There's a lot of interest in the interview, much of it going over the ground I covered earlier in Bill Barr: "Without Any Basis", but with diGenova's own characteristically strong take on it. So, from my point of view, it's worth looking at his words in print to absorb the full import, to get an idea where the Durham investigation is headed. DiGenova is on the same page that we've been on at this blog: We can expect a major conspiracy prosecution, and I want readers to understand ahead of time what that involves, what facts are important for shaping that type of prosecution. This interview will help.
The first thing you may notice as the interview gets started--and I really appreciated this--is that while the hosts start out all eager to discuss the now famous Footnote 350 in the Horowitz FISA report, diGenova is far more eager to move on and talk about the Barr interview with Laura Ingraham--and rightly so, in my view. However, as we'll see, diGenova has a very different take on what's behind that footnote--emphasizing, as I and a few others like sundance have, that it leads to the foreign government angle, and especially to the importance of the UK's involvement. So, here we go:
Q: On Friday senators Chuck Grassley and Ron Johnson disclosed four redacted footnotes from the IG report. *Four of the them,* so there's a lot to get to. To *you,* which one was the most information, the most 'quote-unquote' bombshell, that they released on Friday?
diGenova: Well, I think their information was important because it demonstrated that there is now conclusive evidence, if anybody really needed it, that the FBI was engaged in, not only *selling* disinformation, but *knowingly* selling disinformation to the FISA court. Those four footnotes are very important, and that's why they were kept classified. And the *reason* they were kept classified is because they implicate *foreign governments*--probably the United Kingdom more than anyone--and also very sensitive Russian intelligence sources that the CIA is aware of.
[The way this will play back into the conspiracy theory of the prosecution, is that the CIA--in the person of its Directior, John Brennan--used foreign governments to play false information back into the US to start up domestic investigations. This is illegal CIA domestic activity. It was a fundamental building block of the entire conspiracy.]
But more important than the footnotes is, excuse me for jumping ahead here, but the headline today is, 'Bill Barr announced that there're gonna be indictments in this case.' When he went on the Laura Ingraham Show the other night and gave an *amazing* interview for an Attorney General of the United States, he said: 'Sure, John Durham could write a report, but that's not what he's doing. He's getting ready to bring indictments *if he has the evidence*--quote - unquote.' But the 'if he has the evidence' is like a passe footnote. What the Attorney General was saying, after saying that Crossfire Hurricane was one of the greatest travesties in American history, and that he's deeply disturbed about what the evidence that he's seen, I think it's pretty clear that John Brennan--if he doesn't have a lawyer now, then he better get one, because the indictments are coming.
As we have discussed on this program for a long time, this was never about John Durham writing a report. He can do that if he wants to, but the most important thing is to bring indictments. And the Attorney General just said to us, that's exactly what he's doing. So, for folks who missed it, the footnotes are great, but they're *nothing* compared to what Bill Barr said about John Durham.
Q: I'd like to wind back to asking you more about the footnotes in a second, but since you brought up Bill Barr I wanna play a piece of audio for you, and this is--as you mentioned--an intensity and a severity that I have not heard Bill Barr use yet. And Bill Barr's a plain-spoken guy, but this particular cut, cut 15, shows that he *unequivocally* has assessed, along with John Durham, that *there was no mistake here* when it came to going after President Trump. Listen to this:
Barr: "I think what happened to him was one of the greatest travesties in American history. Without any basis they started this investigation of his campaign. And even more concerning, actually, is what happened *after* the campaign--a whole pattern of events while he was president to sabotage the presidency. And I think--or at least have the effect of sabotaging the presidency."
In other words, the greatest travesty in American history is opening this--without basis--this investigation while he was a candidate. And then what's even worse: sabotaging the presidency.
diGenova: Yes. This has been the obvious truth--to anyone who would assess the available public evidence--from day one. What Bill Barr said--and make no mistake about it, he is getting regular briefings from John Durham, who we now know is working out of a Federal Grand Jury in DC, that he has issued a large number of subpoenas, that he has interviewed CIA intel officers, that he has interviewed people from the Director of National Intelligence who were involved in generating the Intelligence Assessment at the end of the Obama Administration which is a false document created by John Brennan--this is pretty stunning stuff coming from an Attorney General. I personally am pleased to hear it, because it was very important for the American public to begin to get their arms wrapped around the fact that there's gonna be some pretty ugly stuff happening against former US government officials who violated federal law. And it's pretty clear that what John Durham is pursuing is a *massive* conspiracy to deny the civil rights of American citizens and to corrupt the intelligence apparatus of the United States government through fraud and dissembling. That's where he's headed.
Q: Joe, you said that he's not gonna be doing a report, that he's getting lawyers together, you talked about a DC Grand Jury--but we've heard in the past that the reason they didn't go after some people, the reason they didn't *immediately* press charges, they've said it was because they couldn't get an indictment. Because in DC, in the District, it's very hard to get an indictment against a Democrat politician. So how is he gonna do that? If you're talking about Democrat politicians, names that people recognize in the District, isn't it gonna be close to impossible to get any kind of indictment?
diGenova: No. I don't think so. I think that in the cases where there have been no indictments sought or attempted--there's only one case where we know there might have been a refusal by a grand jury, and that's in the Andrew McCabe case. And we don't even know if that's true. We *do* know that you can get an indictment--I don't have any doubt that John Durham's gonna be able to get indictments. The bigger issue would be whether or not he can get a conviction. I'm not worried about that. This is not about convicting people. It's about charging them, knowing that you have guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, and then letting a jury make up its mind. What's important here is disclosure, transparency, *exposure*--making the indictments, having them be full backed up by evidence. And I have *no doubt--no doubt whatsoever*--that those indictments are coming now. Bill Barr would have never given that interview, would have never said what he said about the severity of the conduct of Brennan, and Clapper, and Comey, and McCabe, and even White House officials and senior intelligence officials. I think that, who knows when it's gonna happen? I mean, they say it could be the late summer. That's pretty close to an election, but I don't think it's gonna stop 'em. They're not gonna hold up indictments because of an election.
[I differ from diGenova a bit, in that I do think convictions are important--very important--because of their importance to shaping the public narrative. I'm also optimistic about getting those convictions. Mary Walter talks about "political" figures, but to me there's a fundamental difference between elected politicians and career executive branch officials like Comey and Brennan and the rest. Corrupt cops and lawyers and spies will, IMO, not be sympathetic figures even to a DC jury, the way a Pelosi or Schiff--against all odds--might be.]
Q: Do you have a suspicion about the nature of the charges that would be filed against a guy like John Brennan?
diGenova: Yes. Conspiracy to deny the civil rights of American citizens through the providing of false information to US intelligence and law enforcement sources, for the purpose of instigating an improperly based investigation in the United States. I have *no doubt* that John Brennan conspired with officials overseas who were either witting or unwitting of what he was doing. For example, there is *no doubt* that the FBI, in conjunction with former assets of the CIA, planted purposely false information with US persons overseas, in order to get that information to come back into the United States, *pretend* that it was real intelligence and then use that information to get FISA warrants. The FISA warrants against Carter Page are part of the conspiracy because they were not founded on legitimate information. We now know from the footnotes--in the Grassley - Johnson letter--that the FBI *and the CIA* purposely ignored exculpatory information against all of the targets in those warrants and allowed the warrants to go forward. The submission of those applications for those warrants, under those circumstances, is "A" a crime and "B" is what is called an 'overt act' in a large criminal conspiracy.
["In criminal law, an overt act is [an act] that can be clearly proved by evidence and from which criminal intent [to actually commit the crime in question] can be inferred, as opposed to a mere intention in the mind to commit a crime."]
Q: You had mentioned foreign governments, Joe. We know that there were, I think, four pages that were held back by the Trump Administration, that were not released and made public because of the theory that they do involve foreign governments. Will we now see those four pages, will we now see what's involved in that, and the governments that may be involved in this and exactly what they did?
diGenova: Yes--and there's no choice now. Since Durham's gonna bring indictments the defendants are gonna be able to seek classified information as part of their defense. And in order to short circuit that these governments will be mentioned directly in the charging documents, and if they're not mentioned directly they'll be described in such a way that you will have no trouble identifying the UK, Australia, Italy, and maybe one other country. This is pretty staggering stuff. It is clear that they're holding back certain declassifications because of the pending indictments that Durham is working on. That makes eminently good sense at this point, because you don't want people to know what *you* know when you're conducting an investigation.
And something else has happened. I don't know whether you saw the Op-Ed piece by Ron Johnson in the Wall Street Journal on Friday--it's staggering. It is must reading for anybody who cares about this case. But there is a sentence in it, in which he asks one of several important questions. Listen to this question: "Why did former FBI Director James Comey and former FBI General Counsel James Baker refuse to have their security clearances reinstated before they were interviewed by the Inspector General? Was it so they wouldn't have to explain the provision of disinformation to the court?" That is another overt act in this criminal conspiracy. In other words, John Durham will be able to charge that, as part of the criminal conspiracy, they did *not* get classified clearances reinstated, so they wouldn't hafta answer questions of the Inspector General. This is getting *very* big, *very* fast.
[In other words, an overt act to obstruct a lawful investigation.]
Q: It's amazing. When we were talking about this earlier this morning, Joe, one of the things that is *abundantly* clear is that this information was in the control of the FBI for *so* long--for years--that they were confident that this was Russian disinformation, and never once in what seemed like hundreds of leaks about this case did *that* information ever come out. These were always leaks designed to hurt he President, to create a swirl of scandal around President Trump. And innstead, as the *truth* bears out, and as we're finally getting able to see everything the FBI knew for all that time, it constantly bears out in the President's favor.
diGenova: And, not only is *that* true--it is *absolutely* true, every single word that you just said--but here's what's worse. This is still happening under FBI Director Chris Wray--one of the worst FBI Directors in the history of the Justice Department. That this type of dissembling and deceit and deception could happen this far into the Trump presidency--with a new FBI Director who is supposed to be cleaning house, which he is *not*--this is disgusting. And as I've said on this show and on other shows, repeatedly, Christopher Wray is an embarrasment to the FBI. Everybody in that building hates to go there every day, knowing that he sits on the Seventh Floor with his entourage of people encircling him to protect the people who did things wrong. And I'm gonna say this one more time. You have never heard him give the speech condemning his predecessor--and you never will, because he's an apparatchik. In the truest sense of the old Communist Party word, he's an apparatchik. He's there to serve a purpose, and it's not to protect federal law enforcement. It's to protect his predecessors.
Q: So, are you saying, though, that he knew what was going on?
diGenova: Yes. Yes. Absolutely. Christopher Wray knew all of this from the very beginning. Remember--you and I are learning about some of this stuff for the first time. *They* knew about this stuff three years ago. And believe me--the first thing that happened to this dunce when he became the FBI Director, was they gave him a briefing. And if he had half a brain--which he probably has at least *half* a brain--he knows exactly what's going on. He's surrounded by some very smart people. Dana Boente--all these guys who hung on from the Bush Administration--they've done nothing to improve the goodness or efficiency of the government, but they've done a *great* job of protecting their predecessors.
And you know who was at the head of this bunch? Rod Rosenstein! *There's* an old name from the past! The guy who's done more damage to this President than anyone else other than John Brennan
diGenova: Rely on Barr! Rely on Barr!