, however, Assange’s denials are barely more credible than those of Vladimir Putin himself, even though Assange and WikiLeaks have — time after time — reliably delivered precisely what they promised and have been non-partisan, exposing wrongdoing regardless of the wrongdoers’ political affiliations. Assange is not alone, though, in denying a Russian source connection.

Craig Murray, the human-rights whistleblower and former British ambassador to Uzbekistan, has said in interviews with two British newspapers, The Guardian and Daily Mail Online, that he personally flew to Washington, D.C., and met with the DNC employee who provided him with the DNC e-mails to give to WikiLeaks. “I’ve met the person who leaked them,” Murray told The Guardian, “and they are certainly not Russian and it’s an insider. It’s a leak, not a hack.” Ambassador Murray’s career has shown him to be a credible witness, as well as heroically courageous. In exposing the brutal communist dictatorship of Uzbek President Islam Karimov, he also stood up to the British Foreign Office, which was covering for Karimov, and in so doing, sacrificed his diplomatic career and drew down on himself a vicious campaign of character assassination aimed at destroying his reputation.

Thus, we have highly credible technical analysis that asserts the DNC e-mails were obtained by leak, not hack, and we have a credible witness/participant who testifies that he received the DNC data from a DNC “insider” and delivered them to WikiLeaks.

Who is Dmitri Alperovitch?

Who is Dmitri Alperovitch, and why is his highly suspect CrowdStrike analysis accepted as gospel by the DNC, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, the IC, and the IC-tainted Big Media “Mockingbirds”? Dmitri Alperovitch was born in Moscow in 1980, which is to say, during the latter years of the Soviet Union. There seem to be large gaps in his curriculum vitae concerning his life before emigrating to the U.S., making his background somewhat mysterious, which, some might think, would be problematical for someone who is reputed to be a top go-to guy on cyber security. But it certainly doesn’t seem to be problematic for major investors such as CapitalG (formerly Google Capital), which led a $100 million capital drive for CrowdStrike in 2015. By May of 2017, Business Insider reported, Alperovitch’s startup had attracted over $256 million and its stock was valued at just under $1 billion.

Billionaire Eric Schmidt, the longtime CEO of Google (and its parent company, Alphabet, Inc.) is, of course, a big-time DNC donor, and was a major supporter of both Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, as were many other Google executives. Schmidt was a principal investor in The Groundwork, a start-up tech company formed to assist Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. Besides Google, CrowdStrike has benefitted from cash infusions from Warburg Pincus, Accel Partners, Telstra, and March Capital Partners.

Just as interesting as Alperovitch’s apparent Midas touch is his cachet with the elite media and the great and the good of the globalist one-world set. He has been the subject of flattering profiles at Esquire, Fortune, Politico, the Washington Post, NPR, CNBC, and many other media herd venues. He is also featured as an anointed expert at such exclusive insider assemblages as the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), the World Economic Forum, the Aspen Institute, the Brookings Institution, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, the Atlantic Council (where he is a senior fellow), and the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard University (where he is also a senior fellow).

All of the above organizations — most especially the CFR — have longstanding, troubling ties to the Deep State intelligence services. Notwithstanding Alperovitch’s many elitist ties listed above, it is his connections to the Atlantic Council that are especially noteworthy, as they illustrate the extensive and dangerous interconnectedness of these private globalist organizations with think tanks, major corporations, intelligence agencies, national governments, the United Nations, and other intergovernmental organizations. These private globalist organizations form the top level of the pyramid of power of the state-within-the-state — the Deep State — and they consider themselves above the rule of law and all that stuff meant for lower mortals.

The Atlantic Council is subsidized by taxpayers through its government-related funding partners, which include the U.S. State Department; the European Union; the European Investment Bank; NATO; and the governments of Norway, Sweden, Japan, Finland, Lithuania, South Korea, Cyprus, Latvia, and Slovakia; among others. The Atlantic Council’s corporate sponsors include JPMorgan Chase, the Blackstone Group, Bank of America, Airbus, Chevron, ExxonMobil, Ford, Saab, Zurich, Walmart Stores, Inc., Lockheed Martin, 21st Century Fox, Arab Bank, Boeing, CIGNA Corporation, Coca-Cola Company, Raytheon, Pfizer, and many others. Besides the Rockefeller and Soros foundations, the Atlantic Council also receives generous handouts from the usual establishment tax-exempt foundations that fund globalist and leftwing causes.

The Atlantic Council’s website tells us, “In 1961, former Secretaries of State Dean Acheson and Christian Herter, with Will Clayton, William Foster, Theodore Achilles and other distinguished Americans, recommended the consolidation of the U.S. citizens groups supporting the Atlantic Alliance into the Atlantic Council of the United States.”

What the Atlantic Council’s website doesn’t mention is that all of these founders were also leading members of the CFR, the principal organization pushing for world government and the annihilation of national sovereignty for most of the past century. Virtually all of the individuals populating the Atlantic Council’s historical roster of its current and past chairmen, presidents, and directors are/were also prominent CFR members. The Atlantic Council represents and projects the CFR globalist agenda on a multitude of political and economic issues, as, for instance, in its support for the TTIP (Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnersip), the UN Climate treaty, increased Muslim migration into Europe, expanded EU control over its member states, expanded funding and powers for the United Nations and NATO, and much more. The Atlantic Council is a staunch opponent of the Brexit, President Donald Trump, nationalist-populist movements, and the burgeoning independent media.

It is the Atlantic Council’s involvement in launching an insidious campaign to stamp out the growing Internet-based independent media that is our main concern here, and the area where Dmitri Alperovitch appears to be a central character. A key instrument in that effort is a group of anonymous national security and cybersecurity “experts” who claim to be fighting Russian propaganda in the alternative media.

The group, which goes by the name “Is It Propaganda Or Not?” or "PropOrNot" (www.propornot.com), joined up with Snopes, Politifact, Fake News Watch, Fort Liberty Hoax Sites, and other left-leaning groups to attack conservative and libertarian news sites. It has been boosted in this treacherous attack on the First Amendment by the Washington Post, the New Republic, and other members of the Fourth Estate with deep ties to the Deep State.

This danger has been amplified by the efforts of Google, Facebook, Twitter, and other tech giants to censor politically incorrect speech on the Internet. We first wrote about PropOrNot in a December 2016 article, “FAKE NEWS: Media Hysteria Over Irrelevant Fake Websites Masks More Sinister Agenda.”

In a forthcoming article, we will be examining the threat to our freedom of speech posed by the PropOrNot-Deep State complex and the roles of Alperovitch, CrowdStrike, Google, CFR-Atlantic Council, and the “intelligence community” in that ongoing dangerous attack on liberty.

Image: screenshot from YouTube video of CBS News interview with Dmitri Alperovitch

Related articles:

Rachel Verdon 2 years ago • edited ,

William Jasper, asking "Is Alperovitch, in reality, one of Putin's best deep-cover agents," has every right to be suspicious about Dmitri Alperovitch and his ties to the Atlantic Council of the Ukraine. Alperovitch hates President Putin and the new Russian Federation. Alperovitch was involved in toppling the legitimate Ukrainian presidency of Viktor Yanukovych who favored aligning with Russia instead of the European Union, according to an article in CounterPunch on March 23, 2017:

"Cybersecurity Firm That Attributed DNC Hacks to Russia May Have Fabricated Russia Hacking in Ukraine" by Michael J. Sainato
http://www.counterpunch.org...

The Ukrainian civil war was well orchestrated by Obama and Hillary's Deep State along with Russian Mafioso and Ukrainian neo-Nazi Stefano Bandera operatives, a dubious mercurial cult from WWII who operated for both Hitler and Stalin's armies, being responsible for the penetration of the OPC's (precursor to the CIA) early Cold War operations behind the Iron Curtain. Every freedom fighter we trained behind the Iron Curtain was immediately identified and assassinated by the KGB because of Belorussian and Ukrainian double agents trained by the OPC-CIA:

  • "Ukraine on Fire" the movie, by Oliver Stone https://www.youtube.com/wat...
  • "The Belarus Secret" by John Loftus https://www.amazon.com/Bela... see pages 16, 66, 101-104 depicting the Ukrainian Stefano Bandera group whose communist double agents had permeated every level of western intelligence and compromised US intelligence during the Cold War
Brett Harris paul dinatale a year ago ,

I don't see how Alperovich is connected to Russia, he arrived in the US as a 15year old, and has been working hand in glove with the Obama Administration, especially during the Ukraine coup in 2014. Crowdstrike has already been caught using the same techniques as in the DNC, to "prove" that Russia hacked Ukranian artillery guidance computers. The Ukrainian military has come out and explicitly denied that any artillery was infected, and has been independently verified.

Crowdstrike is just another US based start-up getting high on the hog of government contracts, and was keen to be there at the beginning of the Clinton presidency. The evidence from "Adam Carter" shows that Guccifer 2.0 was almost certainly a creation of Crowdstrike, in order to manufacture the story that it was a Russian hacker and not a disgruntled DNC leaker.

The setup was in the media. On June 15 2016, Crowdstrike announced that the DNC had been hacked by the two "bears", but the only thing missing was opposition research on Donald Trump. The next day, G2 appears, "leaking" the very boring "Trump research". The problem is, that that document didn't come from the DNC leak, it came from the Podesta email leak, yet that was never revealed at the time. How did Crowdstrike know on the 15th, to say that the DNC hackers took the Trump research, and G2 appears the next day claiming to release the document, when in actuality, G2 got the "Trump" file off Podesta's machine?

Plenty of Ukrainian collusion with the DNC, along with British and Australian collusion to undermine Trump, no "collusion" or any other evidence that Russia hacked anyone.

[Feb 27, 2020] Because You d Be In Jail! - The Real Reason Democrats Are Pushing Trump Impeachment by Robert Bridge

Notable quotes:
"... Due to the non-stop action in Washington of late, few believe that the present state of affairs between the Democrats and Donald Trump are exclusively due to a telephone call between the US leader and the Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. That is only scratching the surface of a story that is practically boundless. ..."
"... In March 2016, the DOJ found that "the FBI had been employing outside contractors who had access to raw Section 702 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) data, and retained that access after their work for the FBI was completed," as Jeff Carlson reported in The Epoch Times. ..."
"... That sort of foreign access to sensitive data is highly improper and was the result of "deliberate decision-making," according to the findings of an April 2017 FISA court ruling ( footnote 69 ). ..."
"... On April 18, 2016, then-National Security Agency (NSA) Director Adm. Mike Rogers directed the NSA's Office of Compliance to terminate all FBI outside-contractor access. Later, on Oct. 21, 2016, the FBI and the DOJ's National Security Division (NSD), and despite they were aware of Rogers's actions, moved ahead anyways with a request for a FISA warrant to conduct surveillance on Trump campaign adviser Carter Page. The request was approved by the FISA court, which, apparently, was still in the dark about the violations. ..."
"... Now James Comey is back in the spotlight as one of the main characters in the Barr-Durham investigation, which is examining largely out of the spotlight the origins of the Trump-Russia conspiracy theory that dogged the White House for four long years. ..."
Dec 29, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Robert Bridge via The Strategic Culture Foundation,

In the time-honored tradition of Machiavellian statecraft, all of the charges being leveled against Donald Trump to remove him from office – namely, 'abuse of power' and 'obstruction of congress' –are essentially the same things the Democratic Party has been guilty of for nearly half a decade : abusing their powers in a non-stop attack on the executive branch. Is the reason because they desperately need a 'get out of jail free' card?

Due to the non-stop action in Washington of late, few believe that the present state of affairs between the Democrats and Donald Trump are exclusively due to a telephone call between the US leader and the Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. That is only scratching the surface of a story that is practically boundless.

Back in April 2016, before Trump had become the Republican presidential nominee, talk of impeachment was already in the air.

"Donald Trump isn't even the Republican nominee yet," wrote Darren Samuelsohn in Politico. Yet impeachment, he noted, is "already on the lips of pundits, newspaper editorials, constitutional scholars, and even a few members of Congress."

The timing of Samuelsohn's article is not a little astonishing given what the Department of Justice (DOJ) had discovered just one month earlier.

In March 2016, the DOJ found that "the FBI had been employing outside contractors who had access to raw Section 702 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) data, and retained that access after their work for the FBI was completed," as Jeff Carlson reported in The Epoch Times.

That sort of foreign access to sensitive data is highly improper and was the result of "deliberate decision-making," according to the findings of an April 2017 FISA court ruling ( footnote 69 ).

On April 18, 2016, then-National Security Agency (NSA) Director Adm. Mike Rogers directed the NSA's Office of Compliance to terminate all FBI outside-contractor access. Later, on Oct. 21, 2016, the FBI and the DOJ's National Security Division (NSD), and despite they were aware of Rogers's actions, moved ahead anyways with a request for a FISA warrant to conduct surveillance on Trump campaign adviser Carter Page. The request was approved by the FISA court, which, apparently, was still in the dark about the violations.

On Oct. 26, following approval of the warrant against Page, Rogers went to the FISA court to inform them of the FBI's non-compliance with the rules. Was it just a coincidence that at exactly this time, the Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter were suddenly calling for Roger's removal? The request was eventually rejected. The next month, in mid-November 2016 Rogers, without first notifying his superiors, flew to New York where he had a private meeting with Trump at Trump Towers.

According to the New York Times, the meeting – the details of which were never publicly divulged, but may be guessed at – "caused consternation at senior levels of the administration."

Democratic obstruction of justice?

Then CIA Director John Brennan, dismayed about a few meetings Trump officials had with the Russians, helped to kick-start the FBI investigation over 'Russian collusion.' Notably, these Trump-Russia meetings occurred in December 2016, as the incoming administration was in the difficult transition period to enter the White House. The Democrats made sure they made that transition as ugly as possible.

Although it is perfectly normal for an incoming government to meet with foreign heads of state at this critical juncture, a meeting at Trump Tower between Michael Flynn, Trump's incoming national security adviser and former Russian Ambassador to the US, Sergey Kislyak, was portrayed as some kind of cloak and dagger scene borrowed from a John le Carré thriller.

Brennan questioning the motives behind high-level meetings between the Trump team and some Russians is strange given that the lame duck Obama administration was in the process of redialing US-Russia relations back to the Cold War days, all based on the debunked claim that Moscow handed Trump the White House on a silver platter.

In late December 2016, after Trump had already won the election, Obama slapped Russia with punitive sanctions, expelled 35 Russian diplomats and closed down two Russian facilities. Since part of Trump's campaign platform was to mend relations with Moscow, would it not seem logical that the incoming administration would be in damage-control, doing whatever necessary to prevent relations between the world's premier nuclear powers from degrading even more?

So if it wasn't 'Russian collusion' that motivated the Democrats into action, what was it?

From Benghazi to Seth Rich

Here we must pause and remind ourselves about the unenviable situation regarding Hillary Clinton, the Secretary of State, who was being grilled daily over her use of a private computer to communicate sensitive documents via email. In all likelihood, the incident would have dropped from the radar had it not been for the deadly 2012 Benghazi attacks on a US compound.

In the course of a House Select Committee investigation into the circumstances surrounding the attacks, which resulted in the death of US Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other US personnel, Clinton handed over some 30,000 emails, while reportedly deleting 32,000 deemed to be of a "personal nature". Those emails remain unaccounted for to this day.

I want the public to see my email. I asked State to release them. They said they will review them for release as soon as possible.

-- Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) March 5, 2015

By March 2015, even the traditionally tepid media was baring its baby fangs, relentlessly pursuing Clinton over the email question. Since Clinton never made a secret of her presidential ambitions, even political allies were piling on. Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), for example, said it's time for Clinton "to step up" and explain herself, adding that "silence is going to hurt her."

On July 24, 2015, The New York Times published a front-page story with the headline "Criminal Inquiry Sought in Clinton's Use of Email." Later, Jennifer Rubin of the Washington Post candidly summed up Clinton's rapidly deteriorating status with elections fast approaching: "Democrats still show no sign they are willing to abandon Clinton. Instead, they seem to be heading into the 2016 election with a deeply flawed candidate schlepping around plenty of baggage -- the details of which are not yet known."

Moving into 2016, things began to look increasingly complicated for the Democratic front-runner. On March 16, 2016, WikiLeaks launched a searchable archive for over 30 thousand emails and attachments sent to and from Hillary Clinton's private email server while she was Secretary of State. The 50,547-page treasure trove spans the dates from June 30, 2010 to August 12, 2014.

In May, about one month after Clinton had officially announced her candidacy for the US presidency, the State Department's inspector general released an 83-page report that was highly critical of Clinton's email practices, concluding that Clinton failed to seek legal approval for her use of a private server.

"At a minimum," the report determined, "Secretary Clinton should have surrendered all emails dealing with Department business before leaving government service and, because she did not do so, she did not comply with the Department's policies that were implemented in accordance with the Federal Records Act."

The following month brought more bad news for Clinton and her presidential hopes after it was reported that her husband, former President Bill Clinton, had a 30-minute tête-à-tête with Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch, whose department was leading the Clinton investigations, on the tarmac at Phoenix International Airport. Lynch said Clinton decided to pay her an impromptu visit where the two discussed "his grandchildren and his travels and things like that." Republicans, however, certainly weren't buying the story as the encounter came as the FBI was preparing to file its recommendation to the Justice Department.

The summer of 2016, however, was just heating up.

I take @LorettaLynch & @billclinton at their word that their convo in Phoenix didn't touch on probe. But foolish to create such optics.

-- David Axelrod (@davidaxelrod) June 30, 2016
Hack versus Leak?

On the early morning of July 10, Seth Rich, the director of voter expansion for the Democratic National Committee (DNC), was gunned down on the street in the Bloomingdale neighborhood of Washington, DC. Rich's murder, said to be the result of a botched robbery, bucked the homicide trend in the area for that particular period; murders rates for the first six months of 2016 were down about 50 percent from the same period in the previous year.

In any case, the story gets much stranger. Just five days earlier, on July 5th, the computers at the DNC were compromised, purportedly by an online persona with the moniker "Guccifer 2.0" at the behest of Russian intelligence. This is where the story of "Russian hacking" first gained popularity. Not everyone, however, was buying the explanation.

In July 2017, a group of former U.S. intelligence officers, including NSA specialists, who call themselves Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS) sent a memo to President Trump that challenged a January intelligence assessment that expressed "high confidence" that the Russians had organized an "influence campaign" to harm Hillary Clinton's "electability," as if she wasn't capable of that without Kremlin support.

"Forensic studies of 'Russian hacking' into Democratic National Committee computers last year reveal that on July 5, 2016, data was leaked (not hacked) by a person with physical access to DNC computer," the memo states (The memo's conclusions were based on analyses of metadata provided by the online persona Guccifer 2.0, who took credit for the alleged hack). "Key among the findings of the independent forensic investigations is the conclusion that the DNC data was copied onto a storage device at a speed that far exceeds an Internet capability for a remote hack."

In other words, according to VIPS, the compromise of the DNC computers was the result of an internal leak, not an external hack.

At this point, however, it needs mentioned that the VIPS memo has sparked dissenting views among its members. Several analysts within the group have spoken out against its findings, and that internal debate can be read here . Thus, it would seem there is no 'smoking gun,' as of yet, to prove that the DNC was not hacked by an external entity. At the same time, the murder of Seth Rich continues to remain an unsolved "botched robbery," according to investigators. Meanwhile, the one person who may hold the key to the mystery, Julian Assange, is said to be withering away Belmarsh Prison, a high-security London jail, where he is awaiting a February court hearing that will decide whether he will be extradited to the United States where he 18 charges.

Here is a question to ponder: If you were Julian Assange, and you knew you were going to be extradited to the United States, who would you rather be the sitting president in charge of your fate, Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump? Think twice before answering.

"Because you'd be in jail"

On October 9, 2016, in the second televised presidential debates between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, Trump accused his Democratic opponent of deleting 33,000 emails, while adding that he would get a "special prosecutor and we're going to look into it " To this, Clinton said "it's just awfully good that someone with the temperament of Donald Trump is not in charge of the law in our country," to which Trump deadpanned, without missing a beat, "because you'd be in jail."

Now if that remark didn't get the attention of high-ranking Democratic officials, perhaps Trump's comments at a Virginia rally days later, when he promised to "drain the swamp," made folks sit up and take notice.

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

At this point the leaks, hacks and everything in between were already coming fast and furious. On October 7, John Podesta, Clinton's presidential campaign manager, had his personal Gmail account hacked, thereby releasing a torrent of inside secrets, including how Donna Brazile, then a CNN commentator, had fed Clinton debate questions. But of course the crimes did not matter to the mendacious media, only the identity of the alleged messenger, which of course was 'Russia.'

By now, the only thing more incredible than the dirt being produced on Clinton was the fact that she was still in the presidential race, and even slated to win by a wide margin. But perhaps her biggest setback came when authorities, investigating Anthony Weiner's abused laptop into illicit text messages he sent to a 15-year-old girl, stumbled upon thousands of email messages from Hillary Clinton.

BREAKING NEWS: @jasoninthehouse : @HillaryClinton email - "Case reopened." pic.twitter.com/feVlU2aNP9

-- Fox News (@FoxNews) October 28, 2016

Now Comey had to backpedal on his conclusion in July that although Clinton was "extremely careless" in her use of her electronic devices, no criminal charges would be forthcoming. He announced an 11th hour investigation, just days before the election. Although Clinton was also cleared in this case, observers never forgave Comey for his actions, arguing they cost Clinton the White House.

Now James Comey is back in the spotlight as one of the main characters in the Barr-Durham investigation, which is examining largely out of the spotlight the origins of the Trump-Russia conspiracy theory that dogged the White House for four long years.

In early December, Justice Department's independent inspector general, Michael E. Horowitz, released the 400-page IG report that revealed a long list of omissions, mistakes and inconsistencies in the FBI's applications for FISA warrants to conduct surveillance on Carter Page. Although the report was damning, both Barr and Durham noted it did not go far enough because Horowitz did not have the access that Durham has to intelligence agency sources, as well as overseas contacts that Barr provided to him.

With AG report due for release in early spring, needless to say some Democrats are very nervous as to its finding. So nervous, in fact, that they might just be willing to go to the extreme of removing a sitting president to avoid its conclusions.

Whatever the verdict, 2020 promises to be one very interesting year.

[Feb 27, 2020] Russiagate Investigation Now Endangers Obama by Eric Zuesse

Notable quotes:
"... The Russiagate investigation, which had formerly focused against the current US President, has reversed direction and now targets the prior President. ..."
"... In order to appreciate the seriousness of that misconduct and its implications, it is useful to understand certain procedural and substantive requirements that apply to the government's conduct of electronic surveillance for foreign intelligence purposes. Title I of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA ), codified as amended at 50 USC. 1801-1813, governs such electronic surveillance. It requires the government to apply for and receive an order from the FISC approving a proposed electronic surveillance. When deciding whether to grant such an application, a FISC judge must determine among other things, whether it provides probable cause to believe that the proposed surveillance target is a "foreign power" or an agent a foreign power. ..."
"... The government has a heightened duty of candor to the FISC in ex parte proceedings, that is, ones in which the government does not face an adverse party, such as proceedings on electronic surveillance applications. The FISC expects the government to comply with its heightened duty of candor in ex parte proceedings at all times. Candor is fundamental to this Court's effective operation. ..."
"... On December 9, 2019, the government filed, with the FISC, public and classified versions of the OIG Report. It documents troubling instances in which FBI personnel provided information to NSD ..."
"... which was unsupported or contradicted by information in their possession. It also describes several instances in which FBI personnel withheld from NSD information in their possession which was detrimental to their case for believing that Mr. ..."
"... Page was acting as an agent of a foreign power. ..."
"... MACCALLUM: Were you surprised that he ..."
"... seemed to give himself such a distance from the entire operation? ..."
"... "JAMES COMEY: As the director sitting on top of an organization of 38,000 people you can't run an investigation that's seven layers below you. You have to leave it to the career professionals to do." ..."
"... MACCALLUM: Do you believe that? ..."
"... BARR: No, I think that the -- one of the problems with what happened was precisely that they pulled the investigation up to the executive floors, and it was run and bird dogged by a very small group of very high level officials. And the idea that this was seven layers below him is simply not true. ..."
"... Allegedly, George Papadopoulos said that "Halper insinuated to him that Russia was helping the Trump campaign" , and Papadopoulos was shocked at Halper's saying this. Probably because so much money at the Pentagon is untraceable, some of the crucial documentation on this investigation might never be found. For example, the Defense Department's Inspector General's 2 July 2019 report to the US Senate said "ONA personnel could not provide us any evidence that Professor Halper visited any of these locations, established an advisory group, or met with any of the specific people listed in the statement of work." ..."
"... very profitable business ..."
"... Schultz and other members of the DNC staff had exercised bias against Bernie Sanders and in favor of Hillary Clinton during the 2016 Democratic primaries -- which favoritism had been the reason why Obama had appointed Shultz to that post to begin with. She was just doing her job for the person who had chosen her to lead the DNC. Likewise for Comey. In other words: Comey was Obama's pick to protect Clinton, and to oppose Trump (who had attacked both Clinton and Obama). ..."
"... Nowadays, Obama is telling the Party's billionaires that Elizabeth Warren would be good for them , but not that Sanders would -- he never liked Sanders. ..."
"... and, so, Trump now will be gunning against Obama ..."
"... Whatever the outcome will be, it will be historic, and unprecedented. (If Sanders becomes the nominee, it will be even more so; and, if he then wins on November 3rd, it will be a second American Revolution; but, this time, a peaceful one -- if that's even possible, in today's hyper-partisan, deeply split, USA.) ..."
"... There is no way that the outcome from this will be status-quo. Either it will be greatly increased further schism in the United States, or it will be a fundamental political realignment, more comparable to 1860 than to anything since. ..."
"... Reform is no longer an available option, given America's realities. A far bigger leap than that will be required in order for this country to avoid falling into an utter abyss, which could be led by either Party, because both Parties have brought the nation to its present precipice, the dark and lightless chasm that it now faces, and which must now become leapt, in order to avoid a free-fall into oblivion. ..."
"... The problem in America isn't either Obama or Trump; it's neither merely the Democratic Party, nor merely the Republican Party; it is instead both; it is the Deep State . ..."
Dec 29, 2019 | www.strategic-culture.org
Former US President Barack Obama is now in severe legal jeopardy, because the Russiagate investigation has turned 180 degrees; and he, instead of the current President, Donald Trump, is in its cross-hairs.

The biggest crime that a US President can commit is to try to defeat American democracy (the Constitutional functioning of the US Government) itself, either by working with foreign powers to take it over, or else by working internally within America to sabotage democracy for his or her own personal reasons. Either way, it's treason (crime that is intended to, and does, endanger the continued functioning of the Constitution itself*), and Mr. Obama is now being actively investigated, as possibly having done this.

The Russiagate investigation, which had formerly focused against the current US President, has reversed direction and now targets the prior President. Although he, of course, cannot be removed from office (since he is no longer in office), he is liable under criminal laws, the same as any other American would be, if he committed any crime while he was in office.

A December 17th order by the FISA (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act) Court severely condemned the performance by the FBI under Obama, for having obtained, on 19 October 2016 (even prior to the US Presidential election), from that Court, under false pretenses, an authorization for the FBI to commence investigating Donald Trump's Presidential campaign, as being possibly in collusion with Russia's Government. The Court's ruling said:

In order to appreciate the seriousness of that misconduct and its implications, it is useful to understand certain procedural and substantive requirements that apply to the government's conduct of electronic surveillance for foreign intelligence purposes. Title I of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA ), codified as amended at 50 USC. 1801-1813, governs such electronic surveillance. It requires the government to apply for and receive an order from the FISC approving a proposed electronic surveillance. When deciding whether to grant such an application, a FISC judge must determine among other things, whether it provides probable cause to believe that the proposed surveillance target is a "foreign power" or an agent a foreign power.

The government has a heightened duty of candor to the FISC in ex parte proceedings, that is, ones in which the government does not face an adverse party, such as proceedings on electronic surveillance applications. The FISC expects the government to comply with its heightened duty of candor in ex parte proceedings at all times. Candor is fundamental to this Court's effective operation.

On December 9, 2019, the government filed, with the FISC, public and classified versions of the OIG Report. It documents troubling instances in which FBI personnel provided information to NSD [National Security Division of the Department of Justice] which was unsupported or contradicted by information in their possession. It also describes several instances in which FBI personnel withheld from NSD information in their possession which was detrimental to their case for believing that Mr. [Carter] Page was acting as an agent of a foreign power.

On December 18th, Martha McCallum, of Fox News, interviewed US Attorney General Bill Barr , and asked him (at 7:00 in the video ) how high up in the FBI the blame for this (possible treason) goes:

MACCALLUM: Were you surprised that he [Obama's FBI Director James Comey] seemed to give himself such a distance from the entire operation?

"JAMES COMEY: As the director sitting on top of an organization of 38,000 people you can't run an investigation that's seven layers below you. You have to leave it to the career professionals to do."

MACCALLUM: Do you believe that?

BARR: No, I think that the -- one of the problems with what happened was precisely that they pulled the investigation up to the executive floors, and it was run and bird dogged by a very small group of very high level officials. And the idea that this was seven layers below him is simply not true.

The current (Trump) A.G. there called the former (Obama) FBI Director a liar on that.

If Comey gets heat for this possibly lie-based FBI investigation of the US Presidential nominee from the opposite Party of the sitting US President (Comey's own boss, Obama), then protecting himself could become Comey's top motivation; and, in that condition, protecting his former boss might become only a secondary concern for him.

Moreover, as was first publicly reported by Nick Falco in a tweet on 5 June 2018 (which tweet was removed by Twitter but fortunately not before someone had copied it to a web archive ), the FBI had been investigating the Trump campaign starting no later than 7 October 2015. An outside private contractor, Stefan Halper, was hired in Britain for this, perhaps in order to get around laws prohibiting the US Government from doing it. (This was 'foreign intelligence' work, after all. But was it really ? That's now being investigated.) The Office of Net Assessment (ONA) "through the Pentagon's Washington Headquarters Services, awarded him contracts from 2012 to 2016 to write four studies encompassing relations among the US, Russia, China and India" .

Though Halper actually did no such studies for the Pentagon, he instead functioned as a paid FBI informant (and it's not yet clear whether that money came from the Pentagon, which spends trillions of dollars that are off-the-books and untraceable ), and at some point Trump's campaign became a target of Halper's investigation. This investigation was nominally to examine "The Russia-China Relationship: The impact on US Security interests."

Allegedly, George Papadopoulos said that "Halper insinuated to him that Russia was helping the Trump campaign" , and Papadopoulos was shocked at Halper's saying this. Probably because so much money at the Pentagon is untraceable, some of the crucial documentation on this investigation might never be found. For example, the Defense Department's Inspector General's 2 July 2019 report to the US Senate said "ONA personnel could not provide us any evidence that Professor Halper visited any of these locations, established an advisory group, or met with any of the specific people listed in the statement of work."

It seems that the Pentagon-contracted work was a cover-story, like pizza parlors have been for some Mafia operations. But, anyway, this is how America's 'democracy' actually functions . And, of course, America's Deep State works not only through governmental agencies but also through underworld organizations . That's just reality, not at all speculative. It's been this way for decades, at least since the time of Truman's Presidency (as is documented at that link).

Furthermore, inasmuch as this operation certainly involved Obama's CIA Director John Brennan and others, and not only top officials at the FBI, there is no chance that Comey would have been the only high official who was involved in it. And if Comey was involved, then he would have been acting in his own interest, and not only in his boss's -- and here's why: Comey would be expected to have been highly motivated to oppose Mr. Trump, because Trump publicly questioned whether NATO (the main international selling-arm for America's 'defense'-contractors) should continue to exist, and also because Comey's entire career had been in the service of America's Military-Industrial Complex, which is the reason why Comey's main lifetime income has been the tens of millions of dollars he has received via the revolving door between his serving the federal Government and his serving firms such as Lockheed Martin . For these people, restoring, and intensifying, and keeping up, the Cold War , is a very profitable business . It's called by some "the Military-Industrial Complex," and by others "the Deep State," but by any name it is simply agents of the billionaires who own and control US-based international corporations, such as General Dynamics and Chevron. As a governmental official, making decisions that are in the long-term interests of those investors is the likeliest way to become wealthy.

Consequently, Comey would have been benefitting himself, and other high officials of the Obama Administration, by sabotaging Trump's campaign, and by weakening Trump's Presidency in the event that he would become elected. Plus, of course, Comey would have been benefitting Obama himself. Not only was Trump constantly condemning Obama, but Obama had appointed to lead the Democratic National Committee during the 2016 Presidential primaries, Debbie Wasserman Schultz , who as early as 20 February 2007 had endorsed Hillary Clinton for President in the Democratic Party primaries, so that Shultz was one of the earliest supporters of Clinton against even Obama himself. In other words, Obama had appointed Shultz in order to increase the odds that Clinton -- not Sanders -- would become the nominee in 2016 to continue on and protect his own Presidential legacy. Furthermore, on 28 July 2016, Schultz became forced to resign from her leadership of the DNC after WikiLeaks released emails indicating that Schultz and other members of the DNC staff had exercised bias against Bernie Sanders and in favor of Hillary Clinton during the 2016 Democratic primaries -- which favoritism had been the reason why Obama had appointed Shultz to that post to begin with. She was just doing her job for the person who had chosen her to lead the DNC. Likewise for Comey. In other words: Comey was Obama's pick to protect Clinton, and to oppose Trump (who had attacked both Clinton and Obama).

Nowadays, Obama is telling the Party's billionaires that Elizabeth Warren would be good for them , but not that Sanders would -- he never liked Sanders. He wants Warren to get the voters who otherwise would go for Sanders, and he wants the Party's billionaires to help her achieve this (be the Party's allegedly 'progressive' option), so that Sanders won't be able to become a ballot option in the general election to be held on 3 November 2020.

He is telling them whom not to help win the Party's nomination. In fact, on November 26th, Huffington Post headlined "Obama Said He Would Speak Up To Stop Bernie Sanders Nomination: Report" and indicated that though he won't actually say this in public (but only to the Party's billionaires), Obama is determined to do all he can to prevent Sanders from becoming the nominee. In 2016, his choice was Hillary Clinton; but, today, it's anyone other than Sanders; and, so, in a sense, it remains what it was four years ago -- anyone but Sanders.

Comey's virtually exclusive concern, at the present stage, would be to protect himself, so that he won't be imprisoned. This means that he might testify against Obama. At this stage, he's free of any personal obligation to Obama -- Comey is now on his own, up against Trump, who clearly is his enemy. Some type of back-room plea-bargain is therefore virtually inevitable -- and not only with Comey, but with other top Obama-appointees, ultimately. Obama is thus clearly in the cross-hairs, from now on. Congressional Democrats have opted to gun against Trump (by impeaching him); and, so, Trump now will be gunning against Obama -- and against the entire Democratic Party (unless Sanders becomes its nominee, in which case, Sanders will already have defeated that Democratic Party, and its adherents will then have to choose between him versus Trump; and, so, too, will independent voters).

But, regardless of what happens, Obama now is in the cross-hairs. That's not just political cross-hairs (such as an impeachment process); it is, above all, legal cross-hairs (an actual criminal investigation). Whereas Trump is up against a doomed effort by the Democratic Party to replace him by Vice President Mike Pence, Obama will be up against virtually inevitable criminal charges, by the incumbent Trump Administration. Obama played hardball against Trump, with "Russiagate," and then with "Ukrainegate"; Trump will now play hardball against Obama, with whatever his Administration and the Republican Party manage to muster against Obama; and the stakes this time will be considerably bigger than just whether to replace Trump by Pence.

Whatever the outcome will be, it will be historic, and unprecedented. (If Sanders becomes the nominee, it will be even more so; and, if he then wins on November 3rd, it will be a second American Revolution; but, this time, a peaceful one -- if that's even possible, in today's hyper-partisan, deeply split, USA.)

There is no way that the outcome from this will be status-quo. Either it will be greatly increased further schism in the United States, or it will be a fundamental political realignment, more comparable to 1860 than to anything since.

The US already has a higher percentage of its people in prison than does any other nation on this planet. Americans who choose a 'status-quo' option will produce less stability, more violence, not more stability and a more peaceful nation in a less war-ravaged world. The 2020 election-outcome for the United States will be a turning-point; there is no way that it will produce reform.

Americans who vote for reform will be only increasing the likelihood of hell-on-Earth. Reform is no longer an available option, given America's realities. A far bigger leap than that will be required in order for this country to avoid falling into an utter abyss, which could be led by either Party, because both Parties have brought the nation to its present precipice, the dark and lightless chasm that it now faces, and which must now become leapt, in order to avoid a free-fall into oblivion.

The problem in America isn't either Obama or Trump; it's neither merely the Democratic Party, nor merely the Republican Party; it is instead both; it is the Deep State .

That's the reality; and the process that got us here started on 26 July 1945 and secretly continued on the American side even after the Soviet Union ended and Russia promptly ended its side of the Cold War. The US regime's ceaseless thrust, since 26 July 1945, to rule the entire world, will climax either in a Third World War, or in a US revolution to overthrow and remove the Deep State and end its dictatorship-grip over America. Both Parties have been controlled by that Deep State , and the final stage or climax of this grip is now drawing near. America thus has been having a string of the worst Presidents -- and worst Congresses -- in US history. This is today's reality.

Unfortunately, a lot of American voters think that this extremely destabilizing reality, this longstanding trend toward war, is okay, and ought to be continued, not ended now and replaced by a new direction for this country -- the path toward world peace, which FDR had accurately envisioned but which was aborted on 26 July 1945. No matter how many Americans might vote for mere reform, they are wrong. Sometimes, only a minority are right. Being correct is not a majority or minority matter; it is a true or false matter. A misinformed public can willingly participate in its own -- or even the world's -- destruction. That could happen.

Democracy is a prerequisite to peace, but it can't exist if the public are being systematically misinformed. Lies and democracy don't mix together any more effectively than do oil and water.

[Feb 24, 2020] The Russia Interference Hoax--Deja Vu All Over Again by Larry C Johnson

Notable quotes:
"... Admiral Bill McRaven is proving himself to be an ignorant buffoon. Yes, I'm calling a so-called military hero a clown. He is out today with a despicable op-ed attacking President Trump for removing ACTING DNI Joe Maguire. Here is a sampling of McRaven's stupidity: ..."
"... Maguire's role as DNI was a temporary appointment. It was not permanent and was not submitted to the Senate as part of a confirmation process. He was a mere place holder. Yet McRaven and others in the anti-Trump crowd display their profound ignorance and insist, wrongly, that Trump fired Maguire. ..."
"... Guess what? Maguire's resignation coincides with the 210 day limit. ..."
"... Donald Trump is now on the offensive against a corrupt, dishonest intelligence and law enforcement community as well as their enablers in the festering establishment--the whole crowd is panicked. ..."
"... If there really was intelligence that Russia had embarked on a new, more expansive round of meddling then that intelligence should have been briefed to the President as part of Presidential Daily Briefing. But that has not taken place. Trump's National Security Advisor, Robert O'Brien says pointedly that he has seen no intelligence to substantiate The NY Times report. NONE : ..."
"... "I haven't seen any intelligence that Russia is doing anything to attempt to get President Trump reelected," Robert O'Brien, who was appointed by Trump to the post in September, said in an ABC News interview to be broadcast on Sunday. ..."
"... "Immediately after President Trump won election, opponents inaugurated what they called "The Resistance," and they rallied around an explicit strategy of using every tool and maneuver to sabotage the functioning of the Executive Branch and his Administration. Now, "resistance" is the language used to describe insurgency against rule imposed by an occupying military power. It obviously connotes -- It obviously connotes that the government is not legitimate. This is a very dangerous -- and indeed incendiary -- notion to import into the politics of a democratic republic. What it means is that, instead of viewing themselves as the "loyal opposition," as opposing parties have done in this country for over 200 years, they essentially see themselves as engaged in a war to cripple, by any means necessary, a duly elected government." ..."
"... Now don't go troubling yourself, Admiral, over finding a reason why people outside your beltway circle don't give a rat's ass about you and your pals getting disrespected. It's been a long time coming, a very long time, but ya'll have earned in spades the right to be ignored. Get used to it. Fool us for a year, for two years, three... but for eighteen years??? Sorry Admiral. Stop whining. ..."
"... Caity Johnstone has written a parody piece in which the intelligence community labels every candidate other than Buttigieg to be a Secret Russian Agent. ..."
Feb 24, 2020 | turcopolier.typepad.com

The Russia Interference Hoax--Deja Vu All Over Again by Larry C Johnson

Admiral Bill McRaven is proving himself to be an ignorant buffoon. Yes, I'm calling a so-called military hero a clown. He is out today with a despicable op-ed attacking President Trump for removing ACTING DNI Joe Maguire. Here is a sampling of McRaven's stupidity:

Edmund Burke, the Irish statesman and philosopher, once said : "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." Over the course of the past three years, I have watched good men and women, friends of mine, come and go in the Trump administration -- all trying to do something -- all trying to do their best. Jim Mattis, John Kelly, H.R. McMaster, Sue Gordon, Dan Coats and, now, Joe Maguire, who until this week was the acting director of national intelligence. . . .

But, of course, in this administration, good men and women don't last long. Joe was dismissed for doing his job: overseeing the dissemination of intelligence to elected officials who needed that information to do their jobs. As Americans, we should be frightened -- deeply afraid for the future of the nation. When good men and women can't speak the truth, when facts are inconvenient, when integrity and character no longer matter, when presidential ego and self-preservation are more important than national security -- then there is nothing left to stop the triumph of evil.

Bill, you are wrong as you can be. Are you too damn lazy to do some simple reading and research?

Maguire's role as DNI was a temporary appointment. It was not permanent and was not submitted to the Senate as part of a confirmation process. He was a mere place holder. Yet McRaven and others in the anti-Trump crowd display their profound ignorance and insist, wrongly, that Trump fired Maguire.

Here is the dishonest NY Times spin:

On Wednesday, the president announced that he was replacing Mr. Maguire with Richard Grenell, the ambassador to Germany and an aggressively vocal Trump supporter. And though some current and former officials speculated that the briefing might have played a role in that move, two administration officials said the timing was coincidental. Mr. Grenell had been in discussions with the administration about taking on new roles, they said, and Mr. Trump had never felt a kinship with Mr. Maguire.

Donald Trump did not fire Maguire. He followed the law. The specious claim that Trump fired Maguire exposes McRaven and his ilk as either liars or ignoramuses. The statute governing temporary appointments (i.e., the Federal Vacancies Reform Act of 1998) is quite clear:

Once a vacancy occurs, the position is eligible to be filled by an acting officer for 210 days from the date of the vacancy, as well as any time when a nomination is pending before the Senate.

Guess what? Maguire's resignation coincides with the 210 day limit.

Facts do not matter to the anti-Trumpers. Remember all of the hysteria surround Attorney General Barr's legitimate and proper submission of a RECOMMENDATION for reduced sentencing in the case of Roger Stone. The media and punditry reacted as if Barr was calling for the mass extermination of physically handicapped children. Hardly any took time to note that Barr's "RECOMMENDATION" was just that--a recommendation. Nothing Barr said or wrote could compel or coerce Judge Berman to act according to Barr's wishes. And guess what? Judge Berman decided that Barr was right. The key point being that, SHE DECIDED. Not Barr.

Donald Trump is now on the offensive against a corrupt, dishonest intelligence and law enforcement community as well as their enablers in the festering establishment--the whole crowd is panicked.

The faux outrage over Trump replacing Maguire is just one indicator of this fear. Another is the fact that we are once again being bombarded with the recycled propaganda that Russia meddled in our 2016 election and is poised to do the same in 2020. What next? Resurrect Jussie Smollet and hire a group of pretend rednecks to stage another faux attack on him during the night on the wintry streets of Chicago?

The most recent installment in Putin on the prowl comes courtesy of The NY Times, doing its damndest to masquerade as Pravda.

Intelligence officials warned House lawmakers last week that Russia was interfering in the 2020 campaign to try to get President Trump re-elected, five people familiar with the matter said, a disclosure to Congress that angered Mr. Trump, who complained that Democrats would use it against him.

The day after the Feb. 13 briefing to lawmakers, the president berated Joseph Maguire, the outgoing acting director of national intelligence, for allowing it to take place, people familiar with the exchange said. Mr. Trump was particularly irritated that Representative Adam B. Schiff, Democrat of California and the leader of the impeachment proceedings, was at the briefing.

During the briefing to the House Intelligence Committee, Mr. Trump's allies challenged the conclusions, arguing that he had been tough on Russia and that he had strengthened European security.

Just another scurrilous lie. Pure propaganda being spun for the sole purpose of smearing Trump and tainting his election. The real truth is that Russia, under Vladimir Putin, is doing less "meddling" in our elections than did his predecessors. We meddled in their elections and domestic politics going back to the end of World War II. Meddling is a natural consequence of having professional intelligence services like the CIA, the FSB, the GRU, the DIA, etc. Another uncomfortable fact is that social media makes it more difficult for the traditional intelligence actors to interfere in politics. Michael Bloomberg's spending in the 2020 Democrat primary dwarfs all efforts to control the social media message. Yet, there are limits to the effectiveness of such "meddling."

If there really was intelligence that Russia had embarked on a new, more expansive round of meddling then that intelligence should have been briefed to the President as part of Presidential Daily Briefing. But that has not taken place. Trump's National Security Advisor, Robert O'Brien says pointedly that he has seen no intelligence to substantiate The NY Times report. NONE :

"I haven't seen any intelligence that Russia is doing anything to attempt to get President Trump reelected," Robert O'Brien, who was appointed by Trump to the post in September, said in an ABC News interview to be broadcast on Sunday.

"I have not seen that, and I get pretty good access," he said, according to excerpts released on Saturday.

Another meme in the latest propaganda push by deranged Democrats and discredited media is to portray Maguire's temporary replacement, Ambassador Richard Grenell, as some sort of ignorant, unqualified political hack.

Senator Mark Warner of Virginia offers up an excellent example of this kind of malicious stupidity :

"The President has selected an individual without any intelligence experience to serve as the leader of the nation's intelligence community in an acting capacity. This is the second acting director the President has named to the role since the resignation of Dan Coats, apparently in an effort to sidestep the Senate's constitutional authority to advise and consent on such critical national security positions, and flouting the clear intent of Congress when it established the Office of the Director of National Intelligence in 2004.

"The intelligence community deserves stability and an experienced individual to lead them in a time of massive national and global security challenges. And at a time when the integrity and independence of the Department of Justice has been called into grave question, now more than ever our country needs a Senate-confirmed intelligence director who will provide the best intelligence and analysis, regardless of whether or not it's expedient for the President who has appointed him.

Warner conveniently forgets that Trump named Dan Coats as DNI and the Senate, along with Warner's vote, approved him. Coats had trouble spelling CIA and DNI. He was completely unqualified for the position, yet the Senate rolled over for him with barely a whimper. How about the first DNI? Ambassador John Negroponte was not an intelligence professional. He was career Foreign Service.

Ambassador Grenell has experience comparable to Negroponte's. Grenell has dealt with all elements of the intelligence community during his tenure working within the realm of the U.S. foreign service. The good news is that Grenell is now on the job as DNI and is starting to clean house. This should have been done four years ago. The DNI, like many other parts of the bureaucracy, is infested with anti-Trump haters doing their best to sabotage his Presidency.

Robert O'Brien has cleaned out the NSC. There are a lot of empty desks there now. And persons through out the National Security bureacracy, including DOD and CIA, are being emptied. This is a prelude. When prosecutor John Durham starts dropping indictments expect the screaming to intensify.


blue peacock , 23 February 2020 at 02:59 PM

"When prosecutor John Durham starts dropping indictments....."

Larry, it looks like you have a lot of confidence in Durham. What gives you this confidence? The actions of the DOJ to date should make people skeptical that they'll prosecute their own leadership.

Larry Johnson , 23 February 2020 at 03:10 PM
If Barr and Durham were going to play ball with the Deep Staters and the anti-Trumpers they would not be attacked as is happening. The hysterical over wrought accusations leveled at Barr last week are merely a symptom of the fear seizing these seditionists.
D , 23 February 2020 at 03:52 PM
Americans still retain their keen sense of fair play. Nothing wrong with wanting to be surrounded by those loyal to the elected President.

It is the President's duty to the office itself to demand those appointed also be competent and act with integrity. The President pays the price if they do not.

English Outsider , 23 February 2020 at 04:25 PM
Larry Johnson,

When it comes to telling us where he's coming from Barr has certainly set out his stall. I have been very interested in AG Barr recently. I quoted this fine lecture - https://americanrhetoric.com/speeches/williambarrfederalistsociety.htm

- on an English blog in order to underline some parallels between the parliamentary crisis in England last year and the very similar constitutional crisis in the US. But there's a lot more to the lecture than that -

"Immediately after President Trump won election, opponents inaugurated what they called "The Resistance," and they rallied around an explicit strategy of using every tool and maneuver to sabotage the functioning of the Executive Branch and his Administration. Now, "resistance" is the language used to describe insurgency against rule imposed by an occupying military power. It obviously connotes -- It obviously connotes that the government is not legitimate. This is a very dangerous -- and indeed incendiary -- notion to import into the politics of a democratic republic. What it means is that, instead of viewing themselves as the "loyal opposition," as opposing parties have done in this country for over 200 years, they essentially see themselves as engaged in a war to cripple, by any means necessary, a duly elected government."

That, together with some penetrating remarks about the difference between Progressive and Conservative - and making it amply clear how destructive Progressivism was - was perhaps more than William Barr merely setting out his stall. It was a declaration of intent and if it's held to then we may expect some dramatic results.

So I'm not surprised the Democrats are attacking him. The wonder is that they're not tearing him limb from limb.

Upstate NY'er , 23 February 2020 at 07:53 PM
Chris Murphy - the dolt from CT - on TV whining about Grenell being unqualified and a Trump loyalist. This is the same stooge who just met with the Iranian Foreign Minister (and a head of hair looking for a brain John Kerrey) in Munich.
Flavius , 23 February 2020 at 08:43 PM
Admiral McRaven and his gumba Pentagon bureaucrats should be doing a little belly button gazing to determine how after 2 decades they've managed with considerable sturm und drang to win nothing but have succeeded magnificently in piloting the country into Cold War II with a real adversary.

Well done, Admiral!

Now don't go troubling yourself, Admiral, over finding a reason why people outside your beltway circle don't give a rat's ass about you and your pals getting disrespected. It's been a long time coming, a very long time, but ya'll have earned in spades the right to be ignored. Get used to it. Fool us for a year, for two years, three... but for eighteen years??? Sorry Admiral. Stop whining.

Upstate NY'er , 23 February 2020 at 09:41 PM
Flavius:

You mean all those VERY important people - dressed like doormen -who haven't won a war since WWII? BTW, Gulf Storm doesn't count - you'd probably get more fight back from the NY State Troopers.

These politicians in uniform know all about "diversity", pissing away LOTS of money, transgenders, sucking up and especially landing Beltway bandit contracts. Fighting, not so much.

Note, I'm referring to the General Officer ranks, not actual troops.

JerseyJeffersonian , 23 February 2020 at 10:33 PM
I assess with 100% certainty that this fake scandal was contrived to coincide with the end of this Maguire's "service". Indeed, all of this time he has been acting as an agent of the Borg, only chucking this stinkbomb as his last, spiteful act. Contemptible.
prawnik , 24 February 2020 at 10:46 AM
Caity Johnstone has written a parody piece in which the intelligence community labels every candidate other than Buttigieg to be a Secret Russian Agent.
PRC90 , 24 February 2020 at 07:17 PM
Unless someone in the DNC or numerous affiliates can come up with an actual Russian, this kind of hoax will begin to be be seen as dated.

However, with the Weinstein conviction, the MeToo movement will get new life and a wave of similar high profile pursuits will begin.

Undoubtedly this will include one DJT, featuring accusers going back to the 1960's in a orchestrated 24/7 chorus of unproven horror that they hope will succeed where Mueller and Schiff et al have failed.

Who knows, perhaps one accuser (two for corroboration) will even allege some vague Russian presence.

Fred , 24 February 2020 at 08:12 PM
PRC90,

So a democratic megadoner is convicted of multiple accounts of sexual assault and surprise! Others in the moral cesspool that is Hollywood won't be brought to "justice", social or otherwise but we'll see Stormy Daniels 2.0. Except her lawyer's already in jail. The left better come up with something better than that.

Jack , 24 February 2020 at 10:43 PM
Fred,

How about Epstein and his pals? That would be a good start. However nothing will happen on that since too many powerful people would likely be ensnared like Billy Clinton and a British prince.

[Feb 24, 2020] The Russia Interference Hoax--Deja Vu All Over Again by Larry C Johnson - Sic Semper Tyrannis

Feb 24, 2020 | turcopolier.typepad.com

The Russia Interference Hoax--Deja Vu All Over Again by Larry C Johnson

Admiral Bill McRaven is proving himself to be an ignorant buffoon. Yes, I'm calling a so-called military hero a clown. He is out today with a despicable op-ed attacking President Trump for removing ACTING DNI Joe Maguire. Here is a sampling of McRaven's stupidity:

Edmund Burke, the Irish statesman and philosopher, once said : "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." Over the course of the past three years, I have watched good men and women, friends of mine, come and go in the Trump administration -- all trying to do something -- all trying to do their best. Jim Mattis, John Kelly, H.R. McMaster, Sue Gordon, Dan Coats and, now, Joe Maguire, who until this week was the acting director of national intelligence. . . .

But, of course, in this administration, good men and women don't last long. Joe was dismissed for doing his job: overseeing the dissemination of intelligence to elected officials who needed that information to do their jobs. As Americans, we should be frightened -- deeply afraid for the future of the nation. When good men and women can't speak the truth, when facts are inconvenient, when integrity and character no longer matter, when presidential ego and self-preservation are more important than national security -- then there is nothing left to stop the triumph of evil.

Bill, you are wrong as you can be. Are you too damn lazy to do some simple reading and research?

Maguire's role as DNI was a temporary appointment. It was not permanent and was not submitted to the Senate as part of a confirmation process. He was a mere place holder. Yet McRaven and others in the anti-Trump crowd display their profound ignorance and insist, wrongly, that Trump fired Maguire.

Here is the dishonest NY Times spin:

On Wednesday, the president announced that he was replacing Mr. Maguire with Richard Grenell, the ambassador to Germany and an aggressively vocal Trump supporter. And though some current and former officials speculated that the briefing might have played a role in that move, two administration officials said the timing was coincidental. Mr. Grenell had been in discussions with the administration about taking on new roles, they said, and Mr. Trump had never felt a kinship with Mr. Maguire.

Donald Trump did not fire Maguire. He followed the law. The specious claim that Trump fired Maguire exposes McRaven and his ilk as either liars or ignoramuses. The statute governing temporary appointments (i.e., the Federal Vacancies Reform Act of 1998) is quite clear:

Once a vacancy occurs, the position is eligible to be filled by an acting officer for 210 days from the date of the vacancy, as well as any time when a nomination is pending before the Senate.

Guess what? Maguire's resignation coincides with the 210 day limit.

Facts do not matter to the anti-Trumpers. Remember all of the hysteria surround Attorney General Barr's legitimate and proper submission of a RECOMMENDATION for reduced sentencing in the case of Roger Stone. The media and punditry reacted as if Barr was calling for the mass extermination of physically handicapped children. Hardly any took time to note that Barr's "RECOMMENDATION" was just that--a recommendation. Nothing Barr said or wrote could compel or coerce Judge Berman to act according to Barr's wishes. And guess what? Judge Berman decided that Barr was right. The key point being that, SHE DECIDED. Not Barr.

Donald Trump is now on the offensive against a corrupt, dishonest intelligence and law enforcement community as well as their enablers in the festering establishment--the whole crowd is panicked.

The faux outrage over Trump replacing Maguire is just one indicator of this fear. Another is the fact that we are once again being bombarded with the recycled propaganda that Russia meddled in our 2016 election and is poised to do the same in 2020. What next? Resurrect Jussie Smollet and hire a group of pretend rednecks to stage another faux attack on him during the night on the wintry streets of Chicago?

The most recent installment in Putin on the prowl comes courtesy of The NY Times, doing its damndest to masquerade as Pravda.

Intelligence officials warned House lawmakers last week that Russia was interfering in the 2020 campaign to try to get President Trump re-elected, five people familiar with the matter said, a disclosure to Congress that angered Mr. Trump, who complained that Democrats would use it against him.

The day after the Feb. 13 briefing to lawmakers, the president berated Joseph Maguire, the outgoing acting director of national intelligence, for allowing it to take place, people familiar with the exchange said. Mr. Trump was particularly irritated that Representative Adam B. Schiff, Democrat of California and the leader of the impeachment proceedings, was at the briefing.

During the briefing to the House Intelligence Committee, Mr. Trump's allies challenged the conclusions, arguing that he had been tough on Russia and that he had strengthened European security.

Just another scurrilous lie. Pure propaganda being spun for the sole purpose of smearing Trump and tainting his election. The real truth is that Russia, under Vladimir Putin, is doing less "meddling" in our elections than did his predecessors. We meddled in their elections and domestic politics going back to the end of World War II. Meddling is a natural consequence of having professional intelligence services like the CIA, the FSB, the GRU, the DIA, etc. Another uncomfortable fact is that social media makes it more difficult for the traditional intelligence actors to interfere in politics. Michael Bloomberg's spending in the 2020 Democrat primary dwarfs all efforts to control the social media message. Yet, there are limits to the effectiveness of such "meddling."

If there really was intelligence that Russia had embarked on a new, more expansive round of meddling then that intelligence should have been briefed to the President as part of Presidential Daily Briefing. But that has not taken place. Trump's National Security Advisor, Robert O'Brien says pointedly that he has seen no intelligence to substantiate The NY Times report. NONE :

"I haven't seen any intelligence that Russia is doing anything to attempt to get President Trump reelected," Robert O'Brien, who was appointed by Trump to the post in September, said in an ABC News interview to be broadcast on Sunday.

"I have not seen that, and I get pretty good access," he said, according to excerpts released on Saturday.

Another meme in the latest propaganda push by deranged Democrats and discredited media is to portray Maguire's temporary replacement, Ambassador Richard Grenell, as some sort of ignorant, unqualified political hack.

Senator Mark Warner of Virginia offers up an excellent example of this kind of malicious stupidity :

"The President has selected an individual without any intelligence experience to serve as the leader of the nation's intelligence community in an acting capacity. This is the second acting director the President has named to the role since the resignation of Dan Coats, apparently in an effort to sidestep the Senate's constitutional authority to advise and consent on such critical national security positions, and flouting the clear intent of Congress when it established the Office of the Director of National Intelligence in 2004.

"The intelligence community deserves stability and an experienced individual to lead them in a time of massive national and global security challenges. And at a time when the integrity and independence of the Department of Justice has been called into grave question, now more than ever our country needs a Senate-confirmed intelligence director who will provide the best intelligence and analysis, regardless of whether or not it's expedient for the President who has appointed him.

Warner conveniently forgets that Trump named Dan Coats as DNI and the Senate, along with Warner's vote, approved him. Coats had trouble spelling CIA and DNI. He was completely unqualified for the position, yet the Senate rolled over for him with barely a whimper. How about the first DNI? Ambassador John Negroponte was not an intelligence professional. He was career Foreign Service.

Ambassador Grenell has experience comparable to Negroponte's. Grenell has dealt with all elements of the intelligence community during his tenure working within the realm of the U.S. foreign service. The good news is that Grenell is now on the job as DNI and is starting to clean house. This should have been done four years ago. The DNI, like many other parts of the bureaucracy, is infested with anti-Trump haters doing their best to sabotage his Presidency.

Robert O'Brien has cleaned out the NSC. There are a lot of empty desks there now. And persons through out the National Security bureacracy, including DOD and CIA, are being emptied. This is a prelude. When prosecutor John Durham starts dropping indictments expect the screaming to intensify.


blue peacock , 23 February 2020 at 02:59 PM

"When prosecutor John Durham starts dropping indictments....."

Larry, it looks like you have a lot of confidence in Durham. What gives you this confidence? The actions of the DOJ to date should make people skeptical that they'll prosecute their own leadership.

Larry Johnson , 23 February 2020 at 03:10 PM
If Barr and Durham were going to play ball with the Deep Staters and the anti-Trumpers they would not be attacked as is happening. The hysterical over wrought accusations leveled at Barr last week are merely a symptom of the fear seizing these seditionists.
D , 23 February 2020 at 03:52 PM
Americans still retain their keen sense of fair play. Nothing wrong with wanting to be surrounded by those loyal to the elected President.

It is the President's duty to the office itself to demand those appointed also be competent and act with integrity. The President pays the price if they do not.

English Outsider , 23 February 2020 at 04:25 PM

Larry Johnson,

When it comes to telling us where he's coming from Barr has certainly set out his stall.

I have been very interested in AG Barr recently. I quoted this fine lecture -

https://americanrhetoric.com/speeches/williambarrfederalistsociety.htm

- on an English blog in order to underline some parallels between the parliamentary crisis in England last year and the very similar constitutional crisis in the US. But there's a lot more to the lecture than that -

"Immediately after President Trump won election, opponents inaugurated what they called "The Resistance," and they rallied around an explicit strategy of using every tool and maneuver to sabotage the functioning of the Executive Branch and his Administration. Now, "resistance" is the language used to describe insurgency against rule imposed by an occupying military power. It obviously connotes -- It obviously connotes that the government is not legitimate. This is a very dangerous -- and indeed incendiary -- notion to import into the politics of a democratic republic. What it means is that, instead of viewing themselves as the "loyal opposition," as opposing parties have done in this country for over 200 years, they essentially see themselves as engaged in a war to cripple, by any means necessary, a duly elected government."

That, together with some penetrating remarks about the difference between Progressive and Conservative - and making it amply clear how destructive Progressivism was - was perhaps more than William Barr merely setting out his stall. It was a declaration of intent and if it's held to then we may expect some dramatic results.

So I'm not surprised the Democrats are attacking him. The wonder is that they're not tearing him limb from limb.

Upstate NY'er , 23 February 2020 at 07:53 PM
Chris Murphy - the dolt from CT - on TV whining about Grenell being unqualified and a Trump loyalist. This is the same stooge who just met with the Iranian Foreign Minister (and a head of hair looking for a brain John Kerrey) in Munich.
Flavius , 23 February 2020 at 08:43 PM
Admiral McRaven and his gumba Pentagon bureaucrats should be doing a little belly button gazing to determine how after 2 decades they've managed with considerable sturm und drang to win nothing but have succeeded magnificently in piloting the country into Cold War II with a real adversary.

Well done, Admiral!

Now don't go troubling yourself, Admiral, over finding a reason why people outside your beltway circle don't give a rat's ass about you and your pals getting disrespected. It's been a long time coming, a very long time, but ya'll have earned in spades the right to be ignored. Get used to it. Fool us for a year, for two years, three... but for eighteen years??? Sorry Admiral. Stop whining.

Upstate NY'er , 23 February 2020 at 09:41 PM
Flavius:

You mean all those VERY important people - dressed like doormen -who haven't won a war since WWII?

BTW, Gulf Storm doesn't count - you'd probably get more fight back from the NY State Troopers.

These politicians in uniform know all about "diversity", pissing away LOTS of money, transgenders, sucking up and especially landing Beltway bandit contracts. Fighting, not so much.

Note, I'm referring to the General Officer ranks, not actual troops.

JerseyJeffersonian , 23 February 2020 at 10:33 PM
I assess with 100% certainty that this fake scandal was contrived to coincide with the end of this Maguire's "service". Indeed, all of this time he has been acting as an agent of the Borg, only chucking this stinkbomb as his last, spiteful act. Contemptible.
prawnik , 24 February 2020 at 10:46 AM
Caity Johnstone has written a parody piece in which the intelligence community labels every candidate other than Buttigieg to be a Secret Russian Agent.
PRC90 , 24 February 2020 at 07:17 PM
Unless someone in the DNC or numerous affiliates can come up with an actual Russian, this kind of hoax will begin to be be seen as dated.

However, with the Weinstein conviction, the MeToo movement will get new life and a wave of similar high profile pursuits will begin.

Undoubtedly this will include one DJT, featuring accusers going back to the 1960's in a orchestrated 24/7 chorus of unproven horror that they hope will succeed where Mueller and Schiff et al have failed.

Who knows, perhaps one accuser (two for corroboration) will even allege some vague Russian presence.

Fred , 24 February 2020 at 08:12 PM
PRC90,

So a democratic megadoner is convicted of multiple accounts of sexual assault and surprise! Others in the moral cesspool that is Hollywood won't be brought to "justice", social or otherwise but we'll see Stormy Daniels 2.0. Except her lawyer's already in jail. The left better come up with something better than that.

Jack , 24 February 2020 at 10:43 PM
Fred,

How about Epstein and his pals? That would be a good start. However nothing will happen on that since too many powerful people would likely be ensnared like Billy Clinton and a British prince.

[Feb 24, 2020] Congress chose not to include articles of impeachment based on the foreign and domestic emoluments clauses by Josh Blackman

Instead of settling on charges that relate to statutory crimes, with clear, concrete criteria, the Democrats have released two articles of impeachment in which the misconduct exists largely in the eye of the beholder. Instead of settling on charges that relate to statutory crimes, with clear, concrete criteria, the Democrats have instead released two articles of impeachment in which the misconduct exists largely in the eye of the beholder.
Dec 10, 2019 | www.theatlantic.com

First, Congress chose not to include articles of impeachment based on the foreign and domestic emoluments clauses. Democratic members of Congress have long alleged that President Trump is illegally profiting from his business entities that cater to foreign and state governments. Indeed, more than 200 members of Congress have sued the president in federal court, arguing that his conduct is unconstitutional. (I have filed a series of amicus briefs arguing that Trump's conduct amounts to poor policy, but is lawful.) Yet, the House has not even held a hearing on these once obscure provisions of the Constitution. It would have been very difficult to make the case for impeachment based on a nonexistent record. ... ... ...

...What exactly is an abuse of power? The term is not defined in the Constitution, and indeed it resists a simple definition. This is a crime that exists in a person's subjective judgment: One person's abuse of power is another's diplomacy.

...The House issued subpoenas to the Trump administration to assist its impeachment inquiry. In turn, the Trump administration categorically refused to comply with all of those subpoenas. The House of Representatives then asked the courts to enforce those subpoenas. And the Trump administration asserted various privileges, mirroring arguments they have made in prior court cases. That litigation proceeds separately. But now the House contends that Trump's refusal to comply with the subpoenas is itself an impeachable act. Is that theory correct? Trump will likely counter that asserting a privilege in lieu of responding to a subpoena is a well-worn executive practice, not grounds for removal. Who is right? The Senate will decide.

The Senate is heading into uncharted territory. ... any president who refuses to comply with what he sees as an improper investigation can be charged with "obstruction of Congress." This one-two punch can be drafted with far greater ease than were the articles of impeachment presented against Presidents Andrew Johnson, Richard Nixon, or Bill Clinton.

...the predicates of the Trump articles will set a dangerous precedent, as impeachment might become -- regrettably -- a common, quadrennial feature of our polity.

This story is part of the project " The Battle for the Constitution ," in partnership with the National Constitution Center.

Josh Blackman is a Constitutional law professor at the South Texas College of Law Houston

[Feb 24, 2020] The Impeachment s Moral Hypocrisy by Chris Hedges

Notable quotes:
"... It was a mind-numbing spectacle, devoid of morality and ethics, the kind of political theater that characterizes despotic regimes. No one in the House chamber was protecting the Constitution. No one was seeking to hold accountable those who had violated it. No one was fighting to restore the rule of law. The two parties, which have shredded constitutional protections and rights and sold the political process to the highest bidders, have engaged in egregious constitutional violations for years and ignored them when they were made public. Moral stances have a cost, but almost no one in Congress seems willing to pay. Trying to tar Trump as a Russian agent failed. Now the Democrats hope to discredit him with charges of abuse of power and contempt of Congress. ..."
"... The politicization of the impeachment process has only exacerbated the antagonisms and polarization in the country. It has, ironically, increased support for Trump, who in this toxic environment may well be reelected. His approval rating has jumped to 45 percent, up from 39 percent when the impeachment inquiry was launched, according to the latest Gallup survey , conducted from Dec. 2 to Dec. 15. This is the third consecutive increase in Trump's approval rating. Among Republicans, Trump has a job approval rating of 89%, almost nine in 10 in the GOP. Fifty-one percent of Americans oppose impeachment and removal, up five percentage points since the House inquiry began, Gallup reports. ..."
Dec 23, 2019 | www.truthdig.com

The impeachment process was a nauseating display of moral hypocrisy. The sound bites by Republicans and Democrats swiftly became predictable. The Democrats, despite applauding the announcement of the voting results before being quickly silenced by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, sought to cloak themselves in gravitas and solemnity. Pelosi's calculated decision to open the impeachment proceedings with the 1954 "under God" version of the Pledge of Allegiance was an appropriate signal given the party's New McCarthyism. The Democrats posited themselves as saviors, the last line of defense between a constitutional democracy and tyranny. The Republicans, as cloyingly sanctimonious as the Democrats, offered up ludicrous analogies to attack what they condemned as a show trial, including Rep. Barry Loudermilk's statement that "Pontius Pilate afforded more rights to Jesus than the Democrats have afforded to this president." The Republicans shamelessly prostrated themselves throughout the 10-hour process at the feet of their cult leader Donald Trump, offering abject and eternal fealty. They angrily accused the Democrats of seeking to overturn the 2016 election in a legislative coup.

It was a mind-numbing spectacle, devoid of morality and ethics, the kind of political theater that characterizes despotic regimes. No one in the House chamber was protecting the Constitution. No one was seeking to hold accountable those who had violated it. No one was fighting to restore the rule of law. The two parties, which have shredded constitutional protections and rights and sold the political process to the highest bidders, have engaged in egregious constitutional violations for years and ignored them when they were made public. Moral stances have a cost, but almost no one in Congress seems willing to pay. Trying to tar Trump as a Russian agent failed. Now the Democrats hope to discredit him with charges of abuse of power and contempt of Congress.

The politicization of the impeachment process has only exacerbated the antagonisms and polarization in the country. It has, ironically, increased support for Trump, who in this toxic environment may well be reelected. His approval rating has jumped to 45 percent, up from 39 percent when the impeachment inquiry was launched, according to the latest Gallup survey , conducted from Dec. 2 to Dec. 15. This is the third consecutive increase in Trump's approval rating. Among Republicans, Trump has a job approval rating of 89%, almost nine in 10 in the GOP. Fifty-one percent of Americans oppose impeachment and removal, up five percentage points since the House inquiry began, Gallup reports.

Yes, Trump's contempt of Congress and attempt to get Volodymyr Zelensky, the Ukrainian president, to open an investigation of Joe Biden and his son, Hunter, in exchange for almost $400 million in U.S. military aid and allowing Zelensky to visit the White House are impeachable offenses, but trivial and minor ones compared with the constitutional violations that the two parties have institutionalized and, I fear, made permanent. These sustained, bipartisan constitutional violations -- not Trump -- resulted in the failure of our democracy. Trump is the pus coming out of the wound.

If the Democrats and the Republicans were committed to defending the Constitution why didn't they impeach George W. Bush when he launched two illegal wars that were never declared by Congress as demanded by the Constitution? Why didn't they impeach Bush when he authorized placing the entire U.S. public under government surveillance in direct violation of the Fourth Amendment? Why didn't they impeach Bush when he authorized torture along with kidnapping terrorist suspects around the world and holding them for years in our black sites and offshore penal colonies? Why didn't they impeach Barack Obama when he expanded these illegal wars to 11, if we count Yemen? Why didn't they impeach Obama when Edward Snowden revealed that our intelligence agencies are monitoring and spying on almost every citizen and downloading our data and metrics into government computers where they will be stored for perpetuity? Why didn't they impeach Obama when he misused the 2002 Authorization for Use of Military Force to erase due process and give the executive branch of government the right to act as judge, jury and executioner in assassinating U.S. citizens, starting with the radical cleric Anwar al-Awlaki and, two weeks later, his 16-year-old son? Why didn't they impeach Obama when he signed into law Section 1021 of the National Defense Authorization Act, in effect overturning the 1878 Posse Comitatus Act, which prohibits the use of the military as a domestic police force?

There are other bipartisan constitutional violations, including violating treaty clauses that are supposed to be ratified by the Senate, violating the Constitution by making appointments without seeking Senate confirmation, and the routine abusive use of executive orders. But the two major political parties, salivating at the thought of wielding the king-like power that now comes with the presidency, have no desire to curb these far more dangerous violations.

The selective use of the two violations to impeach Trump is a weaponization of the impeachment process. Should the Democrats take control of the White House and the Republicans control of the Congress, impeachment, with or without merit, will become another form of political pressure exerted within our dysfunctional and divided political system. The rule of law will be a pretense, as in the current process of impeachment and Senate trial.

The impeachment circus, which will culminate in a preordained, choreographed and televised show in the Senate, coincided with The Washington Post's release of what is being called the Afghanistan Papers . The Post, through a three-year legal battle, obtained more than 2,000 pages of internal government documents about the war. The papers detail bipartisan lies, fraud, deceit, corruption, waste and gross mismanagement during the 18-year conflict, the longest in U.S. history. It is a blistering indictment of the ruling class, which, as the papers note, since 2001 has seen the Defense Department, State Department and U.S. Agency for International Development spend or win appropriation of between $934 billion and $978 billion, according to an inflation-adjusted estimate calculated by Neta Crawford, a political science professor and co-director of the Costs of War Project at Brown University. "These figures," the Post adds, "do not include money spent by other agencies such as the CIA and the Department of Veterans Affairs, which is responsible for medical care for wounded veterans." [ See Chris Hedges discuss the Afghanistan Papers with Spenser Rapone, a West Point graduate who served as an Army Ranger in Afghanistan.]

This window into the inner workings of our bankrupt ruling elite, responsible for widespread destruction and the loss of tens, perhaps hundreds, of thousands of lives in Afghanistan, was largely ignored by the media during the impeachment proceedings. Neither political party, and none of their courtiers on the cable news shows, is interested in exposing the bipartisan failure, lying and grotesque incompetence on the part of the United States in the years it has occupied Afghanistan. Afghan and U.S. officials concede that the Taliban is stronger now than at any other time since the 2001 invasion.

In a functioning democracy, the publication of the Afghanistan Papers would see generals and politicians who knowingly deceived the public hauled before congressional committees. The Fulbright hearings, during the Vietnam War, although they did not lead to prosecutions, at least aggressively held U.S. officials to account and made public their duplicity and failure. But in the wake of the new disclosures, no one in either political party or the military will be held accountable for the debacle in Afghanistan, a conflict that saw a vast waste of resources, including nearly a trillion dollars that could have been used to address our pronounced social inequality, rebuild our decaying infrastructure and help end our reliance on fossil fuels.

The Afghanistan Papers lay bare a truth the hyperventilating Republican and Democratic mandarins in Congress prefer to mask. On all the major structural issues -- war, the economy, the use of militarized police and the world's largest prison system for social control, the infusion of corporate money to deform the electoral and legislative processes, slashing taxes for the wealthy and corporations, exploitative trade deals, austerity, the climate emergency and the rapidly accelerating government debt -- there is little or no difference between the Republicans and the Democrats.

The political clashes are not substantive, despite what we heard in the impeachment hearings. They are rhetorical and largely inconsequential. The Republicans and the Democrats recently passed a $738 billion defense bill for fiscal year 2020, a $21 billion increase over what was enacted for fiscal year 2019. The vote was a lopsided 377 to 48. The U.S. spends more on its military than the next 10 countries combined. Also, a day after the impeachment of President Trump, the Republicans and Democrats in the House passed a thinly veiled rewrite of the Clinton administration's North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the 25-year-old free trade agreement that hollowed out our manufacturing centers and sent U.S. jobs and production to Mexico. Again, the vote was lopsided, 385 to 41. When the wealthy and our corporate masters want something done, it gets done. Our elected officials serve them, not us. We are to be controlled.

The Republican and Democratic politicians, like the generals, government bureaucrats and intelligence chiefs, once they leave their government posts will be generously rewarded by being given jobs as lobbyists and consultants or being appointed to corporate boards. These politicians are the mutant products of our system of legalized bribery, shameless kleptocrats . The only interests they serve are their own. This truth binds half the country to Trump, who although a con artist and himself flagrantly corrupt, at least belittles and mocks the ruling elites who have betrayed us.

Trump and his supporters are not wrong in condemning the deep state -- the generals, bankers, corporatists, lobbyists, intelligence chiefs, government bureaucrats and technocrats who oversee domestic and international policy no matter who is in power. The Afghanistan Papers, while detailing the quagmire in Afghanistan -- where more than 775,000 Americans were deployed over the 18 years, more than 2,300 soldiers and Marines killed and more than 20,000 wounded -- also illustrate how seamlessly the two ruling parties and the deep state work together.

"What did we get for this $1 trillion effort? Was it worth $1 trillion?" Jeffrey Eggers, a retired Navy SEAL and White House staffer for Bush and Obama, is quoted as saying by The Washington Post. "After the killing of Osama bin Laden, I said that Osama was probably laughing in his watery grave considering how much we have spent on Afghanistan."

The Post writes , "The documents also contradict a long chorus of public statements from U.S. presidents, military commanders and diplomats who assured Americans year after year that they were making progress in Afghanistan and the war was worth fighting. Several of those interviewed described explicit and sustained efforts by the U.S. government to deliberately mislead the public. They said it was common at military headquarters in Kabul -- and at the White House -- to distort statistics to make it appear the United States was winning the war when that was not the case."

"As commanders in chief, Bush, Obama and Trump all promised the public the same thing," the Post notes. "They would avoid falling into the trap of 'nation-building' in Afghanistan. On that score, the presidents failed miserably. The United States has allocated more than $133 billion to build up Afghanistan -- more than it spent, adjusted for inflation, to revive the whole of Western Europe with the Marshall Plan after World War II."

There is no difference, the Afghanistan Papers make clear, in the mendacity and incompetence of the policymaking apparatus no matter who controls Congress or the White House. No party or elected official dares defy the military-industrial complex or other titans of the deep state. The Democrats through impeachment have no intention of restoring constitutional rights that would curb the power of the deep state and protect democracy. The deep state funds them. It sustains them in office. The Democrats are seeking to replace the inept and vulgar face of empire that is Trump with the benign and decorous face of empire that is Joe Biden. What the Democrats, and the deep state that has allied itself with the Democratic Party, object to is the mask, not what is behind it. If you doubt me, read the six-part series on Afghanistan in the Post.

Columnist Chris Hedges is a Truthdig columnist, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, a New York Times best-selling author, a professor in the college degree program offered to New Jersey state prisoners by Rutgers

[Feb 21, 2020] Why Both Republicans And Democrats Want Russia To Become The Enemy Of Choice by Philip Giraldi

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... Schiff insisted that Trump must be removed now to "assure the integrity" of the 2020 election. He elaborated somewhat ambiguously that "The president's misconduct cannot be decided at the ballot box, for we cannot be assured that the vote will be fairly won." Schiff also unleashed one of the most time honored but completely lame excuses for going to war, claiming that military assistance to Ukraine that had been delayed by Trump was essential for U.S. national security. He said "As one witness put it during our impeachment inquiry, the United States aids Ukraine and her people so that we can fight Russia over there, and we don't have to fight Russia here." ..."
"... Schiff, a lawyer who has never had to put his life on the line for anything and whose son sports a MOSSAD t-shirt, is one of those sunshine soldiers who finds it quite acceptable if someone else does the dying. Journalist Max Blumenthal observed that "Liberals used to mock Bush supporters when they used this jingoistic line during the war on Iraq. Now they deploy it to justify an imperialist proxy war against a nuclear power." Aaron Mate at The Nation added that "For all the talk about Russia undermining faith in U.S. elections, how about Russiagaters like Schiff fear-mongering w/ hysterics like this? Let's assume Ukraine did what Trump wanted: announce a probe of Burisma. Would that delegitimize a 2020 U.S. election? This is a joke." ..."
"... On Wednesday, Schiff maintained that "Russia is not a threat to Eastern Europe alone. Ukraine has become the de facto proving ground for just the types of hybrid warfare that the twenty-first century will become defined by: cyberattacks, disinformation campaigns, efforts to undermine the legitimacy of state institutions, whether that is voting systems or financial markets. The Kremlin showed boldly in 2016 that with the malign skills it honed in Ukraine, they would not stay in Ukraine. Instead, Russia employed them here to attack our institutions, and they will do so again." Not surprisingly, if one substitutes the "United States" for "Russia" and "Kremlin" and changes "Ukraine" to Iran or Venezuela, the Schiff comment actually becomes much more credible. ..."
"... Donald Trump's erratic rule has certainly dismayed many of his former supporters, but the Democratic Party is offering nothing but another helping of George W. Bush/Barack Obama establishment war against the world. We Americans have had enough of that for the past nineteen years. Trump may indeed deserve to be removed based on his actions, but the argument that it is essential to do so because of Russia lurking is complete nonsense. Pretty scary that the apparent chief promoter of that point of view is someone who actually has power in the government, one Adam Schiff, head of the House of Representatives Intelligence Committee. ..."
"... It is scary, but what else can Schiff say? They have no credible arguments against Trump, or for their own party. They are a bunch of lying scumbags that will kill, cheat, steal, mislead, carpet-bag and anything else unethical to achieve their sleazy goals. ..."
"... Since the US Sociopaths In Charge have totally Effed up the nation, and a significant portion of the world, they have to have SOMEBODY to blame. They certainly won't take the blame they deserve themselves. ..."
"... What the ZOG wants the ZOG gets ..."
"... It is appropriate to recall the words of Joseph Goebbels: "Give me the media, and I will make a herd of pigs from any nation," and pigs are easy to drive to the slaughterhouse. Only Russia can really resist such a situation in the world. Therefore, she is the enemy. ..."
"... The Centrist Democrats and Republicans want to paint the old school God and Country Conservatives Equality and Justice for the USA (Nationalist) into being Russian ..."
Feb 07, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com
Authored by Philip Giraldi via The Strategic Culture Foundation,

One of the more interesting aspects of the nauseating impeachment trial in the Senate was the repeated vilification of Russia and its President Vladimir Putin.

To hate Russia has become dogma on both sides of the political aisle, in part because no politician has really wanted to confront the lesson of the 2016 election, which was that most Americans think that the federal government is basically incompetent and staffed by career politicians like Nancy Pelosi and Mitch McConnell who should return back home and get real jobs .

Worse still, it is useless, and much like the one trick pony the only thing it can do is steal money from the taxpayers and waste it on various types of self-gratification that only politicians can appreciate. That means that the United States is engaged is fighting multiple wars against make-believe enemies while the country's infrastructure rots and a host of officially certified grievance groups control the public space.

It sure doesn't look like Kansas anymore.

The fact that opinion polls in Europe suggest that many Europeans would rather have Vladimir Putin than their own hopelessly corrupt leaders is suggestive. One can buy a whole range of favorable t-shirts featuring Vladimir Putin on Ebay , also suggesting that most Americans find the official Russophobia narrative both mysterious and faintly amusing. They may not really be into the expressed desire of the huddled masses in D.C. to go to war to bring true U.S. style democracy to the un-enlightened.

One also must wonder if the Democrats are reading the tea leaves correctly. If they think that a slogan like "Honest Joe Biden will keep us safe from Moscow" will be a winner in 2020 they might again be missing the bigger picture. Since the focus on Trump's decidedly erratic behavior will inevitably die down after the impeachment trial is completed, the Democrats will have to come up with something compelling if they really want to win the presidency and it sure won't be the largely fictionalized Russian threat.

Nevertheless, someone should tell Congressman Adam Schiff, who chairs the House Intelligence Committee, to shut up as he is becoming an international embarrassment. His "closing arguments" speeches last week were respectively two-and-a-half hours and ninety minutes long and were inevitably praised by the mainstream media as "magisterial," "powerful," and "impressive." The Washington Post 's resident Zionist extremist Jennifer Rubin labeled it "a grand slam" while legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin called it "dazzling." Gail Collins of the New York Times dubbed it "a great job" and added that Schiff is now "a rock star." Daily Beast enthused that the remarks "will go down in history " and progressive activist Ryan Knight called it "a closing statement for the ages." Hollywood was also on board with actress Debra Messing tweeting "I am in tears. Thank you Chairman Schiff for fighting for our country."

Actually, a better adjective would have been "scary" and not merely due to its elaboration of the alleged high crimes and misdemeanors committed by President Trump, much of which was undeniably true even if not necessarily impeachable. It was scary because it was a warmongers speech, full of allusions to Russia, to Moscow's "interference" in 2016, and to the ridiculous proposition that if Trump were to be defeated in 2020 he might not concede and Russia could even intervene militarily in the United States in support of its puppet.

Schiff insisted that Trump must be removed now to "assure the integrity" of the 2020 election. He elaborated somewhat ambiguously that "The president's misconduct cannot be decided at the ballot box, for we cannot be assured that the vote will be fairly won." Schiff also unleashed one of the most time honored but completely lame excuses for going to war, claiming that military assistance to Ukraine that had been delayed by Trump was essential for U.S. national security. He said "As one witness put it during our impeachment inquiry, the United States aids Ukraine and her people so that we can fight Russia over there, and we don't have to fight Russia here."

Schiff, a lawyer who has never had to put his life on the line for anything and whose son sports a MOSSAD t-shirt, is one of those sunshine soldiers who finds it quite acceptable if someone else does the dying. Journalist Max Blumenthal observed that "Liberals used to mock Bush supporters when they used this jingoistic line during the war on Iraq. Now they deploy it to justify an imperialist proxy war against a nuclear power." Aaron Mate at The Nation added that "For all the talk about Russia undermining faith in U.S. elections, how about Russiagaters like Schiff fear-mongering w/ hysterics like this? Let's assume Ukraine did what Trump wanted: announce a probe of Burisma. Would that delegitimize a 2020 U.S. election? This is a joke."

Over at Antiwar Daniel Lazare explains how the Wednesday speech was "a fear-mongering, sword-rattling harangue that will not only raise tensions with Russia for no good reason, but sends a chilling message to [Democratic Party] dissidents at home that if they deviate from Russiagate orthodoxy by one iota, they'll be driven from the fold."

The orthodoxy that Lazare was writing about includes the established Nancy Pelosi/Chuck Schumer narrative that Russia invaded "poor innocent Ukraine" in 2014, that it interfered in the 2016 election to defeat Hillary Clinton, and that it is currently trying to smear Joe Biden. One might add to that the growing consensus that Russia can and will interfere again in 2020 to help Trump. Absent from the narrative is the part how the U.S. intervened in Ukraine first to remove its government and the fact that there is something very unsavory about Joe Biden's son taking a high-paying sinecure board position from a notably corrupt Ukrainian oligarch while his father was Vice President and allegedly directing U.S. assistance to a Ukrainian anti-corruption effort.

On Wednesday, Schiff maintained that "Russia is not a threat to Eastern Europe alone. Ukraine has become the de facto proving ground for just the types of hybrid warfare that the twenty-first century will become defined by: cyberattacks, disinformation campaigns, efforts to undermine the legitimacy of state institutions, whether that is voting systems or financial markets. The Kremlin showed boldly in 2016 that with the malign skills it honed in Ukraine, they would not stay in Ukraine. Instead, Russia employed them here to attack our institutions, and they will do so again." Not surprisingly, if one substitutes the "United States" for "Russia" and "Kremlin" and changes "Ukraine" to Iran or Venezuela, the Schiff comment actually becomes much more credible.

The compulsion on the part of the Democrats to bring down Trump to avoid having to deal with their own failings has brought about a shift in their established foreign policy, placing the neocons and their friends back in charge. For Schiff, who has enthusiastically supported every failed American military effort since 9/11, today's Russia is the Soviet Union reborn, and don't you forget it pardner! Newsweek is meanwhile reporting that the U.S. military is reading the tea leaves and is gearing up to fight the Russians. Per Schiff, Trump must be stopped as he is part of a grand Russian conspiracy to overthrow everything the United States stands for. If the Kremlin is not stopped now, it's first major step, per Schiff, will be to "remake the map of Europe by dint of military force."

Donald Trump's erratic rule has certainly dismayed many of his former supporters, but the Democratic Party is offering nothing but another helping of George W. Bush/Barack Obama establishment war against the world. We Americans have had enough of that for the past nineteen years. Trump may indeed deserve to be removed based on his actions, but the argument that it is essential to do so because of Russia lurking is complete nonsense. Pretty scary that the apparent chief promoter of that point of view is someone who actually has power in the government, one Adam Schiff, head of the House of Representatives Intelligence Committee.


Chain Man , 10 hours ago link

If the USA doesn't have a bogey man to be afraid of, the USA might worry more and to insist on fixing the problems within the Nation.

So many of our politicians are guilty of allowing un constitutional on going act like the removal of Due Process of law for some people and the on going bailout of Global Markets with the US Dollar. The Patriot act and FISA Courts should have been gone.

J Frank Parnell , 11 hours ago link

I never saw the problem with Russians. They practice the same religion as I do and are mostly the same color...

Sid Finch , 10 hours ago link

Agreed. He seems as about as close as a leader can get to genuinely liking his country and people. It seems the ones here only give a **** about carbon, Central and South Americans, and cutting off my kids genitalia.

Archeofuturist , 11 hours ago link

Well let see.... Who has a historical beef with Russia and controls both parties. I wonder?

globalintelhub , 11 hours ago link

It is scary, but what else can Schiff say? They have no credible arguments against Trump, or for their own party. They are a bunch of lying scumbags that will kill, cheat, steal, mislead, carpet-bag and anything else unethical to achieve their sleazy goals. When Trump wins in a landslide in 2020, they will claim it's because the Russians 'fixed' the election, and the Democratic party will break into pieces arguing about how they failed and what they did wrong. See www.splittingpennies.com

Alice-the-dog , 11 hours ago link

Since the US Sociopaths In Charge have totally Effed up the nation, and a significant portion of the world, they have to have SOMEBODY to blame. They certainly won't take the blame they deserve themselves.

John Hansen , 10 hours ago link

Don't leave out Israel, they aren't the American peoples friend either.

motiveunclear , 13 hours ago link

There used to be this thing we don't hear used much anymore called "diplomacy" and another useful thing in international politics called "tact".

https://skulltripper.com/2020/01/18/statesmanship/

44magnum , 12 hours ago link

What the ZOG wants the ZOG gets

toady , 13 hours ago link

McCarthyism II. Will the US be able put down a second "red scare"? Tune in next week. Same bat time, same bat channel.

sillycat , 13 hours ago link

lots of words and no answer to the title question. Giraldi does not see the deep ideological problems: Russia is not trying to diversify into a PoC country, they do not worship gays and may be the only white people nation with sustaining birth rate. The US will go to war there is no way to let this continue.

hispanicLoser , 13 hours ago link

The level of Russia hate coming out of the dems is so much greater than that coming out of repubs that one can safely ignore this retarded article.

Jeffersonian Liberal , 12 hours ago link

True. But their hatred is pretended hatred. It is a form of projection.

Dan The Man , 13 hours ago link

Its our own fault.

The smart ppl are doing a lousy job of informing the dumb ones about accepted policy like "America Always Needs An Enemy". Smart ones understand that, and see the bigger game because of it.

We fight the dumb ones who believe Russian boogeyman crap, instead of helping them understand they are being misled on who the enemy really is. The dumb ones then fight back and further entrench that brainwashing.

vasilievich , 13 hours ago link

I'm trying to imagine the Russian Army marching down Pennsylvania Avenue. But first, across the Atlantic Ocean.

ombon , 13 hours ago link

It is appropriate to recall the words of Joseph Goebbels: "Give me the media, and I will make a herd of pigs from any nation," and pigs are easy to drive to the slaughterhouse. Only Russia can really resist such a situation in the world. Therefore, she is the enemy.

Dan The Man , 13 hours ago link

Coming Soon... Why the Gullibles Will Believe Anything

south40_dreams , 14 hours ago link

....and the many thieves are gulping at the money spigot.....time to shut that sucker OFF

whatisthat , 14 hours ago link

I would observe there is evidence the corrupt establishment has done more damage to the US than any other country could ever imagine...

Chain Man , 15 hours ago link

The Centrist Democrats and Republicans want to paint the old school God and Country Conservatives Equality and Justice for the USA (Nationalist) into being Russian. How dare we expect enforcement of the Laws on the books against them. They want to be deemed Royalty with all the Elitist Rights.

The old rally call about Russia was always Communist Russia but, they don't do that anymore? Why ? They love their Communist China wage slaves. The Centrist love Communist labor in the name of profits . Human rights be damned it's all about the Global Elitist to them now.

[Feb 16, 2020] Understanding the Ukraine Story by Joe Lauria

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... Imagine if we substitute the U.S. for Russia and the country "invaded" was Canada, rather than Ukraine, the government overthrown was in Ottawa and not Kiev, and the provinces embroiled in a foreign-backed civil war have been Nova Scotia and New Brunswick rather the provinces of Eastern Ukraine? This report, written in 2016, may make it easier to understand what has been really going on in Ukraine. Clicking on the links is key to understanding the real story. ..."
"... Washington Post ..."
"... Versions of this article first appeared on ..."
"... Consortium News ..."
Feb 14, 2020 | consortiumnews.com

The impeachment hearings and trial of Donald Trump were filled with talk of Russian aggression against Ukraine and threats to the United States. But what would it be like if we switched the roles of Russia and the U.S.?

Imagine if we substitute the U.S. for Russia and the country "invaded" was Canada, rather than Ukraine, the government overthrown was in Ottawa and not Kiev, and the provinces embroiled in a foreign-backed civil war have been Nova Scotia and New Brunswick rather the provinces of Eastern Ukraine? This report, written in 2016, may make it easier to understand what has been really going on in Ukraine. Clicking on the links is key to understanding the real story.

By Joe Lauria
Special to Consortium News

T he United States has "invaded" Canada to support the breakaway Maritime provinces that are resisting a Moscow-engineered violent coup d'etat against the democratically elected government in Ottawa.

The U.S. move is to protect separatists in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia after Washington annexed Prince Edwards Island in a quickly arranged referendum .

The Islanders voted over 90 percent in favor of joining the United States following the Russian-backed coup. Moscow has condemned the referendum as illega l.

Hard-liners in the U.S. want Washington to annex all three Maritime provinces, whose fighters are defying the coup in Ottawa after Moscow installed an unelected prime minister.

Russian-backed Canadian federal troops have launched so-called "anti-terrorist" operations in the breakaway region to crush the rebellion, shelling residential areas and killing hundreds of civilians.

The violent coup.

The Canadian army are joined by Russian-supported neofascist battalions that played a crucial role in the overthrow of the Canadian government. In Halifax, the extremists have burned alive at least 40 pro-U.S. civilians who had taken refugee in a trade union building.

Proof that Russia was behind the overthrow of the elected Canadian prime minister is contained in a leaked conversation between Georgiy Yevgenevich Borisenko, foreign ministry chief of Moscow's North America department, and Alexander Darchiev, the Russian ambassador to Canada.

According to a transcript of the leaked conversation, Borisenko discussed who the new Canadian leaders should be six weeks before the coup took place.

Russia moved to launch the coup when Canada decided to take a loan package from the IMF that had fewer strings attached than a loan from Russia.

Russia's Beijing ally was reluctant to back the coup. But this seemed of little concern to Borisenko who is heard on the tape saying, "Fuck China."

Minister handing out cookies in the square.

Weeks before the coup Borisenko was filmed visiting protestors who had camped out in Parliament Square in Ottawa demanding the ouster of the prime minister. Borisenko is seen giving out cakes to the demonstrators.

The foreign ministers of Russian-allied Belarus and Cuba also marched with the protestors through the streets of Ottawa against the government. Russian media has portrayed the unconstitutional change of government an act of "democracy." Russian senators have met in public with extreme right-wing Canadian coup leaders, praising their rebellion.

Borisenko said in a speech that Russia had spent $5 billion over the past decade to "bring democracy" to Canada.

Senator meeting far-right coup leaders.

The money was spent on training "civil society." The use of non-governmental organizations to overthrow foreign governments that stand in the way of Russia's economic and geo-strategic interests is well documented, especially in a 1991 Washington Post column, "Innocence Abroad: The New World of Spyless Coups ."

The United States has thus moved to ban Russian NGOs from operating in the country.

The coup took place as protestors violently clashed with police, breaking through barricades and killing a number of officers. Snipers fired on the police and the crowd from a nearby building in Parliament Square in which the Russian embassy had set up offices just a few floors above, according to Samantha Power, the U.S. ambassador to the U.N.

Son Gets Job After Coup

Russian lawmakers compared President Barack Obama to Adolph Hitler for allegedly sending U.S. troops into the breakaway provinces and for annexing Prince Edward Island in an act of "American aggression." The Maritimes have had long ties to the U.S. dating back to the American Revolution.

Russia says it has intelligence proving that U.S. tanks have crossed the Maine border into New Brunswick, but have failed to make the evidence public. They have revealed no satellite imagery. Russian news media only reports American-backed rebels fighting in the Maritimes, not American troops.

Washington denies it has invaded but says some American volunteers have entered the Canadian province to join the fight.

Russia's puppet prime minister now in charge in Ottawa has only offered as proof six American passports of U.S. soldiers found in New Brunswick.

Son gets job on energy company board after his father's government backs violent coup.

The Maritime Canadian rebels have secured anti-aircraft weapons enabling them to shoot down a number of Royal Canadian Air Force transport planes.

A Malaysian airlines passenger jet was also shot down over Nova Scotia killing all on board. Russia has accused President Obama of being behind the incident, charging that the U.S. provided the anti-aircraft weapon.

Moscow has refused to release any intelligence to support its claim, other than statements by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

Canada's economy is near collapse and is dependent on infusions of Russian aid. This comes despite a former Russian foreign ministry official being installed as Canada's finance minister, only receiving Canadian citizenship on her first day on the job.

Despite installing a Russian to run Canada's economy, President Putin told the U.N. General Assembly that Russia had "few economic interests" in the country. But Russian agribusiness companies have already taken stakes in Albertan wheat fields. And Ilya Medvedev, son of Russian Prime Minister Dmitri Medvedev, as well as a Lavrov family friend joined the board of Canada's largest oil company just weeks after the coup.

Russia's ultimate aim, beginning with the imposition of sanctions on the U.S., appears to be a color revolution in Washington to overthrow Obama and install a Russian-friendly American president.

This is clear from numerous statements by Russian officials and academics. A former Russian national security advisor whom Putin consults on foreign policy said the United States should be broken into three countries.

He has also written that Canada is the stepping stone to the United States and that if the U.S. loses Canada it will fail to control North America.

Versions of this article first appeared on The Duran and Consortium News in 2016.

Joe Lauria is editor-in-chief of Consortium News and a former correspondent for T he Wall Street Journal, Boston Globe , Sunday Times of London and numerous other newspapers. He can be reached at joelauria@consortiumnews.com and followed on Twitter @unjoe .


mary floyd , February 15, 2020 at 13:20

The most important takeaway in this article for me was that the US should be broken into three separate entities!
That would work well for most Americans. All in all, this is a great piece, Mr. Lauria!

Dao Gen , February 15, 2020 at 02:28

Joe, you are The Truth. The only thing you left out, no doubt for reasons of space and time, was the immortal statement made by a leading member of the Russian Duma, who said during a stirring and well-received speech that, “Canada is our crucial first line of defense against the US. If Canada weren’t there to stop the Americans, we’d have to fight them right here on our own doorstep.”

Herman , February 14, 2020 at 18:52

A very creative way of making the point. Still do not understand the depth of what often appears to be heart felt hate for Russia by very powerful and smart people. Remember reading a comment by Phil Girardi early in the Trump tour when he remarked at the depth of dislike of Russia within the spook community. He wrote he was surprised and had, I think, been part of that community.

Eddie S , February 15, 2020 at 14:51

RE: “…depth of dislike of Russia within the spook community”.
While I have no ‘special knowledge’ of the so-called ‘intelligence community’, there’s a few reasons for this that come to-mind:
— Job preservation. The most obvious. The US wouldn’t need ~80% of those spooks if there
weren’t big scary Russians/Chinese/Iranians/N.Koreans constantly plotting against the
peaceful, benevolent US.

— Spooks believe in what is mainly a distractionary ploy by US oligarchs/plutocrats. These
wealthy interests don’t want to lose some of their wealth to social reforms, so they constantly
financially support scare-mongering, which some spooks unquestioningly accept.

— The profession tends to attract some of the more paranoid elements in our society, so
they’re inclined that way by nature/personality.

robert e williamson jr , February 14, 2020 at 17:51

Well one thing for sure we would not be seeing a female anchor on CNN bemoaning the fact the because of the coronavirus many popular kids toys might not be available here in the U.S. for the up coming holidays (?).

Yes it did happen, hell I couldn’t make that up.

DARYL , February 14, 2020 at 15:45

…or better yet, substitute Central America for Ukraine, and Panama(canal) for Crimea, then you have the makings of an even more salient parallel.

Realist , February 14, 2020 at 15:42

The difference is that under your scenario the world would be a smoking heap of radioactive ashes already as the exceptional nation, unlike the ever cautious Russians, would have immediately made bombastic threats and then launched military attacks to protect its “security interests.” (Warring to “protect” security interests has replaced invasion and occupation to save souls.) Things would have escalated from there to its predestined thermonuclear climax, as they will in the real world if Uncle Sam doesn’t get a grip on his uncontrolled aggression, demanding whatever he wants whenever he wants it at the point of a gun. The world seems to be circling the drain whether or not Washington is allowed to micromanage the affairs of Russia, China, Iran and every last duchy, principality and people’s republic in addition to its own monumental mess it calls domestic affairs. We’ve only got two political parties in this madhouse and they are both equally bent on destroying civilisation if they can’t rule it all, which seems to be the only point they agree on. Each party thinks it preferable to allow an obscenely rich oligarch (what else should we call Trump or Bloomberg?) from the other side to rule rather than a “communist” like Bernie Sanders or a “naive peacenik” like Tulsi Gabbard to be elected president. If the space aliens land tomorrow and start recruiting colonists to populate newly terraformed planets in other solar systems, sign me up. Yeah, it’s become that absurd down here.

JOHN CHUCKMAN , February 14, 2020 at 15:22

Simply imperial rot and corruption of power on all sides.

Neither Democrats nor Republicans have an exclusive on those qualities.

Mark Thomason , February 14, 2020 at 12:37

This is a useful approach. It needs added to it the language and culture element: as if the part that wants out of the Moscow coup shares our own language and culture, while the rest of Canada does not, and the rest of Canada had gone on a spree to suppress that language and culture. It is hard to find a parallel in Canada to those facts, but it is what happened in Ukraine.

It is important to understanding to put oneself in the shoes of the other guys. It was once called walking a mile in the other guy’s moccasins, and given a Native wisdom attribution.

David G Horsman , February 14, 2020 at 12:01

I do this exercise mentally fairly often. This is the first time I saw it done in print. I would like to do an automated process.

[Feb 15, 2020] How does one say Adam Schiff without laughing? by title="View user profile." href="https://caucus99percent.com/users/alligator-ed">Alligator Ed

Highly recommended!
Feb 15, 2020 | caucus99percent.com

At the end of this essay, you may find a song which reasonably applies to Donald Trump directed to Democrats.

How does one say Adam Schiff without laughing? It's hard to continue typing while contemplating the Burbank Buffoon. Yet AS is making obscene flatus-like noises about impeachment 2.0. He and Nervous Nancy will conspire with chief strategist Gerald Nadler about extending the charges of 1.0 to 2.0.

Second verse
Same as the first

Obstructing leaking by firing leakers. That's one of the pending charges. Leutnant Oberst Vindman will be help up as the innocent victim of political retaliation. As I understand the military code of conduct, it says that the underling, Herr Oberst Vindman, went outside the chain of command and released classified information. In the military this is called insubordination, perhaps gross insubordination in view of the classified nature of the information.

Another charge to be filed on behalf of former Ambassador Yovanovich, is that her God-given Female rights were brutally violated as retaliation of advising Ukrainian officials to disregard Commander Cheeto.

There is no telling what additional non-crimes may be thrown at the feet at El Trumpo. All too horrible to contemplate--like someone throwing feces-contaminated dope needles onto Nervous Nancy's front lawn in Pacific Heights.

If this Shampeachment 2.0 (S2) occurs before November's election, Democrats will become as rare as dodo birds. If such proponents of S2 persist after the general election, they better have secure transportation to an extradition-free country.

If it gets bad enough, considering the Clinton Mafia's body count, would it be unreasonable to expect some untimely heart attacks and suicides with red scarves? On Clintonites? Soros et al.?

When the first shot and you don't kill the king, flee. But the DNC is going to attempt shot number 2. Trump WILL NEVER ALLOW A SECOND IMPEACHMENT TO OCCUR, no matter how patently worthless? Will the most powerful narcissist in the world allow the DNC / coup perpetrators to escaping Trumpian retribution?

Those doubting the Wrath of Q be prepared to be disabused of the impression that Q is pure fantasy. Fantasy--like GPS targeting a single small sniper drone to shoot someone from 3000 feet.

Sorry folks. I live in a swamp. I've stepped in shit with my eyes open. Many of you have too. Some of the excrement was of my own making.

Think about the singularly most effective and complex plot the world has ever seen, called 9/11. Think of the thousands of lives purposefully snuffed in then name of power and money. Call yourselves serfs--that's a euphemism. You--including me-- are nothing but ants. Goddam little ants that only Janes respect. There are no ascetic Janes in the penthouses of the elites.

But I digressed to the mysterious existence of morality in politics as a whole. Today's topic is more confined to the Democratic nomination.

Statement of Bias: Go Tulsi. Bravo Andy. The rest of you to the elsewhere--yeah, BS too.

The Dems are determined to grasp Defeat from the jaws of Defeat. Quite a trick. Like trying to borrow money from the Judge during a Bankruptcy trial.

I talked today with a freshman college student majoring in political science about her thought about the Shampeachment. She hadn't been paying attention. Not that I blame her. Her college freshman friend watched C-Span; wasn't impressed. We political aficionados know all about this political debauchery. If AS and NN attempt S2, expect many defections from the supporting vote.

Democrat respect has dwindled in the Independent sector. This is not to say the Repugnants are thereby more popular. They aren't. Trump is. Trump need that NH clown to challenge him in the Repugnant primary to prove exactly how powerful he is. Anybody notice who were in the audience, sitting nearby during Trump's post acquittal speech. Rand Paul and Lindsey Graham. The lamb and the lion laying together. They are both on the Trump Train. Even Richard Burr voted Trump in the impeachment. Mittens feared both his cojones would be excised if he voted against Trump on both counts. What a chickenheart.

But where are the Dems? Why, they are Here. Yes. Yes. And they are There. Yes. Yes. And they are Near. Yes. Yes. But....they are Far. Whither thou goest?

I refrain from pointed comments about AOC in further comments. The Squad is the iceberg floating away from the glacier which spawned it. Unsuitable to warm weather produced by political combat, the Squad faction will woke themselves up to dubious futures.

Establishment versus Bernie:

Not a contest. Spineless Bernie pretzelizes during first heated combat (which the Dem Debate Debacles were not). Won't take a second punch--the first during night 3 of the '16 DNC convention. Fist-shy now. Open Borders? WTF? Are you so nuts? If one offered a person the choice personal safety in their own homes and streets and free medical care for all--including the criminal aliens that A New Path Forward proposes--what do you think 85% of the public would choose?

Pandering.

The Left is also pushing strenuous avoidance of discussing issues in a platitude-depleted fashion. Yeah, Bernie's giving the same speech, with suitable modification, over 40 years. Consistency is a good thing, yeh? How about persistently beating your head with a hammer (while you still can)? Sounds like something Sun Tzu might not recommend.

Now, speaking of Las Vegas and the Nevada Primary. The culinary workers union will not endorse Bernie due to well-deserved or ill-deserved claims that M4A will abolish hard won union health benefits. And don't worry, the Shadow will be there, although Buttjiggle has now disavowed any further connection, along with David Plouffe.

Keeping the Bern off the campaign trail is going to infuriate the Woke Generation / Antifa. When--not if--the DNC cheats Bernie out of the nomination, if such proves necessary* will literally result in blood on the streets along with broken windows and flaming tires. Associate with that lot, eh? Given the choice of going into a biker bar, where brawls are always on the menu, or a discreet wine bar, which would one rather choose? Sorry, those are your only choices.

Nancy Pelosi, impressed by Arnold Schwarzenegger's former physical prowess, tears up her copy of the state of the union address. How decorous. How courteous. How polite. Seen around the world. Nigel Farage must be laughing his butt off, thinking about the shallow anti-Brexit campaigns against his were compared to our Coup. Nigel won. Trump . is. winning. Getting tired of winning yet?

I could go on for pages more of Dem stupidity, but why bother? Stupidity surrounds us.

Betting odds: DNC 1,999,999 to Bernie 1.

Place your bets.

For all the good it will do and I am sincere about this, I will vote Tulsi in the Dem primary.

Here is the song Dems need to heed. This is Donald Trump telling' y'all I'M NOT YOUR MAN

[Feb 08, 2020] Please stand up and clap for Colonel Vindman

Feb 08, 2020 | caucus99percent.com

snoopydawg on Fri, 02/07/2020 - 7:48pm

...

..

Joe Biden asks the Democratic audience to stand up and clap for Colonel Vindman, a member of the national security state

A perfect encapsulation of the last few years

-- Saagar Enjeti (@esaagar) February 8, 2020

..

Joe Biden asks the Democratic audience to stand up and clap for Colonel Vindman, a member of the national security state

A perfect encapsulation of the last few years

-- Saagar Enjeti (@esaagar) February 8, 2020

BTW Vindman quit his job so why was it bad for Trump to remove him early? Games

lol, Joe demands a standing ovation for Lt. Col. Vindman, a security state apparatchik who was offended that Trump didn't read from the talking points he prepared. Beyond parody

-- Michael Tracey (@mtracey) February 8, 2020

..

This moment of Amy and Joe basically telling HRC to f*** off is truly beautiful. #DemDebate

-- Krystal Ball (@krystalball) February 8, 2020

[Feb 08, 2020] Instead of praise, someone should tell Congressman Adam Schiff, who chairs the House Intelligence Committee, to shut up as he is becoming an international embarrassment

Feb 08, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

His "closing arguments" speeches last week were respectively two-and-a-half hours and ninety minutes long and were inevitably praised by the mainstream media as "magisterial," "powerful," and "impressive."

The Washington Post 's resident Zionist extremist Jennifer Rubin labeled it "a grand slam" while legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin called it "dazzling." Gail Collins of the New York Times dubbed it "a great job" and added that Schiff is now "a rock star." Daily Beast enthused that the remarks "will go down in history " and progressive activist Ryan Knight called it "a closing statement for the ages."

Hollywood was also on board with actress Debra Messing tweeting "I am in tears. Thank you Chairman Schiff for fighting for our country."

[Feb 08, 2020] Is Iraq About To Switch From US to Russia

Highly recommended!
Feb 08, 2020 | angrybearblog.com

likbez , February 8, 2020 8:56 pm

NSC Russia expert freshly appointed Andrew Peek, who was walked out like Vindman, with him only freshly appointed after Fiona Hill and the Tim Morrioson resigned.

There is a big problems with "experts" in NSC -- often they represent interests of the particular agency, or a think tank, not that of the country.

Look at former NSC staffer Fiona Hill. She can be called "threat inflation" specialist.

NSC tries to usurp the role of the State Department and overly militarize the USA foreign policy, while having much lower class specialists. It is a kind of CIA backdoor into defining the USA foreign policy.

I would advocate creating "shadow NSC" by the party who is in opposition, so that it can somehow provide countervailing opinions. But with both parties being now war parties, this is no that effective.

Cutting NSC staff to the bones, so that such second rate personalities like Fiona Hill and Vindman are automatically excluded might also help a little bit.

The size above a dozen or two is probably excessive, as like any bureaucracy, it will try to control the President, not so much help him/her.
( https://docs.house.gov/meetings/FA/FA00/20160908/105276/HHRG-114-FA00-Transcript-20160908.pdf ):

One common explanation is that the NSC mission creep results from the NSC staff growing too large and the easy solution is to limit the size of the staff. I am sympathetic to that feeling because we don't want it to
be too large and we don't want it to be usurping things that the State Department or the Agency should do.

[Feb 03, 2020] 'Trump Might Trade Alaska To The Russians!' Cries Schiff During Closing Impeachment Remarks

Notable quotes:
"... Adam Schiff: If Trump isn't removed he "could offer Alaska to the Russians in exchange for support in the next election or decide to move to Mar-a-Lago permanently and leave Jared Kushner to run the country, delegating to him the decision whether they go to war." pic.twitter.com/VBzkonqpmH ..."
Feb 03, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Impeachment manager Adam Schiff (D-CA) argued on Monday during closing remarks that if President Trump isn't removed from office, he " could offer Alaska to the Russians in exchange for support in the next election or decide to move to Mar-a-Lago permanently and leave Jared Kushner to run the country , delegating to him the decision whether they go to war."

Adam Schiff: If Trump isn't removed he "could offer Alaska to the Russians in exchange for support in the next election or decide to move to Mar-a-Lago permanently and leave Jared Kushner to run the country, delegating to him the decision whether they go to war." pic.twitter.com/VBzkonqpmH

-- Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) February 3, 2020

[Feb 03, 2020] White House Warriors: How the National Security Council Transformed the American Way of War

Highly recommended!
This book sheds some light into the story of how Administrative assistants to Present became independent heavily influenced by CIA body controlling the USA foreign policy and to a large extent controlling the President. Recent revolt of NSC (Aka Ukrainegate) shows that the servant became the master
The books contains some interesting information about forming NSC by Truman --- the father of the US National Security State. And bureaucratic turf war the preceded it. It wwas actually Eisenhower who created forma position of a "special assistant to the president for national security affairs"
The author also cover a little bit disastrous decision to launch a "surge" (ironically by the female chickenhawk Meghan O'Sullivan), -- which attests neocon nature of current NSC and level of indoctrination of staffers in "Full Spectrum Dominance" doctrine quite clearly. That's why a faction of NSC launched a coup d'état against Trump in t he form of Ukrainegate and probably was instrumental in Russiagate as well.
Notable quotes:
"... Starting in the 1960s, the NSC dethroned the State Department in providing analysis, intelligence, and even some diplomacy to the diplomat in chief. In the years after September 11th, the staff also began to take greater responsibility, especially for planning, from the military and the rest of the Pentagon. Both departments have struggled and often failed to reclaim lost ground and influence in Washington. ..."
"... Yet war is a hard thing to try to manage from the Executive Office Building. Thousands of miles from the frontlines and far from harm, the NSC make recommendations based on what they come to know from intelligence reports, news sources, phone calls, video-teleconferences, and visits to the front. Even with advice based only on this limited and limiting view, the NSC staff has transformed how the United States fights its wars. ..."
"... Although presidents bear the ultimate responsibilities for these decisions, the NSC staff played an essential, and increasing, role in the thinking behind each bold move. In conflict after conflict, a more powerful NSC staff has fundamentally altered the American way of war. It is now far less informed by the perspective of the military and the view from the frontlines. It is less patient for progress and more dependent on the clocks in the Executive Office Building and Washington than those in theater. It is far more combative, less able to accept defeat, and more willing to risk a change of course. ..."
"... The NSC common law's kept the peace in Washington for years after Iran-Contra. The restrictions against outright advocacy and outsized operational responsibilities were accepted by those at the White House as well as in the agencies during Republican and Democratic administrations. Yet as many in Washington believed the world grew more interconnected and the national security stakes increased, especially after September 11th, a more powerful NSC has given staffers the opportunity to bend, and occasionally break, the common laws, as they have been expected to and allowed to take on more responsibilities for developing strategies and new r ideas from those in the bureaucracy and military. ..."
"... ...Meanwhile, others, including the anonymous author of the infamous September 2018 New York Times opinion piece, believe government officials who comprise a "steady state" amid Trump's chaotic presidency are "unsung heroes" resisting his worst instincts and overreaches. 13 Thus, it is no surprise that more and more Americans are concerned: a 2018 poll found that 74 percent of Americans feel a group of officials arc able to control government policy without accountability. ..."
"... it is no wonder some Americans have taken to assuming the worst of their public servants. ..."
"... Each member of the NSC staff needs to remember that their growing, unaccountable power has helped give evidence to the worries about a deep state. Although no one in Washington gives up influence voluntarily, the staff, even its warriors, need to remember it is not just what they fight for but whether a fight is necessary at all. ..."
"... ... Too many in Washington, including at the Executive Office Building, have forgotten that public service is a privilege that bestows on them great responsibility. Although the NSC has long justified its actions in the name of national security, the means with which its members have pursued that objective have made for a more aggressive American way of war, a more fractious Washington, and more conspiracies about government. ..."
"... The question is for what and for whom they will fight in the years and wars ahead. ..."
Feb 03, 2020 | www.amazon.com

The men and women walking the hushed corridors of the Executive Office Building do not look like warriors. Most are middle-aged professionals with penchants for dark business suits and prestigious graduate degrees, who have spent their lives serving their country in windowless offices, on far-off battle-fields, or at embassies abroad. Before arriving at the NSC, many joined the military or the nation's diplomatic corps, some dedicated themselves to teaching and writing about national security, and others spent their days working for the types of politicians who become presidents. By the time they joined the staff, each had shown the pluck -- and the good fortune -- required to end up staffing a president.

When each NSC staffer first walks up the steps to the Executive Office Building, he or she joins an institution like no other in government. Compared to the Pentagon and other bureaucracies, the staff is small, hierarchically flat with only a few titles like directors and senior directors reporting to the national security advisor and his or her deputies. Compared to all those at the agencies, even most cabinet secretaries, the staff are also given unparalleled access to the president and the discussions about the biggest decisions in national security.

Yet despite their access, the NSC staff was created as a political, legal, and bureaucratic afterthought. The National Security Council was established both
to better coordinate foreign policy after World War II and as part of a deal to create what became known as the Defense Department. Since the army and navy only agreed to be unified under a single department and a civilian cabinet secretary if each still had a seat at the table where decisions about war were expected to be made, establishing the National Security Council was critical to ensuring passage of the National Security Act of 1947. The law, as well as its amendments two years later, unified the armed forces while also establishing the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Office of the Secretary of Defense, as well as the CIA.

... ... ...

Fans of television's the West Wing would be forgiven for expecting that once in the Oval Office, all a staffer needs to do to change policy is to deliver a well-timed whisper in the president's car or a rousing speech in his company. It is not that such dramatic moments never occur, but real change in government requires not just speaking up but the grinding policy work required to have something new to say.

A staffer, alone or with NSC and agency colleagues, must develop an idea until feasible and defend it from opposition driven by personal pique, bureaucratic jealousy, or substantive disagreement, and often all three.

Granted none of these fights are over particularly new ideas, as few proposals in war are truly novel. If anything, the staffs history is a reminder of how little new there is under the guise of national security. Alter all, escalations, ultimatums, and counterinsurgency are only innovative in the context of the latest conflicts. The NSC staff is usually proposing old ideas, some as old as war itself like a surge of troops, to new circumstances and a critical moment.

Yet even an old idea can have real power in the right hands at the right time, so it is worth considering how much more influence the NSC brings to its fights today.

... ... ...

A larger staff can do even more thanks to technology. With the establishment of the Situation Room in 1961 and its subsequent upgrades, as well as the widespread adoption of email in the 1980s, the classified email system during the 2000s, and desktop video teleconferencing systems in the 2010s, White House technology upgrades have been justified because the president deserves the latest and the fastest. These same advances give each member of the staff global reach, including to war zones half a world away, from the safety of the Executive Office Building.

The NSC has also grown more powerful along with the presidency it serves. The White House, even in the hands of an inexperienced and disorganized president like Trump, drives the government's agenda, the news media's coverage, and the American public's attention. The NSC staff can, if skilled enough, leverage the office's influence for their own ideas and purposes. Presidents have also explicitly empowered the staff in big ways -- like putting them in the middle of the policymaking process -- and small -- like granting them ranks that put them on the same level as other agency officials.

Recent staffers have also had the president's ear nearly every day, and sometimes more often, while secretaries of state and defense rarely have that much face time in the Oval Office. Each has a department with tens of thousands (and in the Pentagon's case millions) of employees to manage. Most significantly, both also answer not just to the president but to Congress, which has oversight authority for their departments and an expectation for regular updates. There are few more consequential power differences between the NSC and the departments than to whom each must answer.

Even more, the NSC staff get to work and fight in anonymity. Members of Congress, journalists, and historians are usually too busy keeping track of the National Security Council principals to focus on the guys and gals behind the national security advisors, who are themselves behind the president. Few in Washington, and fewer still across the country, know the names of the staff advising the president let alone what they arc saying in their memos and moments with him.

Today, there arc too many unnamed NSC staffers for anyone's good, including their own. Even with the recent congressional limit on policy staffers, the NSC is too big to be thoroughly managed or effective. National security advisors and their deputies are so busy during their days that it is hard to keep up with all their own emails, calls, and reading, let alone ensure each member of the staff is doing their own work or doing it well. The common law and a de tacto honor system has also struggled to keep staff in check as they try to handle every issue from war to women's rights and every to-do list item from drafting talking points to doing secret diplomacy.

Although many factors contribute to the NSC's success, history suggests they do best with the right-size job. The answer to better national security policy and process is not a bigger staff but smaller writs. The NSC should focus on fewer issues, and then only on the smaller stuff, like what the president needs for calls and meetings, and the big, what some call grand strategic, questions about the nation's interests, ambitions, and capacities that should be asked and answered before any major decision.

... ... ...

Along the way, the staff has taken on greater responsibilities from agencies like the departments of state and defense as each has grown more bureaucratic and sclerotic. Starting in the 1960s, the NSC dethroned the State Department in providing analysis, intelligence, and even some diplomacy to the diplomat in chief. In the years after September 11th, the staff also began to take greater responsibility, especially for planning, from the military and the rest of the Pentagon. Both departments have struggled and often failed to reclaim lost ground and influence in Washington.

As a result, today the NSC has, regretfully, become the strategic engine of the government's national security policymaking. The staff, along with the national security advisor, determine which issues -- large and small -- require attention, develop the plans for most of them, and try to manage day-to-day the implementation of each strategy. That is too sweeping a remit for a couple hundred unaccountable staffers sitting at the Executive Office Building thousands of miles from war zones and foreign capitals. Such immense responsibility also docs not make the best use of talent in government, leaving the military and the nation's diplomats fighting with the White House over policies while trying to execute plans they have less and less ownership over.

... ... ...

Although protocol still requires members of the NSC to sit on the backbench in National Security Council meetings, the staff s voice and advice can carry as much weight as those of the principals sitting at the table, just as the staff has taken on more of each department's responsibilities, the NSC arc expected to be advisors to the president, even on military strategy. With that charge, the staff has taken to spending more time and effort developing their own policy ideas -- and fighting for them.

Yet war is a hard thing to try to manage from the Executive Office Building. Thousands of miles from the frontlines and far from harm, the NSC make recommendations based on what they come to know from intelligence reports, news sources, phone calls, video-teleconferences, and visits to the front. Even with advice based only on this limited and limiting view, the NSC staff has transformed how the United States fights its wars.

The American way of war, developed over decades of thinking and fighting, informs how and why the nation goes to battle. Over the course of American history and, most relevantly, since the end of World War II, the US military and other national security professionals have developed, often through great turmoil, strategic preferences and habits, like deploying the latest technology possible instead of the largest number of troops. Despite the tremendous planning that goes into these most serious of undertakings, each new conflict tests the prevailing way of war and often finds it wanting.

Even knowing how dangerous it is to relight the last war, it is still not easy to find the right course for a new one. Government in general and national security specifically are risk-averse enterprises where it is often simpler to rely on standard operating procedures and stay on a chosen course, regardless of whether progress is slow and the sense of drift is severe. Even then, many in the military, who often react to even the mildest of suggestions and inquiries as unnecessary or even dangerous micromanagement, defend the prevailing approach with its defining doctrine and syndrome.

As Machiavelli recommended long ago, there is a need for hard questions in government and war in particular. He wrote that a leader "ought to be a great askcr, and a patient hearer of the truth." 7 From the Executive Office Building, the NSC staff, who are more distanced from the action as well as the fog of war, have tried to fill this role for a busy and often distracted president. They are, however, not nearly as patient as Machiavelli recommended: they have proven more willing, indeed too willing at times, to ask about what is working and what is not.

Warfighters are not alone in being frustrated by questions: everyone from architects to zookeepers believes they know how best to do their job and that with a bit more time, they will get it right. Without any of the responsibility for the doing, the NSC staff not only asks hard questions but, by avoiding implementation bias, is willing to admit, often long before those in the field, that the current plan is failing. A more technologically advanced NSC, with the ability to reach deep into the chain of command and war zones for updates, has also given the staff the intelligence to back up its impatience.

Most times in history, the NSC staff has correctly predicted that time is running against a chosen strategy. Halperin. and others on the Nixon NSC, were accurate in their assessments of Vietnam. Dur and his Reagan NSC colleagues were right to worry that diplomacy was moving too slowly in Lebanon. Haass and Vershbow were correct when they were concerned with how windows of opportunity for action were shrinking in the Gulf and Balkans respectively, just as O'Sullivan was right that things needed to change relatively soon in Iraq.

Yet an impatient NSC staff has a worse track record giving the president answers to what should come next. The NSC staff naturally have opinions and ideas about what can be done when events and war feel out of control, but ideas about what can be done when events and war feel out of control, but the very distance and disengagement that allow' the NSC to be so effective at measuring progress make its ideas less grounded in operational realities and more clouded by the fog of Washington. The NSC, often stridently, wants to do something more, to "go big when wc can," as one recent staffer encouraged his president, to fix a failing policy or win a w r ar, but that is not a strategy, nor does that ambition make the staff the best equipped to figure out the next steps."

With their proposals for a new plan, deployment, or initiative, the staff has made more bad recommendations than good. The Diem coup and the Beirut mission are two examples, and particularly tragic ones at that, of NSC staff recommendations gone awry. The Iraq surge was certainly a courageous decision, but by committing so many troops to that country, the manpower w r as not available for a war in Afghanistan that was falling off track. Even the more successful NSC recommendations for changes in US strategy in the Gulf War and in Bosnia did not end up exactly as planned, in part because even good ideas in war rarely do.

Although presidents bear the ultimate responsibilities for these decisions, the NSC staff played an essential, and increasing, role in the thinking behind each bold move. In conflict after conflict, a more powerful NSC staff has fundamentally altered the American way of war. It is now far less informed by the perspective of the military and the view from the frontlines. It is less patient for progress and more dependent on the clocks in the Executive Office Building and Washington than those in theater. It is far more combative, less able to accept defeat, and more willing to risk a change of course.

And it is characterized by more frequent and counterproductive friction between the civilian and military leaders.

... ... ...

Through it all, as the NSC's voice has grown louder in the nation's war rooms, the staff has transformed how Washington works, and more often does not work. The NSC's fights to change course have had another casualty: the ugly collapse of the common law' that has governed Washington policymaking for more than a generation. The result today is a government that trusts less, fights more, and decides much slower.

National security policy- and decision-making was never supposed to be a fair fight. Eliot Cohen, a civil-military scholar with high-level government experience, has called the give-and-take of the interagency process an "unequal" dialogue -- one in which presidents are entitled to not just make the ultimate decision but also to ask questions, often with the NSC's help, at any time and about any topic.* Everyone else, from the secretaries of state and defense in Washington dow r n to the commanders and ambassadors abroad, has to expect and tolerate such presidential interventions and then carry out his orders.

Even an unfair fight can have rules, however. The NSC common law's kept the peace in Washington for years after Iran-Contra. The restrictions against outright advocacy and outsized operational responsibilities were accepted by those at the White House as well as in the agencies during Republican and Democratic administrations. Yet as many in Washington believed the world grew more interconnected and the national security stakes increased, especially after September 11th, a more powerful NSC has given staffers the opportunity to bend, and occasionally break, the common laws, as they have been expected to and allowed to take on more responsibilities for developing strategies and new r ideas from those in the bureaucracy and military.

... ... ...

...Meanwhile, others, including the anonymous author of the infamous September 2018 New York Times opinion piece, believe government officials who comprise a "steady state" amid Trump's chaotic presidency are "unsung heroes" resisting his worst instincts and overreaches. 13 Thus, it is no surprise that more and more Americans are concerned: a 2018 poll found that 74 percent of Americans feel a group of officials arc able to control government policy without accountability.

In an era when Americans can see on reality television how their fish are caught, meals arc cooked, and businesses are financed, it is strange that few have ever heard the voice of an NSC staffer. The Executive Office Building is not the only building out of reach: most of the government taxpayers' fund is hard, and getting harder, to see. With bigger security blockades, longer waits on declassification, and more severe crackdowns on leaks, it is no wonder some Americans have taken to assuming the worst of their public servants.

The American people need to know the NSC's war stories if for no other reason than each makes clear that there is no organized deep state in Washington. If one existed, there would be little need for the NSC to fight so hard to coordinate the government's various players and parts. However, this history also makes plain that though the United States can overcome bad decisions and survive military disasters, a belief in a deep state is a threat to the NSC and so much more.

... ... ...

Each member of the NSC staff needs to remember that their growing, unaccountable power has helped give evidence to the worries about a deep state. Although no one in Washington gives up influence voluntarily, the staff, even its warriors, need to remember it is not just what they fight for but whether a fight is necessary at all. Shortcuts and squabbles may make sense when every second feels like it counts, but the best public servants do what is necessary for the president even as they protect, for years to come, the health of the institutions and the very democracy in which they serve. As hard as that can be to remember when the clock in the Oval Office is ticking, doing things the right way is even more important than the latest crises, war, or meeting with the president.

... ... ...

... Too many in Washington, including at the Executive Office Building, have forgotten that public service is a privilege that bestows on them great responsibility. Although the NSC has long justified its actions in the name of national security, the means with which its members have pursued that objective have made for a more aggressive American way of war, a more fractious Washington, and more conspiracies about government.

Centuries ago, Plato argued that civilians must hope for warriors who could be trusted to be both "gentle to their own and cruel to their enemies." At a time when many doubt government and those who serve in it, the NSC staff s history demonstrates just what White House warriors arc capable of. The question is for what and for whom they will fight in the years and wars ahead.

... ... ...

The legendary British double agent Kim Philby wrote: "just because a document is a document it has a glamour which tempts the reader to give it more weight than it deserves An hour of a serious discussion with a trustworthy informant is often more valuable than any number of original documents. Of course, it is best to have both."

Alexandra Jones , September 15, 2019

The Untold History of the NSC

A must-read for anyone interested in history or foreign policy. Gans pulls back the curtain on arguably the most powerful yet opaque body in foreign policy decision-making, the National Security Council. Each chapter recounts a different administration -- as told through the work of an NSC staffer. Through these beautifully-written portraits of largely unknown staffers, Gans reveals the chilling, outsized influence of this small, unelected institution on American war and peace. From this perspective, even the policy success stories seem more luck than skill -- leaving readers concerned about the NSC's continued unchecked power.

[Feb 02, 2020] The most interesting issue is the role of NSC in this impeachment story

Highly recommended!
Edited for clarity
Notable quotes:
"... Currently they can wrap themselves into constitution defenders flag and be pretty safe from any criticism. Because charges that Schiff brought to the floor are bogus, and probably were created out of thin air by NSC plotters. Senators on both sides understand this, creating a classic Kabuki theater environment. ..."
"... In any case, it is clear that Trump is just a marionette of more powerful forces behind him, and his impeachment does not means much, if those forces are untouchable. Impeachment Kabuki theatre is an attempt of restoration of NSC (read neocons) favored foreign policy from which Trump slightly deviated. ..."
Feb 02, 2020 | angrybearblog.com

likbez , February 2, 2020 10:40 pm

Far more interesting issue is the role of NSC in this impeachment story.

Potential whistleblower (actually CIA informant) was from NSC as were Fiona Hill, Alex Vindman and a couple of other major Ukrainegate players.

In this NSC coup d'état against the President or what ? About earlier role of NSC see

https://off-guardian.org/2020/02/01/secret-wars-forgotten-betrayals-global-tyranny-who-is-really-in-charge-of-the-u-s-military/

As for "evil republican senators", they would be viewed as evil by electorate if and only only if actual crimes of Trump regime like Douma false flag, Suleimani assassination (actually here Trump was set up By Bolton and Pompeo) and other were discussed.

Currently they can wrap themselves into constitution defenders flag and be pretty safe from any criticism. Because charges that Schiff brought to the floor are bogus, and probably were created out of thin air by NSC plotters. Senators on both sides understand this, creating a classic Kabuki theater environment.

Both sides are afraid to discuss real issues, real Trump regime crimes.

Schiff proved to be patently inept in this whole story even taking into account limitations put by Kabuki theater on him, and in case of Trump acquittal *which is "highly probable" borrowing May government terminology in Skripals case :-) to resign would be a honest thing for him to do.

Assuming that he has some honestly left. Which is highly doubtful with statements like:

"The United States aids Ukraine and her people so that we can fight Russia over there so we don't have to fight Russia here."

And

"More than 15,000 Ukrainians have died fighting Russian forces and their proxies. 15,000."

Actually it was the USA interference in Ukraine (aka Nulandgate) that killed 15K Ukrainians, mainly Donbas residents and badly trained recruits of the Ukrainian army sent to fight them, as well as volunteers of paramilitary "death squads" like Asov battalion financed by oligarch Igor Kolomyskiy

In any case, it is clear that Trump is just a marionette of more powerful forces behind him, and his impeachment does not means much, if those forces are untouchable. Impeachment Kabuki theatre is an attempt of restoration of NSC (read neocons) favored foreign policy from which Trump slightly deviated.

[Jan 23, 2020] Guinness record in Presidential twits: Trump broke his previous Twitter record

Jan 23, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

On Wednesday, Jan 22 Donald Trump wrote his name in the Guinness records books setting Presidential record in Twits. According @FactbaseFeed, an account which tracks Trump's Twitter habits, Trump sent 142 tweets and retweets on Wednesday -- eclipsing his previous single-day presidential record of 123.

pretzelattack , Jan 23 2020 16:06 utc | 8

According to the US diplomat, President Trump has made it very "clear that any attack on Americans or American interests will be met with a decisive response, which the president demonstrated on January 2".

And American interests are defined very flexibly, sometimes in conflicting tweets.

[Jan 23, 2020] An incredible level of naivety of people who still think that a single individual, or even two, can change the direction of murderous US policies that are widely supported throughout the bureaucracy?

Highly recommended!
The deep state clearly is running the show (with some people unexpected imput -- see Trump ;-)
Elections now serve mainly for the legitimizing of the deep state rule; election of a particular individual can change little, although there is some space of change due to the power of executive branch. If the individual stray too much form the elite "forign policy consensus" he ether will be JFKed or Russiagated (with the Special Prosecutor as the fist act and impeachment as the second act of the same Russiagate drama)
But a talented (or reckless) individual can speed up some process that are already under way. For example, Trump managed to speed up the process of destruction of the USA-centered neoliberal empire considerably. Especially by launching the trade war with China. He also managed to discredit the USA foreign policy as no other president before him. Even Bush II.
Jan 23, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org
Trailer Trash , Jan 23 2020 18:30 utc | 44
>This is the most critical U.S. election in our lifetime
> Posted by: Circe | Jan 23 2020 17:46 utc | 36

Hmmm, I've been hearing the same siren song every four years for the past fifty. How is it that people still think that a single individual, or even two, can change the direction of murderous US policies that are widely supported throughout the bureaucracy?

Bureaucracies are reactionary and conservative by nature, so any new and more repressive policy Trumpy wants is readily adapted, as shown by the continuing barbarity of ICE and the growth of prisons and refugee concentration camps. Policies that go against the grain are easily shrugged off and ignored using time-tested passive-aggressive tactics.

One of Trump's insurmountable problems is that he has no loyal organization behind him whose members he can appoint throughout the massive Federal bureaucracy. Any Dummycrat whose name is not "Biden" has the same problem. Without a real mass-movement political party to pressure reluctant bureaucrats, no politician of any name or stripe will ever substantially change the direction of US policy.

But the last thing Dummycrats want is a real mass movement, because they might not be able to control it. Instead Uncle Sam will keep heading towards the cliff, which may be coming into view...


Per/Norway , Jan 23 2020 19:31 utc | 62

The amount of TINA worshipers and status quo guerillas is starting to depress me.
HOW IS IT POSSIBLE to believe A politician will/can change anything and give your consent to war criminals and traitors?
NO person(s) WILL EVER get to the top in imperial/vassal state politics without being on the rentier class side, the cognitive dissonans in voting for known liars, war criminals and traitors would kill me or fry my brain. TINA is a lie and "she" is a real bitch that deserves to be thrown on the dump off history, YOUR vote is YOUR consent to murder, theft and treason.
DONT be a rentier class enabler STOP voting and start making your local communities better and independent instead.

Per
Norway

Piotr Berman , Jan 23 2020 20:19 utc | 82
The amount of TINA worshipers and status quo guerillas is starting to depress me. <- Norway

Of course, There Is Another Way, for example, kvetching. We can boldly show that we are upset, and pessimistic. One upset pessimists reach critical mass we will think about some actions.

But being upset and pessimistic does fully justify inactivity. In particular, given the nature of social interaction networks, with spokes and hubs, dominating the network requires the control of relatively few nodes. The nature of democracy always allows for leverage takeover, starting from dominating within small to the entire nation in few steps. As it was nicely explained by Prof. Overton, there is a window of positions that the vast majority regards as reasonable, non-radical etc. One reason that powers to be invest so much energy vilifying dissenters, Russian assets of late, is to keep them outside the Overton window.

Having a candidate elected that the curators of Overton window hate definitely shakes the situation with the potential of shifting the window. There were some positive symptoms after Trump was elected, but negatives prevail. "Why not we just kill him" idea entered the window, together with "we took their oil because we have guts and common sense".

From that point of view, visibility of Tulsi and election of Sanders will solve some problems but most of all, it will make big changes in Overton window.

[Jan 22, 2020] 'Remember Where You Are' Chief Justice Roberts Admonishes Both Sides After Impeachment Arguments Get Personal

Sometime Kabuki theater can be very entertaining ;-)
Jan 22, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

John Law Lives , 2 hours ago link

Listening to Schiff drone on and on is cruel and unusual punishment (imo). Maybe that is a Democrat tactic.

J Jason Djfmam , 2 hours ago link

It's like he's Rachel Madcow in a blue suit.

[Jan 19, 2020] It is unclear what percentage of Congress are alcoholics, but judging from their statements looks like more then half

The situation in neoliberal MSM probably is close to a real epidemics ;-)
Jan 19, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Last of the Middle Class , 2 hours ago link

Finally, a group Pelosi can lead and be proud of .

[Jan 17, 2020] In the full sprit of bipartisanship

Notable quotes:
"... Why then were all eight House members chosen as managers to prosecute the case against Trump, who ceremoniously escorted the articles across the Capitol, all Democrats? Why did the articles of impeachment receive not a single Republican vote on the House floor? ..."
Jan 17, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Why then were all eight House members chosen as managers to prosecute the case against Trump, who ceremoniously escorted the articles across the Capitol, all Democrats? Why did the articles of impeachment receive not a single Republican vote on the House floor?

[Jan 17, 2020] Ukraine is a deeply sick patient. The destiny of ordinary Ukrainians is deeply tragic. Diaspora is greedy and want a piece of cake immediately

Highly recommended!
Edited for clarity
Notable quotes:
"... The infrastructure they inherited from the USSR mostly is now fully amortized. For example railway park in in complete ruin. Central heating pipeline communications in cities like Kiev are in ruins too. In the USSR they tried to reuse the heat from electric stations and have elaborate hot water delivery networks from each, which provided heat to a large city blocks. Now pipes are completely rusted (which in 30 years is no surprise) and are in the state of constant repair. ..."
"... But when the standard of living dropped to such extent as it dropped after 2014 sentiments toward even slightly different ethnic groups turn hostile too. This is the case in Ukraine. In this sense you are wrong. There is no more unity now then existed before 2014. I would say there is less unity now. ..."
"... Sentiments turned against both Donbass dwellers and Ukrainians from Western Ukraine. In Kiev the derogatory term for both categories is "ponaekhali" ("come to overcrowd the place and displace us", or something along those lines; it's difficult to translate, but the term carries strong derogatory meaning) ..."
"... The nationalistic hysteria of 2014-2017 now mostly changed into deep depression: how a tiny group of far right nationalist and football hooligan gangs managed to get to power against the will of the majority of the country and destroy its economy. That's why Zelensky was elected and most far right parliamentarians lost their seats. Most of Western Ukraine voted for him, which is telling you something. ..."
"... The problem for Ukraine is that with the cut of economic ties with Russia the natural path for economics is probably down. De-industrialization, Baltic style, is raining supreme. Many enterprises survived the period from 1991 to 2014 only due to orders from Russia. Especially remnants of military industrial complex and manufacturing industry. Now what? Selling land (like Zelensky is trying to do) ? ..."
Jan 17, 2020 | www.unz.com

likbez says:January 17, 2020 at 8:35 am GMT • 1,500 Words @AP AP,

I agree with JPM:

I feel like robber barons in Kyiv have harmed you more through their looting of the country than impoverished Eastern Ukrainians, who were the biggest losers in the post-Soviet deindustrilization, have harmed you by existing and dying of diseases of poverty and despair.

It reminds me of how coastal shit-libs in America talk about "fly-over" country and want all the poor whites in Appalachia to die. I'm living in a country whose soul is totally poisoned. A country that is dying. While all this is happening, whites have split themselves into little factions focused on political point scoring.

I doubt people like Zelensky, Kolomoisky, Poroshenko and all the rest are going to turn Ukraine into an earthly paradise. They're more likely to be Neros playing harps, while Ukraine burns.

Looks like your understanding of Ukraine is mostly based of a short trip to Lvov and reading neoliberal MSM and forums. That's not enough, unless you want to be the next Max Boot.

Ukraine is a deeply sick patient, which surprisingly still stands despite all hardships (Ukrainians demonstrated amazing, superhuman resilience in the crisis that hit them, which greatly surprised all experts).

The infrastructure they inherited from the USSR mostly is now fully amortized. For example railway park in in complete ruin. Central heating pipeline communications in cities like Kiev are in ruins too. In the USSR they tried to reuse the heat from electric stations and have elaborate hot water delivery networks from each, which provided heat to a large city blocks. Now pipes are completely rusted (which in 30 years is no surprise) and are in the state of constant repair.

And, what is really tragic Ukraine now it is a debt state. Usually the latter is the capital sentence for the county. Few managed to escape even in more favorable conditions (South Korea is one.) So chances of economic recovery are slim: with such level of parasitic rent to the West the natural path is down and down. Don't cry for me Argentina.

And there is no money to replace already destroyed due to bad maintenance infrastructure, but surprisingly large parts of Soviets era infrastructure still somehow hold. For example, electrical networks, subway cars. But other part are already crumbling.

For example, in Kiev that means in some buildings you have winter without central heating, you have elevators in 16-storey buildings that work one or two weeks in month, you have no hot water, sometimes you have no water at all for a week or more, etc). Pensioners have problem with paying heating bills, so some of them are forced to live in non-heated apartments.

And that's in Kiev/Kyiv (Western Ukrainians love to change established names, much like communists) . In provincial cities it is a real horror show when even electricity supply became a problem. The countryside dwellers at least has its own food, but the situation for them is also very very difficult.

Other big problem -- few jobs and almost no well paid job, unless you are young, know English and have a university education (and are lucky). Before 2014 approximately 70% of Ukrainian labor migrants (in total a couple of million) came from the western part of the country, in which migration had become a widespread method of coping with poverty, the absence of jobs and low salaries.

Now this practice spread to the whole county. That destroyed many families.

The USA plays its usual games selling vassals crap at inflated prices (arms, uranium rods, coal, locomotives, cars, etc) , which Ukrainians can't refuse. Trump is simply a typical gangster in this respect, running a protection racket.

The rate of emigration and shrinking population is another fundamental problem. Mass emigration ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_Ukraine ) is continuing even after Zelensky election. Looting by the West also continues unabated. This is disaster capitalism in action.

Add to those problems inflated military expenses to fight the civil war in Donbass which deprives other sectors of necessary funds (with the main affect of completely alienating Russia) and "Huston, we have a problem."

May be this is a natural path for xUSSR countries after the dissolution of the USSR, I don't know.

But the destiny of ordinary Ukrainians is deeply tragic: they wanted better life and got a really harsh one. Especially pensioners (typical pension is something like $60-$70) a month in Kiev, much less outside of Kiev. How they physically survive I do not fully understand.

There are still pro-Russian areas but being free of Crimea and Donbass means Ukraine can no longer be characterized as "split."

I agree that there is a substantial growth of anti-Russian sentiments. It is really noticeable. As well as growth of the usage of the Ukrainian language (previously Kiev, unlike Lvov was completely Russian-language city).

And in Western Ukraine Russiphobia was actually always a part of "national identity". The negative definition of national identity, if you wish. See popular slogan "Hto ne skache toi moskal" ("those who do not jump are Moskal" -- where Moskal is the derogatory name for a Russian). Here is this slogan in action: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M6rfqr9afMc ;-)

But when the standard of living dropped to such extent as it dropped after 2014 sentiments toward even slightly different ethnic groups turn hostile too. This is the case in Ukraine. In this sense you are wrong. There is no more unity now then existed before 2014. I would say there is less unity now.

Sentiments turned against both Donbass dwellers and Ukrainians from Western Ukraine. In Kiev the derogatory term for both categories is "ponaekhali" ("come to overcrowd the place and displace us", or something along those lines; it's difficult to translate, but the term carries strong derogatory meaning) .

"Donetskie" (former Donbass dwellers, often displaced by the war) are generally strongly resented and luxury cars, villas, etc and other excesses of neoliberal elite are attributed mostly to them (Donbass neoliberal elite did moved to Kiev, not Moscow) , while "zapadentsi" are also, albeit less strongly, resented because they often use clan politics within institutions, and often do not put enough effort (or are outright incompetent), as they rely on its own clan ties for survival.

This sentiment is stronger to the south of Kiev where the resentment is directed mainly against Western Ukrainians, not against "Donetskie" like in Kiev. And I am talking not only about Odessa. Western Ukrainians are now strongly associated with corrupt ways of getting lucrative positions (via family, clan or political connections), being incompetent and doing nothing useful.

What surprise me is that this resentment against "zapadentsi" and "Poloshenko clan" is shared by many people from Western Ukraine. The target is often slightly more narrow, for example Hutsuls in Lviv ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hutsuls )

The nationalistic hysteria of 2014-2017 now mostly changed into deep depression: how a tiny group of far right nationalist and football hooligan gangs managed to get to power against the will of the majority of the country and destroy its economy. That's why Zelensky was elected and most far right parliamentarians lost their seats. Most of Western Ukraine voted for him, which is telling you something.

The problem for Ukraine is that with the cut of economic ties with Russia the natural path for economics is probably down. De-industrialization, Baltic style, is raining supreme. Many enterprises survived the period from 1991 to 2014 only due to orders from Russia. Especially remnants of military industrial complex and manufacturing industry. Now what? Selling land (like Zelensky is trying to do) ?

Ukraine will probably eventually lose a large part of its chemical industry because without subsidies for gas it just can't complete even taking into account low labor costs. And manufacturing because without Russian market it is difficult to find a place for their production in already established markets, competing only in price and suffering in quality (I remember something about Iraq returning Ukrainians all ordered armored carriers due to defect is the the armor https://sputniknews.com/military/201705221053859853-armored-vehicles-defects-extent /). Although at least for the Ukrainian arm industry there is place on the market in countries which are used to old Soviet armaments, because those are rehashed Soviet products.

Add to this corrupt and greedy diaspora (all those Jaresko, Chalupas, Freelands, Vindmans, etc ) from the USA and Canada (and not only diaspora -- look at Biden, Kerry, etc) who want their piece of the pie after 2014 "Revolution of dignity" (what a sad joke) and you will see the problems more clearly. Not that much changed from the period 1991-2014 where Ukraine was also royally fleeced by own oligarchs allied with Western banksers, simply now this leads to quicker deterioration of the standard of living.

None of Eastern European countries benefited from a color revolution staged by the USA. This is about opening the country not only to multinationals (while they loot the county they at least behave within a certain legal bounds, demonstrating at least decency of gangsters like in Godfather), but to petty foreign criminals from diaspora and outside of it who allies with the local oligarchs and smaller nouveau riche and are siphoning all the county wealth to western banks as soon as possible. Greed of the disapora is simply unbounded. https://neweasterneurope.eu/2016/08/26/the-ukrainian-diaspora-as-a-recipient-of-oligarchic-cash/

Of course, Ukrainian diaspora is not uniform. Still, outside well-know types from the tiny Mid-Eastern country, the most dangerous people for Ukraine are probably Ukrainians from diaspora with dual citizenship

[Jan 14, 2020] Impeachment Of President Trump An Imperial War Game by By Barbara Boyd

Highly recommended!
Barbara Boyd correctly called Kent testimony "obsine" becase it was one grad neocon gallisination, which has nothing to do with real facts on the ground.
She attributed those dirty games not only to the USA but also to London.
Nov 22, 2019 | futurefastforward.com

If you want to stop the coup against the President, you must understand how Joe Biden and Hillary Clinton's State Department carried out a coup against the democratically elected government of Ukraine in 2014.

In a November 16 webcast, LaRouche PAC's Barbara Boyd presented the real story behind the present impeachment farce: how the very forces running the attack on President Trump, used thugs as their enforcers, in order to turn Ukraine into a pawn in the British geopolitical war drive against Russia.

https://youtu.be/uBg3vLjWePI

[Jan 10, 2020] Joe Biden under cross examination in senate trail would be Conedy Central show transmitted live

The folks who hatched that particular impeachment plan and pitched it to Nancy Pelosi must have been the same idiots in the DNC who dreamt up the Russiagate scandal and also pursued Paul Manafort to get him off DJT's election campaign team. Dmitri Alperovich / Crowdstrike, Alexandra Chalupa: we're looking at you.
The real Trump move would be to hit the twitter right before the house impeachment vote and announce that he has instructed the House Republicans to vote for impeachment.
Notable quotes:
"... At least this mess made it patently clear the Dem obsession with Russia has been all about preserving their Ukraine pickpocketing operation. ..."
Nov 27, 2019 | www.forbes.com

Forbes.com billwhalen 26 September 2019 Link

I ordered a truckload of pop corn to snack on during the trial in the Senate. Just imagine Joe Biden under cross examination as he flips 'n flops! "Was that me in the Video, I can't recall."

Maracatu | Nov 26 2019 21:56 utc | 18

I can see a Trump marketing consultant designing a campaign centered on the impeachment hearings called "The Swamp Strikes Back". It might be most effective as a comic strip.

Fly | Nov 27 2019 0:30 utc | 33

At least this mess made it patently clear the Dem obsession with Russia has been all about preserving their Ukraine pickpocketing operation.
Just Saying | Nov 27 2019 7:22 utc | 58

All the bull-Schiff comes from Hillary's lingerie. The democrats need to secure a huge laundromat

[Jan 08, 2020] If we assume that Pompeo persuaded Trump to order to kill a diplomatic envoy, Trump is now a dead man walking as after Iran responce Pelosi impeachment gambit now have legs

Highly recommended!
This is truly shocking: Trump assassinates diplomatic envoy he himself arranged for. . If the U.S. lured Soleimani to Iraq with a promise of negotiations with the Iraqis as mediators and then proceeded to kill him, surely that would be an impeachable offense. Particularly in view of the failure to brief Congress. If it was Saudi tricked Soleimani by getting Iraq to "mediate" (Iraq's prime minister was expecting a message by him on the mediation when he was assassinated), Saudi will get targeted.
The US changed the rules of engagement. They had decided to assassinate Soleimani when he was in Syria, having just returned from a short journey to Lebanon, before boarding a commercial flight from Damascus airport to Baghdad. The US killing machine was waiting for him to land in Baghdad and monitored his movements when he was picked up at the foot of the plane. The US hit the two cars, carrying Soleimani and the al-Muhandes protection team, when they were still inside the airport perimeter and were slowing down at the first check-point.
US forces will no longer be safe in Iraq outside protected areas inside the military bases where they are deployed. A potential danger or hit-man could be lurking at every corner; this will limit the free movement of US soldiers. Iran would be delighted were the Iraqi groups to decide to hit the American forces and hunt them wherever they are. This would rekindle memories of the first clashes between Jaish al-Mahdi and US forces in Najaf in 2004-2005.
Jan 06, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org
Tom , Jan 5 2020 15:55 utc | 16
Impeachment with GOP support could be just around the corner. And who lost Iraq??? He would be a dead man walking in that case. I can't see the evangelical crowd saving him. President Pence. Might have to get use to that.

Here is a link to a twitter account with a good video of massive crowds on the streets of Mashhad awaiting the arrival of Qassem Suleimani. Very powerful.

https://twitter.com/sonofnariman/status/1213792565075550208


Piotr Berman , Jan 5 2020 16:02 utc | 17

There will be no draining of any swamps. Trump-Kushner just another Bibi lackey.

Posted by: Jerry | Jan 5 2020 15:48 utc | 13

1. Draining swamps was a marker of progress in the past. >>Wiki:But in the late 1960s and early 1970s, researchers found that marshes and swamps "were worth billions annually in wildlife production, groundwater recharge, and for flood, pollution, and erosion control." This motivated the passage of the 1972 federal Water Pollution Control Act.<<

2. To recognize this vital role, parties should adopt more acquatic symbols. Caymans are a bit too similar to alligators, but, say, Alligators vs Snapping Turtles?

Sasha , Jan 5 2020 16:02 utc | 18
A video which says it all...
Gen. #Soleimani, enemy of Daesh and Trump!

Trump has threatened #Iran with destroying its cultural sites but that is not his only similarity with Daesh, they both hated General Soleimani.

https://twitter.com/PressTV/status/1213804505537679362


Bemildred , Jan 5 2020 16:02 utc | 19
Posted by: Tom | Jan 5 2020 15:55 utc | 16

Yes, it might just be that this debacle provides the extra impulse to get him removed. Can't say I can even imagine what that would look like, but there would seem to be a good argument now that he must be restrained somehow. Somebody needs to tell Pompeous to stop digging the hole deeper (shutup) too.

[Jan 01, 2020] "Freedom gas" named Worst Words of the Year

Jan 01, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Mao , Dec 30 2019 9:03 utc | 48

"Freedom gas" named Worst Words of the Year

Plain English Foundation has voted freedom gas as the worst word or phrase of 2019.

The term comes from the United States Department of Energy, which rebranded natural gas as "freedom gas" and boasted about bringing molecules of US freedom to the world.

"When a simple product like natural gas starts being named through partisan politics, we are entering dangerous terrain," said the Foundation's Executive Director, Dr Neil James. "Why can't natural gas just remain natural gas?"

Each year, Plain English Foundation gathers dozens of examples of the worst words to highlight the importance of clear and ethical public language.

The full list of 2019's worst words and phrases follows.

https://www.plainenglishfoundation.com/documents/10179/636280/2019_Worst_Words_media_release

[Dec 29, 2019] Note on Washington's bizarre priorities by James Antle

Notable quotes:
"... ...Michael Tracey offered this apt summary of Washington's bizarre priorities: "This last week teaches us that temporarily freezing and then unfreezing future military aid to one of our many far-flung client states is [a] huge national emergency but the government systematically lying about every aspect of the longest war in U.S. history is a forgettable non-issue." ..."
Dec 29, 2019 | www.theamericanconservative.com

...Michael Tracey offered this apt summary of Washington's bizarre priorities: "This last week teaches us that temporarily freezing and then unfreezing future military aid to one of our many far-flung client states is [a] huge national emergency but the government systematically lying about every aspect of the longest war in U.S. history is a forgettable non-issue."

[Dec 22, 2019] So US intelligence tipped off the DNC that their emails were about to be leaked to Wikileaks. That's when the stratagem of attributing the impending Wikileaks release to a Russian hack was born -- distracting from the incriminating content of the emails, while vilifying the Deep State's favorite enemies, Assange and Russia, all in one neat scam

Highly recommended!
Looks like Brennan ears are all over this false flag operation...
Dec 22, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Mark McCarty , 21 December 2019 at 02:34 PM

Here's a key point - on June 12, Assange announces that Wikileaks will soon be releasing info pertinent to Hillary. HE DOES NOT SAY THAT HE WILL BE RELEASING DNC EMAILS.

And yet, on June 14, Crowdstrike reports a Russian hack of the DNC servers - and a day later, Guccifer 2.0 emerges and proclaims himself to be the hacker, takes credit for the upcoming Wikileaks DNC releases, publishes the Trump oppo research which Crowdstrike claimed he had taken, and intentionally adds "Russian footprints" to his metadata.

So how did Crowdstrike and G2.0 know that DNC EMAILS would be released?

Because, as Larry postulates, the US intelligence community had intercepted communications between Seth Rich and Wikileaks in which Seth had offered the DNC emails (consistent with the report of Sy Hersh's source within the FBI).

So US intelligence tipped off the DNC that their emails were about to be leaked to Wikileaks.

That's when the stratagem of attributing the impending Wikileaks release to a Russian hack was born - distracting from the incriminating content of the emails, while vilifying the Deep State's favorite enemies, Assange and Russia, all in one neat scam.

[Dec 21, 2019] If the plan was to sabotage Trump's second-term campaign, it seems to have backfired spectacularly

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... "growing evidence that the public impeachment proceedings in the House against Trump may actually be helping him politically." ..."
"... "open war on American Democracy." ..."
"... the end of his six-page letter shows that he is fully aware of the Democrats' gambit, bringing it out in the open: he wrote it not because he expected them to see reason but "for the purpose of history" and to create a "permanent and indelible record." ..."
"... It is said that history is written by the winners. That's almost true. It is made by the winners, but written by the loud. Trump is a real-estate developer and reality TV star who talked his way into the White House against two major political dynasties – Clinton and Bush – and both the Republican and Democrat establishments; through a gauntlet of US intelligence agencies, as it turns out; and in the face of near-unanimous opposition from the media. ..."
"... So his impeachment is indeed a historic moment – just not in the way his enemies think. ..."
Dec 21, 2019 | astutenews.com

...If the plan was to sabotage Trump's second-term campaign, it seems to have backfired spectacularly. With every hearing before the Intelligence or Judiciary Committee, the public support for impeachment actually decreased. Even CNN was forced to admit the existence of "growing evidence that the public impeachment proceedings in the House against Trump may actually be helping him politically."

Indeed, what better way for Trump to solidify his bona fides as the populist outsider than to be impeached by the coastal elites and the Washington Swamp, in what amounted to a nakedly partisan process?

Definition of Impeachment (modern): A process by which the party out of power shows the world how they got that way. Happens most commonly right before a landslide reelection.

-- Scott Adams (@ScottAdamsSays) December 18, 2019

...Trump never gets tired of pointing out the accomplishments of his administration: jobs, stock market growth, trade deals, etc. He did so again, in a scathing letter to Pelosi on Impeachment Eve, contrasting that to her party's "open war on American Democracy." However, the end of his six-page letter shows that he is fully aware of the Democrats' gambit, bringing it out in the open: he wrote it not because he expected them to see reason but "for the purpose of history" and to create a "permanent and indelible record."

It is said that history is written by the winners. That's almost true. It is made by the winners, but written by the loud. Trump is a real-estate developer and reality TV star who talked his way into the White House against two major political dynasties – Clinton and Bush – and both the Republican and Democrat establishments; through a gauntlet of US intelligence agencies, as it turns out; and in the face of near-unanimous opposition from the media.

So his impeachment is indeed a historic moment – just not in the way his enemies think.


By Nebojsa Malic
Source: RT

[Dec 21, 2019] Time to Terminate Washington's Defense Welfare

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... While I admire America's democratic society, I hate how America brought wars and chaos to the world in guise of "freedom and liberation". ..."
"... Was it necessary to bomb civilians of Ossetia for Georgia to get rid of Russia? Was it necessary to provoke a coup d'état against fully legitimate and democratically elected government in Ukraine? Life isn't fair indeed : not only they will never enter in NATO (even less EU) and no one will protect them, but they can say farewell to the land they lost. People in Georgia and Ukraine are less and less gullible and Pro Russians sentiment is gaining ground btw. Ask yourself why ? ..."
"... Sphere of influence, the same reason why Cuba and Venezuela will pay for their insolence against the hegemon. The world is never a fair place. ..."
Sep 01, 2017 | nationalinterest.org

opaw , August 30, 2017 8:29 PM

While I admire America's democratic society, I hate how America brought wars and chaos to the world in guise of "freedom and liberation".

I hate how America exploit the weak. president moon should offer an olive branch to fatty Kim by sending back the thaad to America and pulling out American base and troops. he should convince fatty Kim that should he really like to proliferate his nuclear missile development as deterrence, aim it only to America and America only. there is no need for Koreans to kill fellow Koreans.

Try Harder , August 31, 2017 2:45 AM

Very good idea, after having pushed Ukraine and Georgia to a war lost in advance, lets hope US will abandon South Korea and Japan because they were helpless in demilitarizing one of the poorest countries in the world....

Try Harder Guest , August 31, 2017 4:16 PM

Was it necessary to bomb civilians of Ossetia for Georgia to get rid of Russia? Was it necessary to provoke a coup d'état against fully legitimate and democratically elected government in Ukraine? Life isn't fair indeed : not only they will never enter in NATO (even less EU) and no one will protect them, but they can say farewell to the land they lost. People in Georgia and Ukraine are less and less gullible and Pro Russians sentiment is gaining ground btw. Ask yourself why ?

Zsari Maxim Guest , August 31, 2017 11:50 AM

Sphere of influence, the same reason why Cuba and Venezuela will pay for their insolence against the hegemon. The world is never a fair place.

Thomas Fung , August 31, 2017 5:04 PM

In this person's opinion, the article raises a good point with regards to US defense subsidies. However, its examples are dissimilar. Japan spends approximately 1% of its GDP on defense; South Korea spends roughly 2.5% of its GDP defense.

In fact, it seems to this person that a better example of US Defense Welfare would be direct subsidies granted to the state of Israel.

[Dec 21, 2019] The ruthless neo-colonialists of 21st century

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... The destruction of Syria and Libya created massive refugee flows which have proved that the European Union was totally unprepared to deal with such a major issue. On top of that, the latest years, we have witnessed a rapid rise of various terrorist attacks in Western soil, also as a result of the devastating wars in Syria and Libya. ..."
"... Whenever they wanted to blame someone for some serious terrorist attacks, they had a scapegoat ready for them, even if they had evidence that Libya was not behind these attacks. When Gaddafi falsely admitted that he had weapons of mass destruction in order to gain some relief from the Western sanctions, they presented him as a responsible leader who, was ready to cooperate. Of course, his last role was to play again the 'bad guy' who had to be removed. ..."
"... Despite the rise of Donald Trump in power, the neoliberal forces will push further for the expansion of the neoliberal doctrine in the rival field of the Sino-Russian alliance. ..."
"... We see, however, that the Western alliances are entering a period of severe crisis. The US has failed to control the situation in Middle East and Libya. The ruthless neo-colonialists will not hesitate to confront Russia and China directly, if they see that they continue to lose control in the global geopolitical arena. The accumulation of military presence of NATO next to the Russian borders, as well as, the accumulation of military presence of the US in Asia-Pacific, show that this is an undeniable fact. ..."
Apr 09, 2019 | failedevolution.blogspot.com

The start of current decade revealed the most ruthless face of a global neo-colonialism. From Syria and Libya to Europe and Latin America, the old colonial powers of the West tried to rebound against an oncoming rival bloc led by Russia and China, which starts to threaten their global domination.

Inside a multi-polar, complex terrain of geopolitical games, the big players start to abandon the old-fashioned, inefficient direct wars. They use today other, various methods like brutal proxy wars , economic wars, financial and constitutional coups, provocative operations, 'color revolutions', etc. In this highly complex and unstable situation, when even traditional allies turn against each other as the global balances change rapidly, the forces unleashed are absolutely destructive. Inevitably, the results are more than evident.

Proxy Wars - Syria/Libya

After the US invasion in Iraq, the gates of hell had opened in the Middle East. Obama continued the Bush legacy of US endless interventions, but he had to change tactics because a direct war would be inefficient, costly and extremely unpopular to the American people and the rest of the world.
The result, however, appeared to be equally (if not more) devastating with the failed US invasions in Iraq and Afghanistan. The US had lost total control of the armed groups directly linked with the ISIS terrorists, failed to topple Assad, and, moreover, instead of eliminating the Russian and Iranian influence in the region, actually managed to increase it. As a result, the US and its allies failed to secure their geopolitical interests around the various pipeline games.

In addition, the US sees Turkey, one of its most important ally, changing direction dangerously, away from the Western bloc. Probably the strongest indication for this, is that Turkey, Iran and Russia decided very recently to proceed in an agreement on Syria without the presence of the US.

Yet, the list of US failures does not end here. The destruction of Syria and Libya created massive refugee flows which have proved that the European Union was totally unprepared to deal with such a major issue. On top of that, the latest years, we have witnessed a rapid rise of various terrorist attacks in Western soil, also as a result of the devastating wars in Syria and Libya.

Evidence from WikiLeaks has shown that the old colonial powers have started a new round of ruthless competition on Libya's resources. The usual story propagated by the Western media, about another tyrant who had to be removed, has now completely collapsed. They don't care neither to topple an 'authoritarian' regime, nor to spread Democracy. All they care about is to secure each country's resources for their big companies.
The Gaddafi case is quite interesting because it shows that the Western hypocrites were using him according to their interests .

Whenever they wanted to blame someone for some serious terrorist attacks, they had a scapegoat ready for them, even if they had evidence that Libya was not behind these attacks. When Gaddafi falsely admitted that he had weapons of mass destruction in order to gain some relief from the Western sanctions, they presented him as a responsible leader who, was ready to cooperate. Of course, his last role was to play again the 'bad guy' who had to be removed.

Economic Wars, Financial Coups – Greece/Eurozone

It would be unthinkable for the neo-colonialists to conduct proxy wars inside European soil, especially against countries which belong to Western institutions like NATO, EU, eurozone, etc. The wave of the US-made major economic crisis hit Greece and Europe at the start of the decade, almost simultaneously with the eruption of the Arab Spring revolutionary wave and the subsequent disaster in Middle East and Libya.

Greece was the easy victim for the global neoliberal dictatorship to impose catastrophic measures in favor of the plutocracy. The Greek experiment enters its seventh year and the plan is to be used as a model for the whole eurozone. Greece has become also the model for the looting of public property, as happened in the past with the East Germany and the Treuhand Operation after the fall of the Berlin Wall.

While Greece was the major victim of an economic war, Germany used its economic power and control of the European Central Bank to impose unprecedented austerity, sado-monetarism and neoliberal destruction through silent financial coups in Ireland , Italy and Cyprus . The Greek political establishment collapsed with the rise of SYRIZA in power, and the ECB was forced to proceed in an open financial coup against Greece when the current PM, Alexis Tsipras, decided to conduct a referendum on the catastrophic measures imposed by the ECB, IMF and the European Commission, through which the Greek people clearly rejected these measures, despite the propaganda of terror inside and outside Greece. Due to the direct threat from Mario Draghi and the ECB, who actually threatened to cut liquidity sinking Greece into a financial chaos, Tsipras finally forced to retreat, signing another catastrophic memorandum.

Through similar financial and political pressure, the Brussels bureaufascists and the German sado-monetarists along with the IMF economic hitmen, imposed neoliberal disaster to other eurozone countries like Portugal, Spain etc. It is remarkable that even the second eurozone economy, France, rushed to impose anti-labor measures midst terrorist attacks, succumbing to a - pre-designed by the elites - neo-Feudalism, under the 'Socialist' François Hollande, despite the intense protests in many French cities.

Germany would never let the United States to lead the neo-colonization in Europe, as it tries (again) to become a major power with its own sphere of influence, expanding throughout eurozone and beyond. As the situation in Europe becomes more and more critical with the ongoing economic and refugee crisis and the rise of the Far-Right and the nationalists, the economic war mostly between the US and the German big capital, creates an even more complicated situation.

The decline of the US-German relations has been exposed initially with the NSA interceptions scandal , yet, progressively, the big picture came on surface, revealing a transatlantic economic war between banking and corporate giants. In times of huge multilevel crises, the big capital always intensifies its efforts to eliminate competitors too. As a consequence, the US has seen another key ally, Germany, trying to gain a certain degree of independence in order to form its own agenda, separate from the US interests.

Note that, both Germany and Turkey are medium powers that, historically, always trying to expand and create their own spheres of influence, seeking independence from the traditional big powers.

Economic Wars, Constitutional Coups, Provocative Operations – Argentina/Brazil/Venezuela

A wave of neoliberal onslaught shakes currently Latin America. While in Argentina, Mauricio Macri allegedly took the power normally, the constitutional coup against Dilma Rousseff in Brazil, as well as, the usual actions of the Right opposition in Venezuela against Nicolás Maduro with the help of the US finger, are far more obvious.
The special weight of these three countries in Latin America is extremely important for the US imperialism to regain ground in the global geopolitical arena. Especially the last ten to fifteen years, each of them developed increasingly autonomous policies away from the US close custody, under Leftist governments, and this was something that alarmed the US imperialism components.

Brazil appears to be the most important among the three, not only due to its size, but also as a member of the BRICS, the team of fast growing economies who threaten the US and generally the Western global dominance. The constitutional coup against Rousseff was rather a sloppy action and reveals the anxiety of the US establishment to regain control through puppet regimes. This is a well-known situation from the past through which the establishment attempts to secure absolute dominance in the US backyard.

The importance of Venezuela due to its oil reserves is also significant. When Maduro tried to approach Russia in order to strengthen the economic cooperation between the two countries, he must had set the alarm for the neocons in the US. Venezuela could find an alternative in Russia and BRICS, in order to breathe from the multiple economic war that was set off by the US. It is characteristic that the economic war against Russia by the US and the Saudis, by keeping the oil prices in historically low levels, had significant impact on the Venezuelan economy too. It is also known that the US organizations are funding the opposition since Chávez era, in order to proceed in provocative operations that could overthrow the Leftist governments.

The case of Venezuela is really interesting. The US imperialists were fiercely trying to overthrow the Leftist governments since Chávez administration. They found now a weaker president, Nicolás Maduro - who certainly does not have the strength and personality of Hugo Chávez - to achieve their goal.

The Western media mouthpieces are doing their job, which is propaganda as usual. The recipe is known. You present the half truth, with a big overdose of exaggeration. The establishment parrots are demonizing Socialism , but they won't ever tell you about the money that the US is spending, feeding the Right-Wing groups and opposition to proceed in provocative operations, in order to create instability. They won't tell you about the financial war conducted through the oil prices, manipulated by the Saudis, the close US ally.

Regarding Argentina, former president, Cristina Kirchner, had also made some important moves towards the stronger cooperation with Russia, which was something unacceptable for Washington's hawks. Not only for geopolitical reasons, but also because Argentina could escape from the vulture funds that sucking its blood since its default. This would give the country an alternative to the neoliberal monopoly of destruction. The US big banks and corporations would never accept such a perspective because the debt-enslaved Argentina is a golden opportunity for a new round of huge profits. It's happening right now in eurozone's debt colony, Greece.

'Color Revolutions' - Ukraine

The events in Ukraine have shown that, the big capital has no hesitation to ally even with the neo-nazis, in order to impose the new world order. This is not something new of course. The connection of Hitler with the German economic oligarchs, but also with other major Western companies, before and during the WWII, is well known.

The most terrifying of all however, is not that the West has silenced in front of the decrees of the new Ukrainian leadership, through which is targeting the minorities, but the fact that the West allied with the neo-nazis, while according to some information has also funded their actions as well as other extreme nationalist groups during the riots in Kiev.

Plenty of indications show that US organizations have 'put their finger' on Ukraine. A video , for example, concerning the situation in Ukraine has been directed by Ben Moses (creator of the movie "Good Morning, Vietnam"), who is connected with American government executives and organizations like National Endowment for Democracy, funded by the US Congress. This video shows a beautiful young female Ukrainian who characterizes the government of the country as "dictatorship" and praise some protesters with the neo-nazi symbols of the fascist Ukranian party Svoboda on them.

The same organizations are behind 'color revolutions' elsewhere, as well as, provocative operations against Leftist governments in Venezuela and other countries.

Ukraine is the perfect place to provoke Putin and tight the noose around Russia. Of course the huge hypocrisy of the West can also be identified in the case of Crimea. While in other cases, the Western officials were 'screaming' for the right of self-determination (like Kosovo, for example), after they destroyed Yugoslavia in a bloodbath, they can't recognize the will of the majority of Crimeans to join Russia.

The war will become wilder

The Western neo-colonial powers are trying to counterattack against the geopolitical upgrade of Russia and the Chinese economic expansionism.

Despite the rise of Donald Trump in power, the neoliberal forces will push further for the expansion of the neoliberal doctrine in the rival field of the Sino-Russian alliance. Besides, Trump has already shown his hostile feelings against China, despite his friendly approach to Russia and Putin.

We see, however, that the Western alliances are entering a period of severe crisis. The US has failed to control the situation in Middle East and Libya. The ruthless neo-colonialists will not hesitate to confront Russia and China directly, if they see that they continue to lose control in the global geopolitical arena. The accumulation of military presence of NATO next to the Russian borders, as well as, the accumulation of military presence of the US in Asia-Pacific, show that this is an undeniable fact.

[Dec 20, 2019] Did John Brennan's CIA Create Guccifer 2.0 and DCLeaks by Larry C Johnson

Highly recommended!
Gossufer2.0 and CrowdStrike are the weakest links in this sordid story. CrowdStrike was nothing but FBI/CIA contractor.
So the hypothesis that CrowdStrike employees implanted malware to implicate Russians and created fake Gussifer 2.0 personality is pretty logical.
Notable quotes:
"... Not one piece of corroborating intelligence. It is all based on opinion and strong belief. There was no human source report or electronic intercept pointing to a relationship between the GRU and the two alleged creations of the GRU--Guccifer 2.0 persona and DCLeaks.com. Now consider the spin that Robert Mueller put on this opinion in his report on possible collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians. Mueller bluffs the unsuspecting reader into believing that it is a proven fact that Guccifer 2.0 and DCLeaks were Russian assets. But he is relying on a mere opinion from a handpicked group of intel analysts working under the direction of then CIA Director John Brennan ..."
"... In October 2015 John Brennan reorganized the CIA . As part of that reorganization he created a new directorate--DIRECTORATE OF DIGITAL INNOVATION. Its mission was to "manipulate digital footprints." In other words, this was the Directorate that did the work of creating Guccifer 2.0 and DCLeaks. One of their specialties, creating Digital Dust. ..."
"... We also know, thanks to Wikileaks, that the CIA was using software specifically designed to mask CIA activity and make it appear like it was done by a foreign entity. Wikipedia describes the Vault 7 documents : ..."
"... Exhibit A in the case is this document created and later edited in the ubiquitous Microsoft Word format. Metadata left inside the file shows it was last edited by someone using the computer name "Феликс Эдмундович." That means the computer was configured to use the Russian language and that it was connected to a Russian-language keyboard. More intriguing still, "Феликс Эдмундович" is the colloquial name that translates to Felix Dzerzhinsky, the 20th Century Russian statesman who is best known for founding the Soviet secret police. (The metadata also shows that the purported DNC strategy memo was originally created by someone named Warren Flood, which happens to be the name of a LinkedIn user claiming to provide strategy and data analytics services to Democratic candidates.) ..."
"... Why would the CIA do this? The CIA knew that Podesta's emails had been hacked and were circulating on the internet. But they had no evidence about the identity of the culprit. If they had such evidence, they would have cited it in the 2017 ICA. ..."
"... The U.S. intelligence community became aware around May 26, 2016 that someone with access to the DNC network was offering those emails to Julian Assange and Wikileaks. Julian Assange and people who spoke to him indicate that the person was Seth Rich. Whether or not it was Seth, the Trump Task Force at CIA was aware that the emails, which would be embarrassing to the Clinton campaign, would be released at some time in the future. Hence the motive to create Guccifer 2.0 and pin the blame on Russia. ..."
"... The only source for the claim that Russia hacked the DNC is a private cyber security firm, CrowdStrike. ..."
"... Time for the common sense standard again. Crowdstrike detected the Russians on the 6th of May, according to CEO Dimitri Alperovitch, but took no steps to shutdown the network, eliminate the malware and clean the computers until 34 days later, i.e., the 10th of June. That is 34 days of inexcusable inaction. ..."
"... The actions attributed to DCLeaks and Guccifer 2.0 should be priority investigative targets for U.S. Attorney John Durham's team of investigators. This potential use of a known CIA tool, developed under Brennan with the sole purpose to obfuscate the source of intrusions, pointing to another nation, as a false flag operation, is one of the actions and issues that U.S. Attorney John Durham should be looking into as a potential act of "Seditious conspiracy. It needs to be done. To quote the CIA, I strongly assess that the only intelligence agency that evidence indicates was meddling via cyber attacks in the 2016 Presidential election was the CIA, not the GRU. ..."
"... LJ bottom line: "The only intelligence agency that evidence indicates was meddling via cyber attacks in the 2016 Presidential election was the CIA, not the GRU." ..."
"... ICA which seemed to have been framed to allow journalists or the unwary to link the ICA with more rigorous standards used by more authentic assessments? ..."
"... With the Russians not having the advantages that the NSA does (back doors in all US-designed network hardware/software and taps all over the internet), would Russia reveal anything unless it involved an immediate major national security threat. I doubt that would cover Trump. ..."
Dec 20, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Special Counsel Robert Mueller's report insists that Guccifer 2.0 and DCLeaks were created by Russia's military intelligence organization, the GRU, as part of a Russian plot to meddle in the U.S. 2016 Presidential Election. But this is a lie. Guccifer 2.0 and DCLeaks were created by Brennan's CIA and this action by the CIA should be a target of U.S. Attorney John Durham's investigation. Let me explain why.

Let us start with the January 2017 Intelligence Community Assessment aka ICA. Only three agencies of the 17 in the U.S. intelligence community contributed to and coordinated on the ICA--the FBI, the CIA and NSA. In the preamble to the ICA, you can read the following explanation about methodology:

When Intelligence Community analysts use words such as "we assess" or "we judge," they are conveying an analytic assessment or judgment

To be clear, the phrase,"We assess", is intel community jargon for "opinion". If there was actual evidence or source material for a judgment the writer of the assessment would state, "According to a reliable source" or "knowledgeable source" or "documentary evidence."

Pay close attention to what the analysts writing the ICA stated about the GRU and Guccifer 2.0 and DCLeaks:

We assess with high confidence that the GRU used the Guccifer 2.0 persona, DCLeaks.com, and WikiLeaks to release US victim data obtained in cyber operations publicly and in exclusives to media outlets.

  • Guccifer 2.0, who claimed to be an independent Romanian hacker, made multiple contradictory statements and false claims about his likely Russian identity throughout the election. Press reporting suggests more than one person claiming to be Guccifer 2.0 interacted with journalists.
  • Content that we assess was taken from e-mail accounts targeted by the GRU in March 2016 appeared on DCLeaks.com starting in June.

We assess with high confidence that the GRU relayed material it acquired from the DNC and senior Democratic officials to WikiLeaks. Moscow most likely chose WikiLeaks because of its self-proclaimed reputation for authenticity. Disclosures through WikiLeaks did not contain any evident forgeries.

Not one piece of corroborating intelligence. It is all based on opinion and strong belief. There was no human source report or electronic intercept pointing to a relationship between the GRU and the two alleged creations of the GRU--Guccifer 2.0 persona and DCLeaks.com. Now consider the spin that Robert Mueller put on this opinion in his report on possible collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians. Mueller bluffs the unsuspecting reader into believing that it is a proven fact that Guccifer 2.0 and DCLeaks were Russian assets. But he is relying on a mere opinion from a handpicked group of intel analysts working under the direction of then CIA Director John Brennan.

Here's Mueller's take (I apologize for the lengthy quote but it is important that you read how the Mueller team presents this):

DCLeaks

"The GRU began planning the releases at least as early as April 19, 2016, when Unit 26165 registered the domain dcleaks.com through a service that anonymized the registrant.137 Unit 26165 paid for the registration using a pool of bitcoin that it had mined.138 The dcleaks.com landing page pointed to different tranches of stolen documents, arranged by victim or subject matter. Other dcleaks.com pages contained indexes of the stolen emails that were being released (bearing the sender, recipient, and date of the email). To control access and the timing of releases, pages were sometimes password-protected for a period of time and later made unrestricted to the public.


Starting in June 2016, the GRU posted stolen documents onto the website dcleaks.com, including documents stolen from a number of individuals associated with the Clinton Campaign. These documents appeared to have originated from personal email accounts (in particular, Google and Microsoft accounts), rather than the DNC and DCCC computer networks. DCLeaks victims included an advisor to the Clinton Campaign, a former DNC employee and Clinton Campaign employee, and four other campaign volunteers.139 The GRU released through dcleaks.com thousands of documents, including personal identifying and financial information, internal correspondence related to the"Clinton Campaign and prior political jobs, and fundraising files and information.140


GRU officers operated a Facebook page under the DCLeaks moniker, which they primarily used to promote releases of materials.141 The Facebook page was administered through a small number of preexisting GRU-controlled Facebook accounts.142


GRU officers also used the DCLeaks Facebook account, the Twitter account @dcleaks__, and the email account dcleaksproject@gmail.com to communicate privately with reporters and other U.S. persons. GRU officers using the DCLeaks persona gave certain reporters early access to archives of leaked files by sending them links and passwords to pages on the dcleaks.com website that had not yet become public. For example, on July 14, 2016, GRU officers operating under the DCLeaks persona sent a link and password for a non-public DCLeaks webpage to a U.S. reporter via the Facebook account.143 Similarly, on September 14, 2016, GRU officers sent reporters Twitter direct messages from @dcleaks_, with a password to another non-public part of the dcleaks.com website.144


The dcleaks.com website remained operational and public until March 2017."

Guccifer 2.0

On June 14, 2016, the DNC and its cyber-response team announced the breach of the DNC network and suspected theft of DNC documents. In the statements, the cyber-response team alleged that Russian state-sponsored actors (which they referred to as "Fancy Bear") were responsible for the breach.145 Apparently in response to that announcement, on June 15, 2016, GRU officers using the persona Guccifer 2.0 created a WordPress blog. In the hours leading up to the launch of that WordPress blog, GRU officers logged into a Moscow-based server used and managed by Unit 74455 and searched for a number of specific words and phrases in English, including "some hundred sheets," "illuminati," and "worldwide known." Approximately two hours after the last of those searches, Guccifer 2.0 published its first post, attributing the DNC server hack to a lone Romanian hacker and using several of the unique English words and phrases that the GRU officers had searched for that day.146

That same day, June 15, 2016, the GRU also used the Guccifer 2.0 WordPress blog to begin releasing to the public documents stolen from the DNC and DCCC computer networks.

The Guccifer 2.0 persona ultimately released thousands of documents stolen from the DNC and DCCC in a series of blog posts between June 15, 2016 and October 18, 2016.147 Released documents included opposition research performed by the DNC (including a memorandum analyzing potential criticisms of candidate Trump), internal policy documents (such as recommendations on how to address politically sensitive issues), analyses of specific congressional races, and fundraising documents. Releases were organized around thematic issues, such as specific states (e.g., Florida and Pennsylvania) that were perceived as competitive in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

Beginning in late June 2016, the GRU also used the Guccifer 2.0 persona to release documents directly to reporters and other interested individuals. Specifically, on June 27, 2016, Guccifer 2.0 sent an email to the news outlet The Smoking Gun offering to provide "exclusive access to some leaked emails linked [to] Hillary Clinton's staff."148 The GRU later sent the reporter a password and link to a locked portion of the dcleaks.com website that contained an archive of emails stolen by Unit 26165 from a Clinton Campaign volunteer in March 2016.149 "That the Guccifer 2.0 persona provided reporters access to a restricted portion of the DCLeaks website tends to indicate that both personas were operated by the same or a closely-related group of people.150

The GRU continued its release efforts through Guccifer 2.0 into August 2016. For example, on August 15, 2016, the Guccifer 2.0 persona sent a candidate for the U.S. Congress documents related to the candidate's opponent.151 On August 22, 2016, the Guccifer 2.0 persona transferred approximately 2.5 gigabytes of Florida-related data stolen from the DCCC to a U.S. blogger covering Florida politics.152 On August 22, 2016, the Guccifer 2.0 persona sent a U.S. reporter documents stolen from the DCCC pertaining to the Black Lives Matter movement.153"

Wow. Sounds pretty convincing. The documents referencing communications by DCLeaks or Guccifer 2.0 with Wikileaks are real. What is not true is that these entities were GRU assets.

In October 2015 John Brennan reorganized the CIA . As part of that reorganization he created a new directorate--DIRECTORATE OF DIGITAL INNOVATION. Its mission was to "manipulate digital footprints." In other words, this was the Directorate that did the work of creating Guccifer 2.0 and DCLeaks. One of their specialties, creating Digital Dust.

We also know, thanks to Wikileaks, that the CIA was using software specifically designed to mask CIA activity and make it appear like it was done by a foreign entity. Wikipedia describes the Vault 7 documents :

Vault 7 is a series of documents that WikiLeaks began to publish on 7 March 2017, that detail activities and capabilities of the United States' Central Intelligence Agency to perform electronic surveillance and cyber warfare. The files, dated from 2013–2016, include details on the agency's software capabilities, such as the ability to compromise cars, smart TVs,[1] web browsers (including Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox, and Opera Software ASA),[2][3][4] and the operating systems of most smartphones (including Apple's iOS and Google's Android), as well as other operating systems such as Microsoft Windows, macOS, and Linux[5][6

One of the tools in Vault 7 carries the innocuous name, MARBLE. Hackernews explains the purpose and function of MARBLE:

Dubbed "Marble," the part 3 of CIA files contains 676 source code files of a secret anti-forensic Marble Framework, which is basically an obfuscator or a packer used to hide the true source of CIA malware.
The CIA's Marble Framework tool includes a variety of different algorithm with foreign language text intentionally inserted into the malware source code to fool security analysts and falsely attribute attacks to the wrong nation.

Marble is used to hamper[ing] forensic investigators and anti-virus companies from attributing viruses, trojans and hacking attacks to the CIA," says the whistleblowing site.

"...for example by pretending that the spoken language of the malware creator was not American English, but Chinese, but then showing attempts to conceal the use of Chinese, drawing forensic investigators even more strongly to the wrong conclusion," WikiLeaks explains.

So guess what gullible techies "discovered" in mid-June 2016? The meta data in the Guccifer 2.0 communications had "Russian fingerprints."

We still don't know who he is or whether he works for the Russian government, but one thing is for sure: Guccifer 2.0 -- the nom de guerre of the person claiming he hacked the Democratic National Committee and published hundreds of pages that appeared to prove it -- left behind fingerprints implicating a Russian-speaking person with a nostalgia for the country's lost Soviet era.

Exhibit A in the case is this document created and later edited in the ubiquitous Microsoft Word format. Metadata left inside the file shows it was last edited by someone using the computer name "Феликс Эдмундович." That means the computer was configured to use the Russian language and that it was connected to a Russian-language keyboard. More intriguing still, "Феликс Эдмундович" is the colloquial name that translates to Felix Dzerzhinsky, the 20th Century Russian statesman who is best known for founding the Soviet secret police. (The metadata also shows that the purported DNC strategy memo was originally created by someone named Warren Flood, which happens to be the name of a LinkedIn user claiming to provide strategy and data analytics services to Democratic candidates.)

Just use your common sense. If the Russians were really trying to carry out a covert cyberattack, do you really think they are so sloppy and incompetent to insert the name of the creator of the Soviet secret police in the metadata? No. The Russians are not clowns. This was a clumsy attempt to frame the Russians.

Why would the CIA do this? The CIA knew that Podesta's emails had been hacked and were circulating on the internet. But they had no evidence about the identity of the culprit. If they had such evidence, they would have cited it in the 2017 ICA.

The U.S. intelligence community became aware around May 26, 2016 that someone with access to the DNC network was offering those emails to Julian Assange and Wikileaks. Julian Assange and people who spoke to him indicate that the person was Seth Rich. Whether or not it was Seth, the Trump Task Force at CIA was aware that the emails, which would be embarrassing to the Clinton campaign, would be released at some time in the future. Hence the motive to create Guccifer 2.0 and pin the blame on Russia.

It is essential to recall the timeline of the alleged Russian intrusion into the DNC network. The only source for the claim that Russia hacked the DNC is a private cyber security firm, CrowdStrike. Here is the timeline for the DNC "hack."

Here are the facts on the public record. They are at odds with the claims of the Intelligence Community:

  1. It was 29 April 2016 , when the DNC claims it became aware its servers had been penetrated. No claim yet about who was responsible. And no claim that there had been a prior warning by the FBI of a penetration of the DNC by Russian military intelligence.
  2. According to CrowdStrike founder , Dimitri Alperovitch, his company first supposedly detected the Russians mucking around inside the DNC server on 6 May 2016. A CrowdStrike intelligence analyst reportedly told Alperovitch that:
    • Falcon had identified not one but two Russian intruders: Cozy Bear, a group CrowdStrike's experts believed was affiliated with the FSB, Russia's answer to the CIA; and Fancy Bear, which they had linked to the GRU, Russian military intelligence.
  3. The Wikileaks data shows that the last message copied from the DNC network is dated Wed, 25 May 2016 08:48:35.
  4. 10 June 2016 --CrowdStrike waited until 10 June 2016 to take concrete steps to clean up the DNC network. Alperovitch told Esquire's Vicky Ward that: 'Ultimately, the teams decided it was necessary to replace the software on every computer at the DNC. Until the network was clean, secrecy was vital. On the afternoon of Friday, June 10, all DNC employees were instructed to leave their laptops in the office."
  5. On June 14, 2016 , Ellen Nakamura, a Washington Post reporter who had been briefed by computer security company hired by the DNC -- Crowdstrike--, wrote:
    • Russian government hackers penetrated the computer network of the Democratic National Committee and gained access to the entire database of opposition research on GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump, according to committee officials and security experts who responded to the breach.
    • The intruders so thoroughly compromised the DNC's system that they also were able to read all email and chat traffic, said DNC officials and the security experts.
    • The intrusion into the DNC was one of several targeting American political organizations. The networks of presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump were also targeted by Russian spies, as were the computers of some Republican political action committees, U.S. officials said. But details on those cases were not available.
  6. 15 June, 2016 , an internet "personality" self-described as Guccifer 2.0 surfaces and claims to be responsible for the hacks but denies being Russian. The people/entity behind Guccifer 2.0:
  • Used a Russian VPN service provider to conceal their identity.
  • Created an email account with AOL.fr (a service that exposes the sender's IP address) and contacted the press (exposing his VPN IP address in the process).
  • Contacted various media outlets through this set up and claimed credit for hacking the DNC, sharing copies of files purportedly from the hack (one of which had Russian error messages embedded in them) with reporters from Gawker, The Smoking Gun and other outlets.
  • Carried out searches for terms that were mostly in English, several of which would appear in Guccifer 2.0's first blog post. They chose to do this via a server based in Moscow. (this is from the indictment,
    "On or about June 15, 2016, the Conspirators logged into a Moscow-based server used and managed by Unit 74455")
  • Created a blog and made an initial blog post claiming to have hacked the DNC, providing links to various documents as proof.
  • Carelessly dropped a "Russian Smiley" into his first blog post.
  • Managed to add the name "Феликс Эдмундович" (which translates to Felix Dzerzhinsky, also known as "Iron Felix") to the metadata of several documents. (Several sources went beyond what the evidence shows and made claims about Guccifer 2.0 using a Russian keyboard, however, these claims are just assumptions made in response to the presence of cyrillic characters.)

The only thing that the Guccifer 2.0 character did not do to declare its Russian heritage was to take out full page ads in the New York Times and Washington Post. But the "forensic" fingerprints that Guccifer 2.0 was leaving behind is not the only inexplicable event.

Time for the common sense standard again. Crowdstrike detected the Russians on the 6th of May, according to CEO Dimitri Alperovitch, but took no steps to shutdown the network, eliminate the malware and clean the computers until 34 days later, i.e., the 10th of June. That is 34 days of inexcusable inaction.

It is only AFTER Julian Assange announces on 12 June 2016 that WikiLeaks has emails relating to Hillary Clinton that DCLeaks or Guccifer 2.0 try to contact Assange.

The actions attributed to DCLeaks and Guccifer 2.0 should be priority investigative targets for U.S. Attorney John Durham's team of investigators. This potential use of a known CIA tool, developed under Brennan with the sole purpose to obfuscate the source of intrusions, pointing to another nation, as a false flag operation, is one of the actions and issues that U.S. Attorney John Durham should be looking into as a potential act of "Seditious conspiracy. It needs to be done. To quote the CIA, I strongly assess that the only intelligence agency that evidence indicates was meddling via cyber attacks in the 2016 Presidential election was the CIA, not the GRU.

Posted at 02:13 PM in Larry Johnson , Russiagate | Permalink


Factotum , 20 December 2019 at 02:45 PM

LJ bottom line: "The only intelligence agency that evidence indicates was meddling via cyber attacks in the 2016 Presidential election was the CIA, not the GRU."
Paul Damascene , 20 December 2019 at 02:54 PM
Larry, thanks -- vital clarifications and reminders. In your earlier presentation of this material did you not also distinguish between the way actually interagency assessments are titled, and ICA which seemed to have been framed to allow journalists or the unwary to link the ICA with more rigorous standards used by more authentic assessments?
walrus , 20 December 2019 at 03:51 PM
Thank you Larry. You have discovered one more vital key to the conspiracy. We now need the evidence of Julian Assange. He is kept incommunicado and He is being tortured by the British in jail and will be murdered by the American judicial system if he lasts long enough to be extradited.

You can be sure he will be "Epsteined" before he appears in open court because he knows the source of what Wikileaks published. Once he is gone, mother Clinton is in the clear.

Ghost Ship , 20 December 2019 at 04:04 PM
I can understand the GRU or SVR hacking the DNC and other e-mail servers because as intelligence services that is their job, but can anyone think of any examples of Russia (or the Soviet Union) using such information to take overt action?

With the Russians not having the advantages that the NSA does (back doors in all US-designed network hardware/software and taps all over the internet), would Russia reveal anything unless it involved an immediate major national security threat. I doubt that would cover Trump.

[Dec 20, 2019] Letter from President Donald J. Trump to the Speaker of the House of Representatives

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... You are turning a policy disagreement between two branches of government into an impeachable offense -- it is no more legitimate than the Executive Branch charging members of Congress with crimes for the lawful exercise of legislative power. ..."
"... You know full well that Vice President Biden used his office and $1 billion dollars of U.S. aid money to coerce Ukraine into firing the prosecutor who was digging into the company paying his son millions of dollars. You know this because Biden bragged about it on video. Biden openly stated: "I said, 'I'm telling you, you're not getting the billion dollars' I looked at them and said: 'I'm leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you're not getting the money.' Well, son of a bitch. He got fired." Even Joe Biden admitted just days ago in an interview with NPR that it "looked bad." Now you are trying to impeach me by falsely accusing me of doing what Joe Biden has admitted he actually did. ..."
"... This is nothing more than an illegal, partisan attempted coup that will, based on recent sentiment, badly fail at the voting booth. You are not just after me, as President, you are after the entire Republican Party. But because of this colossal injustice, our party is more united than it has ever been before. History will judge you harshly as you proceed with this impeachment charade. Your legacy will be that of turning the House of Representatives from a revered legislative body into a Star Chamber of partisan persecution. ..."
Dec 17, 2019 | www.whitehouse.gov

Law & Justice

Issued on: December 17, 2019


The Honorable Nancy Pelosi
Speaker of the House of Representatives
Washington, D.C. 20515

Dear Madam Speaker:

I write to express my strongest and most powerful protest against the partisan impeachment crusade being pursued by the Democrats in the House of Representatives. This impeachment represents an unprecedented and unconstitutional abuse of power by Democrat Lawmakers, unequaled in nearly two and a half centuries of American legislative history.

The Articles of Impeachment introduced by the House Judiciary Committee are not recognizable under any standard of Constitutional theory, interpretation, or jurisprudence. They include no crimes, no misdemeanors, and no offenses whatsoever. You have cheapened the importance of the very ugly word, impeachment!

By proceeding with your invalid impeachment, you are violating your oaths of office, you are breaking your allegiance to the Constitution, and you are declaring open war on American Democracy. You dare to invoke the Founding Fathers in pursuit of this election-nullification scheme -- yet your spiteful actions display unfettered contempt for America's founding and your egregious conduct threatens to destroy that which our Founders pledged their very lives to build. Even worse than offending the Founding Fathers, you are offending Americans of faith by continually saying "I pray for the President," when you know this statement is not true, unless it is meant in a negative sense. It is a terrible thing you are doing, but you will have to live with it, not I!

Your first claim, "Abuse of Power," is a completely disingenuous, meritless, and baseless invention of your imagination. You know that I had a totally innocent conversation with the President of Ukraine. I then had a second conversation that has been misquoted, mischaracterized, and fraudulently misrepresented. Fortunately, there was a transcript of the conversation taken, and you know from the transcript (which was immediately made available) that the paragraph in question was perfect. I said to President Zelensky: "I would like you to do us a favor, though, because our country has been through a lot and Ukraine knows a lot about it." I said do us a favor, not me , and our country , not a campaign. I then mentioned the Attorney General of the United States. Every time I talk with a foreign leader, I put America's interests first, just as I did with President Zelensky.

You are turning a policy disagreement between two branches of government into an impeachable offense -- it is no more legitimate than the Executive Branch charging members of Congress with crimes for the lawful exercise of legislative power.

You know full well that Vice President Biden used his office and $1 billion dollars of U.S. aid money to coerce Ukraine into firing the prosecutor who was digging into the company paying his son millions of dollars. You know this because Biden bragged about it on video. Biden openly stated: "I said, 'I'm telling you, you're not getting the billion dollars' I looked at them and said: 'I'm leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you're not getting the money.' Well, son of a bitch. He got fired." Even Joe Biden admitted just days ago in an interview with NPR that it "looked bad." Now you are trying to impeach me by falsely accusing me of doing what Joe Biden has admitted he actually did.

President Zelensky has repeatedly declared that I did nothing wrong, and that there was No Pressure. He further emphasized that it was a "good phone call," that "I don't feel pressure," and explicitly stressed that "nobody pushed me." The Ukrainian Foreign Minister stated very clearly: "I have never seen a direct link between investigations and security assistance." He also said there was "No Pressure." Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, a supporter of Ukraine who met privately with President Zelensky, has said: "At no time during this meeting was there any mention by Zelensky or any Ukrainian that they were feeling pressure to do anything in return for the military aid." Many meetings have been held between representatives of Ukraine and our country. Never once did Ukraine complain about pressure being applied -- not once! Ambassador Sondland testified that I told him: "No quid pro quo. I want nothing. I want nothing. I want President Zelensky to do the right thing, do what he ran on."

The second claim, so-called "Obstruction of Congress," is preposterous and dangerous. House Democrats are trying to impeach the duly elected President of the United States for asserting Constitutionally based privileges that have been asserted on a bipartisan basis by administrations of both political parties throughout our Nation's history. Under that standard, every American president would have been impeached many times over. As liberal law professor Jonathan Turley warned when addressing Congressional Democrats: "I can't emphasize this enough if you impeach a president, if you make a high crime and misdemeanor out of going to the courts, it is an abuse of power. It's your abuse of power. You're doing precisely what you're criticizing the President for doing."

Everyone, you included, knows what is really happening. Your chosen candidate lost the election in 2016, in an Electoral College landslide (306-227), and you and your party have never recovered from this defeat. You have developed a full-fledged case of what many in the media call Trump Derangement Syndrome and sadly, you will never get over it! You are unwilling and unable to accept the verdict issued at the ballot box during the great Election of 2016. So you have spent three straight years attempting to overturn the will of the American people and nullify their votes. You view democracy as your enemy!

Speaker Pelosi, you admitted just last week at a public forum that your party's impeachment effort has been going on for "two and a half years," long before you ever heard about a phone call with Ukraine. Nineteen minutes after I took the oath of office, the Washington Post published a story headlined, "The Campaign to Impeach President Trump Has Begun." Less than three months after my inauguration, Representative Maxine Waters stated, "I'm going to fight every day until he's impeached." House Democrats introduced the first impeachment resolution against me within months of my inauguration, for what will be regarded as one of our country's best decisions, the firing of James Comey (see Inspector General Reports) -- who the world now knows is one of the dirtiest cops our Nation has ever seen. A ranting and raving Congresswoman, Rashida Tlaib, declared just hours after she was sworn into office, "We're gonna go in there and we're gonna impeach the motherf****r." Representative Al Green said in May, "I'm concerned that if we don't impeach this president, he will get re-elected." Again, you and your allies said, and did, all of these things long before you ever heard of President Zelensky or anything related to Ukraine. As you know very well, this impeachment drive has nothing to do with Ukraine, or the totally appropriate conversation I had with its new president. It only has to do with your attempt to undo the election of 2016 and steal the election of 2020!

Congressman Adam Schiff cheated and lied all the way up to the present day, even going so far as to fraudulently make up, out of thin air, my conversation with President Zelensky of Ukraine and read this fantasy language to Congress as though it were said by me. His shameless lies and deceptions, dating all the way back to the Russia Hoax, is one of the main reasons we are here today.

You and your party are desperate to distract from America's extraordinary economy, incredible jobs boom, record stock market, soaring confidence, and flourishing citizens. Your party simply cannot compete with our record: 7 million new jobs; the lowest-ever unemployment for African Americans, Hispanic Americans, and Asian Americans; a rebuilt military; a completely reformed VA with Choice and Accountability for our great veterans; more than 170 new federal judges and two Supreme Court Justices; historic tax and regulation cuts; the elimination of the individual mandate; the first decline in prescription drug prices in half a century; the first new branch of the United States Military since 1947, the Space Force; strong protection of the Second Amendment; criminal justice reform; a defeated ISIS caliphate and the killing of the world's number one terrorist leader, al-Baghdadi; the replacement of the disastrous NAFTA trade deal with the wonderful USMCA (Mexico and Canada); a breakthrough Phase One trade deal with China; massive new trade deals with Japan and South Korea; withdrawal from the terrible Iran Nuclear Deal; cancellation of the unfair and costly Paris Climate Accord; becoming the world's top energy producer; recognition of Israel's capital, opening the American Embassy in Jerusalem, and recognizing Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights; a colossal reduction in illegal border crossings, the ending of Catch-and-Release, and the building of the Southern Border Wall -- and that is just the beginning, there is so much more. You cannot defend your extreme policies -- open borders, mass migration, high crime, crippling taxes, socialized healthcare, destruction of American energy, late-term taxpayer-funded abortion, elimination of the Second Amendment, radical far-left theories of law and justice, and constant partisan obstruction of both common sense and common good.

There is nothing I would rather do than stop referring to your party as the Do-Nothing Democrats. Unfortunately, I don't know that you will ever give me a chance to do so.

After three years of unfair and unwarranted investigations, 45 million dollars spent, 18 angry Democrat prosecutors, the entire force of the FBI, headed by leadership now proven to be totally incompetent and corrupt, you have found NOTHING! Few people in high position could have endured or passed this test. You do not know, nor do you care, the great damage and hurt you have inflicted upon wonderful and loving members of my family. You conducted a fake investigation upon the democratically elected President of the United States, and you are doing it yet again.

There are not many people who could have taken the punishment inflicted during this period of time, and yet done so much for the success of America and its citizens. But instead of putting our country first, you have decided to disgrace our country still further. You completely failed with the Mueller report because there was nothing to find, so you decided to take the next hoax that came along, the phone call with Ukraine -- even though it was a perfect call. And by the way, when I speak to foreign countries, there are many people, with permission, listening to the call on both sides of the conversation.

You are the ones interfering in America's elections. You are the ones subverting America's Democracy. You are the ones Obstructing Justice. You are the ones bringing pain and suffering to our Republic for your own selfish personal, political, and partisan gain.

Before the Impeachment Hoax, it was the Russian Witch Hunt. Against all evidence, and regardless of the truth, you and your deputies claimed that my campaign colluded with the Russians -- a grave, malicious, and slanderous lie, a falsehood like no other. You forced our Nation through turmoil and torment over a wholly fabricated story, illegally purchased from a foreign spy by Hillary Clinton and the DNC in order to assault our democracy. Yet, when the monstrous lie was debunked and this Democrat conspiracy dissolved into dust, you did not apologize. You did not recant. You did not ask to be forgiven. You showed no remorse, no capacity for self-reflection. Instead, you pursued your next libelous and vicious crusade -- you engineered an attempt to frame and defame an innocent person. All of this was motivated by personal political calculation. Your Speakership and your party are held hostage by your most deranged and radical representatives of the far left. Each one of your members lives in fear of a socialist primary challenger -- this is what is driving impeachment. Look at Congressman Nadler's challenger. Look at yourself and others. Do not take our country down with your party.

If you truly cared about freedom and liberty for our Nation, then you would be devoting your vast investigative resources to exposing the full truth concerning the FBI's horrifying abuses of power before, during, and after the 2016 election -- including the use of spies against my campaign, the submission of false evidence to a FISA court, and the concealment of exculpatory evidence in order to frame the innocent. The FBI has great and honorable people, but the leadership was inept and corrupt. I would think that you would personally be appalled by these revelations, because in your press conference the day you announced impeachment, you tied the impeachment effort directly to the completely discredited Russia Hoax, declaring twice that "all roads lead to Putin," when you know that is an abject lie. I have been far tougher on Russia than President Obama ever even thought to be.

Any member of Congress who votes in support of impeachment -- against every shred of truth, fact, evidence, and legal principle -- is showing how deeply they revile the voters and how truly they detest America's Constitutional order. Our Founders feared the tribalization of partisan politics, and you are bringing their worst fears to life.

Worse still, I have been deprived of basic Constitutional Due Process from the beginning of this impeachment scam right up until the present. I have been denied the most fundamental rights afforded by the Constitution, including the right to present evidence, to have my own counsel present, to confront accusers, and to call and cross-examine witnesses, like the so-called whistleblower who started this entire hoax with a false report of the phone call that bears no relationship to the actual phone call that was made. Once I presented the transcribed call, which surprised and shocked the fraudsters (they never thought that such evidence would be presented), the so-called whistleblower, and the second whistleblower, disappeared because they got caught, their report was a fraud, and they were no longer going to be made available to us. In other words, once the phone call was made public, your whole plot blew up, but that didn't stop you from continuing.

More due process was afforded to those accused in the Salem Witch Trials.

You and others on your committees have long said impeachment must be bipartisan -- it is not. You said it was very divisive -- it certainly is, even far more than you ever thought possible -- and it will only get worse!

This is nothing more than an illegal, partisan attempted coup that will, based on recent sentiment, badly fail at the voting booth. You are not just after me, as President, you are after the entire Republican Party. But because of this colossal injustice, our party is more united than it has ever been before. History will judge you harshly as you proceed with this impeachment charade. Your legacy will be that of turning the House of Representatives from a revered legislative body into a Star Chamber of partisan persecution.

Perhaps most insulting of all is your false display of solemnity. You apparently have so little respect for the American People that you expect them to believe that you are approaching this impeachment somberly, reservedly, and reluctantly. No intelligent person believes what you are saying. Since the moment I won the election, the Democrat Party has been possessed by Impeachment Fever. There is no reticence. This is not a somber affair. You are making a mockery of impeachment and you are scarcely concealing your hatred of me, of the Republican Party, and tens of millions of patriotic Americans. The voters are wise, and they are seeing straight through this empty, hollow, and dangerous game you are playing.

I have no doubt the American people will hold you and the Democrats fully responsible in the upcoming 2020 election. They will not soon forgive your perversion of justice and abuse of power.

There is far too much that needs to be done to improve the lives of our citizens. It is time for you and the highly partisan Democrats in Congress to immediately cease this impeachment fantasy and get back to work for the American People. While I have no expectation that you will do so, I write this letter to you for the purpose of history and to put my thoughts on a permanent and indelible record.

One hundred years from now, when people look back at this affair, I want them to understand it, and learn from it, so that it can never happen to another President again.

Sincerely yours,

DONALD J. TRUMP
President of the United States of America

cc: United States Senate
United States House of Representatives

[Dec 20, 2019] Sen. Mitch McConnell great speech in which he slams Dem impeachment on Senate floor

Highly recommended!
Dec 20, 2019 | www.youtube.com

Jenna Bronson , 5 hours ago

Historic speech from McConnell. He nailed exactly what makes the ideology of the Democrats antithetical to the very principles that founded this nation.

William Burnam , 8 hours ago

"...[to] insure domestic tranquility..." THIS is in the preamble to the Constitution the Dems claim to support. Someone please tell us all how they are supporting this. I'll wait.

Trey Tex , 4 hours ago

Senator McConnell's FINEST HOUR. A great speech that will live forever in the annals of history itself. Our Founding Fathers would be so proud of you. Thank you for stepping up to the plate and protecting our Republic Senator McConnell. God Bless you sir.

The Backwoods Mechanic , 4 hours ago

I'm independent and I'll say this, I'll never vote for a Democrat again because of this

J Barron459 , 7 hours ago div class="comment-renderer-t

ext-content expanded"> I've never heard a more brilliant or eloquent summary and analysis of the Impeachment case. Sloppy, hurried, careless without regard for due process, the Democrats in 12 weeks have committed an abuse of their constitutional authority and to the spirit of historical precedent regarding impeachment as a weapon to use just because you don't like the President. This group of democrats have done serious damage to our government.

Rocky Mountain Ras , 8 hours ago

Brilliant, historical, factual, and brutal. Thank you Mitch, well said.

[Dec 19, 2019] MIC lobbyism (which often is presented as patriotism) is the last refuge of scoundrels

Highly recommended!
Dec 19, 2019 | angrybearblog.com

likbez, December 19, 2019 6:58 pm

Afghan war demonstrated that the USA got into the trap, the Catch 22 situation: it can't stop following an expensive and self-destructive positive feedback loop of threat inflation and larger and large expenditures on MIC, because there is no countervailing force for the MIC since WWII ended. Financial oligarchy is aligned with MIC.

This is the same suicidal grip of MIC on the country that was one of the key factors in the collapse of the USSR means that in this key area the USA does not have two party system, It is a Uniparty: a singe War party with two superficially different factions.

Feeding and care MIC is No.1 task for both. Ordinary Americans wellbeing does matter much for either party. New generation of Americans is punished with crushing debt and low paying jobs. They do not care that people over 50 who lost their jobs are essentially thrown out like a garbage.

"41 Million people in the US suffer from hunger and lack of food security"–US Dept. of Agriculture. FDR addressed the needs of this faction of the population when he delivered his One-Third of a Nation speech for his 2nd Inaugural. About four years later, FDR expanded on that issue in his Four Freedoms speech: 1.Freedom of speech; 2.Freedom of worship; 3.Freedom from want; 4.Freedom from fear.

Items 3 and 4 are probably unachievable under neoliberalism. And fear is artificially instilled to unite the nation against the external scapegoat much like in Orwell 1984. Currently this is Russia, later probably will be China. With regular minutes of hate replaced by Rachel Maddow show ;-)

Derailing Tulsi had shown that in the USA any politician, who try to challenge MIC, will be instantly attacked by MIC lapdogs in MSM and neutered in no time.

One interesting tidbit from Fiona Hill testimony is that neocons who dominate the USA foreign policy establishment make their living off threat inflation. They literally are bought by MIC, which indirectly finance Brookings institution, Atlantic Council and similar think tanks. And this isn't cheap cynicism. It is simply a fact. Rephrasing Samuel Johnson's famous quote, we can say, "MIC lobbyism (which often is presented as patriotism) is the last refuge of scoundrels."

[Dec 19, 2019] A the core of color revolution against Trump is Full Spectrum Dominance doctrine

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... Ukrainegate is preemptive political tactics. ..."
Dec 19, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Lk , Dec 18 2019 22:19 utc | 26

The House impeachment is driven by several factors:
  1. After Russiagate, when Trump began to investigate its fraudulent origins, the Dems feared the exposure of Obama-era corruption if not high crimes. Hence Ukrainegate is preemptive political tactics.
  2. The investigation into Russiagate led right to Ukraine, and thus to Biden. In the context of Sanders' campaign, Ukrainegate became an imperative for the factions of the capitalist class that dominates the DNC. If Biden falls on Ukraine issues, then Sanders is inevitable; an anathema to Wall Street and Big Tech DNC donors.
  3. 3. While 1 and 2 dominate DNC machinations, foreign policy is also a factor. The foreign policy establishment is absolutely against any hesitation with respect to confronting Russia as part of a regional and global strategy for primacy. Trump's limited prevarications on Russia might threaten the long established strategy to expand Nato to Ukraine and thereby to encircle Russia and maintain US dominance over Europe. So, even though Trump names great power rivalry as the name of the game today, his inclination for making nice with Putin threatens to weaken the US hold over Europe, which Trump wants to label as an economic competitor.

    It is with these points that the strategic differences become apparent: Trump is raising a realist, neo-mercantalist strategy against ALL potential competitors; the DNC and the deep state hold a strategy of liberal hegemony: globalization and US primacy through dominating regional alliances, and impregnating US hegemony INSIDE the vassal States of the empire.

All of this, however, is bound to fail for the DNC, and down the road for Trump himself.

The contradictions of US empire and global capitalism cannot be mitigated by either more liberal strategies or realist ones.