Is This Now A Hostile Work Environment?

On Sunday, Just the News posted an article about FBI Special Agent Stephen M. Friend, who serves as a SWAT team member, who has been suspended in recent days because of his status as a whistleblower.

The article reports:

An FBI whistleblower has reported to the Office of Special Counsel that he believes the bureau and Justice Department are violating the constitutional rights of Jan. 6 defendants, falsifying statistics on domestic extremism and misusing SWAT teams to make misdemeanor arrests, according to a copy of the complaint reviewed by Just the News.

Special Agent Stephen M. Friend, who works for the FBI in Florida and serves as a SWAT team member, told the main federal whistleblower office in Washington he had an “exemplary” work record since he joined the bureau in 2014 and even won awards but was suspended in recent days after he began raising concerns about the FBI’s and DOJ’s conduct in the Jan. 6 investigation

“I believed the investigations were inconsistent with FBI procedure and resulted in the violation of citizens’ Sixth and Eighth Amendment rights,” Friend wrote. “I added that many of my colleagues expressed similar concerns to me but had not vocalized their objections to FBI Executive Management.”

The FBI national press office did not immediately respond to a request for comment sent on Friday.

Although I have very little doubt that what Agent Friend is saying is true, I am not optimistic that the problems he points out will be dealt with. Although there are Congressional committees charged with overseeing various aspects of the FBI, the Director, Christoper Wray, is accountable to the Attorney General, Merrick Garland. Both the Director and the Attorney General are known for the politicization of their organizations. Since the prosecutions relating to January 6th are purely political, I suspect the civil rights of those accused will continue to be violated. As for the SWAT teams, there have be a number of incidents when SWAT teams and other tactics were used to intimidate political enemies of the Democrat party.

I don’t mean to be negative, but I am beginning to wonder if anyone can put right our totally corrupt FBI and Department of Justice.

This Is Disturbing

On Tuesday, The New York Post reported that the FBI had seized Mike Lindell’s cell phone. As you know, Mike Lindell, CEO of My Pillow, has been very outspoken about voter fraud in the 2020 election and is said to have proof of that fraud.

The article reports:

MyPilllow CEO Mike Lindell said FBI agents pulled up to his car in a Hardee’s drive-thru in Minnesota and seized his phone — apparently as part of the Justice Department’s investigation into 2020 election interference. When is the Justice Department going to investigate Hunter Biden?

The pro-Trump conspiracy theorist retold the dramatic moment live on his show the Lindell Report Tuesday — claiming his phone was seized and he was served a subpoena.

Lindell said he and a pal decided to pick up food at a Hardee’s in his hometown of Mankato after a fishing trip when three cars pulled up and surrounded his vehicle, blocking him from exiting the drive-thru lane.

“I said to my buddy, I said ‘that’s either a bad guy or it’s FBI’,” Lindell said on his show, according to a clip posted on the conservative news site The Post Millennial.

I object to Mike Lindell being called a pro-Trump conspiracy theorist. Actually, most of the conspiracy theories in the past six years have turned out to be true.

The article continues:

The pillow entrepreneur — known for falsely insisting Donald Trump won the 2020 election — said the agents began peppering him with questions about Colorado, Colorado clerk Tina Peters — who faces felony charges related to a security breach of her office’s election equipment — and the Dominion voting machines.

The article concludes:

“I said ‘If I don’t give it to you, will you arrest me then?’” Lindell said he asked the agents, noting that he runs “five companies” off his phone because he apparently doesn’t have a computer.

However, after calling a lawyer, Lindell said he handed over his phone.

Lindell, known as the “My Pillow guy” from his TV commercials, is not the only Trump ally to have their phone seized by the FBI in recent days.

Agents for the Justice Department seized the phones of longtime Trump adviser Boris Epshteyn and campaign strategist Mike Roman, the New York Times reported Monday.

The department also issued about 40 subpoenas over the past week — a sign that it is intensifying its criminal probe into the former president’s role in attempts to steal the election.

There was no attempt by President Trump to steal the election. That is a Democrat talking point and does not belong in a supposed news report. There are serious questions about ballot harvesting, computer glitches, and mail-in ballots in the 2020 election that have never been fully investigated. The taking of Mike Lindell’s cell phone has nothing to do with a criminal probe–it is a move to intimidate Trump supporters to prevent him from running in 2024 and to intimidate Republicans in general. This is not how a representative republic (we are NOT a Democracy) is supposed to work.

Where Is The Transparency?

On Monday, The Hill reported the following:

The Justice Department on Monday told a federal judge that releasing the law enforcement affidavit used to obtain a search warrant for former President Trump’s home would jeopardize an ongoing investigation.

Federal prosecutors submitted a court filing opposing any efforts to unseal the document laying out probable cause for the search. The filing came just days after they agreed to release a copy of the warrant itself as well as a receipt listing the materials that were seized during the search of Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate.

“The affidavit supporting the search warrant presents a very different set of considerations,” the filing reads. “There remain compelling reasons, including to protect the integrity of an ongoing law enforcement investigation that implicates national security, that support keeping the affidavit sealed.”

Prosecutors typically submit affidavits from law enforcement officials when seeking a judge’s authorization for a search warrant. These documents are meant to provide an overview of evidence collected during an investigation that would support the probable cause needed to obtain a warrant under the Fourth Amendment.

The court filing submitted Monday — which was signed by Jay Bratt, the head of the DOJ’s counterintelligence office, and Juan Antonio Gonzalez, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida — argued that disclosing the affidavit used to secure the Mar-a-Lago warrant would cause “significant and irreparable damage to this ongoing criminal investigation.”

I hate to be cynical (but I am getting good at it), but I translated that as ‘give us more time–we are trying to invent some evidence.’ The term ‘ongoing investigation’ is always used when the Justice Department is avoiding transparency.

The article notes:

They argued that revealing sensitive information about the investigation could also affect law enforcement’s ability to secure cooperation from potential witnesses and risk revealing identifying details about any witnesses who are already working with investigators.

This is not the Justice Department of a free country.

Why Patriotism Is Important

Duck Duck Go, my favorite search engine, defines patriotism as follows:

  1. Love of and devotion to one’s country.
  2. Love of one’s country; the passion which moves a person to serve his country, either in defending it from invasion or in protecting its rights and maintaining its laws and institutions.
  3. Love of country embodied or personified; patriots collectively.

A person who plays a part in the country’s military preparedness needs to espouse those values. Unfortunately, not everyone does.

Fox 13 reported yesterday that Elaine Marie Thomas, a metallurgist in Washington state, has pleaded guilty to faking the results of strength tests on steel used to make U.S. Navy submarines.

The article reports:

Elaine Marie Thomas, 67, of Auburn, Washington, was the director of metallurgy at a foundry in Tacoma that supplied steel castings used by Navy contractors Electric Boat and Newport News Shipbuilding to make submarine hulls.

From 1985 through 2017, Thomas falsified the results of strength and toughness tests for at least 240 productions of steel — about half the steel the foundry produced for the Navy, according to her plea agreement, filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Tacoma. The tests were intended to show that the steel would not fail in a collision or in certain “wartime scenarios,” the Justice Department said.

There was no allegation that any submarine hulls failed, but authorities said the Navy had incurred increased costs and maintenance to ensure they remain seaworthy. The government did not disclose which subs were affected.

Thomas faces up to 10 years in prison and a $1 million fine when she is sentenced in February. However, the Justice Department said it would recommend a prison term at the low end of whatever the court determines is the standard sentencing range in her case.

In a statement filed in U.S. District Court on her behalf Monday, her attorney, John Carpenter, said Thomas “took shortcuts.”

“Ms. Thomas never intended to compromise the integrity of any material and is gratified that the government’s testing does not suggest that the structural integrity of any submarine was in fact compromised,” Carpenter wrote. “This offense is unique in that it was neither motivated by greed nor any desire for personal enrichment. She regrets that she failed to follow her moral compass – admitting to false statements is hardly how she envisioned living out her retirement years.”

Thomas’ conduct came to light in 2017, when a metallurgist being groomed to replace her noticed suspicious test results and alerted their company, Kansas City-based Bradken Inc., which acquired the foundry in 2008.

I am concerned that the Justice Department said it would “recommend a prison term at the low end of whatever the court determines is the standard sentencing range in her case.” The actions of this person could have resulted in the unnecessary loss of life of American military personnel. I think she deserves more than the minimum sentence. It is very fortunate that no lives were lost.

Just When I Thought John Durham’s Picture Belonged On A Milk Carton

The New York Post is reporting today that Igor Danchenko has been arrested and accused of lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

The article reports:

A Russian analyst who was the key source behind the shady “Steele dossier” about former President Donald Trump was arrested in Virginia on Thursday as part of an ongoing special counsel investigation, the Justice Department said.

Igor Danchenko, 43, is accused of lying to the FBI when questioned about his work compiling the wild allegations about Russia and Trump ahead of his victorious 2016 presidential election, according to a grand jury indictment unsealed Thursday.

The shady analyst is now the third person to face charges in special counsel John Durham’s probe into the origins of the Russia investigation, which Trump has long insisted was a witch hunt.

The problem is that many Americans believe the Steele dossier was factual and many mainstream media outlets have not yet admitted it wasn’t.

The article notes:

Many of his other allegations, such as the claim that Trump lawyer Michael Cohen visited Prague to meet Russian intel operatives, have been subsequently disproven.

According to the indictment, the FBI interviewed Danchenko several times between January and November 2017 to determine if information contained in the dossier was true.

Danchenko allegedly lied to federal investigators about his sources for the dubious intel on at least five different dates during that time, the court document states.

For instance, the feds say Danchenko falsely claimed never to have spoken to a certain unnamed PR executive — who was also a longtime Democratic party operative — about any of the allegations in the report. 

But Danchenko actually used the exec as an anonymous source for one or more of the claims contained in the dossier, according to the indictment.

It will be interesting to see how far this investigation goes before it is shut down for one reason or another. The people most in danger from the investigation are the Clintons, and the fact that Terry McAuliffe lost the election in Virginia this week may be a sign that the power the Clintons wield in the Democrat party is waning. I suspect that the Bidens have no love for the Clintons, but they may want to see the investigation shut down before it does serious damage to the Democrat party.

Stay tuned.

This Was Always The Next Step

On October 2nd, I posted an article about the National School Boards Association’s claim that school board members are under threat from parents who oppose some of the garbage being taught in our classrooms. The actual truth is that the National School Boards Association and the local school boards would like very much for parents to sit down and shut up, and the parents are not cooperating. There have been very few, if any, threats. One of the few benefits of the school shutdowns of the past year was that parents got a closer look at what their children were being taught. A lot of parents didn’t like what they saw and are now speaking out against it. Because the Teacher’s Union and affiliated groups are major donators to the Democrat party, this revolt by parents must be stopped. Enter the Biden administration’s Justice Department.

Yesterday Red State reported the following:

The struggle of parents to prevent school boards from sanctioning racial discrimination and stereotyping and imposing profoundly stupid Wuhan virus mitigation measures, like masking elementary school kids, has led to school board meetings becoming something of a battleground in the culture wars. School board members and educrats do not like being challenged or held to account by the rubes who elected them, and so they are claiming the mantle of victimhood.

Yesterday, I posted about a letter written by the president of the National School Boards Association…yes, there is such a thing…demanding that Joe Biden use the full force of the federal government to stop parents from speaking out. This letter included a request that the provisions of the Patriot Act be invoked against parents to keep school boards safe from being offended; see National School Board Official Demands Biden Use Patriot Act Against Protesting Parents.

Even though White House spokescreature Jen Psaki was publicly ambivalent about the letter, it was evident that Biden would eventually come to the rescue of the educrats because he needed their support. That help arrived today.

The article includes the following:

Justice Department Addresses Violent Threats Against School Officials and Teachers

Citing an increase in harassment, intimidation and threats of violence against school board members, teachers and workers in our nation’s public schools, today Attorney General Merrick B. Garland directed the FBI and U.S. Attorneys’ Offices to meet in the next 30 days with federal, state, Tribal, territorial and local law enforcement leaders to discuss strategies for addressing this disturbing trend. These sessions will open dedicated lines of communication for threat reporting, assessment and response by law enforcement.

“Threats against public servants are not only illegal, they run counter to our nation’s core values,” wrote Attorney General Garland. “Those who dedicate their time and energy to ensuring that our children receive a proper education in a safe environment deserve to be able to do their work without fear for their safety.”

According to the Attorney General’s memorandum, the Justice Department will launch a series of additional efforts in the coming days designed to address the rise in criminal conduct directed toward school personnel. Those efforts are expected to include the creation of a task force, consisting of representatives from the department’s Criminal Division, National Security Division, Civil Rights Division, the Executive Office for U.S. Attorneys, the FBI, the Community Relations Service and the Office of Justice Programs, to determine how federal enforcement tools can be used to prosecute these crimes, and ways to assist state, Tribal, territorial and local law enforcement where threats of violence may not constitute federal crimes.

Threats are not acceptable, but either is a crackdown against free speech, which is what this will eventually evolve into. Notice the words “where threats of violence may not constitute federal crimes.” Anything perceived to be a threat of violence (even though it may not be a federal crime) will come into play here. Is “I hope you get voted out of office” a threat of violence? Will it be considered one? This is a dangerous path.

 

A New Low In American Justice

Yesterday American Greatness posted an article about Timothy Hale-Cusanelli, an Army reservist arrested on January 15 for his involvement in the January 6 protest in Washington, D.C.

The article reports:

During a status hearing Friday afternoon for Timothy Hale-Cusanelli, an Army reservist arrested on January 15 for his involvement in the January 6 protest in Washington, D.C., an assistant U.S. attorney admitted the government will not meet its discovery obligations for all Capitol defendants until early 2022.

Kathyrn Fifield, the lead attorney representing the Justice Department, informed Judge Trevor McFadden that the “incalculable” volume of video collected by the government related to the Capitol breach investigation will prevent defendants and their lawyers from accessing the full body of evidence against them for several more months. “No system exists to wrap its arms around [all this evidence],” Fifield told McFadden. This includes at least 14,000 hours of surveillance video plus thousands of hours of body-worn camera footage from law enforcement.

Fifield resisted setting a 2021 trial date for Hale; McFadden and Jonathan Crisp, Hale’s court-appointed attorney, told the government last month that unless a plea arrangement was agreed upon, a trial would be set for later this year because Hale already has been incarcerated for more than six months. “If we do set a trial date, the government cannot meet discovery obligations until early 2022. That’s a conservative estimate,” Fifield said.

The article notes the strange handling of this case:

Despite the lack of evidence against him, Hale has been behind bars since January. He is not charged with any violent crimes but the Justice Department repeatedly—and successfully—has sought his pre-trial detention. (McFadden denied Hale’s release in March.) 

The article concludes:

On July 7, the D.C. Circuit Court denied Hale’s appeal seeking release.

McFadden scolded the government for its backwards process. “You would not arrest [someone] then gather evidence later. That’s not how this works.” When Fifield said full discovery is in the best interest of the defendant, McFadden shot back: “Freedom also is important to the defendant.” The Trump-appointed judge raised concerns over Sixth Amendment violations. “This does not feel what the Constitution [and] the Speedy Trial Act envisions.”

Despite the government’s confession that it is not prepared to make its case against Hale, McFadden set a trial date of November 9, 2021. (He did not release Hale, who has no criminal record, from prison.)

“No January Sixer should be made to suffer in a jail cell while the DOJ continues to delay discovery simply because it can,” one defense attorney told me by text this afternoon. “This is unprecedented, unreasonable, unconstitutional, and wrong.”

This is what a dictatorship detaining political prisoners looks like. Where are the people in Congress who swore an oath to defend the U.S. Constitution. This is a total violation of the Constitution they swore to defend, and most of Congress has been totally silent about the matter.

Sad, But Not Surprising

The Epoch Times is reporting today that employers can legally require their employees to get the Covid-19 vaccine despite the fact that the vaccine is approved for emergency use and not fully approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

The article reports:

The Department of Justice concluded in an opinion that federal law doesn’t prohibit public agencies and private businesses from requiring COVID-19 vaccines under the Food and Drug Administration’s emergency use authorization.

On July 26, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, California, and New York City said they would require some of their government workers to get the COVID-19 shot or be tested weekly. Veterans Affairs, with the move, became the first federal agency to mandate the vaccine.

The Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel on July 26 wrote (pdf) that because access to COVID-19 vaccines is more commonplace, “numerous educational institutions, employers, and other entities across the United States” have said they will require some individuals to be vaccinated against the virus as a condition of employment, participation, benefit, service, or relationship.

“For instance,” it wrote, “certain schools will require vaccination in order for students to attend class in person, and certain employers will require vaccination as a condition of employment.”

The opinion, which noted that some have questioned the legality of such mandates, concluded that federal law concerning the FDA’s emergency use authorizations (EUA) on COVID-19 vaccines made by Moderna, Pfizer, and Johnson & Johnson doesn’t “prohibit public or private entities from imposing vaccine requirements, even when the only vaccines available are those authorized under EUAs.”

The article notes:

White House press secretary Jen Psaki, who has given conflicting statements around whether the administration supports vaccine passports, told reporters during a briefing last week that the administration isn’t requiring officials to get vaccinated.

“No, we have not mandated it,” Psaki in response to a question about whether the White House has made COVID-19 shots mandatory. She appeared to say that the White House offered the vaccines to every employee.

Some Republican-led states, meanwhile, have passed laws that forbid the usage of vaccine passports in government agencies and offices. Florida went a step further in May after Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican, signed a law that prohibits all private businesses from using vaccine passports in his state.

I don’t believe we have been in this place before. I don’t remember the polio vaccine being federally mandated despite the polio epidemic of the 1950’s. This is a level of government control that no one should support.

Some Of The Nominees For Positions In The Biden Administration Are Troubling

Paul Mirengoff at Power Line Blog posted an article today about Merrick Garland, President Biden’s pick to lead the Justice Department.

The article notes:

I don’t consider Merrick Garland a moderate liberal, and I don’t think he came across as one during his confirmation hearing yesterday. He couldn’t even bring himself to say that illegally entering the U.S. should be a crime.

I consider Garland a front man for the radicalization and politicization of the Department of Justice. As Julie Kelly puts it, “he’ll be a figurehead [like Robert Mueller] and Weismann-type prosecutors will run the show.”

Two of those who, if confirmed, will run the show are Vanita Gupta and Kristen Clarke. Gupta is Joe Biden’s nominee for Associate Attorney General. Clarke is his nominee for Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights.

Yesterday, Sen. Mike Lee asked Garland about these two. Garland dutifully vouched for them on the basis of having “gotten to know them.” The question is: What else could he say? Also: Whom should we believe, Merrick Garland or our lying eyes?

Please follow the link above to read the responses by Merrick Garland when asked specific questions about Vanita Gupta and Kristen Clarke.

The article concludes:

It’s important to note that Garland did not select either Gupta or Clarke for the positions in question. He got to “know” them only after they had been picked by Team Biden. And clearly, he had no choice but to vouch for them at his confirmation hearing.

But even if Garland was giving his honest opinions of the two based on his conversations with them, these opinions count for next to nothing.

Garland may be a decent guy and a competent court of appeals judge, but he’s not a seer. Gupta and Clarke weren’t going to confess to him their raw hatred of Republicans, their most extreme political views, or any strands of anti-Semitism and Black supremacy in their thinking.

But Gupta’s intemperate comments about her political opponents, which approach those of Neera Tanden in their venom, are there, in writing, for all to see. So is Clarke’s history of advocating Black supremacy and promoting anti-Semitism. So is her unwavering support for racial discrimination against Whites.

The Senate should confirm Merrick Garland. He’s the nominee for Attorney General one would expect in a Democratic administration — nothing better, nothing worse.

The Senate should not confirm Vanita Gupta and Kristen Clarke. The public record, from which Sen. Lee’s questions were drawn, shows them to be nasty extremists committed to key elements of the radical BLM agenda — whatever Garland’s true impression of them might be.

Even in a Democratic administration, we should expect, and demand, better.

There are words to describe the cabinet the Biden administration is putting together, but I can’t use them in a G-rated blog.

 

 

He Probably Meant Well

The following is a post that appeared on the Judicial Watch website:

How The Barr DOJ Failed

“They’ve been protecting Hillary Clinton, they’ve been protecting Obama, they’ve been protecting the Deep State,” Fitton (Tom Fitton) stated last Friday.

Attorney General Barr’s resignation amidst a contested presidential election dominated last week’s political airwaves. On Friday, Fitton reminded viewers that “AG Barr or at least the Justice Department under AG Barr has been a black hole in terms of responding to Judicial Watch.” As Fitton reported, “they recently went to court to shut down all of our Clinton email investigations, discovery, and FOIA lawsuits – they don’t want us to do anything.”

Fitton believes that the Justice Department has turned a blind eye to scandals surrounding VP Joe Biden, especially material evidence discovered on Hunter Biden’s laptop last year. The scandals, which he has described as “obvious criminal conduct,” were largely set aside by the Department of Justice, according to Fitton. “They [the DOJ] protected Joe Biden and interfered in the election by doing nothing about the Joe Biden scandals.”

Those defending the DOJ’s decision to not investigate the Bidens are, in Fitton’s estimation, misunderstanding the role the Agency plays in investigating corruption surrounding presidential candidates. While it is correct that the DOJ should not investigate candidates in a bid to influence the outcome of an election, Fitton believes that the Agency is doing just that – but in a different way: “this person is running for office and they get a get of jail free card.” Likening the policy to a game of Monopoly, Fitton contrasts this approach with that employed by the DOJ against President Trump, when “they specifically targeted Trump because he was running for office.

As Fitton concluded, “it doesn’t matter who the next AG is, I don’t expect any difference coming January. We just have to keep doing the work we’re doing. We can’t trust them to investigate Biden, so we’ll do it instead.”

The fact that no one in authority was charged in the overt violation of the civil rights of the people involved in the Trump campaign and the Trump transition team says a lot about the corruption in our federal law enforcement agencies. The fact that a senior administration official can totally mishandle classified information and pay no price while a sailor goes to jail for taking a picture of his workplace is disturbing. Somewhere along the line we have lost the concept of equal justice under the law. Until someone has the courage to clean out the agencies that are supposed to be working for all Americans–not just those of one political persuasion–our country will be in danger of becoming a banana republic. We are already hearing cries from some Democrats of investigating the President when he leaves office with the goal of arresting him. That shouldn’t happen in America. An honest justice department and related agencies is needed. Unfortunately, William Barr was not able to deliver that.

What Did They Expect?

Yesterday The Washington Times posted an article about the increase of shootings in Portland, Oregon, after the Mayor Ted Wheeler disbanded the city’s police gun crimes unit. What did they expect?

The article reports:

The city recorded 223 shootings in July and August, up from 77 over the same period in 2019. And a little more than halfway through September the city already had 64 shootings, or double the shootings from the same month last year.

The numbers were released last week.

On Monday the federal Justice Department declared Portland and two other cities, Seattle and New York, to be “Anarchy Jurisdictions.” In Portland the federal officials cited the increase in gun crimes as one reason.

The city has faced near-nightly mayhem since late May, when protests broke out over the death of George Floyd, a black man, in Minneapolis. More than 25 riots have been declared in the days since.

The article concludes:

Mr. Wheeler, who is also police commissioner, announced in early June he was disbanding the Portland Police Bureau’s Gun Violence Reduction Team as part of an effort to “reimagine” city policing. Protesters had said the unit unfairly targeted Black men.

In August, after seeing the spike in shootings in July, Mr. Wheeler said he was pondering restoring some type of gun crimes unit.

At least Mr. Wheeler is considering correcting his mistake.

A Little Late, But A Good Move

Just the News is reporting today that the Justice Department is investigating the funding and organizing of the riots that have rocked some of America’s cities recently

The article reports:

The Justice Department is investigating the funders and organizers of far-left violent riots that have rocked America’s cities this summer, Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf says.

Federal investigators are “targeting and investigating the head of these organizations, the individuals that are paying for these individuals to move across the country,” Wolf told Fox News host Tucker Carlson on Monday night.

“I wish that was in a little quicker fashion,” Wolf added while emphasizing “this president is committed to holding individuals accountable.”

…Wolf’s comments come after some GOP members of Congress, including Rep. Ken Buck of Colorado and Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, have increased pressure on DOJ to follow the money and organizers facilitating Britannicthe nationwide rioting.

Britannica reminds us:

Seattle WTO protests of 1999, in full Seattle World Trade Organization protests of 1999, also called Battle of Seattle, a series of marches, direct actions, and protests carried out from November 28 through December 3, 1999, that disrupted the World Trade Organization (WTO) Ministerial Conference in Seattle, Washington. Comprising a broad and diffuse coalition of the American Federation of Labor–Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) and other labour unions, student groups, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), media activists, international farm and industrial workers, anarchists, and others, the Seattle WTO protests are often viewed as the inauguration of the antiglobalization movement.

…Seattle was left with millions of dollars in property damage and lawsuits by protesters arguing civil rights violations. While many of the affiliations formed by divergent political groups dissolved within the next few years, the Seattle WTO protests did jump-start a series of international antiglobalization protests and helped progressive movements realize the power of the Internet for mobilization and coalition building.

I believe this is part of the root of our current problem. The protesters used our legal system against us–claiming that their civil rights were violated. If we don’t deal with the rioters harshly, more riots will follow. That is the lesson of Seattle in 1999. The article refers to the protests in 1999 in Seattle as antiglobalization. I believe that today’s protesters are actually working to further globalization. I am not sure that they are aware of this, but I believe many of the people supporting the riots are globalists.

 

The RussiaGate Scandal Begins To Unravel

Yesterday The Washington Examiner reported that Kevin Clinesmith will plead guilty to charges of altering evidence involved in the surveillance of the Trump campaign in 2016.

The article reports:

Kevin Clinesmith, who worked on both the Hillary Clinton emails investigation and the Trump-Russia inquiry, will admit that he falsified a document during the bureau’s targeting of Carter Page, according to multiple reports. Clinesmith, 38, claimed in early 2017 that Page was “not a source” for the CIA when the CIA had actually told the bureau on multiple occasions that Page was an operational contact for them — a falsehood used to obtain a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act renewal against Page. Durham submitted a five-page filing to the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia on Friday, noting Clinesmith was being charged under 18 U.S.C. § 1001(a)(3) for “False Statements.”

Attorney General William Barr had hinted at a “development” in Durham’s investigation during a Fox News interview on Thursday night.

Clinesmith’s responsibilities during the Trump-Russia investigation included communicating with “another specific United States government agency,” which is believed to be the CIA, as well as providing support to the FBI special agents working with the Justice Department’s National Security Division to pursue FISA warrants and renewals against Page.

Why is this important? The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) was passed to allow the FBI to track terrorists more easily. It was never intended to be used against American citizens who were not breaking the law. The falsifying of a document to allow the surveillance of Carter Page resulted in the violation of Carter Page’s civil rights (and unauthorized spying on the Trump campaign) . The use of FISA to spy on an opposition political campaign was simply Watergate using government surveillance warrants that were unjustified.

The article also notes:

In a scathing July 2018 inspector general report on the FBI’s Clinton emails investigation, Clinesmith was mentioned — again, not by name — numerous times as being one of the FBI officials who conveyed a possible bias against Trump in instant messages, along with Strzok and FBI lawyer Lisa Page, both of whom have left the bureau.

In a lengthy instant message exchange between Clinesmith and another FBI employee on Nov. 9, 2016, the day after Trump’s presidential victory, he lamented Trump’s win and worried about the role he played in the investigation into Trump and his campaign. “My god damned name is all over the legal documents investigating his staff,” Clinesmith said, adding, “So, who knows if that breaks to him what he is going to do?”

Other messages showed Clinesmith, listed in Horowitz’s report as “FBI Attorney 2,” expressed favor toward Clinton and said “Viva le resistance” in the weeks after Trump’s win.

The July 2018 report shows Clinesmith claimed his messages reflected only his personal views and that his work was unaffected by them; Horowitz ultimately was unable to find that “improper considerations, including political bias,” influenced any investigative decisions.

Horowitz’s December report criticized the Justice Department and the FBI for at least 17 “significant errors and omissions” related to the FISA warrants against Page and for the bureau’s reliance on the Democrat-funded discredited dossier compiled by British ex-spy Christopher Steele. Declassified footnotes from Horowitz’s report indicate the bureau became aware that Steele’s dossier may have been compromised by Russian disinformation.

The DOJ watchdog called the FBI’s explanations for these mistakes “unsatisfactory across the board” and testified he wasn’t sure if the errors were “gross incompetence” or “intentional.”

In January, the Justice Department determined that the final two of the four Page FISA warrants “were not valid.” The FBI told the court it was working to ” sequester” all the information from the Page wiretaps, and FBI Director Christopher Wray testified to Congress he was working to ” claw back” that intelligence. The FBI director also testified that the bureau likely illegally surveilled Page.

“After several years, Kevin Clinesmith is finally being held accountable and pleading guilty to committing a felony for his involvement in the plot to falsely portray me and, by implication, the Trump administration as traitors. The actions by the full band of government officials and Democrat operatives involved in the creation of the false applications for my FISA surveillance warrants were entirely unconscionable,” Page said in a statement shared with the Washington Examiner.

I am sure there is more to come. The fact remains that the trial will probably be held in a Washington, D.C. court. It will be very interesting to see how the court rules. We may be about to find out if we actually do have equal justice under the law in America.

What’s Wrong With This Picture?

Townhall reported yesterday that the death sentence of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, one of two asylum-seeking brothers who blew up the Boston Marathon, has been overturned by a U.S. Appeals Court.

The article reports:

Dzhokhar’s lawyers argued that the terrorist himself was a victim of intense media coverage and an unfair jury trial. The attack on the 2013 Boston Marathon killed three people and wounded around 280 others. Many of the victims lost limbs and suffered other horrific injuries. 

“A core promise of our criminal-justice system is that even the very worst among us deserve to be fairly tried and lawfully punished,” reads the federal appeals court ruling vacating Dzhokhar’s death sentence. 

In 2015, a jury found Dzhokhar guilty on all 30 charges against him and sentenced the bomber to death. But because Dzhokhar had destroyed the lives of so many Bostonians, his defense attorneys have successfully argued that his death sentence was unfair because the trial should have been moved to a different city — presumably a city where Dzhokhar didn’t kill people. Dzhokhar told investigators that he and his brother’s next target was planned for New York City’s Times Square.

Dzhokhar will be given a new trial on the basis that his previous trial was unfair and should have been moved to a different city.

Let’s contrast that with the trial of General Michael Flynn. After a federal appeals court Wednesday ordered a trial judge to dismiss the case against President Trump’s first national security adviser, Micheal Flynn, the judge refused to dismiss the case.

On July 30th, The Business Insider reported:

A key federal appeals court in Washington DC agreed Thursday to reexamine the fight over whether former Trump national security adviswer Michael Flynn’s guilty plea can be summarily dismissed.

The new order from 10 members of the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit comes a little over a month after a three-judge panel there ordered a lower federal district court judge who is overseeing the case against Flynn to dismiss the prosecution at the Justice Department’s request.

Recently declassified information on the Flynn case indicates that General Flynn was targeted as a way to tarnish the Trump administration (article here). There is enough information out there to prove that General Flynn’s guilty plea was coerced and that the charges against him should be dismissed.

Contrast the way our courts are treating someone who was caught after executing a terrorist act and a patriot who served our country for many years. Something is seriously wrong with this picture.

Information We Need NOW!

On Saturday The Federalist posted an article explaining why U.S. Attorney John Durham, the lead prosecutor looking into the origins of the Russia probe and the spying on the Trump campaign, should release the results of his investigation before November. I will admit that I am more interested in seeing those in the intelligence community who broke the law held accountable than I am in seeing a report.

The article reports:

As reported by the Washington Examiner, several sources have indicated that “Durham may end up waiting until after November to reveal what he has found or to hand down indictments” because Durham does not want his investigation or any decisions to be viewed as “political.” This would be a mistake. There is no question that he should release his findings and issue any necessary indictments before the November elections.

The voters need to know if the investigations that went on in 2015 and 2016 of the Trump campaign and people associated with it were warranted. If those investigations were not warranted, those responsible need to be held accountable before the election. Anyone who has been following the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) releases by Judicial Watch has a pretty good idea of what went on. Unfortunately, Americans who depend on the mainstream media for their information have no idea of the information in the documents so far declassified and made public. It is totally unfair to ask voters to make a decision in November without giving them the information they need to make an informed decision.

The article notes:

Historically, the Department of Justice has refrained from taking any action for partisan purposes. As reported in Just Security:

Department of Justice employees are entrusted with the authority to enforce the laws of the United States and with the responsibility to do so in a neutral and impartial manner. This is particularly important in an election year.

The Memorandum further states (emphasis added):

As Department employees … we must be particularly sensitive to safeguarding the Department’s reputation for fairness, neutrality and nonpartisanship.

Simply put, politics must play no role in the decisions of federal investigators or prosecutors regarding any investigations or criminal charges. Law enforcement officers and prosecutors may never select the timing of investigative steps or criminal charges for the purpose of affecting any election, or for the purpose of giving an advantage or disadvantage to any candidate or political party.

The article argues that that policy does not apply in this case:

While this policy makes sense overall, it does not make sense in this case for several compelling reasons. First, there is no evidence that Durham’s investigation is partisan in nature or that it is being conducted for partisan political purposes like the Michael Flynn and Roger Stone investigations. Durham’s investigation began long ago and well before Americans were seriously thinking about the 2020 elections.

Second, the purpose of Durham’s investigation appears to align with the department’s mission. Specifically, through his investigation, Durham is seeking to protect the integrity of the election process in the United States. More particularly, Durham is investigating whether one or more people were involved in a plot to sabotage a presidential candidate or to overthrow a duly elected president.

This is not a political issue that “benefits” one party or another. Rather, it is an investigation, the results of which will help Americans of all political leanings. Durham’s findings are vital for all Americans who care about democracy and the integrity of the election process. Americans deserve to know what happened leading up to the 2016 elections.

It’s time for Americans to learn the truth about what the Justice Department and the intelligence community did to undermine the campaign and presidency of President Trump.

Under The Radar

On Wednesday The Epoch Times reported the following:

President Donald Trump and Attorney General William Barr announced on Wednesday significant developments in the administration’s efforts to eradicate the notorious MS-13 gang, including its plan to seek the death penalty of an alleged gang member in connection to the slayings of two New York teens.

Trump said his administration’s “campaign to destroy MS-13” had lead to the arrest and indictment of dozens of MS-13 members and its leaders. The Justice Department launched Joint Task Force Vulcan (JTFV) in August 2019 in an effort to disrupt, dismantle, and ultimately destroy the vicious gang, which has been responsible for a wide range of criminal activity across the United States such as human trafficking, drug trafficking, kidnapping, and murder.

Among the arrests include the indictment of Melgar Diaz, who became the first MS-13 member to be charged with terrorism-related offenses, officials say.

“He was responsible for activities in 13 states—20 cliques in the United States.  He was also the person who would greenlight assassinations in the United States.  The orders come from El Salvador—or they request to assassinate people who go down to El Salvador, and he would greenlight the hit,” Barr said during a press conference at the oval office on Wednesday.

Diaz, whose indictment was unsealed on July 14, was charged with offenses including conspiring to provide material support to terrorists, conspiring to kill or maim individuals overseas, and conspiring to commit acts of terrorism transcending national boundaries.

The article concludes:

The attorney general told reporters that more actions against the leadership of MS-13 are expected, saying that the administration had been working very closely with counterparts in El Salvador.

MS-13 was initially formed by Salvadoran immigrants that came to the United States in order to escape the civil war in their home country, according to a study published in the Journal of Gang Research in 2009.

This action is long overdue. Securing our borders is one way to keep members of MS-13 from coming into the country. Arresting the members that are already here is another step toward making America a safer place.

A Synopsis Of What Obamagate Was And How It Happened

Yesterday Andrew McCarthy posted an op-ed piece in The Washington Examiner detailing some of the highlights of Obamagate. Please follow the link to read the entire article. I am going to focus on a few highlights.

The op-ed notes:

The Trump-Russia inquiry was ingeniously designed. If the president demanded that his subordinates unveil the intelligence files that would reveal the prior administration’s political spying, he stood to be accused of obstructing investigators and seeking to distract the country from his own alleged criminality.

On that score, an underappreciated aspect of the saga is that Trump came to office as a novice. His unhinged Twitter outbursts obscure an abiding uncertainty about the extent of the president’s power to direct the intelligence bureaucracy. A more seasoned Beltway hand would have known what he could safely order reluctant bureaucrats and Obama holdovers to produce for him or disclose to the public. Trump, however, was at sea. That is why it was so vital for his antagonists to sideline Michael Flynn and Jeff Sessions, Trump loyalists with deep experience in intelligence and law enforcement, who could have put a stop to the farce if they’d remained, respectively, national security adviser and attorney general.

The article concludes:

There are two lessons to be drawn from all this.

First, Barr could not be more right that the malfeasance in our government today is the politicization of law enforcement and intelligence. The only way to fix that is to stop doing it. That cannot be accomplished by bringing what many would see as the most politicized prosecution of all time. The imperative to get the Justice Department and the FBI out of our politics discourages the filing of charges that would be portrayed as banana-republic stuff. Yet, even if Barr succeeds in this noble quest, there is no assurance that a future administration would not turn the clock back.

Second, when wayward officials are not called to account, the powers they have abused become the target of public and congressional ire. The problem is that the powers are essential. Without properly directed foreign counterintelligence, supplemented by legitimate law enforcement, the United States cannot be protected from those who would do her harm.

The Trump-Russia farce has destroyed the bipartisan consensus on counterterrorism, and on the need for aggressive policing against cyberintrusions and other provocations by America’s enemies. There is an implicit understanding: The public endows its national security officials with sweeping secret authorities, and those officials solemnly commit that these authorities will only be used to thwart our enemies, not to spy on Americans or undermine the political process.

That understanding has been fractured. In counterintelligence, government operatives have to be able to look us in the eye and say, “You can trust us.” Americans no longer do. The sentiment is justified. That will not make our consequent vulnerability any less perilous.

Consequences for the guilty parties would be appropriate. However, until the American public is educated on exactly what happened, any consequences are going to look political. What is needed at this time is a massive education campaign to bring the general public up to speed. Unfortunately, the mainstream media is not likely to participate in that campaign. I am concerned that because of the dishonesty of the mainstream media,  many Americans have no idea that there actually was an attempted soft coup against President Trump. Attorney General Barr and those working with him will need the wisdom of Solomon to navigate the maze that lies before them.

The Dead Case Continues

Yesterday Townhall posted an article about the continuing saga of Michael Flynn. This story should have been over years ago, but there are enough deep state operatives running around Washington to keep it alive. The real root of the case is that Michael Flynn is a very smart man who would have figured out the corruption in the Department of Justice in his first week on the job.

Townhall focused on the missing 302, the form that the agents interviewing General Flynn would have filled out at the time. The original 302 has somehow gone missing. The article includes a timeline of the case.

The article cites the latest developments in the case:

Sidney Powell is part of Flynn’s new and aggressive legal team, who said in October that new documents would show an FBI entrapment plot. Well, that day arrived for sure. Flynn has fought to withdraw his guilty plea since the beginning of this year. Right now, his legal team has filed a new writ of mandamus to get this case tossed, the judge removed, and the amicus brief motion dismissed as well. Yeah, I forgot to mention that Sullivan decided he was going to allow every anti-Trump legal team in the world to file amicus briefs. The good news is that the DC Court of Appeals had every right to dismiss the writ outright, no questions asked. Instead, they’ve ordered Sullivan to respond to Powell’s writ personally and defend his actions regarding this case. Legal observers noted this is a huge development and a sign that Flynn’s legal team already passed a huge hurdle. Not only that, but the DC Court gave this judge the most serious method regarding a response. It’s quite clear that the DC Court of Appeals is disturbed by Sullivan’s actions. We’ll circle back to that in a few days. It seems that at least part of the writ might be granted and bring Flynn closer to putting this nightmare behind him. 

Yesterday Paul Mirengoff at Power Line Blog reported the following:

Judge Emmet Sullivan has hired Beth Wilkinson to represent him as he defends his unusual actions in the Michael Flynn case before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. Sullivan already asked for assistance from outside counsel when he appointed John Gleeson to argue against the Justice Department’s motion to dismiss the Flynn prosecution. That extraordinary move helped land Sullivan in the dock, so to speak, thus causing him to enlist Wilkinson as his lawyer.

A highly regarded litigator, Wilkinson represented top aides to Hillary Clinton in her email controversy. She also assisted Brett Kavanaugh when Christine Blasey Ford made her unsubstantiated allegations against him.

Sullivan’s retention of a hired gun litigator is the latest in a long line of bizarre developments in the Flynn case. The likelihood that, in the face of the D.C. Circuit’s order that he file a brief explaining himself, Sullivan would finally bring an end to the farce by granting the DOJ’s motion was never great. With Sullivan now lawyering up, it seems clear that the farce will drag on, with yet another bizarre twist, for a while longer.

It would be really interesting to know who is paying Judge Sullivan’s legal fees.

The Timeline Is Important

When you look up Sharyl Attkisson this is what you find, “Sharyl Attkisson is a nonpartisan Investigative Journalist who tries to give you information others don’t want you to have. What you do with it is your own business. Do your own research. Seek advice from those you trust. Make up your own mind. Think for yourself.” That is a pretty accurate description of a lady who works hard to report the truth.She has received numerous awards for her investigative reporting and was under surveillance during the Obama administration because she got too close to the truth in her reporting about Fast and Furious.

On her website, she recently posted a timeline of all of the illegal surveillance carried out by the Obama administration. Please follow the link to see the entire timeline. I am going to focus only on the part beginning in the summer of 2016.

The article reports:

Summer 2016:

The FBI reportedly tries to obtain a secret FISA court order to monitor communications of Trump adviser Carter Page, alleging that Page is acting as a Russian agent. The application is turned down but approved in October when the anti-Trump “dossier” is included to justify the wiretap application.

2016:

It’s not yet known publicly, but CNN later reports that the Obama Justice Department wiretapped Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort before the 2016 election over Russia ties, closed the investigation, then began surveillance anew sometime in the fall and continued it through the early part of 2017.

Fall 2016:

Trump opponents “shop” to reporters a political opposition research “dossier” alleging Trump is guilty of various inappropriate acts regarding Russia. The information is unverified (and some of it is false) and the press doesn’t publish it, but a copy is provided to the FBI.

September 26, 2016:

It’s not publicly known at the time, but the government makes a proposal to the secretive Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) court to allow the National Counter Terrorism Center to access “unmasked” intel on Americans acquired by the FBI and NSA. (The Court later approves as “appropriate”.)

October 7, 2016:

Former vice chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff James Cartwright pleads guilty in a leak investigation to lying to the FBI about his discussions with reporters regarding Iran’s nuclear program.

October 26, 2016:

At  closed-door hearing before the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, the Obama administration disclosed that it had been violating surveillance safeguards, according to Circa. It disclosed that more than 5 percent of its searches of the NSA’s database violated safeguards promised in 2011.

November 8, 2016:

Donald Trump is elected President.

November 2016-January 2017:

News reports claim Rice’s interest in the NSA materials accelerates after President Trump’s election through his January inauguration. Surveillance reportedly included Trump transition figures and/or foreign officials discussing a Trump administration.

December 2016:

FBI secretly monitors and records communications between Russian ambassador, Sergey Kislyak and Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, who later became President Trump’s national security adviser.

After Trump’s election, Obama officials take steps to ensure certain intelligence gathered regarding Trump associates is “spread across the government.” One Obama official would later say it’s because they were afraid once Trump officials “found out how we knew what we knew,” the intelligence would be destroyed. However, Obama critics later theorize Obama officials were working to mount opposition to Trump’s presidency.

December 15, 2016:

National Security Adviser Susan Rice later reportedly acknowledged that the Obama administration spied on Trump officials in Trump Tower on this date, but claimed it was incidental to the administration’s spying on the foreign leader they were meeting with: the UAE crown prince. Rice also reportedly admitted to “unmasking” the names of the Trump officials who met with the crown prince, saying it was important to know who they were, although the identities of Americans are supposed to be strictly protected except in extraordinary circumstances. Trump officials who met with the crown prince reportedly included: Steve Bannon, Jared Kushner and Gen. Michael Flynn.

January 10, 2017:

The media reports on the leaked anti-Trump “dossier” compiled by a political opposition research group containing unverified and at least partly untrue allegations of misconduct involving Trump and Russia.

January 12, 2017:

The Obama administration finalizes new rules allowing the National Security Agency (NSA) to spread certain intelligence to 16 other U.S. intel agencies without the normal privacy protections.

President Obama commutes all but the last four months of Manning’s sentence for leaking intelligence information to WikiLeaks.

February 2, 2017:

The news reports that five information technology (IT) computer professionals employed by Democrats in the House of Representatives are under criminal investigation for allegedly “accessing House IT systems without lawmakers’ knowledge.” The suspects include three brothers identified as Abid, Imran and Jamal Awan “who managed office information technology for members of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and other lawmakers.” The brothers were said to have been employed by three Democrats on the Intelligence Committee and “five members of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs which deal with with many of the nation’s most sensitive issues and documents, including those related to the war on terrorism.”

February 9, 2017:

News of the FBI recordings of Lt. Gen. Flynn speaking with Russia’s ambassador is leaked to the press. The New York Times and the Washington Post report that Flynn was captured on wiretaps discussing current U.S. sanctions, despite Flynn’s earlier denials.

The Washington Post also reports the FBI reviewed Flynn’s calls with Russian ambassador and “found nothing illicit.”

I realize that is a long list, but there are a few things in it that stand out to me. President Trump took office on January 20th. Why would President Obama change long-standing rules on handling intelligence eight days before leaving office? Why have we heard nothing about any consequences the Awan brothers have suffered because of their activities? Why were there no consequences for the spying on Trump Tower?

The timeline of the increased unmasking during the transition period and during the early days of the Trump administration is very telling. This looks like the setting up of a shadow government to make sure the previous illicit activities were not discovered. I firmly believe that General Flynn was targeted because he was smart enough and had been around Washington enough to figure out quickly what was going on. Had General Flynn stayed on the White House staff, I suspect there might already be some people on trial for their misdeeds. That may well have been the reason he was targeted. The reason he is still being targeted is that those who broke the law want to make sure he is never put in a position to uncover their misdeeds.

The Case For Investigating The Trump Campaign And Presidency Just Keeps Getting Weaker

Yesterday John Solomon posted an article at Just The News with the following title, “The 13 revelations showing the FBI never really had a Russia collusion case to begin with.”

I am going to list the revelations without the comments, so please follow the link to read the entire article. It is chilling to think that a political party in power can use such flimsy information to spy on the political campaign (and presidency) of the opposing party.

Here is the list:

1.) The FBI possessed information dating to 2015 in Steele’s intelligence (Delta) file warning that he might be the victim of Russian disinformation through his contacts with Vladimir Putin-connected oligarchs.

2.) Senior Justice Department official Bruce Ohr warned the FBI in August 2016 that Steele held an extreme bias against Trump (he was “desperate” to defeat Trump) and that his information was likely uncorroborated raw intelligence.

3.) Steele’s work on the dossier was funded by Trump’s rival in the election, Hillary Clinton’s campaign, and the Democratic Party, through their opposition research firm, Fusion GPS.

4.) Steele told a State Department official in October 2016, 10 days before the FISA warrants were first secured, that he had leaked to the news media and had an election day deadline for making public the information he had shared with the FBI as a confidential human source.

5.) Steele was fired Nov. 1, 2016 for violating his confidential human source agreement by leaking to the news media.

6.) Information Steele provided to the government was proven, before the FISA warrants were granted, to be false and inaccurate.

7.) Steele was caught in October 2016 peddling a false internet rumor also being spread by a lawyer for the Democratic National Committee and a liberal reporter.

8.) The FBI falsely declared to the FISA court it had corroborated the evidence in Steele’s dossier used in the search warrant application, including that Carter Page had met with two senior Russians in Moscow in summer 2016

9.) The FBI interviewed Steele’s primary sub-source in January 2017, who claimed much of the information attributed to him was not accurate, exaggerated or rumor.

10.) The FBI possessed statements of innocence from Page collected by an undercover informer in August and October 2016, including that Page denied meeting with the two Russians and did not play a role in changing a GOP platform position on Ukraine during the Trump nominating convention.

11.) The CIA alerted the FBI that Page was a friendly U.S. asset who had assisted the Agency on Russia matters and was not a stooge for the Russian government.

12.) The FBI possessed exculpatory statements made by Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos in which he told an undercover informer he and the Trump campaign were not involved in the Russian hacking of Clinton’s emails and considered such activity to be “illegal.”

13.) The FBI concluded in January 2017 that Trump national security adviser Mike Flynn was not being deceptive in his interviews with agents and likely suffered from a faulty memory and was not operating as an agent for Russia.

The only thing I can add to this is that this should NEVER happen again in America. The only way to prevent it from happening again is the put the people in jail who violated the civil rights of Americans by lying to the FISA Court.

The Slow Drip Of Investigations Into FISA Abuse Continues

Yesterday The Washington Examiner posted an article titled, “FISA court orders DOJ to review flawed surveillance applications and provide names of targets.”

The article reports:

The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court demanded answers about whether FISA applications were invalid after a new Justice Department inspector general report found pervasive issues with the FBI not following fact-checking procedures.

Friday’s ruling came days after DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz released a memo showing FISA flaws were not just limited to the surveillance of Trump campaign associate Carter Page.

The findings of Horowitz’s audit released on Tuesday focused on the FBI’s requirement to maintain an accuracy subfile known as a “Woods file.” Investigators found serious problems in each of the 29 FISA applications they examined.

“We believe that a deficiency in the FBI’s efforts to support the factual statements in FISA applications through its Woods Procedures undermines the FBI’s ability to achieve its ‘scrupulously accurate’ standard for FISA applications,” Horowitz concluded.

The article continues with information that might indicate the FISA court is not happy about being misled:

“It would be an understatement to note that such lack of confidence appears well-founded. None of the 29 cases reviewed had a Woods File that did what it is supposed to do: support each fact proffered to the Court. For four of the 29 applications, the FBI cannot even find the Woods File,” presiding Judge James Boasberg said. “For three of those four, the FBI could not say whether a Woods File ever existed. The OIG, moreover, ‘identified apparent errors or inadequately supported facts’ in all 25 applications for which the Woods Files could be produced. Interviews with FBI personnel ‘generally have confirmed’ those deficiencies, not dispelled them.”

Boasberg said the wide-ranging problems “provide further reason for systemic concern” about the FBI’s FISA process and “reinforces the need for the Court to monitor the ongoing efforts of the FBI and DOJ to ensure that, going forward, FBI applications present accurate and complete facts.” The judge said, “When problems are identified in particular cases, furthermore, the Court must evaluate what remedial measures may be necessary.”

The article concludes:

In a rare public order last year, the FISA court criticized the FBI’s handling of the Page applications as “antithetical to the heightened duty of candor described above” and demanded an evaluation from the bureau. The FISA court also ordered a review of all FISA filings handled by Kevin Clinesmith, the FBI lawyer who altered a key document about Page in the third renewal process. He is now under criminal investigation by U.S. Attorney John Durham, a prosecutor from Connecticut who was tasked by Attorney General William Barr with investigating the origins and conduct of the Russia inquiry.

I will not be impressed with any of this until people actually go to jail for violating the civil rights of American citizens. I am still not convinced that will ever happen.

 

There Are Serious Problems In Our Justice System

Yesterday The Washington Times posted an article about the sentencing of Roger Stone. Frankly it seems as if Roger Stone’s biggest crime was supporting President Trump.

The article reports:

Federal prosecutors’ initial recommendation that Roger Stone serve between seven to nine years in prison was unusually excessive compared to similar sentences imposed for lying to Congress, according to an analysis by The Washington Times.

However, the Justice Department’s move to reduce the sentencing recommendation for an ally of President Trump set off a politically-charged fracas in Washington. Capitol Hill Democrats demanded an investigation into why the department overruled prosecutors’ initial request as “excessive and unwarranted.”

A Washington jury convicted Stone in November of lying to Congress, obstruction of justice and witness tampering for thwarting lawmakers’ investigation into Trump campaign collusion with Russia.

Roger Stone was arrested in a predawn raid with a S.W.A.T. team. He was not considered a danger to anyone, and his wife is deaf. Can you imagine the fear she felt. This whole scenario is over the top.

Meanwhile, do you remember Brock Allen Turner? He was a Stanford University student athlete caught in the act of raping a female student. He was sentenced to six months in the county jail and probation. What about Hillary Clinton and her secret server? How many security violations and destruction of evidence charges were overlooked there? Meanwhile a young submariner was sent to jail for taking a picture of his workspace.

Our justice system is wandering down a road that should not be traveled.

The article at The Washington Times notes:

Two other political figures ensnared in then-special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia probe also were convicted for lying to Congress:

⦁ Lobbyist W. Samuel Patten pleaded guilty and prosecutors dropped the charge. He got three years probation for illegal lobbying.

⦁ Former Trump fixer Michael Cohen received four years in prison after he pleaded guilty to lying to Congress and other crimes.

The key difference between Stone’s and other cases is he also went down for obstruction and tampering with witnesses. Prosecutors with the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Washington said the added convictions demanded more prison time.

They were “piling on,” said former federal prosecutor Andrew McCarthy.

“A sentence of nine years is unreasonable,” he said. “The Justice Department could have brought this whole case as one count of obstruction and instead brought seven felonies.”

This sentence does need to be revised.

Michael Flynn and FBI Misconduct

Yesterday Fox News posted an article about the case of Michael Flynn.

The article reports:

“I did not lie to them.”

With those words in a declaration and supplemental motion filed Wednesday, former national security adviser Michael Flynn formally asked a federal judge for permission to withdraw his guilty plea for making false statements to two FBI agents in the White House back on Jan. 24, 2017.

In a sweeping argument that took aim at the bureau’s “outrageous” conduct, Flynn’s legal team highlighted a slew of information that has come to light since Flynn’s plea — including that no precise record of Flynn’s statements to the agents exists and that the original handwritten FD-302 witness report from the interview is “missing,” with subsequent versions later “edited” in some undisclosed manner by anti-Trump FBI officials.

Moreover, Flynn’s team maintained he had no reason to lie about his communications with the Russian ambassador concerning how the country should respond to sanctions imposed by the Obama administration, or a then-pending vote on Israel in the United Nations. After all, Flynn said, he knew federal officials “routinely monitor, record, and transcribe” conversations like the ones he had with Russian diplomats.

The article continues:

Horowitz further revealed that Pientka (FBI Agent Joe Pietnka) was part of an apparent undercover operation to essentially spy on the Trump campaign and Flynn during a routine intelligence briefing in August 2016.

Pientka’s “participation in that presidential briefing was a calculated subterfuge to record and report … anything Mr. Flynn and Mr. Trump said in that meeting,” Flynn’s lawyers wrote. Morever, the FISA court itself has rebuked the FBI as a whole, the filing noted.

Pientka “bore ultimate responsibility for four falsified applications to the FISA court and oversaw virtually every abuse inherent in Crossfire Hurricane — including suppression of exculpatory evidence,” Flynn’s team added.

The FBI has repeatedly refused to respond to Fox News’ request for clarification on Pientka’s status, even as Republicans in Congress have sought to question him.

The article concludes:

In December, U.S. District Judge Emmitt Sullivan had seemingly crushed Flynn’s hopes for ditching his guilty plea, saying that Flynn had waived his constitutional rights to obtain exculpatory information by pleading guilty.

Then, earlier this month, Flynn moved to withdraw his guilty plea for this first time —  just days after the Justice Department reversed course to recommend up to six months of prison time in his case, alleging he was not fully cooperating or accepting responsibility for his actions.

On Wednesday, the govenrment kept its recommendation of between zero and six months in prison, but specifically stated it would not “oppose” a sentence of probation. That walkback was notable, and signaled that Flynn likely will not serve time in prison.

Flynn’s lawyers, earlier this month, argued that “because of the government’s bad faith, vindictiveness and breach of the plea agreement,” Flynn’s plea should be withdrawn. That led to Wednesday’s supplemental filing — and, perhaps, new life for Flynn’s defense team.

Please follow the link to read the entire article–it includes a lot of significant details. I hope that Michael Flynn is not only exonerated, but reimbursed for the legal expenses he has incurred defending himself from a smear campaign.

This Case Is Still Relevant

On Tuesday The Epoch Times posted an article about the Awan scandal. In case you have forgotten, various members and friends of the Awan family were IT aides to more than 40 Democratic members of key national security and foreign policy committees in the House of Representatives. Their positions gave the aides access to all of the members’ digital communications and documents.

The article reminds us:

With the exception of Imran Awan, all of the Awan network members lost their access to the House IT network in February 2017, as a result of a report by the top House administrative officials that said the aides “are an ongoing and serious risk to the House of Representatives, possibly threatening the integrity of our information systems and thereby members’ capacity to serve constituents.”

Imran Awan was kept on the House payroll by then-Democratic National Committee Chairman Rep. Debbie Wasserman-Schultz (D-Fla.) until he was arrested by federal agents while trying to leave the United States.

Awan was subsequently charged with bank fraud in connection with a loan from the Congressional Federal Credit Union.

The article reports the current activities on the case:

An apparently frustrated federal judge ordered attorneys for the Department of Justice (DOJ) to appear Jan. 15 for a “snap” hearing to explain why the government isn’t producing documents sought by Judicial Watch concerning former Democratic information technology aide Imran Awan.

U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia Judge Amit Mehta’s unusual order followed a sealed submission by DOJ attorneys Jan. 10 in the case prompted by the nonprofit government watchdog’s November 2018 Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit.

Such hastily convened hearings are extremely unusual in a federal judicial system so jammed that months can pass before cases are litigated in courtrooms.

“In a hearing last month, U.S. District Court Judge Amit P. Mehta expressed frustration and ordered the Justice Department to explain its failure to produce records by January 10 and to provide Judicial Watch some details about the delay,” Judicial Watch said in a statement Jan. 14 about the snap hearing.

“Instead, the Justice Department made its filing under seal and has yet to provide Judicial Watch with any details about its failure to produce records as promised to the court,” Judicial Watch said.

Federal attorneys previously said in December 2019 that they were unable to provide the documents sought in the Judicial Watch FOIA requests because they include materials from a “related sealed criminal matter.”

Thank God for Judicial Watch.

The article concludes:

The Awan scandal was first exposed by Daily Caller investigative journalist Luke Rosiak, who subsequently published a book on his findings, titled “Obstruction of Justice: How the Deep State Risked National Security to Protect the Democrats.”

None of the Awan network members were reportedly required to undergo security background checks prior to being employed on congressional staffs.

Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said in the nonprofit’s statement that “the DOJ’s handling of the Awan brothers case has long been an issue of concern and now we are expected to believe some secret investigation prevents the public from knowing the full truth about this scandal. We are skeptical.”

Just another example of inexplicable actions by the Justice Department.

The Swamp Has Been The Swamp For A While

Issues & Insights posted an article today with the following headine, “This Isn’t The First Time The IG Denied Flagrant Bias At The FBI.”

The article reports:

Democrats and the mainstream press – is there any difference between the two these days? – have been clinging to the “no bias” statement by the Justice Department inspector general with all their might.

The IG said that he couldn’t state definitively that political bias motivated officials at the FBI to launch and then sustain an investigation against the Trump campaign based on the Clinton-campaign funded and thoroughly discredited Steele Dossier.

That was enough for press to run headlines such as:

“Bias didn’t taint FBI leaders running Trump-Russia Investigation”

“Report on F.B.I. Debunks Anti-Trump Plot”

“Mistakes, but no political bias in FBI probe of Trump campaign: watchdog”

And when Inspector General Michael Horowitz testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday, Democrats repeatedly pressed him to state his “no bias” claim over and over.

“You didn’t find a ‘deep state’ conspiracy against candidate or President Trump,” Sen. Diane Feinstein asked in the form of a statement.

“We found no bias,” Horowitz said.

Sen. Patrick Leahy repeated the “question,” saying that the IG had found “no evidence that the investigation was motivated by anti-Trump or political bias.”

The notion that there was “no bias” at all is impossible to believe when you look at the evidence that Horowitz gathered.

The article also notes:

In any case, this “no bias” language in the latest IG report is almost identical to what Horowitz said in his June 2018 report about the hopelessly biased FBI “investigation” into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server when she was secretary of State.

In that report, the also G claimed that there was “no evidence that the conclusions by department prosecutors were affected by bias.” The report then went on to say that officials made a series of “judgment calls” that were technically proper.

But the truth is that every single one of these judgment calls benefited Clinton.

Plus, the IG found plenty of evidence of flagrant bias among the key players in that investigation, including exchanges between Peter Strzok and Lisa Page about how “we’ll stop” Trump from being elected.

The article concludes:

What kind of “inaccuracies and omissions”? Oh, things like hiding from the court information that “raised significant questions about the reliability of the Steele reporting that was used.” And failing to tell the court that Page had been an FBI informant, which involved working with Russian intelligence officers.

“We also found” he went on, “basic, fundamental, and serious errors during the completion of the FBI’s factual accuracy reviews.” And it found that FBI officials “did not give appropriate attention to facts that cut against probable cause.”

In other words, any shreds of evidence that there was no reason to spy on Page.

Horowitz said these “basic and fundamental errors” were made by “three separate, hand-picked investigative teams.”

If the FBI were simply incompetent, you’d expect these “fundamental errors” to be more random. But as with the “judgment calls” during the Clinton email investigation, all of these mistakes just happened to cut in one direction only. In this case of Clinton, they all helped the FBI reach the decision they’d made at the start to exonerate her. In Trump’s case, every supposed screw-up all helped to keep the probe going.

Even Horowitz himself wouldn’t categorically deny that bias played a role in the FISA applications. As he told Sen. Patrick Leahy, the Vermont Democrat, “it gets murkier … when you get to the FISA.”

“Murkier” is one way of putting it. “Deep state, anti-Trump bias” is another way. Just because an inspector general won’t say those words doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.

We truly are on a quest to restore equal justice under the law. Right now we don’t have it.