Hello !
Recent Appearances... Rantburg

Home Front: Politix
NYT reporter flagged Jared Kushner meetings with Russians to FBI
2019-06-22
[WASHINGTONEXAMINER] A New York Times

...which still proudly displays Walter Duranty's Pulitzer prize...

news hound fed information about Jared Kushner meeting with Russians to the FBI, newly released emails show.

Journalist Michael Schmidt sent an email on March 24, 2017, to FBI Assistant Director for Public Affairs Michael Kortan, stating that his colleagues were reporting on the FBI's Russia investigation and had stumbled onto some information about President Trump's son-in-law and top adviser.

"Wanted to flag you on something. Three of my colleagues are working on a story about the Russia investigation. They’re told that Jared Kushner is among the individuals who the F.B.I. is scrutinizing for their meetings with Russians," Schmidt said. "My colleagues were told that Ambassador Kislyak, after meeting Kushner and General Flynn in early December at Trump Tower, set up a meeting with Kushner and a Russian banker. Kushner ultimately met with the Russian banker. The banker worked for Alpha Bank. Thanks. Mike."

Kortan forwarded the email to FBI special agent Peter Strzok, who was leading the bureau's Russia investigation, and Jonathan Moffa, an FBI counterintelligence officer.

The Washington Examiner has reached out to Schmidt for comment.

The email was obtained by conservative watchdog group Judicial Watch, released in response to a May 21 court order by U.S. District Judge Reggie Walton to the FBI to process 13,000 pages of records. Thursday's release by Judicial Watch, which it claimed to show "FBI-media collusion," also revealed interactions between the FBI and other media outlets, including ProPublica asking for a fact check for an upcoming report.

An email exchange on April 10, 2017, involving Strzok, former FBI lawyer Lisa Page, and other bureau officials, appears to be about getting a preview of an upcoming Times report. "The editing is nearing completion and we have one last shot to hear what the end result is. Do you have time later today or tomorrow that is convenient for a listening session? Likely by phone in Mike’s office," said an email that was part of the thread with the subject line "NYT Last Shot."
Link


-Lurid Crime Tales-
Dick Morris: The Brits Played A Large Role In The Russian Collusion Hoax
2019-06-10
[Red State] Obviously, much of the spying, the use of FBI informants to infiltrate the Trump campaign, took place on British soil. The incident that the FBI claims triggered them to open an counterintelligence investigation into candidate Donald Trump, a conversation between Australian diplomat Alexander Downer and Trump campaign advisor George Papadopoulos, took place in a London bar. Stefan Halper, a professor at Cambridge University, met with several Trump campaign junior advisors in London as well.

We also know that the day after Peter Strzok, who at the time led the FBI’s Counterespionage Division, opened the investigation into the Trump campaign, he hopped on a plane to London. We know from texts between Strzok and FBI lawyer Lisa Page he was accompanied by another, more senior FBI official as well. Testimony from other FBI officials have pointed to a London connection as well.

In the video below, political analyst Dick Morris discusses the role played by the British intelligence community in the hoax against candidate Trump and the reasons why the Brits were strongly hoping for a Hillary Clinton victory. Trump worried the British elite, Morris says. "He questioned the value of NATO, he said it might be obsolete. He openly endorsed Brexit which they strongly opposed...Then, when he started to say nice things about Putin, praising his leadership style and saying that he could do business with him, that set off alarm bells throughout London." According to Morris:
Link


-Lurid Crime Tales-
Judicial Watch: Strzok-Page Emails Suggest Clinton Email Investigation Was ‘A JOKE'
2019-06-05
[Daily Caller] FBI emails released by a conservative watchdog group Monday suggest the bureau was lax in its investigation of Hillary Clinton’s private email server.

Judicial Watch obtained the 218 pages of emails between former FBI Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok and agency lawyer Lisa Page. The activist group says the documents demonstrate how the FBI showed "special treatment" towards the former secretary of state and her lawyer.

"These incredible documents show the leadership of the FBI rushed to give Hillary Clinton her FBI interview report shortly before the election," Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton wrote in a news release. "And the documents also show the FBI failed to timely document interviews in the Clinton email ’matter’ ‐ further confirming the whole investigation was a joke." (RELATED: Liz Cheney: Strzok-Page Text Messages ’Could Well Be Treason)

The emails focus on what the bureau calls "302s" ‐ reports that document what was said during an interview between an agent and a witness. Page reportedly notes in one email that no such 302 was completed in four instances during the Clinton investigation. The lawyer, who was involved in an affair with Strzok at the time, did not go into details as to why there was such an oversight.
Link


-Lurid Crime Tales-
Barr Unloads On Collusion Conspiracy Theory: ‘This Whole Idea That Trump Was In Cahoots With The Russians Is Bogus'
2019-06-01
[The Federalist] In an hour-long interview with CBS News’ Jan Crawford released on Friday, Attorney General William Barr reflected on the Russia investigation, the Robert Mueller report, the personal attacks against him, and his career at the Department of Justice.

Barr laid into the abuses of power happening among top officials at the FBI, the lack of evidence found by Mueller’s investigation, and the media hypocrisy exposed by coverage of stories like the "appalling" texts between FBI agent lovers Peter Strzok and Lisa Page.

"Mueller has spent two and half years and the fact is there is no evidence of a conspiracy," Barr said. "So it was bogus, this whole idea that the Trump was in cahoots with the Russians is bogus."

Barr has been critiqued for seeking to declassify documents concerning the Russia investigation. He argued that reviewing standards and procedures at the highest levels are an "important way of making sure that government power is being conscientiously and properly applied."

When Crawford asked if he was concerned with bias among FBI investigators, Barr said the Strzok-Page texts were "very damning" and argued that there would be an outrage if the same stunts had been pulled against the Obama campaign.

"If those kinds of discussions were held, you know, when Obama first ran for office, people talking about Obama in those tones and suggesting that ’Oh that he might be a Manchurian candidate for Islam or something like that.’ You know some wild accusations like that, and you had that kind of discussion back and forth, you don’t think we would be hearing a lot more about it?" he asked.

When Crawford asked Barr about attacks on his reputation, the attorney general gave a stoic response.
Link


-Lurid Crime Tales-
Liz Cheney: Statements by Peter Strzok, Lisa Page ‘Could Well Be Treason'
2019-05-27
[Breitbart] Sunday on ABC’s "This Week," Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) said negative statements by former FBI officials Peter Strzok and Lisa Page while investigating President Donald Trump sounded "a whole lot like a coup" and added that it could even be "treason."

Cheney said, "What is crucially important to remember here is that you had Stzrok and Page who were in charge of launching this investigation and they were saying things like we must stop this president. We need an insurance policy against this president. That in my view when you have people that are in the highest echelons of the law enforcement of this nation saying things like that, that sounds an awful lot like a coup, and it could well be treason. And I think that we need to know more. What was Jim Comey’s role in all this? These people reported to him. Andy McCabe reported to him. What was Comey’s role in that, and that is what the attorney general is going to be focused on."

She added, "Think about the fact that we had people that are at the highest levels of our law enforcement in this nation saying that they were going to stop a dually elected president of the United States, saying they need an insurance policy against him. That is something that simply cannot happen. We have to have confidence in our law enforcement, and the attorney general has got to get to the bottom of what happened, how it was that those people were allowed to misuse and abuse their power that way."
Link


Home Front: Politix
The T-Word...
2019-05-27
...Our friends across the aisle tend to fling this word about with joyous abandon when we disagree with them about something. Well, finally one of our own has used it, and - IMHO - actual legal justification. Look carefully at the ones who scream the loudest about this...because I suspect there we shall find the guiltiest consciences.
[FoxNews] Liz Cheney: Strzok-Page texts sound ’like a coup,’ could be ’treason’

Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo, said in an interview that aired Sunday that text messages between former FBI investigators Peter Strzok and Lisa Page "sound an awful lot like a coup" and could even be treason.

"I think what is really crucially important to remember here is that you had Strzok and Page who were in charge of launching this investigation and they were saying things like, 'We must stop this president, we need an insurance policy against this president,'" she said on ABC News' "This Week."

"In my view when you have people that are in the highest echelons of the law enforcement of this nation saying things like that, that sounds an awful lot like a coup -- and it could well be treason and I think we need to know more," she said.

Cheney was referring to the anti-Trump texts uncovered last year by Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz. Both Strzok and Page were involved in the FBI’s initial counterintelligence investigation into Russian meddling and potential collusion with Trump campaign associates during the 2016 election, and later served on Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team.

In an August 2016 text message exchange, they talked about Trump’s chance of being elected president.

"[Trump’s] not ever going to become president, right? Right?!" Page texted Strzok.

"No. No he won’t. We’ll stop it," Strzok responded.

In another text the two talked of an "insurance policy" against the election of then-candidate Trump. Page essentially confirmed in an interview with lawmakers that this referred to the Russia investigation.

She also explained that officials were proceeding with caution, concerned about the implications of the case while not wanting to go at "total breakneck speed" and risk burning sources as they presumed Trump wouldn't be elected anyway.

Horowitz, who was investigating the bureau’s handling of the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server while secretary of state, is now investigating alleged surveillance abuses during the 2016 campaign.

Trump on Thursday issued a memo giving Attorney General William Barr the authority to declassify any documents related to surveillance of the Trump campaign in 2016.

"We want to be very transparent, so as you know, I declassified everything," Trump told reporters Friday. "We are exposing everything."
Link


Government
None of these people are fit to pick up your trash...
2019-05-26
[RealClearInvestigations] "The FBI and DoJ are ruthless to each other, petty to one another," one congressional staffer marvels.

FBI investigator Peter Strzok provides a vivid example of the attitudes at play. In texts to his lover, FBI lawyer Lisa Page, he makes declarations such as "I hate DoJ." Half an hour later he sends another text that includes "And I hate DoJ." Elsewhere in the texts, the people of "main justice" are called "political dicks" In the same spirit Strzok declares "DoJ are putzes, man." Later he tells Page, "Don't trust DoJ" and declares, "God I hate them." Page describes DoJ as the "no brigade." She writes, "I just feel like throttling DOJ."

Connoisseurs of the knife fights between Justice and the bureau keep an eye out not only for what gets reported in the press, but where it gets reported. "The Department of Justice has good relations with, and tends to leak to, the Washington Post," says a longtime Capitol Hill staffer. "The FBI leaks to the New York Times."
Link


-Lurid Crime Tales-
Peter Strzok Suspected CIA Was Behind Inaccurate Media Leaks
2019-05-07
[Daily Caller] Peter Strzok suspected CIA employees were behind inaccurate leaks to the press regarding possible Trump campaign contacts with Russia, according to an email the former FBI counterintelligence official sent to colleagues in April 2017.

"I’m beginning to think the agency got info a lot earlier than we thought and hasn’t shared it completely with us. Might explain all these weird/seemingly incorrect leads all these media folks have. Would also highlight agency as source of some of the leaks," Strzok wrote in an email to FBI colleagues on April 13, 2017.

The email is highlighted in a letter that two Republican senators sent Monday to Michael K. Atkinson, the inspector general of the intelligence community.

In the letter, Sens. Chuck Grassley of Iowa and Ron Johnson of Wisconsin asked Atkinson if he has investigated whether the CIA or other intelligence community agencies leaked information to the press.

They pointed to a Dec. 15, 2016 text message that Strzok, the lead investigator on the Trump-Russia probe, sent to then-FBI attorney Lisa Page.

"Think our sisters have begun leaking like mad. Scorned and worried and political, they’re kicking in to overdrive," Strzok wrote Page.
Link


-Lurid Crime Tales-
Watch Ben Rhodes Squirm When Asked If Obama's WH Was Involved In FBI Investigation Of Trump
2019-04-30
[The Federalist] Ben Rhodes, former deputy of national security for President Obama, told journalist Nicholas Ballasy that the Obama administration was unaware and uninvolved in the FBI’s investigation into then-candidate Donald Trump.

"Literally, I learned about the investigation into Trump as a private citizen in the freaking Washington Post," Rhodes said.
Just like Zero. Everything he learned he got from the paper
When asked about the dossier, Rhodes insisted he had nothing to do with.

"I saw it‐I heard about it at the very end in 2017. We weren’t, like, involved in commissioning the dossier. We learned about it when it was in the report that was appended to the report that went to Congress at the end of the administration," he said.

While Rhodes maintains the Obama administration’s innocence, unredacted copies of text messages suggest otherwise. Former FBI employees Peter Strzok and Lisa Page served on Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation when their anti-Trump text messages were leaked. "The White House is running this," one text read.

Between 2016 and 2017, Obama For America (OFA), Obama’s official campaign organization, paid nearly a million dollars to the same law firm that funneled money to Fusion GPS, the firm behind the Steele dossier.
Link


-Lurid Crime Tales-
Strzok/Page Texts Suggest Effort to Recruit White House Staffers to Spy on Trump Team
2019-04-26
[PJ] Communications between two former FBI officials nine days after the 2016 election regarding a briefing with Vice President-elect Pence have attracted fresh scrutiny from top Senate Republicans, Fox News reported Thursday.

The text messages, exchanged between FBI lovebirds Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, "may show potential attempts by the FBI to conduct surveillance of President-elect Trump's transition team" wrote Sen. Charles Grassley, chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, and Sen. Ron Johnson, chairman of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security, in a letter to Attorney General William Barr Thursday.

To be clear, the texts may show that top officials at the FBI were attempting to recruit staffers to spy on the Trump transition team.

In the letter, the senators wrote that they wanted to bring the matter to Barr's attention to assist his review into the "genesis and conduct of intelligence activities directed at the Trump campaign during 2016." According to the letter:
Link


Home Front: Politix
USA Today Calls For Investigation Into Obama-Era Deep State Election
2019-04-05
[DCWHISPERS] The Russia investigation did not come from nothing, of course. Moscow did try to influence the 2016 election, part of a long history of attempted involvement in American politics going back to the days of the Comintern. This Russian activity prompted President Obama to tell Vladimir Putin
...President-for-Life of Russia. He gets along well with other presidents for life. He is credited with bringing political stability and re-establishing something like the rule of law, which occasionally results in somebody dropping dead from poisoning by polonium or other interesting substance. Under Putin, a new group of business magnates controlling significant swathes of Russia's economy has emerged, all of whom have close personal ties to him. The old bunch, without close personal ties to Putin, are in jail or in exile or dead from poisoning by polonium or other interesting substances...
personally to "cut it out" or face "serious consequences." And the FBI gave the Trump campaign a standard counterintelligence briefing on the possibility of foreign interference in the summer of 2016, multiple government sources told NBC News and CNN.

Yet Obama officials also treated Trump campaign staffers as targets themselves. They used cooperative foreign intelligence services to chat them up overseas, both to put a layer of deniability between them and this questionable behavior, and to get around prohibitions against spying on American citizens. The recently released transcript of the House Committee on the Judiciary and Committee on Government Reform and Oversight interview with Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos goes into great detail how this targeting was conducted. Papadopoulos claims that foreign governments are now cooperating to reveal more about these activities.

There are also numerous classified documents related to the collusion illusion that have been either hidden or released in severely redacted form. Last September, President Trump instructed the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the Department of Justice immediately to declassify materials related to the Russia investigation, including "all text messages ... without redaction" of James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Peter Strzok, Lisa Page and Bruce Ohr, as well as documents concerning the warrant application under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act for Trump adviser Carter Page.

Democrats objected that declassifying text messages regarding the Russia investigation will compromise FBI "sources and methods," and the move was delayed after "key allies" objected.

Link


-Lurid Crime Tales-
Some Of Mueller's Investigators Not Happy With AG Barr
2019-04-04
[Townhall] Well, pack some sandbags and brace for impact, folks. Russian collusion hysteria is about to erupt all over again. House Democrats voted to subpoena Special Counsel Robert Mueller for the full report, including all the evidence that’s been collected over the past two years. This investigation began as an FBI probe into possible Russian collusion, a counterintelligence investigation where disgraced ex-FBI Agent Peter Strzok was reportedly one of the key people to sign off on it.

Strzok is known for his extramarital affair with former bureau lawyer Lisa Page. The pair exchanged tens of thousands of texts, many of them anti-Trump. Some of the most infamous texts were the ones where Strzok and Page discussed an "insurance policy" concerning Trump, with the former outright saying that they would stop a Trump presidency, whatever that meant. The two also worried that the FBI was going too hard on Hillary when the bureau was investigating whether the former first lady had mishandled classified information while serving as secretary of state via her unsecured and unauthorized homebrew server; Clinton conducted all official business through this server.

Now, Mueller’s investigators, most of them partisan Democrats, are a bit irritated that Attorney General William Barr’s summary didn’t really touch upon the severity of their findings...allegedly (via NYT):
Link


-12 More