09/9/16

Which Security Risk for President?

By: Cliff Kincaid | Accuracy in Media

security

“Could your Congressman pass an FBI background check?” is the question posed on the cover of the DVD version of Trevor Loudon’s new film, “The Enemies Within.” In fact, however, the FBI only provides background information about federal employees, not elected officials. In Mrs. Clinton’s special case, there was an opportunity to recommend prosecution of her over her mishandling of classified information, but FBI Director James Comey declined, keeping her presidential campaign alive.

At the Commander-in-Chief Forum on Wednesday night, Mrs. Clinton demonstrated how much of a security risk she is. She acknowledged that “…the State Department system was hacked.” She explained, “Most of the government systems are way behind the curve. We’ve had hacking repeatedly, even in the White House.” Then she added, “There is no evidence my system was hacked.”

The State Department was hacked but her emails were somehow protected? This is almost as mind-boggling as her flip-flop on whether she ever received a briefing on handling classified information.

Not to be outdone, Donald J. Trump began by noting, “I look today and I see Russian planes circling our planes,” referring to hostile Russian military actions. But he went on to say, “I think I would have a very, very good relationship with Putin. And I think I would have a very, very good relationship with Russia.”

Then he added, “Take a look at what happened with their fighter jets circling one of our aircraft in a very dangerous manner. Somebody said less than 10 feet away. This is hostility.”

So how will Trump deal with this hostility? He didn’t say. Instead, he preached cooperation with Russia.

Asked about Putin, he said, “I think when he calls me brilliant, I’ll take the compliment, Okay?” He added, “I think I’d be able to get along with him.”

On what possible basis does he make such a claim?

Trump released a letter in which 88 retired staff and flag officers endorsed his candidacy. It calls for “a long-overdue course correction in our national security posture and policy” and says, “As retired senior leaders of America’s military, we believe that such a change can only be made by someone who has not been deeply involved with, and substantially responsible for, the hollowing out of our military and the burgeoning threats facing our country around the world.”

There is nothing in the letter recognizing the threat posed by Russia.

One name that is not on the list is retired Air Force General Philip Breedlove, former head of U.S. European Command. Russia, he says, has to be recognized “as the enduring, global threat it really represents.”

Breedlove says, “Moscow is determined to reestablish what it considers its rightful sphere of influence, undermine NATO, and reclaim its great-power status. That desire has been evident since 2005, when Russian President Vladimir Putin called the collapse of the Soviet Union ‘the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the [twentieth] century’—a preposterous claim in light of that century’s two world wars. It is through this prism that the West must view Russian aggression.”

Trump seems dangerously naïve regarding the Russian threat. Hillary Clinton isn’t any better, since she and Obama engineered a failed Russian reset in 2009.

The question that must go beyond the two major presidential candidates is whether the intelligence community failed to understand what Putin meant in 2005 when he called the collapse of the Soviet Union “the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the [twentieth] century.”

A couple of years before Mrs. Clinton’s Russian reset, a very important book came out, entitled, Comrade J: The Untold Secrets of Russia’s Master Spy in America After the End of the Cold War, based on interviews with Sergei Tretyakov, the former Russian spymaster based at the U.N. Tretyakov was quoted as saying, “I want to warn Americans…You believe because the Soviet Union no longer exists, Russia now is your friend. It isn’t, and I can show you how the SVR (i.e., KGB) is trying to destroy the U.S. even today and even more than the KGB did during the Cold War.”

Mrs. Clinton may not have read the book because one of her top associates, former Time magazine journalist and top Clinton State Department official Strobe Talbott, is depicted as a dupe of the Russian intelligence service.

This is the same Strobe Talbott who had Mrs. Clinton’s direct email address when she was secretary of state. The New York Times noted that Talbott, who now heads the Brookings Institution, had written to Hillary Clinton directly, expressing concerns that “time-sensitive messages” were not getting through the State Department email address of Hillary chief of staff Cheryl D. Mills.

Despite his role as a former official with controversial Russian intelligence contacts, Talbott was one of those given “privileged status” in Mrs. Clinton’s world.

At the time, the publication of the Comrade J book raised serious questions about security procedures at the Department of State. Those questions have only increased over the years with the damaging revelations about Mrs. Clinton’s use of private emails to communicate classified information.

Yet Trump throws the issue away by sounding even softer on Vladimir Putin now than Mrs. Clinton used to be then.

For his part, Putin continues to broadcast his intentions. Russian jets have been buzzing American ships, and now a Russian jet has flown within 10 feet of a U.S. Navy spy plane. Inexplicably, Trump denounces that while praising Putin, even saying that the authoritarian ruler is popular in the polls.

The question Trevor Loudon needs to ask is, “Could Clinton or Trump pass a background check?” The answer is they don’t need to. Yet, one of them will win and follow another security risk into the White House.


Cliff Kincaid is the Director of the AIM Center for Investigative Journalism and can be contacted at [email protected]View the complete archives from Cliff Kincaid.

09/6/16

Clinton’s Excuses Fall Outside the Realm of Plausible Deniability

By: Frank Salvato

Hillary

The credibility of our government has been marginalized, and increasingly so for decades. The agenda-driven politicization of departments and agencies – government entities that are supposed to serve the people – has facilitated an all-encompassing bureaucracy loyal to elitist politicians over the American people. This corrupt, special interest-serving politicization has exploded in the almost eight-years of the Obama Administration.

In an unbelievable explanation covered by the Washington Examiner, Hillary Clinton testified under sworn deposition to FBI agents that she believed the classified “C” markings on emails recovered from her private emails were there as a way to alphabetically order paragraphs. This information comes from an 11-page summary of the deposition, alongside 58 pages of notes from the FBI investigation into her illegal use of a private email server and email accounts.

“When asked what the parenthetical ‘C’ meant before a paragraph…Clinton stated she did not know and could only speculate it was referencing paragraphs marked in alphabetical order,” the FBI cited from notes created taken during its interview with her.

The interviewing agent’s notes stated that Clinton swore she had a “limited understanding” of the document classification process; of how and why certain documents are deemed classified. They also revealed that Clinton “couldn’t recall” ever being trained on how to handle sensitive material.

The new information also evidenced that Clinton testified to FBI investigators approximately three dozen times that she “couldn’t recall” specific details or events related to her use and establishment of her private email and server.

Clinton’s excuse for several of her lapses in memory was that the events in question occurred directly her head injury, which left the Democrat nominee with a blood clot on the brain and a concussion.

So, let’s take a brief recounting of Hillary Clinton’s political career to see if it is even possible for her to be so naïve about the document classification process and for her not to have any functional knowledge of how to handle classified and sensitive information.

Hillary Clinton served as a staff lawyer on the House Judicial Committee investigating Watergate during her youthful years in Washington. This position mandated that she have access to audio files that containing classified information; information recorded inside the Oval Office. Are we to believe she wasn’t counseled on how to handle those documents?

Hillary Clinton was also First Lady for eight long, hard years. In that station she would have had to have attained a top secret status just for her ability to enter the Oval Office with regularity. Are we to believe she wasn’t counseled on how to manage information she may or may not have had access to emanating from the President or the Oval Office?

Clinton was a US Senator from New York who sat on the Armed Services Committee and the Subcommittee on Emerging Threats & Capabilities. These committee assignments required Clinton receive at least “top secret” clearance for the military information to which she had access. Are we to believe that during the whole of the time she was on these committees she never once was counseled on how to handle classified information?

And as Secretary of States – a position fourth in line to the presidency, and part of the inner-circle cabinet and structural hierarchy of the President of the United States – she was required to handle all classifications of sensitive information materials, including “Special Access Program” material, the highest and most sensitive level of information our government keeps. Are we to believe that she was afforded this access without anyone – anyone – covering their asses enough to have counseled her on how to safeguard this information?

Clinton’s answers the FBI investigators; her excuses; her attempts at establishing plausible deniability, are so far from the realm of believability they are beyond ludicrous. To believe her narrative is to exist as a human being incapable of even the most rudimentary function.

To put it bluntly: To believe Clinton’s testimony would be to be on the intellectual level of a mentally challenged squirrel, and that is being unkind to the squirrel.

It is beyond obvious that Mrs. Clinton has perjured herself in interviews with Federal Agents, just like her impeached husband did. As we all know, that – in and of itself – is a crime punishable by time in a federal prison and a hefty fine.

It would require the willing suspension of disbelief to accept that over the many years Clinton has existed in Washington she wouldn’t understand how to recognize and/or handle classified information. For that to be true there would be a trail of unauthorized access to sensitive materials that would rival the Oregon Trail and the Trail of Tears combined.

Given how the Clintons are dojo masters at covering their tracks and establishing plausible deniability – and given they were aware enough to BleachBit destroy the emails they really didn’t want anyone to see, it is impossible to accept her story that she “didn’t know” or was “unaware.”

All that understood, perhaps Friday’s FBI document dump isn’t what it appears. Maybe it is based on either a guilt streak or an attempt to make things right in spite of a corrupt Justice Department by FBI Director James Comey, perhaps both. Perhaps that was the plan all along. Would it be ethical? No, it wouldn’t. But when you are battling unethical forces (read: The Clintons and the Washington Progressive machine) that will lie, cheat, steal and, perhaps, even kill, to achieve their goals, sometimes you have to get a little dirty.

Frank Salvato is the Executive Director of BasicsProject a grassroots, non-partisan, research and education initiative focusing on Constitutional Literacy, and internal and external threats facing Western Civilization. His writing has been recognized by the US House International Relations Committee and the Japan Center for Conflict Prevention. His opinion and analysis have been published by The American Enterprise Institute, The Washington Times, The Jewish World Review, Accuracy in Media, Human Events, Townhall.com and are syndicated nationally. Mr. Salvato has appeared on The O’Reilly Factor on FOX News Channel, and is the author of six books examining internal and external threats facing our country. Mr. Salvato’s personal writing can be found at FrankJSalvato.com.

09/2/16

Will the KGB Kill Edward Snowden?

By: Cliff Kincaid | Accuracy in Media

Snowden

In a story headlined, “The New Snowden Movie is the Best PR He’ll Ever Get,” a young writer with no knowledge of Russian espionage operations quotes an ACLU lawyer as saying that the upcoming movie “Snowden” will paint the former NSA analyst living in Russia as “a hero who exposed the great injustices and overreach of the global surveillance state.” The film will therefore “have a huge effect on how the public sees Snowden,” he says.

But the film, scheduled for release on September 16, may be an attempt to salvage the reputations of both Edward Snowden and the filmmaker, Oliver Stone.

Edward Snowden is charged with espionage, and has been described by presidential candidate Donald J. Trump as a traitor who should be executed.

His disclosures of NSA surveillance techniques have assisted America’s enemies and adversaries, including the Islamic State and Vladimir Putin’s Russia. I wrote a book about the case, Blood on His Hands: The True Story of Edward Snowden, examining the setbacks for American foreign policy in the wake of Snowden’s theft of classified documents, and the U.S. being caught blind regarding Russian aggression and Islamic State expansion into Europe and America.

Two days before the film’s release, some theaters will feature a live question-and-answer period between Snowden and Stone following a special screening, with Snowden appearing live from Moscow.

Stone is apparently hoping the film will restore his reputation as an avant-garde filmmaker whose previous release, “South of the Border,” was an embarrassing apology for a series of Latin American communists. It depicted Venezuela as heaven on earth and featured interviews with such despots as Hugo Chavez, Lula da Silva of Brazil and Raul Castro.

Chavez has since expired and met his maker, while Venezuela is a hell-hole example of how socialism works in practice, with shortages, massive inflation and violations of human rights on a constant basis. Lula da Silva’s successor, Dilma Rousseff, has just been impeached in Brazil. Castro is still in power because Barack Obama and Pope Francis engineered U.S. recognition of the Communist regime in Cuba, and thereby a lifeline of new money.

Trying to make himself newsworthy again, Stone has made the movie, “Snowden,” after a trip to Russia where he met with former Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev. Upon his return, he delivered the commencement speech at the University of Connecticut, where he described Edward Snowden as “an avatar” for the next generation.

Previous avatars have included Aldrich Ames, the CIA traitor, and Robert Hanssen, the FBI traitor. Both were spies for the Soviets and are serving life sentences in prison.

“I think Snowden is a terrible threat, I think he’s a terrible traitor, and you know what we used to do in the good old days when we were a strong country—you know what we used to do to traitors, right?” Trump said to host Eric Bolling on Fox News. “Well, you killed them, Donald,” Bolling replied.

He was apparently referring to Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, who were American citizens executed for espionage on behalf of the Soviet Union back in 1953.

Yet, President Obama’s then-Attorney General Eric Holder actually wrote to the Russians, promising them that Snowden would be spared the death penalty if he returned to the United States.

In a story about how Snowden is pulling in tens of thousands of capitalist dollars for digital speaking appearances from Russia at American colleges and other events like concerts and Comic-Con, Michael Isikoff and Michael B. Kelley of Yahoo! News reported that advance work in the media for the new Snowden movie is being handled by “veteran liberal public relations executive David Fenton.”

That seems appropriate. In the past, Fenton has represented George Soros, the communist Sandinistas in Nicaragua, the Salvadoran communist guerrillas and CIA defector Philip Agee.

Snowden seems to be the NSA equivalent of Agee, who defected from the CIA and became a Cuban and Soviet agent. Benjamin S. Civiletti, attorney general in the Carter administration, provided Agee with immunity from prosecution. At the time, the FBI wasarguing for prosecution of Agee on the grounds that he was engaging in espionage activity against the U.S.

Snowden may be seeking to return to the U.S. because of what happened to another defector from the NSA to Russia. Victor Norris Hamilton, a former code analyst with the NSA who defected to Russia, was discovered in the 1990s at a Moscow psychiatric prison hospital. After the Soviets milked him, they put him in a rubber room.

Former Reagan National Security Council staffer Oliver North says that Snowden will be killed by the Russians when they have finished using him for propaganda purposes. Then, he suggests, the Russians will blame his death on the CIA.


Cliff Kincaid is the Director of the AIM Center for Investigative Journalism and can be contacted at [email protected]View the complete archives from Cliff Kincaid.

08/10/16

Watching someone drop the ball

By: T F Stern | T F Stern’s Rantings

Ball1Last night during the Astros’ game with the Minnesota Twins center fielder, Carlos Gomez, didn’t get the job done.  Perhaps that’s an understatement as he let a ball get by him and turned a single into an RBI two base error and permitted the batter to reach third.

Bad as that was, Gomez managed to follow that botched play with yet another screw up as he lost track of a fly ball that should have been caught; but instead landed several feet away.  Remember the man on third, the one who should have been at first except for a two base error, that man scored and the batter ended up with a ‘gimme’ triple since the ball was ‘lost in the lights’.

I won’t print what the pitcher, Collin McHugh said, use your imagination; but it was captured on film for all who can read lips.  Let’s just say it follows the thought pattern of, “You have got to be kidding!”, only with a more common street verbiage and tone.

I mention this as a lead in for what’s going on in our country.  ‘We The People’ are standing on the mound as the ball(s) get dropped  over and over.

We have an individual running for President of the United States of America who has managed to avoid being charged and prosecuted for crimes which would have the average individual before a firing squad, the gallows or serving life in prison without chance of parole.

Ball2The FBI made their case against Hillary Clinton only to back off at the last moment and have FBI DirectorJames Comey tell ‘We The People’ that the charges shouldn’t be filed because they couldn’t prove intent.

Did I hear, “You have got to be kidding me”, or was it the cruder version as stated by the Astros’ pitcher in last night’s game?

It should be noted, none of the felonies which Hillary violated in regard to lost email or improper us of email required ‘intent’; simply that the crime occurred, either by willful intent or neglect did not matter.

We could say the FBI and Justice Department lost it in the lights, much as Gomez let the ball avoid his glove.

‘We The People’ are standing on the mound, figuratively speaking, watching this unfold before our eyes.   I can assure you my exclamation matched up with the Astros’ pitcher… and those who can read lips know what I said.

This article has been cross posted to The Moral Liberal, a publication whose banner reads, “Defending The Judeo-Christian Ethic, Limited Government, & The American Constitution”.

07/13/16

CCB Press Conference on Benghazi Proves Dereliction of Duty [Video]

By: Roger Aronoff | Accuracy in Media

Benghazi

The Citizens’ Commission on Benghazi (CCB) recently held a press conference and issued a report uncovering new details about the events leading up to and during the September 11, 2012 attacks in Libya that took the lives of four Americans. However, the press has done what it usually does when a story threatens the narrative or reputation of the administration of President Barack Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton—they have, for the most part, ignored or misrepresented the CCB’s findings.

The speakers at our June 29 event at the National Press Club in Washington exposed, once again, how the U.S. facilitated the provision of arms to al-Qaeda-linked rebels, and demonstrated that there were many warnings leading up to the attack on the Special Mission Compound, warnings that the administration ignored. In addition, the administration was derelict in its duty to send forces to aid those under attack in Benghazi.

I said that “There’s a media theme, or meme, out there that keeps saying—and you see this [at the] New York Times, CNN, everywhere, saying, ‘No new evidence of any wrongdoing by Hillary Clinton.’ That seems to be the conclusion of most of the media in response to yesterday’s [House Select Committee report]. And we see a field of smoking guns.”

“No matter what comes out…the role of many in the mainstream media is to protect the legacy of President Obama and protect the presidential candidacy and viability of Hillary Clinton,” I argued.

I was joined by a number of other members of the CCB, including former CIA officer Clare Lopez, General Thomas McInerney, Lt. Colonel Denny Haney, Admiral James “Ace” Lyons (all retired), our attorney John Clarke, as well as guests Rear Admiral Chuck Kubic (ret.) and Charles Woods, father of Ty Woods, the former Navy SEAL who was killed in the attack on the CIA Annex.

Here are some of our findings, in the words of each of the CCB members and the guests. In my earlier column on the press conference, we included a video of the entire event, including Q&A and crosstalk among the panelists. Here we present a video of each individual speaker. If you want to see the Q&A as well, please go to the previous column:

Clare Lopez:

“So, when we undertook to begin this second report, we think that we bring to this topic a willingness to name names, a willingness to assign responsibility and to demand accountability that too many of the others, committees and others, have not done—have neglected to do.”

“Now, from Christopher Stevens to the folks at the CIA Annex, they were in fact then relying on exactly the jihadist enemy that was eventually to turn on them and to kill four Americans and injure others so gravely.”

“Absolutely, they [Hillary and Obama] lied. There’s no question. We know, again, from Judicial Watch documents obtained through the FOIA process that the administration, including the President and Secretary of State Clinton, were actively involved that very night while the attack was still going on in concocting a false narrative to deflect the story from the truth and to defend at all costs, even the cost of American lives, the re-election campaign of the President. They were not even decided on which video they were going to blame. They only knew that they were going to blame a video.”

General Thomas McInerney (ret.):

“We should have prepositioned F-16s from Aviano down to Sigonella to be on 15-minute alert.”

“It was 9/11. Isn’t 9/11 a significant date for us? And yet we had none of this preparation. We had all of the Combatant Commanders back in Washington, DC, on a commanders’ conference.”

“So, there was no pre-planning. I call that dereliction of duty.”

Lt. Colonel Dennis Haney (ret.):

“I talked to Sean Smith’s uncle this morning, and he said he’s read our report. He got halfway through [Trey] Gowdy’s report, he got all the way through our report. He says read this [CCB] report if you want to know the truth.”

“Qaddafi was out there killing bad guys. He was killing al Qaeda, and al Qaeda we supported—they went to Syria, they became ISIS. We developed ISIS. That’s a fact.”

Admiral James “Ace” Lyons (ret.):

“And when I watched the [Select Committee on Benghazi’s] press conference yesterday, to say I was disappointed would be an understatement, because Chairman Gowdy is not a stenographer and he’s not a tape recorder. He was there to make findings and conclusions. He had the information; he copped out.”

“There’s no reason why F-16 aircraft weren’t moved from Aviano to Sigonella, or to Souda Bay, Crete—either place. We had a 130-man Marine force recon team at Sigonella. We had the Marine FAST teams at Rota. We had the Commanders’ in Extremis Force in Croatia. We had assets.”

“We know Jeremy Bash, the chief of staff at the Department of Defense, at 1910 that evening sent an email, or called the State Department, and said ‘we’re spinning up as we [speak].’ Where do we get the cross border authority?”

John Clarke:

“Now we just heard, I just found out, because I haven’t read Mr. Gowdy’s report, that the order [to deploy] was given at 7:00 pm. Well, the attack began at 3:42 pm. local time. That’s three hours later.”

Rear Admiral Chuck Kubic (ret.):

“And I found out eventually that it was Secretary Clinton working directly with the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who had shut down not that truce talk [with Qaddafi] but had struck down a parallel one I didn’t even know was happening through a different business channel.”

“So it struck me that the same behavior that shut down the 72-hour truce at the onset of the war, leading to death, destruction a failed state, was the same kind of behavior that existed in that 7:30 [Deputies] meeting.”

Charles Woods:

“Many, many times Ty as a Navy SEAL in his 20 years of service was in worse situations than this. But he always knew that if there was a compromise of the mission, that he was going to be extracted. That did not happen in this case. That’s part of the DNA of being in the military. That’s part of the code of ethics, is you are always rescued.”

“We have a lot of experts in the military that say they could have been rescued. No attempt was made.”

You can read the CCB’s new report here. It is well documented, it puts Benghazi in context, it explains why we were in Libya, what we did and didn’t do, and it names the people most responsible for the failures of Benghazi.


Roger Aronoff is the Editor of Accuracy in Media, and a member of the Citizens’ Commission on Benghazi. He can be contacted at [email protected]. View the complete archives from Roger Aronoff.

07/12/16

Comey Indicts Hillary Clinton—But Recommends No Indictment

By: Roger Aronoff | Accuracy in Media

Comey

Back in March, when it appeared that FBI Director James Comey might call for the indictment of Hillary Clinton, I laid out the stark consequences of failing to bring criminal charges against the now presumptive Democratic presidential candidate: “Now the administration faces its biggest challenge, which will determine whether the U.S. has become a banana republic: Will Hillary Clinton be indicted?”

The day when our Republic has succumbed to corruption, politicization and cronyism has arrived. In light of the decision last week by Director Comey and his rationale for it, we may have become that banana republic.

The idea that Hillary Clinton broke no laws while secretary of state is offensive to anyone who believes in equal justice for all. Even Director Comey, during his July 5statement to announce that the FBI will not recommend prosecution, did not argue that Mrs. Clinton and her staff weren’t in the wrong. Rather, he said that “no reasonable prosecutor would bring such a case” against Mrs. Clinton. But a number of very reasonable former prosecutors have since said otherwise: Rudy Giuliani, Joe diGenova, former Attorney General Michael Mukasey, and Andy McCarthy, to name a few. Yes, they’re all Republicans, just like Comey. But Comey owes his appointment as FBI director to President Obama, whose knowledge of Hillary’s use of an unsecured server implicates his own office in this ongoing scandal. This may well explain why Obama has had his thumb on the scale, long ago declaring Hillary’s actions as merely “careless” and not jeopardizing national security, while claiming no knowledge of the investigation beyond what was in the media.

Comey said investigators “did not find clear evidence that Secretary Clinton or her colleagues intended to violate laws governing the handling of classified information,” but they did find evidence “that [Clinton and her aides] were extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information.”

Despite Comey’s assertion that such a prosecution would be unprecedented because Mrs. Clinton didn’t, in his view, intend to break the law, Sarah Westwood of The Washington Examiner has found several examples where negligence, or carelessness, in handling classified materials—far less egregiously than Clinton—resulted in charges.

There was, for example, the case of the Marine Corps officer forced out of the service for mishandling classified materials. His crime: “sending a warning to deployed colleagues about an Afghan police chief whose servant later killed three Marines” and that the police chief “was corrupt and sexually abusing children,” according to The Washington Post.

Two days after Comey’s announcement, he went before a congressional committee to answer questions about his decision. During questioning from Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC), Comey acknowledged that Mrs. Clinton had lied about whether she had sent or received any emails marked classified; whether she had emailed classified material that was classified at the time, whether marked or not; whether she had done this email set up so she could do all of her emailing using just one device (Comey acknowledged that she had used multiple devices); the fact that she had turned all of her work related emails over to the State Department (Comey acknowledged there were “thousands” that had not been turned over); and she lied when she said that no work related emails were deleted or wiped from her server. You can watch that exchange here:

But the events leading up to and throughout the Fourth of July weekend revealed a staged event, or at least one in which the principal players must have known Comey’s bottom line. About the time it was announced that Hillary was finally going to be interviewed by the FBI for three and a half hours, it accidentally came to light that there had been a meeting on a plane between former President Bill Clinton and Attorney General Loretta Lynch. Clinton had appointed Lynch to her position as U.S. Attorney when he was president. In addition, a message came from the Clinton camp via The New York Times that Ms. Lynch would be getting strong consideration to stay on as attorney general in a Hillary Clinton administration. And we heard from CNN and others citing sources “familiar with the investigation” indicating that no indictment was likely. The fix was in; the media should have instead been asking the hard questions about Mrs. Clinton’s reckless disregard of the law.

Then, less than three days after the FBI interview was completed—an interview that Comey later said was not under oath, and apparently not recorded—he announced that he was recommending no indictment, and that no reasonable prosecutor would do otherwise. It would have been impossible to compare her statements in the interview to her public record to determine if she had lied to the FBI. Comey even acknowledged that her testimony was not compared at all to what she told the Select Committee on Benghazi last October.

On the same day as Comey’s announcement, President Obama and Mrs. Clinton traveled together on Air Force One to a campaign stop where she spoke in front of the presidential seal. In other words, the outcome was apparently known before Comey made his announcement, in spite of his declaring that that was not the case.

As former federal prosecutor Andy McCarthy has previously noted, “’malicious intent’ is not required to prove felonious mishandling of classified information.” Rather, McCarthy writes, “gross negligence would do, so if there really is even ‘scant’ evidence of malicious intent, that suggests it would be fairly easy to prove the crime.”

Even Director Comey concurs that Mrs. Clinton and her staff were willfully reckless. Do her actions not qualify at least as “gross negligence?”

“Mrs. Clinton has asserted that she did not send or receive any information marked classified at the time it was sent,” reports The New York Times. “But about two dozen emails were designated ‘top secret,’ the highest level of classification, and Mrs. Clinton’s critics say she jeopardized national security.”

In other words, Mrs. Clinton lied.

“To be clear,” said Comey at his announcement, “this is not to suggest that in similar circumstances, a person who engaged in this activity would face no consequences. To the contrary, those individuals are often subject to security or administrative sanctions, but that’s not what we’re deciding now.”

Yet there will be few consequences for Hillary Clinton for her misconduct outside the political domain. And Comey’s actions constitute little more than a politicized decision.

As secretary of state, Mrs. Clinton repeatedly acted in ways that benefitted her and her family and her family’s foundation, in obvious quid pro quo situations, and most importantly in her handling of classified information on her private unsecured server. When there were problems with the secure fax, Mrs. Clinton indicated that her staff could turn secure information “into nonpaper with w no identifying heading and send nonsecure,” thereby stripping classified markings. Mrs. Clinton also authored 104 classified emails sent through her private email server.

Clinton apologists and the media have claimed that the information Mrs. Clinton sent through her private email server was largely up-classified retrospectively. However, the classified information that Mrs. Clinton jeopardized was far from inconsequential—and some of it was highly classified at the time. One of Mrs. Clinton’s emails regarding the “movement of North Korean nuclear assets” was “initially flagged by the inspector general of the intelligence community in July as potentially containing information derived from highly classified satellite and mapping system of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency,” according to The Washington Times.

The degree to which Mrs. Clinton broke classification laws shows arrogance and contempt for the American people. It was not merely carelessness: it was willful. And, as Comey said, Mrs. Clinton’s use of a private email server was widely known by those in government.

This is a dark day in American history, although the media certainly won’t report it that way. We must wait to see if Joe diGenova was right when he said in January that there would be a revolt inside the Bureau if there is no indictment, because failing to prosecute Mrs. Clinton means that the government can never again credibly indict someone for mishandling of classified material.

As far as the other investigation regarding public corruption, in regard to the intersection of Mrs. Clinton’s work as secretary of state with matters related to the Clinton Foundation, it came up at the House Oversight Committee hearing on Thursday, but Comey refused to comment. Asked by Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT), chair of the House Committee on Government Oversight and Reform, “Did you look at the Clinton Foundation?” Comey replied, “I’m not going to comment on the existence or non-existence of any other investigations.”

Some see this as an unintentional favor to the GOP and those who believe that electing Mrs. Clinton president would be a disaster in terms of rewarding someone who was so deceitful and reckless with America’s national security secrets. She may also be vulnerable to blackmail from countries and individuals who may have successfully hacked her server. Mrs. Clinton is a badly weakened candidate, the theory goes, and was clearly treated as someone above the law. Comey, whether wittingly or unwittingly, made the case for how corrupt and deceitful Mrs. Clinton had acted, but left her to twist slowly in the wind.


Roger Aronoff is the Editor of Accuracy in Media, and a member of the Citizens’ Commission on Benghazi. He can be contacted at [email protected]. View the complete archives from Roger Aronoff.

07/7/16

James Comey makes the government safe for corruption

By: LAWRENCE SELLIN, PHD | Family Security Matters

It is times like this that words almost fail me, but, thinking about FBI Director James Comey, “coward,” “disgrace” and “cheap political hack” come to mind.

Other words like “hypocrite” and “double standard” are, in this case, equally appropriate.

The FBI investigated Hillary Clinton for alleged violations of U.S. Code Title 18 § 793 – Gathering, transmitting or losing defense information, subsection (f):

“Whoever, being entrusted with or having lawful possession or control of any document, writing, code book, signal book, sketch, photograph, photographic negative, blueprint, plan, map, model, instrument, appliance, note, or information, relating to the national defense, (1) through gross negligence permits the same to be removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of his trust, or to be lost, stolen, abstracted, or destroyed, or (2) having knowledge that the same has been illegally removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of its trust, or lost, or stolen, abstracted, or destroyed, and fails to make prompt report of such loss, theft, abstraction, or destruction to his superior officer- Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both.”

On national television, Comey, describing his reasons for not charging Hillary Clinton with a crime, said:

“Although there is evidence of potential violations of the statutes regarding the handling of classified information, our judgment is that no reasonable prosecutor would bring such a case. Prosecutors necessarily weigh a number of factors before bringing charges. There are obvious considerations, like the strength of the evidence, especially regarding intent. ”

First and foremost, U.S. Code Title 18 § 793 subsection (f) says nothing about “intent” as a requirement for indictment.

Secondly, recalling my days in the US Army Reserve for which I had a security clearance, the classified computer system (SIPRNet) was neither connected to nor interactive with non-classified systems. Moving information from SIPRNet to a non-classified computer system was both a violation of U.S. Code Title 18 § 793 and could only be done physically and intentionally using a portable storage device like a thumb drive.

Somebody had to move that classified information, physically and intentionally, from the State Department’s classified system for delivery to Hillary Clinton’s non-classified account.

Will anyone be prosecuted or does everything surrounding this case get swept under the rug?

And what is the difference between the “extreme carelessness” that Comey claims Hillary Clinton demonstrated and the “gross negligence” described in U.S. Code Title 18 § 793 subsection (f)?

And why didn’t Comey let the “prosecutors” in the Department of Justice decide not to indict rather than FBI, which really isn’t its role in the legal system?

Comey followed his appalling excuse for inaction with what one could consider an outright lie, stating:

“In looking back at our investigations into mishandling or removal of classified information, we cannot find a case that would support bringing criminal charges on these facts.”

There was just such a similar case less than a year ago.

On its own website, dated July 29, 2015, the FBI boasts about the conviction of a Folsom California Naval Reservist, who was convicted and sentenced after pleading guilty to unauthorized removal and retention of classified materials:

“According to court documents, Nishimura was a Naval reservist deployed in Afghanistan in 2007 and 2008. In his role as a Regional Engineer for the U.S. military in Afghanistan, Nishimura had access to classified briefings and digital records that could only be retained and viewed on authorized government computers. Nishimura, however, caused the materials to be downloaded and stored on his personal, unclassified electronic devices and storage media. He carried such classified materials on his unauthorized media when he traveled off-base in Afghanistan and, ultimately, carried those materials back to the United States at the end of his deployment. In the United States, Nishimura continued to maintain the information on unclassified systems in unauthorized locations, and copied the materials onto at least one additional unauthorized and unclassified system.”

Does that not sound like, in substance, what Hillary Clinton and her subordinates did?

Comey’s decision was nothing less than politically-motivated malfeasance, that is, the performance by a public official of an act that is legally unjustified, harmful, or contrary to law.

Thanks to Comey, it should now be clear to all thoughtful Americans that the US Government, as an institution, is hopelessly corrupt, unaccountable to the people and unconstrained by the rule of law.

Comey obviously concurs with and has aptly demonstrated that the political elite are immune from prosecution regardless of the damage done to our national security and the Constitution, specifically the concept of equal justice under the law.

James Comey has secured his place in US History.

America has a new Benedict Arnold.

Lawrence Sellin, Ph.D. is a retired colonel with 29 years of service in the US Army Reserve and a veteran of Afghanistan and Iraq. Colonel Sellin is the author of “Restoring the Republic: Arguments for a Second American Revolution “. He receives email at [email protected].