Category Archives: CIA
Eli Lake in Bloomberg View thinks people in the permanent government selectively leaked highly classified information to damage a political appointee. He calls what happened to Michael Flynn a “political assassination”.
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…
Representative Devin Nunes, the Republican chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, told me Monday that he saw the leaks about Flynn’s conversations with Kislyak as part of a pattern. “There does appear to be a well orchestrated effort to attack Flynn and others in the administration,” he said. “From the leaking of phone calls between the president and foreign leaders to what appears to be high-level FISA Court information, to the leaking of American citizens being denied security clearances, it looks like a pattern.”
In 2012 President Obama told Russian President Medvedev he would be much more flexible after the election. Obama thought his remarks were private but he was speaking into an open mic in front of tv cameras.
Lucky for him, there was no Republican narrative of Russian election hacking in 2012. It might have seemed plausible, considering the fact that Obama repeatedly mocked Romney for insisting that Russia was our number one enemy. Also, in 2009, Obama halted a missile defense system in Poland and The Czech Republic. Romney described that act as “a gift to Russia.”
If the Russians had any incentive to hack a U.S. election, 2012 would seem to be the ticket. After that election they felt comfortable enough to invade Crimea without fear of U.S. sanctions. Obama only got tough with Russia on his way out the door in December 2016. He imposed sanctions after Hillary lost and the Russians were accused of hacking John Podesta’s emails. Which, btw, is the only reason we know Donna Brazile fed debate questions to Hillary.
Those sanctions are the ones Michael Flynn is accused of discussing in December with the Russian ambassador. We know about that, not through an open mic, but from leaked classified U.S. intelligence.
In his Super Bowl interview with President Trump, Bill O’Reilly accused the Russian President of killing people. Trump’s response? “You think our country’s so innocent?”
That made me think of one of my favorite exchanges between Michael Corleone and Kay Adams:
Michael: My father is no different than any powerful man, any man with power, like a president or senator.
Kay: Do you know how naive you sound, Michael? Presidents and senators don’t have men killed.
Michael: Oh. Who’s being naive, Kay?
Except Trump is president, not a mob boss. Now who’s being naive?
Anyway, I got the idea for this cartoon from a Holman Jenkins column in the WSJ.
His assessment of Trump’s comments was, “unwise, spoken by somebody with a thin grasp of his circumstances.” But he went on to say, “Trump, clumsily, was actually keeping up a longstanding U.S. policy of covering up for Mr. Putin.” Then Jenkins detailed the Ryazan bombing plot by Putin security thugs to frame Chechen terrorists. It rarely gets mentioned by American officials. Jenkins thinks that’s because everybody wants to make a deal with Putin.
He concludes, “Read a certain way, Mr. Trump’s comments make him the first U.S. president to address Mr. Putin’s real nature.”
The CIA has a “high degree of confidence” that Putin hacked the election in favor of Trump. CNN reported that intelligence agencies had briefed Trump about an incriminating dossier. The document, compiled by a former British spy, implies Trump could be manipulated by Russia. BuzzFeed published a whiz bang story revealing the dossier’s unverified contents.
Meanwhile FBI Director James Comey is being investigated by the inspector general.
Democrats are enraged about a letter, damaging to Hillary Clinton, that Comey sent to Congress days before the election. It’s against FBI policy to comment on its investigations. But the same Democrats were thrilled by Comey’s earlier comment that Hillary shouldn’t be prosecuted.
There is no investigation of Comey’s boss AG Loretta Lynch concerning her secret meeting with Bill Clinton last summer on an airport tarmac.
And now civil rights legend John Lewis says Trump is an illegitimate president-elect. Naturally, the MSM narrative was about Trump’s tweeted response to Lewis’s attack on his legitimacy.
Bob Woodward thinks Trump has a right to be pissed.
Michael Hayden, the former head of the NSA, is on Apple’s side in the fight over cracking the iPhone of dead terrorist Syed Rizwan Farook. So is Ted Olson, former Solicitor General for George W. Bush. His wife was killed in the original 9/11 attack.
iPhone Smarter Than Uncle Sam
Seems hard to blame Apple for wanting us to know about it.