1. The Pitfalls of a Pit Bull Russophobe
This is by Ray McGovern. McGovern was chief of the CIA’s Soviet Foreign Policy Branch during the 1970s. His target here is Fiona Hill:
Like so many other glib “Russia experts” with access to Establishment media, Fiona Hill, who testified Thursday in the impeachment probe, seems three decades out of date.
but also the entire Russia Hoax narrative, especially the Russia-meddled-ICA that Brennan and Clapper put out to validate the coup attempt against Trump:
As for the “Intelligence Community Assessment,” the banner headline atop The New York Times on Jan. 7, 2017 set the tone for the next couple of years: “Putin Led Scheme to Aid Trump, Report Says.” During my career as a CIA analyst, as deputy national intelligence officer chairing National Intelligence Estimates (NIEs), and working on the Intelligence Production Review Board, I had not seen so shabby a piece of faux analysis as the ICA. The writers themselves seemed to be holding their noses. They saw fit to embed in the ICA itself this derriere-covering note: “High confidence in a judgment does not imply that the assessment is a fact or a certainty; such judgments might be wrong.”
Not a Problem
With the help of the Establishment media, Clapper and CIA Director John Brennan, were able to pretend that the ICA had been approved by “all 17 intelligence agencies” (as first claimed by Clinton, with Rep. Jim Himes, D-CT, repeating that canard Thursday, alas “without objection).” Himes, too should do his homework. The bogus “all 17 intelligence agencies” claim lasted only a few months before Clapper decided to fess up. With striking naiveté, Clapper asserted that ICA preparers were “handpicked analysts” from only the FBI, CIA and NSA. The criteria Clapper et al. used are not hard to divine. In government as in industry, when you can handpick the analysts, you can handpick the conclusions.
Maybe a Problem After All
“According to several current and former intelligence officers who must remain anonymous because of the sensitivity of the issue,” as the Times says when it prints made-up stuff, there were only two “handpicked analysts.” Clapper picked Brennan; and Brennan picked Clapper. That would help explain the grossly subpar quality of the ICA.
If U.S. Attorney John Durham is allowed to do his job probing the origins of Russiagate, and succeeds in getting access to the “handpicked analysts” — whether there were just two, or more — Hill’s faith in “our intelligence agencies,” may well be dented if not altogether shattered.
2. FBI Lawyer Referred for Criminal Prosecution by Horowitz Was Primary FBI Attorney on Trump-Russia Case
“took an email from an official at another federal agency that contained several factual assertions, then added material to the bottom that looked like another assertion from the email’s author, when it was instead his own understanding.”
If the email Clinesmith altered was, in fact, from "an official at another federal agency" then it wasn't from Carter Page.
OTOH, for separate reasons, I'm inclined to suspect that the renewal application to which this altered email was applied may well have been the final renewal, which was done for Team Mueller.
QUICK ADDENDUM: Ron Paul has a nice piece at Zerohedge. Nothing you don't know, but succinct--all about the "interagency consensus" or Deep State: The Real Bombshell of the Impeachment Hearings.