What Actually Needs To Be Investigated | “the destructive socialist/pro-Muslim agenda of the Obama-Clinton-Soros left”
“This story is from March, but has been pretty much ignored in the press. Larry Klayman posted an article at Newsmax on March 5, 2017.
There are some interesting charges made in the article:
The newest revelations that the Obama administration wiretapped, that is “bugged” President Trump and all of his men, in the lead up to and after the November 8, 2016, elections are not surprising. In this regard, for over 2 years the highest levels of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) have been secretly investigating the “harvesting” of highly confidential information including financial records of the chief justice of the Supreme Court, other justices, over 156 judges, prominent businessmen like Donald Trump, and public activists like me.
In this regard, a whistleblower named Dennis Montgomery, a former NSA/CIA contractor, came forward to FBI Director Comey with 47 hard drives and over 600 million pages of largely classified information, under grants of use and derivative use immunity, which I obtained for him with the U.S Attorney for the District of Columbia. Later, Montgomery, who suffers from a potentially fatal brain aneurism, testified under oath, for over 2-and-a-half hours before FBI Special Agents Walter Giardina and William Barnett in a secure room at the FBI’s field office in Washington, D.C. The testimony was under oath and videotaped and I have reminded the FBI recently to preserve this evidence.
…Legally speaking, my cases against the intelligence agencies also encompass the illegal surveillance of President Trump and his men, as what apparently occurred shows a pattern of unconstitutional conduct that at trial would raise a strong evidentiary inference that this illegal behavior continues to occur. Our so called government, represented by dishonest Obama-loyal attorneys in the corrupted Federal Programs Branch of the Justice Department, continues to maintain that they cannot for national security reasons confirm or deny the mass surveillance against me or anyone else.
I have asked Judge Leon to enter a permanent injunction against Obama and his political hacks at the NSA and CIA, many of whom are still there and are bent on destroying the Trump presidency and attempting to blackmail prominent Americans, like me, who might challenge the destructive socialist/pro-Muslim agenda of the Obama-Clinton-Soros left.
I am not aware of the current status of this case. If anyone can update me, I would appreciate it. However, the charge that the deep state has been collecting information on Washington leaders is not a surprise. Does anyone remember the more than 300 FBI files that were mysteriously obtained by the Clinton Administration? It is time to drain the swamp. I also think that if our leaders would simply be honest and ask for our forgiveness about past mistakes that they are covering up, we might (I said might) be able to move forward. If your actions are already out there and you have acknowledged your mistakes, you can’t be blackmailed!”
CIA Whistleblower Speaks: ‘There Has Been A Wiretap on Trump For Years’
“CIA and NSA contractor-turned-whistleblower Dennis Montgomery speaks out about the surveillance on President Donald Trump in an interview with his attorney Larry Klayman, the founder of Judicial Watch and Freedom Watch, on the premiere episode of the new talk radio program “Special Prosecutor with Larry Klayman.” The program, which debuted on Sunday, May 14, is carried by Radio America, an Arlington, Virginia-based network.
Montgomery has been in the public eye recently following the bombshell Big League Politics report, “Whistleblowers: James Comey Seized and Buried Information Showing Donald Trump’s Phone Calls Were Spied On (AUDIO).” The article featured interviews with Sherriff Joe Arpaio that were released by a federal judge in Arizona as part of a civil case, and are now preserved on our whistleblower Soundcloud page. Now, with President Trump locked at war with the Deep State, Montgomery is speaking out in public.
“I provided to the FBI seventeen businesses of Donald Trump, including the Trump Tower, the Trump leasing programs, all of these different programs, and including Trump himself and the various family members that had been wiretapped under these programs,” Montgomery said in the interview. “There has been a wiretap on Trump for years.”
“I started by going to Maricopa County and showing that Sheriff Arpaio himself was wiretapped under the Obama administration,” the whistleblower said.
“I was a CIA contractor both under John Brennan and under James Clapper and these individuals were running domestic surveillance programs in the United States collecting information on Americans. This isn’t political. They were collecting information on Republicans and Democrats. But they collected everything they could find. Bank accounts, phone numbers, chats, emails, and they collected a massive amount of it under the Obama administration,” Montgomery said.”
FBI Director Comey Proclaims Americans Deserve NO Privacy; The Government Owns Even Your Thoughts, Memories
| TruePundit |
“FBI Director James Comey took the liberty of rewriting the United States Constitution and completely dismantling the Fourth and Fifth Amendments during a speech Wednesday at Boston College on cyber security.
Comey’s incredulous claims that even the US government owns the thoughts and memories of its citizens were absolutely disgraceful and proves he is unfit for any office in a free society. Comey fabricated a tale that the founding fathers “struck a bargain” and in return for freedom, law enforcement is allowed to invade privacy at will. Really? The founding fathers of Russia?
Special note to Comey and his wall of academic degrees: The Fifth Amendment affords every American the right to say nothing to you or the Justice Department. Ever. By law, you can’t compel squat. Ask Lois Lerner. Ask Bryan Pagliano.
Comey’s third-worldesque comments are beyond chilling and should shine a brighter light on his Anti-American, Orwellian philosophies that steer what used to be considered the country’s premier law enforcement agency. But no more. His words not only undermine this country’s constitutional fabric but also prove that he is not fit to serve at the helm any government agency. His rhetoric is dictatorial, dangerous and have no place in a free society.
The sycophants and collegiate stooges at Boston College gave Comey a rousing ovation after his comments. College kids all jacked up on caffeine and student debt. They’re dumb enough to believe a globalist like Comey who would kick your door down for downloading a mp3 file.
“It is “our job,” not Trump’s, to “control exactly what people think,” gasped MSNBC’s Mika Brzezinski last month. This week’s gasp from the media assumes a slightly different form and can be translated as: It is our job, not Trump’s, to push stories about the government investigation of Trumpworld.
For months, the media, drawing upon criminal leaks from Obama holdovers, has been saying in effect: Trumpworld is under investigation for ties to Russia! Then Trump says essentially the same thing on Twitter and the media freaks out. Why does the latter merit condemnation but not the former?
Notice what is happening here: The Obama holdovers are denying the import of the very stories that they planted. Where did the liberal BBC’s story (building on a story first reported by Heat Street) on intelligence agencies receiving a FISA court warrant to investigate Russian-Trumpworld ties come from? It came from a “senior member of the US intelligence community”:
On 15 October, the US secret intelligence court issued a warrant to investigate two Russian banks. This news was given to me by several sources and corroborated by someone I will identify only as a senior member of the US intelligence community. He would never volunteer anything – giving up classified information would be illegal – but he would confirm or deny what I had heard from other sources.
Notice on the Sunday talk shows that Obama’s CIA director John Brennan did not appear. Yet he served as the genesis of this investigation, according to the BBC story:
Last April, the CIA director was shown intelligence that worried him. It was – allegedly – a tape recording of a conversation about money from the Kremlin going into the US presidential campaign.
It was passed to the US by an intelligence agency of one of the Baltic States. The CIA cannot act domestically against American citizens so a joint counter-intelligence taskforce was created.
The taskforce included six agencies or departments of government. Dealing with the domestic, US, side of the inquiry, were the FBI, the Department of the Treasury, and the Department of Justice. For the foreign and intelligence aspects of the investigation, there were another three agencies: the CIA, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the National Security Agency, responsible for electronic spying.
Lawyers from the National Security Division in the Department of Justice then drew up an application. They took it to the secret US court that deals with intelligence, the Fisa court, named after the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. They wanted permission to intercept the electronic records from two Russian banks.
Their first application, in June, was rejected outright by the judge. They returned with a more narrowly drawn order in July and were rejected again. Finally, before a new judge, the order was granted, on 15 October, three weeks before election day.
Why did this article appear? Because John Brennan wanted it to. He just didn’t expect Trump to call him on it. Now the Obama embeds who used the press to smear Trump now demand it disclaim the storyline they stoked. How dare anyone suggest we were investigating the Trump campaign!
Forget about all the endless parsing of claims and lawyerly denials from the Jim Clappers. The bottom line is that John Brennan and his band of anti-Trump saboteurs sought to investigate the Trump campaign. That is the story. The Chuck Todds want people to miss the forest for the trees. That’s why Todd didn’t press Clapper on his as-far-as-I-know style denial. A serious questioner would have asked Jim Clapper to respond directly to the BBC paragraphs quoted above. A serious questioner would have also asked: Why are you here and not John Brennan? Why are you here and not Loretta Lynch?
Notice as well that FBI director Jim Comey’s quasi-denial on Sunday didn’t come from an appearance or even a press release but from a leaked news story, which was designed not to eliminate confusion but to increase it. We’re told that he wants the Justice Department to issue a denial. But to deny what? That the U.S. government ever sought to investigate the Trump campaign? To deny the Heat Street and BBC stories (which Trump was in effect repeating) that Comey didn’t ask the Justice Department to deny after they actually appeared?”
FBI’s Comey At Boston College: ‘You’re Stuck With Me For Another 6 1/2 Years’
| Boston.CBSlocal.com |
BOSTON (AP) — FBI Director James Comey says he plans to serve his entire 10-year term, even as controversy swirls over his attempt to rebut President Donald Trump’s claim that the Obama administration tapped his phones during the election.
Comey said Wednesday during a cybersecurity conference at Boston College: “You’re stuck with me for another 6½ years.” He was appointed 3½ years ago by then-President Barack Obama.
After Trump recently claimed that Obama tapped his phones during last year’s election, Comey privately asked the Justice Department to dispute the allegation.
During his speech to law enforcement officials and private-sector business leaders, Comey said the FBI is renewing a focus on the challenges posed by encryption. He said there should be a balance between privacy and the FBI’s ability to lawfully access information.”
Wikileaks CIA Revelations Refuel Speculation That Author Michael Hastings Was Murdered by Deep State Operatives
| theGatewayPundit |
“Wikileaks released documents today on the CIA’s global hacking force. The documents reveal CIA attempts to remotely hack into cars and trucks for remote assassinations.
This news refueled speculation on author Michael Hastings’ death in 2013.
Author Michael Hastings was a vocal critic of the Obama administration, Democratic Party and surveillance state. In 2013 during the investigation of reporters by the U.S. Department of Justice Hastings referred to the restrictions on the freedom of the press by the Obama administration as a “war” on journalism. His last story, “Why Democrats Love to Spy On Americans”, was published by BuzzFeed on June 7.
Hastings died in a fiery high-speed automobile crash on June 18, 2013, in Los Angeles, California.
Michael Hastings died in a fiery crash hours after contacting Wikileaks.
Hastings contacted Wikileaks hours before his fatal crash. He sent out a panicked email saying the FBI was investigating him.
Michael Hastings contacted WikiLeaks lawyer Jennifer Robinson just a few hours before he died, saying that the FBI was investigating him.
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) June 19, 2013
Hastings told his neighbor he believed his Mercedes had been tampered with, according to a report.
In a lengthy profile by LA Weekly, Hastings’ neighbor Jordanna Thigpen says he knocked on her door after midnight and asked to borrow her Volvo because he was afraid to drive his own car.
“He was scared, and he wanted to leave town,” she told the weekly newspaper. She declined, saying her car was in need of repairs.
Hastings died later that night. He lost control of his car.”
How CIA allegedly turns everyday devices into high-tech spy weapons
| New York Post |
“CIA software can secretly turn everyday electronics like smartphones and high-tech TVs into listening devices to spy on unsuspecting users, WikiLeaks claimed in a massive document dump Tuesday.
Some of the computer programs target the iOS software that runs Apple iPhones as well as Google’s Android operating system, which does the same for phones built by Samsung, HTC and Sony, WikiLeaks said.
The “weaponized” software also reportedly provides techniques to defeat the encryption abilities of popular apps including WhatsApp, Signal, Telegram and Wiebo, which claim to supply users with secure and private communications.
One program, known as “Weeping Angel,” can even be used to infect Samsung “smart” TVs and covertly activate their built-in microphones to record conversations and then transmit them over the Internet, WikiLeaks said.
The documents also reveal that the CIA was “looking at infecting the vehicle control systems used by modern cars and trucks” as of 2014, WikiLeaks said.
“The purpose of such control is not specified, but it would permit the CIA to engage in nearly undetectable assassinations,” WikiLeaks suggested.”
Obama’s Police State | Wikileaks Reveals CIA Tools and Tactics for Domestic Spying |
| Heavy |
“It was revealed today by the WikiLeaks’ Vault 7 leak that the Central Intelligence Agency may have car hacking capabilities, leading online conspiracists to further the claims that journalist Michael Hastings was murdered by the CIA.
Hastings died on June 18, 2013, in a fiery high-speed automobile crash in his Mercedes C250 Coupé following the publication of “Why Democrats Love to Spy On Americans” on BuzzFeed. Hastings had been a vocal critic of the Obama administration. Following his death, former U.S. National Coordinator for Security, Infrastructure Protection, and Counter-terrorism Richard A. Clarke said that Hastings’ crash was consistent with a “car cyber attack.”
Clark told the Huffington Post, “What has been revealed as a result of some research at universities is that it’s relatively easy to hack your way into the control system of a car, and to do such things as cause acceleration when the driver doesn’t want acceleration, to throw on the brakes when the driver doesn’t want the brakes on, to launch an air bag… You can do some really highly destructive things now, through hacking a car, and it’s not that hard.”
According to CW6 San Diego, Hastings claimed to have received a death threat prior to the crash by a staff member at the McChrystal Group about a critical passage in his book, The Operators: The Wild and Terrifying Inside Story of America’s War in Afghanistan. The McChrystal Group is an advisory firm started by retired United States Army general Stanley Allen McChrystal.
McChrystal’s last military assignment was in Afghanistan.
CW6 also reported that Hastings was investigating CIA Director John Brennan for an upcoming exposé before his death.
In an official synopsis of the recently leaked Vault 7, the above passage can be found.
Redditors on r/conspiracy are already connecting the new information to the death of Hastings. It cannot be independently confirmed.
However, a July 23, 2015, article on WhoWhatWhy by Russ Baker also drew a similar conclusion to conspiracist Redditors, despite not having access to WikiLeaks Vault 7 information.”
WikiLeaks Exposes CIA’s Covert Global Hacking Program
| Daily Caller
“WikiLeaks has released nearly 9,000 pages of files it says exposes a covert global hacking program operated by the CIA.
The document dump, which WikiLeaks is calling “Vault 7,” is the largest publication of documents stolen from the CIA, says the group, which was founded by Julian Assange.
The veracity of the documents has not been verified and it is not yet clear whether the release marks a major breach of the CIA.
According to an explainer released by WikiLeaks, the 8,761 documents had been maintained in a high-security network at CIA’s Center for Cyber Intelligence in Langley, Va. But the group says that the CIA “lost control” of the documents after they began circulating among a 5,000-person network of former U.S. government hackers and contractors. One of those individuals is WikiLeaks’ source, the group claims.
The documents, which include more than 70,000 redactions, show how CIA hackers use malware, trojan viruses and other tools to convert electronics, including phones and smart TVs, into covert microphones used for spying. The group also says there are documents showing that the CIA uses the U.S. consulate in Frankfurt as a covert hacker base for its European operations.
Among the most salacious revelations in the WikiLeaks release come from documents showing how CIA developed techniques to hack Samsung smart TVs with British intelligence services. The malware, called Weeping Angel, records audio while the target of the hack believes the TV is turned off.
One of the documents released on Tuesday purportedly shows that the CIA was working on a program as of Oct. 2014 that would infect the vehicle control systems of certain cars and trucks.
“The purpose of such control is not specified, but it would permit the CIA to engage in nearly undetectable assassinations,” WikiLeaks asserts.”
Wikileaks: Want a look inside the CIA’s cyberespionage efforts?
“First it was the NSA’s turn, and now the CIA gets its Wikileaks moment. Claiming it to be the “largest intelligence publication in history,” Wikileaks has released its first installment of documents that expose the CIA’s cyberespionage efforts. If genuine, the documents unveil operations, locations, and methods that could cripple US efforts on cyberwarfare:
“Year Zero” introduces the scope and direction of the CIA’s global covert hacking program, its malware arsenal and dozens of “zero day” weaponized exploits against a wide range of U.S. and European company products, include Apple’s iPhone, Google’s Android and Microsoft’s Windows and even Samsung TVs, which are turned into covert microphones.”
Trump Leak Now Points To Bezos’ Hidden $600M Deal With Obama CIA To Feed Washington Post
“The majority of people do not know Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos purchased the Washington Post and is now the sole owner with no editorial board or ethical review committees to oversee the actions of Bezos as a publisher, much less the courage to stand against the new “boss.”
It begs to question: How is Bezos connected to questionable intelligence leaks in recent months?
What does he have to do with the sudden disruption of web services that kept millions from accessing whistle blowing website, WikiLeaks, during its explosive releases of state department cables?
Cables containing inside information revealing corruption within American politics linked to former secretary of state, and presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton.
The majority of Americans do not know ‘leaked” CIA documents to undermine a new president and administration were leaked through the Washington Post first and after Bezos took the helm of “America’s newspaper.”
Much worse and even more suspicious is the majority of the people have not been informed that Bezos landed a $600 million federal contract and by who? The CIA.
The “deal” is for a computing cloud developed by Amazon Web Services (AWS). It also just happens AWS services all 17 agencies within the US intelligence community.”
– Curious that this nexus of information and disinformation between Amazon and the CIA is not on the front page of every political web site. Somehow this ‘arrangement’ between Bezos and the government is kept from public view. SNL doesn’t parody it. The pundits don’t decry it. It’s like it never happened. /CJ
A Brief History of Government Control of the Media |
The CIA, Washington Post, And Russia: What You’re Not Being Told
“According to an unsubstantiated article by the Washington Post, anonymous CIA officials have confirmed that the Russian government hacked the United States election to favor Donald Trump. Though it’s entirely possible the Russian government attempted to influence the election, the Post has been widely criticized — for the second time in a month — for its failure to follow basic journalistic practices. Nevertheless, the narrative is sticking.
But the outlet’s behind-the-scenes relationship with the CIA is nothing new. In 2013, a conflict of interest arose shortly after Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon, purchased the newspaper. As the Nation reported at the time:
“[Jeff Bezos] recently secured a $600 million contract from the CIA. That’s at least twice what Bezos paid for the Post this year. Bezos recently disclosed that the company’s Web-services business is building a ‘private cloud’ for the CIA to use for its data needs.”
As this occurred, a petition calling on the Washington Post to disclose its new ties to the CIA when reporting on the agency garnered 30,000 signatures. According to the RootsforAction petition:
“The Post often does reporting on CIA activities. The coverage should include full disclosure that the owner of the Washington Post is also the main owner of Amazon — and Amazon is now gaining huge profits directly from the CIA.”
Robert McChesney of the Institute for Public Accuracy pointed out the glaring conflict of interest:
“If some official enemy of the United States had a comparable situation—say the owner of the dominant newspaper in Caracas was getting $600 million in secretive contracts from the Maduro government—the Post itself would lead the howling chorus impaling that newspaper and that government for making a mockery of a free press. It is time for the Post to take a dose of its own medicine.”
In its most recent article on the CIA’s claims of a Russian hack, the Post made no mention of its ties to the CIA. But while this connection calls into serious question the validity of a newspaper that claims to be a purveyor of “great journalism,” the connections are not enough to prove nefarious collaboration.
Unfortunately, however, history reveals actual collusion between the CIA and news outlets, including the Washington Post.
In 1977, Carl Bernstein, a former Post journalist, wrote about the CIA’s efforts to infiltrate the news media, often with the assistance of top management at the papers. In total, Bernstein reported, over 400 journalists were involved.”
CIA broke the law to take out its critic General Flynn
– American Thinker
“Make no mistake: we have just witnessed an operation by members of the CIA to take out a high official of our own government. An agency widely believed to have brought down democratically elected governments overseas is now practicing the same dark arts in domestic American politics. Almost certainly, its new head, Mike Pompeo, was not consulted.
Senator Chuck Schumer, of all people, laid out on January 2 what was going to happen to the Trump administration if it dared take on the deep state – the permanent bureaucracy that has contempt for the will of the voters and feels entitled to run the government for its own benefit:
New Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) said Tuesday that President-elect Donald Trump is “being really dumb” by taking on the intelligence community and its assessments on Russia’s cyber activities.
“Let me tell you, you take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you,” Schumer told MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow.
“So even for a practical, supposedly hard-nosed businessman, he’s being really dumb to do this.”
Or, as the old rueful saying has it, “you’ve got to go along to get along.” This means that we the people had better acknowledge that the bureaucrats have turned into our masters, and the old expression “public servant” is as ironic as anything Orwell came up with. Schumer knows this and likes it, because the deep state wants a bigger, more powerful government, just as he does.
Note that the law was broken by whoever leaked the transcripts to the media. Not only is the crime underlying the “scandal” being ignored, but the criminals are being hailed. On Morning Joe‘s first hour today, the host, a former congressman (i.e., a lawmaker) himself, called the leakers “heroes.”
This interference in domestic politics by the CIA should be regarded as a major threat to our democracy, but of course our Trump-hating domestic media are reveling in a major point scored against the new president.
David P. Goldman (aka Spengler), writing on PJ Media, explains the level of hatred the CIA has for Flynn for daring to take on its spectacular failures:
… the CIA has gone out of its way to sandbag Flynn at the National Security Council. As Politico reports: “On Friday, one of Flynn’s closest deputies on the NSC, senior director for Africa Robin Townley, was informed that the Central Intelligence Agency had rejected his request for an elite security clearance required for service on the NSC, according to two people with direct knowledge of the situation.” Townley held precisely the same security clearance at the Department of Defense for seventeen years, yet he was blackballed without explanation. At DoD, Townley had a stellar reputation as a Middle East and Africa expert, and the denial of his clearance is hard to explain except as bureaucratic backstabbing.
… Gen. Flynn is the hardest of hardliners with respect to Russia within the Trump camp. In his 2016 book Field of Fight (co-authored with PJ Media’s Michael Ledeen), Flynn warned of “an international alliance of evil movements and countries that is working to destroy us[.] … The war is on. We face a working coalition that extends from North Korea and China to Russia, Iran, Syria, Syria, Cuba, Bolivia, Venezuela and Nicaragua.” The unsubstantiated allegation that he presides over a “leaky” National Security Council tilting towards Russia makes no sense. The only leaks of which we know are politically motivated reports coming from the intelligence community designed to disrupt the normal workings of a democratic government – something that raises grave constitutional issues.
Flynn is the one senior U.S. intelligence officer with the guts to blow the whistle on a series of catastrophic intelligence and operational failures. The available facts point to the conclusion that elements of the humiliated (and perhaps soon-to-be-unemployed) intelligence community is trying to exact vengeance against a principled and patriotic officer[.] … The present affair stinks like a dumpster full of dead rats.
This last point is critical. The entire “scandal” is based on innuendo. Flynn tripped over his own feet by misinforming Vice President Pence on the nature of his call and allowing the veep to issue a too sweeping denial of any discussion. If Flynn had said in his conversation with the Russian ambassador that we will discuss the sanctions after Trump takes office, he might well have told Pence that they did not discuss the sanctions. And the CIA leakers could have used the appearance of the word “sanctions” in their transcript to brand Pence a liar. We don’t know, and for some reason, nobody is gaining access to the actual transcripts so that we may see the content. Perhaps the congressional investigations to come will gain access. But Flynn is now gone, and media memes have been firmly planted in the public mind.
The Flynn Affair is a huge scandal, all right. But the media are misdirecting our attention toward the lesser dimension while they studiously ignore the real threat to our democracy.”
Lake: ‘Permanent State’ Destroyed Mike Flynn ‘from the Cloak of Anonymity’
“Eli Lake writes in Bloomberg View that the leaks leading to the resignation of National Security Advisor Mike Flynn are an alarming, weaponized use of “tightly held government secrets.” He likens the intelligence community’s actions to that of a police state.
The point here is that for a White House that has such a casual and opportunistic relationship with the truth, it’s strange that Flynn’s “lie” to Pence would get him fired. It doesn’t add up.
It’s not even clear that Flynn lied. He says in his resignation letter that he did not deliberately leave out elements of his conversations with Ambassador Sergey Kislyak when he recounted them to Vice President Mike Pence. The New York Times and Washington Post reported that the transcript of the phone call reviewed over the weekend by the White House could be read different ways. One White House official with knowledge of the conversations told me that the Russian ambassador raised the sanctions to Flynn and that Flynn responded that the Trump team would be taking office in a few weeks and would review Russia policy and sanctions. That’s neither illegal nor improper.
There is another component to this story as well — as Trump himself just tweeted. It’s very rare that reporters are ever told about government-monitored communications of U.S. citizens, let alone senior U.S. officials. The last story like this to hit Washington was in 2009 when Jeff Stein, then of CQ, reported on intercepted phone calls between a senior Aipac lobbyist and Jane Harman, who at the time was a Democratic member of Congress.
Normally intercepts of U.S. officials and citizens are some of the most tightly held government secrets. This is for good reason. Selectively disclosing details of private conversations monitored by the FBI or NSA gives the permanent state the power to destroy reputations from the cloak of anonymity. This is what police states do.”
Why you should fear the leaks that felled Mike Flynn
– NY Post
“It might seem bizarre to say that an administration only 23 days old needed a fresh start, but look: If Adele can stop 45 seconds into a live performance at the Grammys and begin again, so too can Donald Trump. The departure of Michael Flynn from the White House could be Trump’s Adele moment.
The chaos and infighting and unforced errors at 1600 Penn that have left everyone dizzied may be viewed as rookie mistakes to be overcome by on-the-job training. So it was for Bill Clinton’s White House, which also began horribly in 1993 — and needed a whole bunch of departures and reassignments to steady itself, not just a single change.
But what happened with Flynn also represents a frightening portent.
Leftists have become fond of saying that Trump shouldn’t be “normalized.” That concern should now go both ways. Every American should be equally concerned at the potential “normalization” of the tactics used by unnamed government officials to do Flynn in.
To be sure, Flynn’s ouster after three weeks is proof positive he should never have been given the national security adviser job in the first place. Flynn’s deceits about his conversations with a Russian official cannot be viewed in isolation from the overly close relationship with the Russian government he forged following his firing by the Obama administration in 2013.
Still, unelected bureaucrats with access to career-destroying materials clearly made the decision that what Flynn did or who Flynn was merited their intervention — and took their concerns to the press.
In one sense, the larger system of American checks and balances worked: The Trump White House couldn’t ignore the Flynn problems because they went public. On the other hand, the officials who made the problems public did so using raw information that was in their possession for reasons we don’t yet know and may not have any right whatsoever to know.
This information might have come because the US intelligence community has an active interest in the Russian official to whom he talked.
Or it could have come because the FBI had been pursuing some sort of secret investigation and had received authorization to monitor and track his calls and discussions.
If this was intelligence, the revelation of the Flynn meeting just revealed something to the Russians we shouldn’t want revealed — which is that we were listening in on them and doing so effectively.
And if it was an FBI investigation, then the iron principle of law enforcement — that evidence gathered in the course of an investigation must be kept secret to protect the rights of the American being investigated — was just put through a shredder.
Keeping our intelligence-gathering assets hidden from those upon whom we are spying is a key element of our national security.
And as for playing fast and loose with confidential information on American citizens: No joke, people — if they can do it to Mike Flynn, they can do it to you.
This is the ultimate Pandora’s box. It makes a public mockery of the presumption of innocence that is the hallmark of our legal system. Such a thing is only acceptable, even morally, if you believe that the Trump White House represents such an unprecedented threat to everything that a higher law must govern your actions.
It would be pretty to think so, but we also know that Flynn had an antagonistic relationship with America’s intelligence agencies. If these leaks came about not out of high principle but because officials at those agencies were taking out a potential adversary, that is nothing more or less than a monstrous abuse of power.
And that’s true even if Flynn is guilty of something. But we can’t know if he’s guilty of something unless he’s charged with a crime and tried in the courts. That’s how law works.”