April 21, 2024

Taibbi: Same People That Cooked Intel Report Russia Interfered With Election Also Surveilled Trump Aides In 2016

The point remains that the Obama-Biden White House, their CIA and FBI director launched an illegal preemptive war against democracy, got caught, and have been covering it up for eight years.

Racket News editor Matt Taibbi on Wednesday told FOX News host Jesse Watters about a “broad political espionage campaign” involving the same people in the intelligence community that cooked the intel assessment that Russia interfered with the election.

JESSE WATTERS, FOX NEWS HOST: The point remains that the Obama-Biden White House, their CIA and FBI director launched an illegal preemptive war against democracy, got caught, and have been covering it up for eight years. Shellenberger and Taibbi also said redacted FOIA documents suggested that Biden has been conspiring against Donald Trump with the intelligence committee to prosecute the former president in federal court. Which would be an impeachable offense. Matt Taibbi is the Racket News editor-in-chief and “Griftopia” author. So this is great reporting. It’s hard to verify because we were told that this special counsel, Durham, was going to get to the bottom of it. Are you saying he missed this?

MATT TAIBBI, RACKET NEWS: We were told that the scope of the Durham investigation was limited to a few areas and that he wasn’t looking at this particular direction. The information that we have, the investigation that was conducted by the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, what they found was a broad political espionage campaign and there were two main conclusions that are at the center of our reports.

One is that at least 26 Trump aides and associates were improperly and without predication placed under surveillance in election year of 2016. And the other one is that these same folks cooked the intelligence for the January 6, 2017 intelligence community assessment saying that Russia interfered, I’m sorry, conducted an influence campaign to help Donald Trump. It is a WMD-style story. They suppressed dissenting opinions and created a false narrative.

WATTERS: There is a lot of debate over this binder. Is there a binder? What’s in the binder? Is it redacted? Who has it and where is it? Is that why they conducted the [Mar-a-Lago] raid? What is going on with these materials?

TAIBBI: Well, it’s a difficult story because we heard multiple versions of what the binder is, how many binders there are. We heard there are as many as three. But we do know a couple of concrete things. We know that only a share of the investigation only got out. People are aware of the Nunes memo which led to the investigation of FISA. We also know that there was a report done into the origins of that intelligence community assessment which supposedly never left a vault on the grounds of Langley. That is like a 17- or 20-page report that was confirmed by multiple sources.

Apart from that we were told there were numerous other investigative materials that may or may not be these binders that stories are referring to. But we know there is a lot of stuff that didn’t get out. That there were thousands of hours of investigation and their conclusions have not yet been declassified.

WATTERS: This would just be another reason why they want to do everything they can to prevent Donald Trump from returning to the White House because he will blow the lid off of that. He tried to and wasn’t able to at the end. I am interested in your reporting that there heavily redacted FOIA documents that suggest that Joe Biden has been collaborating with the intelligence committee to prosecute these federal cases against Donald Trump. We will see how that shakes out. Matt, great reporting to you and [Michael] Shellenberger. I suggest everybody go to her website, your Substack, and read it for yourself. Thanks again.

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| National Security

Our Most Serious National Security Threat Isn’t Russian Nukes In Space, It’s Intelligence Agencies In Washington

The hysteria on Capitol Hill over Russian nukes in space was a cheap ploy to ram through Ukraine aid and kill FISA reform

Forget Russian Nukes In Space, The Real Threat Is In Washington

The hysteria on Capitol Hill over Russian nukes in space was a cheap ploy to ram through Ukraine aid and kill FISA reform.

It was a busy day in Washington on Wednesday as the intelligence bureaucracy tried to foment a national security panic over Russian nukes in space in hopes of ramming through the Ukraine aid package and killing reforms designed to curb its power to spy on Americans.

Lest you think that sounds crazy, consider the timing of the panic provocations, which came almost immediately after House Speaker Mike Johnson said he and other Republicans weren’t going to be “rushed” into approving the $61 billion aid package for Ukraine. It also came at the precise moment — just coincidentally! — that the House was debating reforms to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, set to expire in April, that would end warrantless surveillance of Americans, which of course the White House and intelligence agencies oppose.

All of it just goes to show that the most serious threat facing America isn’t Russian nukes in space or overseas terrorist plots, it’s the political class in Washington and our intelligence agencies that think they’re above the law.

Here’s what happened. On Wednesday, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Turner issued a cryptic warning about a “national security threat” related to a “destabilizing foreign military capability” so grave that President Biden should declassify all information about it immediately. Soon thereafter, anonymous sources leaked to the press that the threat was about Russia wanting to put nuclear weapons in space.

This prompted a flood of statements from Republicans and Democrats that the threat was very serious — but not to worry, they have the situation under control. White House National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan told reporters he had already scheduled a briefing with congressional leaders on the matter before Turner made his statement, and don’t worry, President Biden “is going to ensure the security of the American people.”

Democrat House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries issued a helpful statement clarifying what all this was really about: “The most urgent national security threat facing the American people right now is the possibility that Congress abandons Ukraine and allows Vladimir Putin’s Russia to win.”

Meanwhile, Congress was set to take up proposed reforms to Section 702 of FISA that would put an end to warrantless spying on Americans. The intelligence agencies and the White House have been very clear about their opposition to those reforms and that they would very much like to keep spying on Americans without having to obtain a warrant. They’ve been using the press to pressure Congress to scrap the reforms. On Tuesday, the FBI shared newly declassified information with Politico revealing it used Section 702 to foil a terrorist plot on U.S. soil last year — a none-too-subtle suggestion that if they had to bother with getting a warrant, they wouldn’t be able to stop these kind of terrorist plots.

What happened next is telling. Even though the House Republicans who were pushing for the FISA reforms appeared to be winning the debate, in the aftermath of the hysteria over Russia nukes in space, Speaker Johnson pulled the bill and canceled Congress for the rest of the week.

It doesn’t take a conspiracy theorist to figure out what happened here. Our intelligence agencies don’t want lawmakers getting in the way of their plans. They don’t want any interruption in the flow of U.S. tax dollars to Ukraine, and they don’t want any curbs on their ability to spy on Americans.

The irony here is that the U.S. intelligence community itself has become a far greater threat to our republic than Russia or any other country. As journalists Michael Shellenberger, Matt Taibbi, and Alex Gutentag reported Tuesday, the CIA asked foreign intelligence agencies to spy on more than two dozen Trump associates as early as 2015 and share the intelligence they acquired. This surveillance operation would later be used to launch the Crossfire Hurricane investigation and craft the Russia-collusion hoax.

“Until now, the official story has been that the FBI’s investigation began after Australian intelligence officials told US officials that a Trump aide had boasted to an Australian diplomat that Russia had damning material about Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton,” the report says.

But in fact, the reports alleges, U.S. intelligence agencies tasked the United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia — the other members of the so-called “Five Eyes” intelligence alliance — to surveil 26 Trump associates identified by President Barack Obama’s CIA director, John Brennan.

The purpose of this surveillance wasn’t to discover whether Trump associates were colluding with Moscow. It was to make contacts and create interactions with those people through the Five Eyes agencies and then report those contacts to the FBI as suspicious, thus establishing a pretext for the FBI Crossfire Hurricane investigation.

And as we all know, Crossfire Hurricane notoriously abused FISA to spy on Trump associates — to say nothing of its ultimate purpose, which was to destroy Trump’s candidacy and, failing that, his presidency.

So please, let’s not get distracted with hysterics about Russian nukes in space. Want to know where the real threat to our country is? It’s not in space or in Moscow. It’s in Washington.

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| Recent History

Senior FBI Analyst Reveals Obama FBI offered Christopher Steele $1 million for ‘Dirt’ on Trump

by Kyle Becker 10.12.22 News, Opinion

Senior FBI Analyst Reveals Obama FBI offered Christopher Steele $1 million for ‘Dirt’ on Trump – El American

FBI supervisory analyst Brian Auten testified on Tuesday that Russia hoax dossier author Christopher Steele was offered $1 million by former President Barack

FBI supervisory analyst Brian Auten testified on Tuesday that Russia hoax dossier author Christopher Steele was offered $1 million by former President Barack Obama’s FBI for ‘dirt’ on Donald Trump, but he never got the money because he could not “prove the allegations.”

According to the FBI official, Steele refused to provide the names of any of his sources during his meeting with the bureau. Furthermore, Steele didn’t give the FBI anything substantive that corroborated his claims in his debunked dossier.

Auten’s revelations were made at the criminal trial of Igor Danchenko, the Russian asset identified as a primary source for Steele’s dossier.  Danchenko has pleaded not guilty to lying to the FBI in connection to the investigation by special counsel John Durham.

The FBI, however, did reimburse expenses for Christopher Steele, making him an FBI informant.

In September, Special Counsel John Durham provided evidence that the FBI was aware of Danchenko’s activities as early as July 2016. Durham also laid out the ties between the Hillary Clinton Presidential Campaign and the FBI’s “Crossfire Hurricane” operation.

“Beginning in or about July 2016 and continuing through December 2016, the FBI began receiving a series of reports from former British government employee Christopher Steele and his firm, Orbis Business Solutions, that contained derogatory information on then-candidate Trump concerning Trump’s purported ties to Russia,” the motion states.

“Earlier that year, Perkins Coie, a U.S.-based international law firm, acting as counsel to the Hillary Clinton Presidential campaign, had retained Fusion GPS, a U.S.-based investigative firm, to conduct research on Trump and his associates. In or about June 2016, Fusion GPS, in turn, retained Steele and Orbis to investigate Trump’s purported ties to Russia. The Steele Reports played an important role in applications that FBI personnel prepared and submitted to obtain warrants pursuant to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (“FISA”) targeting Carter Page, a United States citizen who for a period of time had been an advisor to then-candidate Trump.”

“Over a fairly lengthy period of time, the FBI attempted to investigate, vet, and analyze the Steele Reports but ultimately was not able to confirm or corroborate most of their substantive allegations,” the motion added. “In the context of these efforts, the FBI learned that Christopher Steele relied primarily on a U.S.-based Russian national, the defendant Igor Danchenko (‘Danchenko’ or the ‘defendant’), to collect information that ultimately formed the core allegations found in the Steele Reports. From January 2017 through October 2020, and as part of its efforts to determine the truth or falsity of specific information in the Steele Reports, the FBI conducted multiple interviews of the defendant regarding, among other things, the information that he had provided to Steele.”

In the Department of Justice’s Inspector General report on the FBI’s ‘Crossfire Hurricane’ operation, revised edition in December 2019, it notes that the discredited Steele dossier was used to justify the “sensitive and intrusive” surveillance of Trump adviser Carter Page.

The FISA warrant renewals contained false and misleading information, as the IG report notes. These include: “Omitted the fact that Steele’s Primary Subsource, who the FBI found credible, had made statements in January 2017 raising significant questions about the reliability of allegations included in the FISA applications”; “Omitted Page’s prior relationship with another U.S. government agency [CIA], despite being reminded by the other agency in June 2017, prior to the filing of the final renewal application, about Page’s past status with that other agency” [emphasis added]; “Omitted information from persons who previously had professional contacts with Steele or had direct knowledge of his work-related performance, including statements that Steele had no history of reporting in bad faith but ‘[d]emonstrates lack of self-awareness, poor judgment,’ ‘pursued people with political risk but no intelligence value,’ ‘didn’t always exercise great judgment,’ and it was ‘not clear what he would have done to validate’ his reporting.”

The U.S. media nonetheless reported on the Steele dossier, the primary fuel for the Russia Hoax that accused former President Donald Trump of being a traitor colluding with the Russians, as if it were credible information. The meritless claim mislead millions of Americans into believing that Trump’s 2016 election was not legitimate.

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