Aa
Aa
A
A
A
Close
1747881 tn?1546175878

Crossfire Hurricane:

Pull back curtain on FBI's investigation of Donald Trump, Russia

The FBI surveilled Trump's campaign. Only the motive and who gave the orders remains a mystery, but it won't remain for long.

President Trump is ordering the Justice Department formally to examine whether the Obama administration used the FBI to attempt a political hit on his 2016 campaign. It’s about time.

On Sunday the president tweeted that he will instruct the DOJ to investigate whether the FBI/DOJ “infiltrated or surveilled the Trump campaign for political purposes.” The last three words are key, because we already know the Trump campaign was under FBI "surveillance." Only the motive and who gave the orders remains a mystery.

Remember the umbrage in March 2017 when the president said that he had been “wiretapped” before the election? Then-FBI Director James Comey testified he had had “no information” to support that idea, and he had “looked carefully inside the FBI." Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said there was no surveillance, and as DNI he would have known about a court order on "something like this." PolitiFact labeled the claim 100% false.

What a difference a year makes. Recent revelations of the extent of the anti-Trump surveillance activity have forced Trump critics to adopt a new narrative. Clapper now says spying on the campaign was actually a good thing. The New York Times took issue with the term “spying,” saying rather that it was simply an “investigation.” This dickering over terms is reminiscent of when former Attorney General Loretta Lynch insisted the “investigation” into Hillary Clinton’s home-brew email server be called a “matter.”

Former FBI agent Asha Rangappa wrote in the Washington Post that the spying was in fact for Trump’s protection, which he would understand if he knew the first thing about the art of counter-intelligence. But if the FBI was trying to shield the Trump campaign from evil Russkies, why not inform the candidate up front both to warn him and to allay any potential misunderstandings? The New York Times helpfully answers that the FBI was protecting the integrity of the election by keeping the spying under wraps — and in fact if any campaign was hurt it was Hillary Clinton’s.

This flurry of revisionist interpretations comes prior to the expected release of DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s report on the Hillary Clinton email investigation, which could contain criminal referrals. The IG is also looking into how the FBI obtained a FISA warrant to begin its spying campaign on an unnamed Trump aide. Shortly after the president’s tweet on Sunday, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein asked the Inspector General to expand this investigation to include “whether there was any impropriety or political motivation in how the FBI conducted its counterintelligence investigation.”

The FBI and Justice Department could help matters at this point with radical transparency, releasing all the information about every aspect of what they dubbed Operation Crossfire Hurricane. But at every turn the DOJ has raised national security objections to revealing practically anything important. This is harmful to the DOJ and the country. The department leadership needs to understand that a considerable number of Americans believe that the DOJ itself has become a national security threat.

Besides, how could the FBI’s spying on the Trump campaign not have been for political purposes? We have FBI special agent Peter Strzok’s private texts to his paramour FBI lawyer Lisa Page reviewing an Aug. 15, 2016, meeting in then-deputy director Andrew McCabe’s office with top FBI officials, saying the government “can’t take (the) risk” that “Trump gets elected” and the Russia investigation was their “insurance policy” against a Trump presidency. If the Strzok-Page texts were not still heavily and strategically redacted we would know much more. And the fact remains that a major party candidate has never been subjected to such a bizarrely concocted and systematic official investigation during and after an election. Derailing this bastardized process and the Mueller investigation it spawned is not obstruction of justice, but obstruction of injustice.

Whoever came up with the Rolling Stones-inspired name “Crossfire Hurricane” for the horrendous spy operation had a strange sense of humor. But as we watch the truth gradually emerge, see the abuses of power laid bare, and entertain the prospect that the principle actors behind this wretched excess may be held criminally responsible, to quote the Stones, “it’s all right now, in fact it’s a gas.”  

https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2018/05/21/fbi-probe-donald-trump-campaign-russia-witch-hunt-column/628652002/
1 Responses
1747881 tn?1546175878
Cambridge professor outed as FBI informant inside Trump campaign

A Cambridge professor with deep ties to American and British intelligence has been outed as an agent who snooped on the Trump presidential campaign for the FBI.

Multiple media outlets have named Stefan Halper, 73, as the secret informant who met with Trump campaign advisers Carter Page and George Papadopoulos starting in the summer of 2016. The American-born academic previously served in the Nixon, Ford and Reagan administrations.

The revelation, stemming from recent reports in which FBI sources admitted sending an agent to snoop on the Trump camp, heightens suspicions that the FBI was seeking to entrap Trump campaign aides. Papodopoulous has pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI, while Page was the subject of a federal surveillance warrant.

“If the FBI or DOJ was infiltrating a campaign for the benefit of another campaign, that is a really big deal,” President Trump tweeted Saturday, calling for the FBI to release additional documents to Congress.

The Halper revelation also shows the Obama administration’s FBI began prying into the opposing party’s presidential nominee earlier than it previously admitted.

Halper’s sit-downs with Page reportedly started in early July 2016, undermining fired FBI Director James Comey’s previous claim that the bureau’s investigation into the Trump campaign began at the end of that month.

Halper made his first overture when he met with Page at a British symposium. The two remained in regular contact for more than a year, meeting at Halper’s Virginia farm and in Washington, DC, as well as exchanging emails.

The professor met with Trump campaign co-chair Sam Clovis in late August, offering his services as a foreign policy adviser, the Washington Post reported Friday, without naming the academic.

Clovis did not see the conversation as suspicious, his attorney told the paper — but is now “unsettled” that “the professor” never mentioned he’d struck up a relationship with Page.

Days later, Halper contacted Papadopoulos by email. The professor offered the young and inexperienced campaign aide $3,000 and an all-expenses-paid trip to London, ostensibly to write a paper about energy in the eastern Mediterranean region.

“George, you know about hacking the emails from Russia, right?” the professor pressed Papadopoulos when they met, according to reports — a reference to Trump’s campaign-trail riffs about Hillary Clinton’s private email server.

Sources close to Papadopoulos told NBC News that he now believes Halper was working for an intelligence agency.

Highly detailed descriptions of the FBI informant in Friday reports in the New York Times and Washington Post pegged Halper in all but name. Outlets including NBC and Fox News subsequently connected the dots. The revelation confirms a March report in the Daily Caller that outlined Halper’s repeated meetings with Papadopoulos and Page.

It is not clear if the professor was paid to speak with Trump campaign figures, but public records show that he has received large payments from the federal government in the last two years.

The Department of Defense’s Office of Net Assessment — a shadowy think tank that reports directly to the secretary of defense — paid Halper $282,000 in 2016 and $129,000 in 2017.

Halper has close personal and professional ties to the CIA reaching back decades. He is the son-in-law of a former deputy director of the agency and worked on the 1980 presidential campaign of George H.W. Bush, who had served as CIA director.

When Bush became Ronald Reagan’s running mate, Halper was implicated in a spying scandal in which CIA officials gave inside information on the Carter administration to the GOP campaign.

Meanwhile, reports emerged Saturday that Donald Trump Jr. met in August 2016 with a representative of Saudi crown princes, who offered pre-election help to his father’s campaign.

An Israeli political strategist who attended the meeting told the New York Times that their plan to carry out a pro-Trump social media campaign did not go forward.

https://nypost.com/2018/05/19/cambridge-professor-outed-as-fbi-informant-inside-trump-campaign/
You must join this user group in order to participate in this discussion.

You are reading content posted in the Current Events . . . Group

Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
For people with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD), the COVID-19 pandemic can be particularly challenging.
A list of national and international resources and hotlines to help connect you to needed health and medical services.
Here’s how your baby’s growing in your body each week.
These common ADD/ADHD myths could already be hurting your child
This article will tell you more about strength training at home, giving you some options that require little to no equipment.
In You Can Prevent a Stroke, Dr. Joshua Yamamoto and Dr. Kristin Thomas help us understand what we can do to prevent a stroke.