|-Lurid Crime Tales-|
|John Solomon: Once-secret FBI informant reports reveal wider-ranging operation to spy on Trump campaign|
|[Just The News] nce-secret reports show the FBI effort to spy on the Trump campaign was far wider than previously disclosed, as agents directed an undercover informant to make secret recordings, pressed for intelligence on numerous GOP figures, and sought to find "anyone in the Trump campaign" with ties to Russia who could acquire dirt "damaging to Hillary Clinton."|
The now-declassified operational handling reports for FBI confidential human source Stefan Halper — codenamed "Mitch" — provide an unprecedented window both into the tactics used by the bureau to probe the Trump campaign and the wide dragnet that was cast to target numerous high-level officials inside the GOP campaign just weeks before Americans chose their next president in the November 2016 election.
Among the revelations, the memos make clear that:
Almost immediately after the FBI opened a Russia collusion probe on July 31, 2016 narrowly focused on the foreign lobbying of a single Trump campaign aide named George Papadopoulos, agents pressed Halper for information on more than a half dozen other figures, including future Attorney General Jeff Sessions, foreign policy adviser Sam Clovis, campaign chairman Paul Manafort, economic adviser Peter Navarro, future National Security Adviser Michael Flynn and campaign adviser Carter Page.
Halper provided significant exculpatory evidence to the FBI — including transcripts of conversations he recorded of targeted Trump advisers providing statements of innocence — that was never disclosed to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court that approved a year of surveillance targeting the Trump campaign, and specifically Page.
While current FBI Director Chris Wray has insisted the bureau did not engage in spying on the Trump campaign, Halper's taskings include many of the tradecraft tactics of espionage, including the creation of a fake cover story (he wanted a job at the Trump campaign), secret recordings, providing background on targets, suggested questions to ask and even contact information for potential targets.
But the memos' most explosive revelations are the sheer breadth of the FBI's insufficiently predicated dragnet targeting the Trump campaign, and the agents' clearly stated purpose of thwarting any Trump campaign effort to get dirt from Russia that could hurt his Democratic rival.
"The Crossfire Hurricane investigative team is attempting to determine if anyone in the Trump campaign is in a position to have received information either directly or indirectly from the Russian Federation regarding the anonymous release of information during the campaign that would be damaging to Hillary Clinton," one of the early FBI electronic communications (ECs) from Halper's undercover work stated.
You can read the memos here.
|Home Front: Politix|
|[Breitbart] On Wednesday’s broadcast of MSNBC’s "The ReidOut," White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain stated that if OMB Director nominee Neera Tanden isn’t confirmed, "We will find some other place for her to serve in the administration that doesn’t require Senate confirmation."|
Night watchperson? Janitoress? Dog walker?
Just like Madam Speaker Pelosi got the "Affordable Care Act" passed before she read it.
|Joe Biden's NatSec and China Policy Directors Served As Fellows At Chinese Communist Party-Funded Center.|
|[NationalPulse] President Biden’s National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan and Senior Adviser on China in Policy Planning Mira Rapp-Hooper served as fellows at Yale’s Paul Tsai China Center, which has taken millions in Chinese Communist Party cash and counts Chinese government and military-linked individuals as fellows and speakers, The National Pulse can reveal.|
The center re-established itself in 2016 following a $30,000,000 donation from the son of the late Paul Tsai, Vice Chairman and co-founder of Alibaba Joseph Tsai. Alibaba, founded by Jack Ma, has close financial and personnel ties to the Chinese Communist Party.
Joseph Tsai is also a "patron" of the China-United States Exchange Foundation (CUSEF), a Chinese Communist Party-backed grouped exposed by The National Pulse for sponsoring trips to China for journalists and politicians in exchange for "favorable coverage" and part of the country’s United Front efforts "to co-opt and neutralize sources of opposition to the Chinese Communist Party" and encourage "positions supportive of Beijing’s preferred policies."
The Paul Tsai China Center was also singled out in a Department of Education (DOE) letter requesting financial records relating to cash—estimated to be around $375 million—the Ivy League university has taken from foreign governments but failed to report.
The center describes its purpose as "helping advance China’s legal reforms, improving U.S.—China relations, and increasing understanding of China in the United States" and "works collaboratively with a broad range of top experts in the Chinese government, universities, and civil society" to do so.
But in reality, the center collaborates extensively with the Chinese Communist Party and its American enablers.
|-Lurid Crime Tales-|
|Ghislaine Maxwell Allegedly Refused to Help Find Bill Clinton Tapes Because It Would Hurt Hillary Clinton's 2016 Run|
|[Breitbart] British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell allegedly refused to help a CBS producer find videotapes Jeffrey Epstein made of Bill Clinton because it would hurt Hillary Clinton’s chances of winning the White House in 2016, according to a recently published book.|
As the Daily Wire reported Friday:
In his new book, "Ticking Clock: Behind The Scenes At 60 Minutes," former CBS producer Ira Rosen writes of speaking with Maxwell in 2016, saying he asked for footage of Donald Trump that Epstein might have shot, only to have Maxwell respond, "If you get the tapes on Trump you have to do [Bill] Clinton."
The former producer said he told Maxwell to "ask Epstein" because the "fate of the country is at stake. ... Trump could be elected president and how would you feel if those tapes emerged after he was in office?"
"She gave me a stern look and pointed a finger in my face," Rosen claimed, adding, "She said: ’I am the daughter of a press baron. I know the way you people think. If you do one side, you must do the other. If you get the tapes on Trump you have to do Clinton.'"
Maxwell reportedly told Rosen Epstein never revealed to her where the alleged tapes were kept.
Bill Clinton has denied he ever visited Epstein’s Caribbean estate after court documents claimed the former president and "two young girls" were guests of Epstein’s in the early 2000s, Breitbart News reported in July.
However, photos published in August showed Bill Clinton receiving a neck massage from alleged Epstein victim Chauntae Davies, according to Breitbart News.
"The photos were snapped in September 2002 while Clinton, Epstein, and others were in transit to Africa for a humanitarian trip in Epstein’s private plane — Lolita Express," the article read.
However, Davies stated that "President Clinton was a perfect gentleman during the trip and I saw absolutely no foul play involving him."
Maxwell was arrested in July and an indictment said she allegedly "’assisted, facilitated and contributed to Jeffrey Epstein’s abuse of minor girls by, among other things, helping Epstein to recruit, groom, and ultimately abuse’ girls under age 18," Breitbart News reported.
Editor’s note: This article was updated to include Davies’ statement about Bill Clinton.
|-Lurid Crime Tales-|
|Twenty days of infamy: the January 2017 red flags the FBI blew past on Russia collusion|
|[Just the News] From its earliest moments, the FBI's Russia collusion probe was always fraught with warning signs.|
Agents were told Christopher Steele provided faulty information, had likely been compromised by Russian intel disinformation, wanted to defeat Donald Trump, had leaked to the media and was being paid by Hillary Clinton, who herself might be carrying out an epic dirty political trick to vilify Trump with false information to distract from her own scandals.
Those intelligence reports alone should have given agents pause. The fact that Steele had been terminated by the FBI as an informant for leaking also should have weighed heavily.
But if ever there were red lights screaming for the FBI to end the counterintelligence probe, they were flashing during a harrowing 20-day window in January 2017 as Barack Obama was leaving office and Trump was coming in.
Between Jan. 4, 2017 and Jan. 24, 2017, nearly every major assumption of the FBI's Russia collusion theory was gutted, according to recently declassified evidence reviewed by Just the News.
Months of investigating Trump adviser Mike Flynn had turned up "no derogatory information," and agents recommended shutting down that part of the inquiry after concluding Flynn wasn't aiding Moscow. Two separate informant recordings of Trump adviser Carter Page — the target of an ongoing FISA warrant — produced stunning evidence of innocence.
U.S. intelligence had concluded a key allegation in the Steele dossier was Russian disinformation. And Steele's primary sub-source — whom the FBI assessed was likely tied to Russian intelligence — discounted much of the information attributed to him in the dossier. Even Director James Comey was telling colleagues there wasn't much corroborated in the dossier.
|-Lurid Crime Tales-|
|Smoking FBI gun: Comey told Clapper FBI unable to 'sufficiently corroborate' Steele ‐ then signed FISA|
|[Just the News] The very day in January 2017 that then-FBI Director James Comey signed a FISA surveillance warrant application declaring content from Christopher Steele's dossier had been "verified," he wrote President Obama's outgoing intelligence community chief with a very different assessment of the British spy's intelligence on Russia collusion, a newly released memo shows.|
"We are not able to sufficiently corroborate the reporting," Comey wrote in a Jan. 12, 2017 email to then-Director of National Intelligence James Clapper that was declassified and made public through an open records lawsuit by the Southeastern Legal Foundation.
The memo recounts an internal debate inside the U.S. intelligence community during one of the most delicate moments in the FBI's then six-month old Crossfire Hurricane probe.
CIA officials had already informed Comey's FBI that the target of the FISA warrant, Carter Page, wasn't a Russian spy but rather an asset helping U.S. intelligence. The bureau had received warnings about Steele and the reliability of his source network, including that it might have been compromised by Russian disinformation. Agents had also just recommended on Jan. 4, 2017 shutting down the probe's inquiry into incoming National Security Adviser Michael Flynn for lack of evidence.
The FBI had been warned the previous summer that Hillary Clinton's campaign may have planted the false Russia collusion story as a way to "vilify" Trump and distract from her email scandal, and agents were about to interview Steele's primary sub-source, who would discount much of the information in the dossier attributed to him as bar talk and unconfirmed rumor not worthy of official intelligence.
|Re-post, still no update - Three weeks after Trump declassified Russia memos, most aren't released|
|[Just The News] More than two weeks after Donald Trump officially declassified the evidence, the vast majority of documents detailing FBI and Justice Department failures in the now-discredited Russia collusion investigation remain out of public view in a delay that has thwarted the former president's goal of sweeping transparency.|
Multiple officials tell Just the News that the documents yet to be released include:
Just the News was able to obtain about 15% of the thousands of pages of declassified documents, from a hodgepodge network of White House officials who worked on the declassification, law enforcement and intelligence officials who got their own versions of the declassified documents, and members of Congress who were given copies of some memos in the final days of the Trump presidency.
Just the News has posted all of those documents, which include explosive revelations like:
The remaining documents, according to sources who have seen them, provide more details showing just how far the FBI went to deceive the FISA judges in an effort to keep surveilling Page and that the FBI's true target for surveillance was the larger Trump campaign.
For instance, an August 2016 tasking document for Halper, one of the informants, made clear the FBI's real focus of the investigation was to determine whether "anyone in the Trump campaign is in a position to have received information either directly or indirectly from the Russian Federation regarding the anonymous release of information during the campaign that would be damaging to Hillary Clinton," according to a source who took verbatim notes from one of the documents.
Those documents also show Halper was asked to potentially contact or monitor Trump campaign figures far beyond Page and George Papadopoulos, the two figures publicly acknowledged in the past.
Among the names that show up in the FBI's operational plan are former Attorney General Jeff Sessions, former National Security Adviser Mike Flynn, former Trump campaign adviser Sam Clovis and eventual White House adviser Peter Navarro, according to sources interviewed by Just the News.
The less redacted FISA warrants show, according to sources, that as the FBI failed to develop any evidence that Page was working for Russia — and in fact had worked as an asset for the CIA — it offered the FISA court unusual justifications for continuing to spy on him, including that he espoused foreign policy views deemed favorable to Russia and might be writing a book, two clearly First Amendment-protected activities.
Also, the internal messages between senior FBI officials on the Russia probe, according to the sources, reveal that McCabe had direct contact with reporters from major news organizations like the New York Times and CNN even as his deputies, like Strzok, viewed the Russia reporting of those organizations as significantly flawed.
|Home Front: Politix|
|Surprise: Biden Demands Resignations From All US Attorneys ‐ Except These Two|
|[Hot Air] All of the top presidentially appointed federal prosecutors will get pink slips in the mail as early as today, a fairly usual part of any change of administrations. Excuse me, I meant to write that it’s fairly usual when a Democrat comes into the White House. Asking appointees to clear out their desks is a scandal when a Republican takes over the presidency, at least in the media.|
SEE ALSO: The return of Biden Inc: Son-in-law now under ethical scrutiny in COVID response start-up
Two lucky members of the club will get a pass, however — because Joe Biden doesn’t want to look corrupt:
The hall pass given to John Durham and David Weiss is far more interesting, politically if not legally.
Durham’s probe involves the partisanship and politicization of the FBI and DoJ during Operation Crossfire Hurricane and the FBI’s potential spying on a major-party presidential candidate. ... If Biden removed Durham at this point, especially with the public record of Crossfire Hurricane already at its present stage, it wouldn’t suggest “partiality” — it would smell of a cover-up.
That’s even more obviously true with Weiss, whose investigation involves the Biden family directly. The DoJ’s Hunter Biden probe got partially exposed by the New York Post before the election and confirmed shortly afterward by William Barr.
|-Lurid Crime Tales-|
|Jack Palladino, detective hired by Bill Clinton to discredit women in 1992, on life support after robbery|
|[FOX] Jack Palladino, the private investigator hired by former President Bill Clinton during his 1992 campaign to help discredit women claiming extramarital affairs with him, was reportedly on life support after being robbed Thursday outside of his San Francisco home.|
Palladino, whose celebrity clients have also included Harvey Weinstein, Don Johnson, Kevin Costner, Robin Williams, Huey Newton and Snoop Dogg, fell onto the pavement outside his home when the robber grabbed his new camera from around his neck, the San Francisco Police Department said,
"Fell 37 times"
He suffered a traumatic brain injury in the fall and wasn’t expected to survive, his stepson told the newspaper.
|China derecognises British National Overseas passport|
|[KhaleejTimes] China says it will no longer recognise the British National Overseas passport as a valid travel document or form of identification amid a bitter feud with London over a plan to allow millions of Hong Kong residents a route to residency and eventual citizenship.|
The announcement by Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian on Friday throws up new uncertainty around the plan just hours after the UK said it would begin taking applications for what are called BNO visas beginning late Sunday.
Under the plan, as many as 5.4 million Hong Kong residents could be eligible to live and work in the UK for five years then apply for citizenship. Demand soared after Beijing last year imposed a sweeping new national security law on the former British colony following months of pro-democracy protests.
|Home Front: Politix|
|Hawaii GOP official resigns after tweeting on party account that QAnon followers are just 'patriots'|
|US will work with Israel to build on regional normalization agreements: Biden national security adviser|
A promise or a threat?[AlAhram] The Biden administration will work closely with Israel on regional security issues and to build on the country's regional normalization agreements, White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan told his Israeli counterpart, according to a statement on Sunday.
"They discussed opportunities to enhance the partnership over the coming months, including by building on the success of Israel's normalization arrangements with UAE, Bahrain, Sudan, and Morocco," according to a statement on Sullivan's call on Saturday with Israel's Meir Ben Shabbat.
Sullivan also extended an invitation to begin a strategic dialogue in the near term, the statement said.