Kevin Brock--see below for career specs--has a clever article at The Hill, but it's more than just clever. He hits on the important points about predication that Barr and Durham have been making. Here are some brief excerpts from a really good presentation--Misfired 'Hurricane': Comey's team abused Carter Page and the FBI. It's far more interesting than the title might suggest:
Imagine the Department of Justice inspector general (IG) conducting a review of the Jeffrey Epstein case. It might read something like this: “While it is clear that Mr. Epstein abused minor girls, there is no documentary or testimonial evidence that he was motivated by a deviant sexual interest in those young girls.”
The report by IG Michael Horowitz is one long expose of a confluence of actors at the top of the FBI who, by their own words, despised Donald Trump and came together to open and run an investigation into his 2016 presidential campaign, falsifying documents, withholding evidence and using a confidential source who had stated clearly that his goal was to prevent a Trump presidency.
Despite these flashing lights, the IG essentially stated that since no one admitted to being motivated by their personal biases, he could not reach that conclusion. Thanks for that, but most Americans unencumbered by a law degree can detect the obvious without a lot of effort.
The IG concluded that fired FBI director James Comey’s “Crossfire Hurricane” team had “sufficient” justification for starting the investigation so nicknamed. He then, conveniently, provided the exact words on which the team relied. These are telling.
The FBI received a notification from a friendly country, which is known to be Australia, that a Trump campaign adviser, George Papadopoulos, had received a “suggestion” from Russia that it could assist the campaign by releasing information “damaging to Mrs. Clinton (and President Obama).”
That was it. That’s the justification. Here’s what that thin predication was adequate for in the FBI I grew up in: An agent from a field office, not headquarters, would have contacted Mr. Papadopoulos, interviewed him to get more details, enlisted his cooperation against the Russians, if warranted, and that would have been it.
The IG can assess that the investigation was technically justified, but in tradition and common counterintelligence practice it was not — particularly, and especially, since it involved the incredibly sensitive specter of investigating a presidential campaign. It was overkill on very lightweight assertions by a team of individuals in leadership positions who appeared to be driven by personal agendas, rather than normal protocols and practices.
As a full investigation, the Comey “Crossfire Hurricane” team could unleash every investigative weapon at the bureau’s disposal — and they did. According to the report, the team used techniques usually reserved for suspects actively spying and stealing national security secrets on behalf of a foreign enemy.
And, in what amounts to a profound disgrace to everything the FBI stands for, the team obtained authorization to electronically eavesdrop on a U.S. citizen, former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, through duplicity — by withholding information, falsifying information, using uncorroborated information, and by using a source whom the FBI knew was unreliable and not credible.
And they did it four times. Major espionage cases don’t typically run FISA intercepts nearly that long. Again, this type of reckless rush and inexplicably irresponsible behavior only begins to make sense when viewed through a biased filter.
Kevin R. Brock, former assistant director of intelligence for the FBI, was an FBI special agent for 24 years and principal deputy director of the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC).
In the course of your career, did you ever meet Kevin Brock, James Gagliano or Chris Swecker?ReplyDelete
These are some former FBI men turned commentators whose work I have read.
No. But everything Brock is saying here comports with my own experience.Delete
I'm including this article in case you haven't seen it.ReplyDelete
"'Aghast' to learn extent of Obama AG's involvement in FBI Trump probe: Fmr independent counsel" found at
It features former Independent Counsel Robert Ray and his take on the lack of involvement by Obama's AG and DAG.
Yeah, I was just watching it. I like Robert Ray's views.Delete
Plausible deniability. They all knew what was going on and were totally onboard. Risk virtually nil because...President Hillary!Delete
"the team used techniques usually RESERVED for suspects actively spying...."ReplyDelete
Barr should be hammering away at this, and at the key fact that these warrants were of the SUPER (two-step) variety.
"But how did you like the play Mrs. Lincoln?"ReplyDelete
All this talk about bias and the absurdity of the OIG conclusions is a camouflage for the severity of the abuse of the FISA process. Nothing will change unless the main culprits spend some time in prison, period. No amount of faux outrage or pretend new rules is going to change anything. Just like the reality that new gun control rules will not stop a criminal from obtaining a firearm, neither will new FBI rules or procedures stop a dirty cop from finding a new loophole to exploit in future coups. It's not the rule book that matters, but the quality of the men and woman hired into the FBI, and the honesty and integrity of their management. No rule will compensate for having a dirty cop as director.
There was an interesting interview with a former DoJ official who said: Durham is a true professional; the only way he said what he did in response to Horowitz is that he's got the goods on someone.Delete
"The IG report...did not seriously attempt to investigate why the abuses occurred."ReplyDelete
Mistakes Were Made™
Yeah. The logical response is: I found a lot of smoke, there's certainly a fire hear somewhere--improper or criminal motivation.Delete
And every time that excuse is allowed to float they make "burn it down" sound more rational to more people.Delete
Brock writes that the Horowitz report is an "expose of ...actors at the top of the FBI who, by their own words, despised Donald Trump..."ReplyDelete
True enough, but there must have been far more to it, and it reminds me of several other myths, spins, falsehoods and obfuscations that the Deep State and the MSM have more or less invented and pretty much gotten away with...so far. Because my drafting has exceeded blogspot character limits I am breaking up this comment into two parts.
1 Its undoubtedly true that some 'actors' at the top of the FBI ‘hated’ Trump. But their actions had to be motivated by more than mere 'hatred'. I will posit that they acted criminally and attempted to subvert an election and bring down an elected government. These actions suggest that Trump's victory was not only unappealing to them but likely to destroy their 'power' or their 'wealth' or their 'reputation' or all three. There was no abstract 'hatred' here (as in 'I hate Hillary Clinton, so I will never vote for her’). There was much more in play in terms of motive which I am praying Barr and Durham expose. My thought, expressed here several times, is that this is, at bottom, a massive coverup of wrongdoing which still remains to be exposed.
2 Same with the myth often repeated that Christopher Steele ‘hated’ Donald Trump. Based on what I’ve read Christopher Steele does not have a conscience and therefore is likely incapable of the human emotion of ‘hate’. No, Steele was and is a retired and failed spy who was open for business and was and is motivated by one thing only: money and the prospect of getting more of it doing what he does. I was amused by the comment of one person who is acquainted with Steele that he was always showing up looking for business.
3 Another myth is that the Steele Dossier contained Russian ‘information’ or ‘disinformation’. We now know for sure that this is absolutely made up and false. No Russian (as in anyone working for the government of Russia) ever touched the Dossier. It contained no Russian information or disinformation. It was all made up by the folks trying to get Trump. It is increasingly obvious that Steele didn’t even write the ‘Steele Dossier’. I certainly hope Durham will use his prosecutorial powers to determine who exactly (Glenn Simpson, Nellie Ohr, Stefan Halper?) participated in this fraud. And because Mrs Clinton’s surrogates paid for it, we need a full accounting of her participation and motives.
4 Same with the “Russians interfered with the 2016 election” myth. It seems that even conservatives and Trump supporters acknowledge that “well, there was Russian interference, but Mueller could not prove that Trump colluded in these interference efforts”. We need to get to the bottom of this. My view is that Russian so-called ‘interference’ was minimal, if not non-existent, and is another made up lie. The evidence for interference seems to consist of four things: (i) some clickbait-like internet activity in St Petersburg that may have been run by a guy who knows Putin, (ii) the ‘Russian’ hack of the DNC computer, (iii) the Steele Dossier, and (iv) the presence of four Russian ‘agents’ (Flynn, Papadopoulos, Page and Manafort) on Trump’s team. Based on these facts, even Republicans are willing to accept (rather than get shouted down by the Left) that the Russians ‘interfered’. The internet allegation was either false or immaterial or both, and the Dossier and Russian agent allegations are demonstrably false. I suspect the Russian hack allegation is also false (based on the unsubstantiated word of Crowdstrike) and, again, I am praying that Barr and Durham expose the lie.
Re your #2, I believe Fiona Hill testified to that … (If my memory has failed, I expect to hear about it.)Delete
5 Lindsey Graham is fond of asking “Why didn’t the FBI go to Trump and give him a defensive briefing about Russian attempts to collude with his campaign associates (like they did with Dianne Feinstein)”. We need to get past this one, too. The FBI didn’t advise Trump of Russian collusion efforts because there weren’t any. They were a fiction. And furthermore, they couldn’t advise Trump of the Russian activities because they weren’t investigating Russian activities, or the made up allegations against Trump’s campaign associates, they were investigating Trump.ReplyDelete
6 The Mifsud was a Russian agent lie needs to be exposed and rejected once and for all. It seems that Horowitz gave the Left an unnecessary pass by concluding Mifsud was not an FBI agent. Well, Mifsud may not have been an ‘FBI’ agent, but he was undoubtedly part of the conspiracy. Barr and Durham need to get to the bottom of this.
7 So too with John Brennan’s role. Because Horowitz is the IG for the DOJ he did not investigate the CIA’s role in the conspiracy. I am certain that when John Brennan’s role is exposed the political motivations behind Crossfire Hurricane will be obvious and indisputable.
8 And why are there still redacted documents which have not been disclosed to the American public?
9 Lastly, and most importantly, Horowitz may have failed to find an official who admitted to political bias behind the decision to open the Trump investigation and may have found the predication in some way technically sufficient, but this only opens (and certainly does not close) the door to a far deeper investigation of the evidence of wrongdoing within the Obama Administration. If the Papadopoulos/Mifsud/Downer interactions are now supposed to be sufficient predication, there are many, many more questions to be asked than have been answered.
While I broadly agree with almost all of the above, I would add re motivation: don't discount real hatred, motivated by politics. Steele, for example, is well known to have been a committed Socialistic going back to his days at Cambridge. Most of DoJ players fit in that mold as well, as well as many of the FBI people. Perhaps not Socialists per se (although in the case of the Ohrs and some others ...) but committed Liberals. They are definitely capable of hate, as the Strzok/Page texts amply demonstrate.Delete
So, lets say its a combination of hatred, power lust, greed, and coverup...a very toxic brew...Delete
"...Mifsud may not have been an ‘FBI’ agent, but he was undoubtedly part of the conspiracy."Delete
Horowitz giving a pass on this is like the Triangle Waist Co. refusing to compensate one of the victims because they only did piece work, rather than being a salaried employee.
The only assertion I recall hearing was that Mifsud was “a Western asset”. That covers a lot of territory - and more than one country.Delete
Chris Wallace, who I increasingly despise, defends the FBI argument that it could not have given the Trump campaign a defensive briefing because his campaign might have been already compromised.ReplyDelete
This is absurd, and certainly doesn't explain why the FBI didn't brief Trump himself.
Of course the explanation is that they were investigating Trump.
The FBI's objective was to stop Trump by trapping him, not give him a heads-up (defensive briefing). This is Lavrentiy Beria-NKVD technique.Delete
Your comment calls to mind the Alice in Wonderland nature of what we have been enduring.
There is no question that 'they' were 'biased'. They were first, last and always attempting to destroy Trump.
Yes, using Beria NKVD techniques.
But today we have to endure the Senate Dems and the MSM suggesting that the FBI did nothing wrong because they could 'find' no evidence of bias in opening Crossfire Hurricane. Which opening, according to Horowitz, essentially required no more than a fig leaf of predication.
When in fact the bias is incontrovertibly staring us in the face.