Tag Archives: Russiagate

How the Russiagate Conspiracy Benefits Those in Power, by Alan Macleod

This is a good history of the sordid Russiagate concoction and the conspiracy to bring down Trump. From Alan Macleod at theantimedia.org:

To the shock of many, Donald Trump won the 2016 presidential elections, becoming the 45th president of the United States. Not least shocked were corporate media, and the political establishment more generally; the Princeton Election Consortium confidently predicted an over 99 percent chance of a Clinton victory, while MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow (10/17/16) said it could be a “Goldwater-style landslide.”

The election of Donald Trump came as a shock to many (Independent, 11/5/16).

Indeed, Hillary Clinton and her team actively attempted to secure a Trump primary victory, assured that he would be the easiest candidate to beat. The Podesta emails show that her team considered even before the primaries that associating Trump with Vladimir Putin and Russia would be a winning strategy and employed the tactic throughout 2016 and beyond.

With Clinton claiming, “Putin would rather have a puppet as president,” Russia was by far the most discussed topic during the presidential debates (FAIR.org10/13/16), easily eclipsing healthcare, terrorism, poverty and inequality. Media seized upon the theme, with Paul Krugman (New York Times7/22/16) asserting Trump would be a “Siberian candidate,” while ex-CIA Director Michael Hayden (Washington Post5/16/16) claimed Trump would be Russia’s “useful fool.”

The day after the election, Jonathan Allen’s book Shattered detailed, Clinton’s team decided that the proliferation of Russian-sponsored “fake news” online was the primary reason for their loss.

Within weeks, the Washington Post (11/24/16) was publicizing the website PropOrNot.com, which purports to help users differentiate sources as fake or genuine, as an invaluable tool in the battle against fake news (FAIR.org12/1/1612/8/16). The website soberly informs its readers that you see news sources critiquing the “mainstream media,” the EU, NATO, Obama, Clinton, Angela Merkel or other centrists are a telltale sign of Russian propaganda. It also claims that when news sources argue against foreign intervention and war with Russia, that’s evidence that you are reading Kremlin-penned fake news.

To continue reading: How the Russiagate Conspiracy Benefits Those in Power

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US Intelligence Community as a Collapse Driver, by Dmitry Orlov

The US intelligence agencies are sucking the life out of the country. From Dmitry Orlov at cluborlov.com:

In today’s United States, the term “espionage” doesn’t get too much use outside of some specific contexts. There is still sporadic talk of industrial espionage, but with regard to Americans’ own efforts to understand the world beyond their borders, they prefer the term “intelligence.” This may be an intelligent choice, or not, depending on how you look at things.

First of all, US “intelligence” is only vaguely related to the game of espionage as it has been traditionally played, and as it is still being played by countries such as Russia and China. Espionage involves collecting and validating strategically vital information and conveying it to just the pertinent decision-makers on your side while keeping the fact that you are collecting and validating it hidden from everyone else.

In eras past, a spy, if discovered, would try to bite down on a cyanide capsule; these days torture is considered ungentlemanly, and spies that get caught patiently wait to be exchanged in a spy swap. An unwritten, commonsense rule about spy swaps is that they are done quietly and that those released are never interfered with again because doing so would complicate negotiating future spy swaps. In recent years, the US intelligence agencies have decided that torturing prisoners is a good idea, but they have mostly been torturing innocent bystanders, not professional spies, sometimes forcing them to invent things, such as “Al Qaeda.” There was no such thing before US intelligence popularized it as a brand among Islamic terrorists.

Most recently, British “special services,” which are a sort of Mini-Me to the to the Dr. Evil that is the US intelligence apparatus, saw it fit to interfere with one of their own spies, Sergei Skripal, a double agent whom they sprung from a Russian jail in a spy swap. They poisoned him using an exotic chemical and then tried to pin the blame on Russia based on no evidence. There are unlikely to be any more British spy swaps with Russia, and British spies working in Russia should probably be issued good old-fashioned cyanide capsules (since that supposedly super-powerful Novichok stuff the British keep at their “secret” lab in Porton Down doesn’t work right and is only fatal 20% of the time).

To continue reading: US Intelligence Community as a Collapse Driver

Julian Assange and the Dying of the Light, by Raúl Ilargi Meijer

Lies about both Russiagate and Julian Assange sustain each other. From Raúl Ilargi Meijer at theautomaticearth.com:

One thing that’s not receiving enough attention in the respective Assange and Russia coverage is to what extent both protagonists are needed in each other’s narratives to keep each of these alive. Without explicitly linking Assange to Russia, allegations against him lose a lot, if not most, of their credibility. Likewise, if Assange is not put straight in the middle of the Russia story, it too loses much. Linking them is the gift that keeps on giving for the US intelligence community and the Democratic party.

In that light, as the shameful/shameless treatment of Julian Assange continues and is on the verge of even worse developments, I was wondering about some dates and timelines in the whole sordid affair. And about how crucial it is for those wanting to ‘capture’ him, to tie him to Russia in any form and shape they can come up with and make halfway credible.

10 days ago in The True Meaning of ‘Collusion’ I mentioned how Robert Mueller in his indictment of 12 Russians -but not Assange-, released on the eve of the Trump-Putin summit, strongly insinuated that WikiLeaks had actively sought information from Russians posing as Guccifer 2.0, that would be damaging to Hillary Clinton. I also said that Assange was an easy target because, being closed off from all communication, he cannot defend himself. From the indictment:

a. On or about June 22, 2016, Organization 1 sent a private message to Guccifer 2.0 to “[s]end any new material [stolen from the DNC] here for us to review and it will have a much higher impact than what you are doing.” On or about July 6, 2016, Organization 1 added, “if you have anything hillary related we want it in the next tweo [sic] days prefable [sic] because the DNC [Democratic National Convention] is approaching and she will solidify bernie supporters behind her after.” The Conspirators responded, “ok . . . i see.” Organization 1 explained, “we think trump has only a 25% chance of winning against hillary . . . so conflict between bernie and hillary is interesting.”

Now, the indictment itself has been blown to shreds by Adam Carter, while the narrative that the Russians hacked DNC servers and provided what they stole to WikiLeaks, has always categorically been denied by Assange, while the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS) and others have concluded that the speed at which the info was downloaded from the servers means it couldn’t have been a hack.

Oh, and Carter left little standing of Mueller et al’s portrait of Guccifer 2.0 as being of Russian origin. Plus, as several voices have pointed out, Assange had said on British TV on June 12 2016, ten days before the date the indictment indicates, that WikiLeaks was sitting on a batch of material pertaining to Hillary Clinton. An indictment full of allegations, not evidence, that in the end reads like Swiss cheese.

To continue reading: Julian Assange and the Dying of the Light

WaPo Contributor Declares “God Bless The Deep State” and U.S. Intelligence Agencies – Ignoring The Partisan Figures That Once Led Them, by Jon Hall

President Trump has been roundly criticized for questioning the integrity and competence of the US intelligence agencies. Given their historical record, how can their integrity and competence not be questioned? From Jon Hall at fmshooter.com:

Last Thursday, Eugene Robinson – MSNBC analyst and writer for the Washington Post – published a column criticizing President Trump for failing to side with the U.S. intelligence community over their conclusion on Russian meddling in the 2016 election during a diplomatic summit with Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, Finland.

Remember when the “deep state” was written off as a conspiracy theory? How times have changed.

Robinson writes:

With a supine Congress unwilling to play the role it is assigned by the Constitution, the deep state stands between us and the abyss.

Throughout his article, Robinson defends the integrity and reputation of U.S. intelligence agencies – the same organizations that concluded Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction and launched us into a decade-long quagmire in the Middle East.

That isn’t to say the entirety of the United States intelligence communities are dishonorable and lack integrity. However, if the top brass in the agencies is anything to go by – the intentions and aims of our intelligence organizations could certainly be called into question. Look for no further evidence of that notion than…


Former CIA Director, John Brennan

Brennan is no stranger to the spotlight; from appearances on major cable news networks to his dismal outbursts on Twitter, the former CIA Director steadily attempts to control and shape the narrative.

Last week, Tucker Carlson blasted Brennan, labeling him as an “out of the closet extremist” and “cable news shouter” – deriding the fact Brennan still has a top secret security clearance. Tucker detailed that Brennan is “a passionate ideologue with a documented history of dishonesty” and “as CIA director… lied about spying on senate staffers and killing civilians with drone strikes… and about the Steele dossier…”

Furthermore, Kimberly Strassel of the Wall Street Journal penned a great exposé on Brennan’s role in the virtually ignored 2016 spying scandal of Trump and his transition team. Strassel calls Brennan out as “partisan” and notes his close history with Obama. 

Former DNI Director, James Clapper

Clapper is cut from the same cloth as Brennan regarding former intelligence officials turned cable news commentators. In August of 2017, Clapper was hired at CNN as an analyst – after he allegedly leaked the Steele dossier to the network.

To continue reading: WaPo Contributor Declares “God Bless The Deep State” and U.S. Intelligence Agencies – Ignoring The Partisan Figures That Once Led Them

The Burden Of Proof Is On The Russiagaters, by Caitlin Johnstone

One question for the Russiagaters: Where’s your proof? Never underestimate the power of a question. From Caitlin Johnstone at medium.com:

I saw a Twitter thread between two journalists the other day which completely summarized my experience of debating the establishment Russia narrative on online forums lately. Aaron Maté‏, who is in my opinion one of the clearest voices out there on American Russia hysteria, was approached with an argument by a journalist named Jonathan M Katz. Maté‏ engaged the argument by asking for evidence of the claims Katz was making, only to be given the runaround.

I’m going to copy the back-and-forth into the text here for anyone who doesn’t feel like scrolling through a Twitter thread, not because I am interested in the petty rehashing of a meaningless Twitter spat, but because it’s such a perfect example of what I want to talk about here.

Katz: Are you aware of what Russian agents did during the 2016 presidential election, by chance?

Maté‏: I’m aware of what Mueller has accused Russian agents of — are we supposed to just reflexively believe the assertions of prosecutors & intelligence officials now, or is it ok to wait for the evidence? (as I did in the tweet you’re replying to)

Katz: Why are you even asking this question if you’re just going to discard the reams of evidence that have supplied by investigators, spies, and journalists over the last two years?

Maté‏: Why are you avoiding answering the Q I asked? If I can guess, it’s cause doing so would mean acknowledging your position requires taking gov’t claims on faith. Re: “reams of evidence”, I’ve actually written about it extensively, and disagree that it’s convincing.

Katz: Yeah I’m familiar with your work. You’re asking for someone to summarize two years of reporting, grand jury indictments, reports from independent analysts, give agencies both American and foreign, and on and on just so you can handwave and draw some vague equivalencies.

To continue reading: The Burden Of Proof Is On The Russiagaters 

Carter Page FISA Application Exposes Flimsy Underpinnings Of FBI “Witch Hunt”, by Tyler Durden

Although the FBI keeps denying it, apparently the FISA application and renewals to spy on Carter Page were lifted straight from the Trump dossier, which was funded by the Clinton campaign and the DNC. From Tyler Durden at zerohedge.com:

The Saturday release of the FBI’s heavily redacted FISA warrant application for Carter Page reveals that the Obama administration, eager to make a case to spy on a US citizen (and arguably the Trump campaign) cobbled together a combination of facts and innuendo from Page’s business dealings in Russia, several press reports of varying reliability, and of course, the infamous Clinton-funded “Steele Dossier,” which the FBI went to great lengths to justify despite being largely unable to verify its claims.

Perhaps the most concerning takeaway, however, is the stark disconnect between the FBI’s multiple allegations against Page versus the fact that he hasn’t been charged with a single crime after nearly two years of DOJ/FBI investigations.

Once issued, the FISA warrant and its subsequent renewals allowed the Obama administration to better spy on the Trump campaign using a wide investigatory net. As such, the October, 2016 application painted Page in the most criminal light possible, as intended, in order to convince the FISA judge to grant the warrant. It flat out accuses Page of being a Russian spy who was recruited by the Kremlin, which sought to “undermine and influence the outcome of the 2016 U.S. presidential election in violation of U.S. criminal law,” the application reads.

In order to reinforce their argument, the FBI presented various claims from the dossier as facts, such as “The FBI learned that Page met with at least two Russian officials” – when in fact that was simply another unverified claim from the dossier.

Another approach used to beef up the FISA application’s curb appeal was circular evidence, via the inclusion of a letter from Democratic Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (NV) to former FBI Director James Comey, citing information Reid got from John Brennan, which was in turn from the Clinton-funded dossier.

To continue reading: Carter Page FISA Application Exposes Flimsy Underpinnings Of FBI “Witch Hunt”

 

John Brennan, Melting Down and Covering Up, by Peter Van Buren

John Brennan is probably the ring leader of the coup against Trump, and that cries for further investigation. From Peter Van Buren at theamericanconservative.com:

It isn’t a pretty face, but one scarred from a dark past, repackaged now by the frenzy of “resistance.” Accusing Donald Trump recklessly, implying he knows more than he lets on, promising redemption: John Brennan is the face of American politics in 2018.

But before all that, Brennan lived in a hole about as far down into the deep state as one can dwell while still having eyes that work in the sunlight. He was director of the Central Intelligence Agency. He was Obama’s counterterrorism advisor, helping the president decide who to kill every week, including American citizens. He spent 25 years at the CIA, and helped shape the violent policies of the post-9/11 Bush era. He was a fan of torture and extrajudicial killing to the point that a 2012 profile of him was entitled, “The Seven Deadly Sins of John Brennan.” Another writer called Brennan “the most lethal bureaucrat of all time, or at least since Henry Kissinger.” Today, however, a New York Times puff piece sweeps all that away as a “troubling inheritance.”

On Twitter this week, Brennan cartoonishly declaimed, “Donald Trump’s press conference performance in Helsinki rises to and exceeds the threshold of high crimes and misdemeanors. It was nothing short of treasonous. Not only were Trump’s comments imbecilic, he is wholly in the pocket of Putin.”

Because it is 2018, Brennan was never asked to explain exactly how a press conference exceeds the threshold of high crimes and misdemeanors the Constitution sets for impeachment, nor was he asked to lay a few cards on the table showing what Putin has on Trump. No, Brennan is a man of his times, all bluster and noise, knowing that so long as he says what a significant part of the country apparently believes—that the president of the United States is under the control of the Kremlin—he will never be challenged.

Brennan slithers alongside those like Nancy Pelosi and Cory Booker who said Trump is controlled by Russia, columnists in the New York Times who called him a traitor, an article (which is fast becoming the Zapruder film of Russiagate) in New York Magazine echoing former counterterrorism coordinator Richard Clarke in speculating that Trump met Putin as his handler, and another former intelligence officer warning that “we’re on the cusp of losing the constitutional republic forever.”

To continue reading: John Brennan, Melting Down and Covering Up