Trump Delivers Documented Evidence of MB Obama Wiretaps To House Panel
Mar 19, 2017 by MICHAEL DEPINTO
At this point in time, the public does not yet know the contents of the documents delivered by President Trump’s DOJ to the House Intelligence Committee regarding the wiretapping incident, but presumably since the documents were sent by Trump’s team, it stands to reason that whatever was delivered to the House Intelligence Committee was in favor of Trump’s claims, not the other way around.
Throughout his time in office, Barack Obama associated with many political operatives who were real lowlifes, and who often walked a tightrope between the world of what was considered legal behavior (however, unethical), and what was considered criminal behavior. There’s an old saying I’m sure you’re familiar with that goes:
‘If you hang around the barbershop long enough, you’re going to get a haircut…’
Are we about to learn next week that Obama got a haircut, and we’re all going to find out?
In the video below, Right Wing News breaks down the recent report from Young Conservatives, and compares it with an earlier report from Doug Hagmann of the Canada Free Press. Did Obama finally go to far this time? Let’s hope so. It’s long overdue!
Last week, the House Intelligence Committee asked the Justice Department to submit any evidence it had pertaining to President Donald Trump’s claims of surveillance by the Obama administration.
The plot thickens, as on Friday, the DOJ made its submission to the committee.
From The Hill:
The Department of Justice (DOJ) sent documents to the House Intelligence Committee on Friday in response to a request for evidence backing up President Trump’s claim that former President Obama wiretapped Trump Tower.
The committee is currently reviewing the documents, an aide confirmed to The Hill.
It’s unclear what’s in the documents, which CNN reported separately had also been delivered to the Senate Intelligence Committee, though that report could not be immediately confirmed.
White House spokesperson Sean Spicer clarified Trump’s original wording, saying that when he used the term “wiretapping” in quotation marks in his tweet, he was referring to surveillance in a broader sense.
Trump also didn’t back off the claim of surveillance, even joking about it with Angela Merkel who was spied on by the Obama administration.
The House Intelligence Committee will hold an open meeting on Monday discussing Russian interference and the claims of Obama administration surveillance.
MEET TEAM OBAMA WITH THE AMNESIA
While some have disputed the claims of surveillance, if there was no surveillance, how then were Trump’s conversations with the Presidents of Mexico and Australia picked up and the transcripts later leaked specifically to undermine him?
The media appears to have completely suffered amnesia about those reports.
It will be fascinating to see what evidence, if anything, the DOJ submitted…
Recall the following from a post last Friday titled: Obama Wiretapping Bombshell Drops; This is as Serious as it Gets (Video):
In that article, Douglas J. Hagmann reported that President Trump had in his possession evidence of the paper trail leading to a FISA court that substantiates his assertions that Obama, obtained authorization to eavesdrop on the Trump campaign under the pretense of a national security investigation. For anyone not familiar with Douglas J. Hagmann, he has been a licensed investigator in the private sector for the last 30 years, where he’s worked on well over 5,000 cases, and he’s considered a surveillance specialist within his industry.
Often, his vast expertise has been sought out as either an informational or operational asset on various federal and state law enforcement agencies. In addition to his investigating duties, Hagmann is also an author, runs four websites, and has a successful talk radio show. Bottom line: If law enforcement agencies trust Hagmann’s investigative abilities, then I’m certainly going to trust them long before I believe a mainstream media that suffers from amnesia about the very stories THEY reported on previously.
There is a large storm brewing over Washington, DC right now – a storm that could dwarf anything ever seen in recent times. It is growing stronger by the hour as new information is being disclosed that strongly suggests that it is possible, even likely, that Obama and his Department of Justice maliciously and criminally misused the FISA process to collect intelligence on Presidential candidate Donald J. Trump. Additionally, Obama personally relaxed the limitations on how such information collected could be disseminated in the weeks before leaving office.
The political ramifications from this, if proved correct, could be unprecedented in scope. Once fully exposed, it would explain the curious actions of Obama as he prepared to vacate the White House. It would also explain, in context, the actions and statements of not only Barack Hussein Obama, but others in key positions of power including Loretta Lynch, Sally Yates, John Brennan, and others within the media.
At issue is Obama’s insistence to secure a federal wiretap warrant of Donald J. Trump, the candidate, using the federal court system as the mechanism to do so. The ostensible probable cause was alleged ties between Donald J. Trump and/or his associates with Russia.
The first warrant application was made in June 2016, according to reports published by The New York Times and elsewhere, but was rejected due to the lack of probable cause of criminal activity.
RECALL THAT THE FIRST ATTEMPT AT THE FISA COURTS…
WAS JUST DAYS AFTER THE INFAMOUS MEETING ON THE TARMAC!
When the request was denied in regular federal court, Obama and his Justice Department attempted an “end around” by citing the existence of a “foreign actor” and made a similar surveillance warrant application through the more specialized Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court in October of 2016. According to published reports, that warrant application was rejected as well, a rare occurrence in the FISA venue, which strengthens claims that no evidence of any foreign involvement ever existed. It has been reported that the initial warrant application to the FISA court specifically named Donald J. Trump.
It is also relevant to note here that this is the type of activity that led to the creation of the infamous “Wall” that was referenced after the 9/11 attacks. Its relevance to this specific instance is explained well by former federal prosecutor Andrew McCarthy an article linked here.
NSA DOCUMENTS PROVE SURVEILLANCE OF DONALD TRUMP & HIS FAMILY
Bombshell discovery shows targets of NSA’s “Project Dragnet”
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Infowars.com have obtained credible information from law enforcement sources regarding individual records of U.S. citizens under National Security Agency (NSA) electronic surveillance in the years 2004 through 2010 – a database that suggests both Donald J. Trump and Alex Jones were under illegal, unauthorized government monitoring during those years.
LIVE COVERAGE OF NSA SPYING ON TRUMP
Michael Zullo, formerly the commander and chief investigator of the Cold Case Posse (CCP), a special investigative group created in 2006 in the office of Joseph M. Arpaio, formerly the sheriff in Maricopa County, an Arizona State Certified Law Enforcement Agency, headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona, provided sections of the database to Infowars.com.
The electronic surveillance database, provided to Zullo by a whistleblower in 2013, was apparently created by the NSA as part of the NSA’s illegal and unconstitutional Project Dragnet electronic surveillance of U.S. citizens, first revealed by news reports published in 2005, as further documented by the revelations of whistleblower Edward Snowden in 2013.
Sheriff Arpaio and Chief Investigator Zullo have identified dozens of entries at various addresses, including both Trump Tower in New York City and Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida, under which Donald Trump was apparently under NSA electronic surveillance from 2004, during President George W. Bush’s term of office, through 2009, the first year of President Obama’s presidency.
Electronic surveillance of Donald Trump was listed in the database for the following companies, locations, and dates:
1 Central Park, NYC, NY
Trump World Tower
845 United Nations Plaza, NYC, NY
Trump Tower SAL
108 Central Park, NYC, NY
Trump Palace Co
200 E. 69th Street A, NYC, NY
725 Fifth Ave. FL, NYC, NY
725 Fifth Ave. BSM, NYC, NY
725 Fifth Ave., NYC, NY
1100 S. Ocean BL, Palm Beach, FL
401 N. Wabash Ave., Chicago, IL
239 Nassau St., Princeton, NJ
3505 Summit BLV, West Palm Beach, FL
P.O. Box 196, Hamilton MA
1 Central Park, NYC, NY
Huron Ave., Atlantic City, NJ
339 Pine Rd, Briarcliff, NY
Trump Plaza & C
2500 Pacific Ave, Atlantic City, NJ
Trump Palace Co.
200 E. 69th St., NYC, NY
66 Oregon Rd, Mount Kisco, NY
While attempts have been made to deny such domestic surveillance, reports from the New York Times in 2014 showed the Central Intelligence Agency had done just that by spying on a senate panel investigating the agency’s use of “enhanced interrogation.”
In a 2016 article from The Guardian entitled, “‘A constitutional crisis’: the CIA turns on the Senate,” it is likewise noted just how drastic and widespread the CIA’s domestic surveillance operation was.
As revealed from the Dragnet database, not only was Trump himself surveilled but so were numerous employees of his located at Trump Tower.
Former CIA officer Larry Johnson recently joined the Alex Jones show to discuss how intelligence sources have stated that such surveillance of Trump during the presidential election in fact took place.
Here is a partial list of the Trump employees that show up in the Project Dragnet database:
• Patricia Hernandez, a Manager for the Trump Organization, was under NSA electronic surveillance at Trump Parc, Central Park South, in New York City, at phone 212-586-xxxx, date: 9/16/2008.
• Mike van der Goes, a Golf Pro at Oceans Trails Golf Course in Palos Verdes, who was promoted to be general manager when Trump bought the course from the bank in 2005 and renamed it Trump National. Mike van der Goes was under surveillance at Trump National, 1 Ocean TRL, Rancho Palos Verdes, California, at phone: 310-265-xxxx, no date.
• Carolyn Kepcher, a frequent guest on NBC’s television program “The Apprentice,” who was under NSA electronic surveillance when she was General Manager at the Trump National Golf Course in Briarcliff, New York, in Westchester County north of New York City, at 339 Pine Rd., in Briarcliff, New York, at phone 914-944-xxxx, date: 9/7/206.
• Joe Traci, a Real Estate Property Manager at Trump New World Property Management, at 438 W. 69th Street, New York City, phone 212-769-xxxx, date: 11/12/2008; and at 5 12th Street, New York City, phone: 212-586-xxxx, no date.
• Roger Socio, a Senior Project Manager, Trump Organization, Trump Tower, 725 Fifth Avenue, New York City, phone: 212-715-xxxx, 2/23/2009.
• Bill Fichter, Residents Manager, Trump Organization, Trump Palace, 200 E. 69th Street, New York City, phone: 212-879-xxxx, date: 2/24/2009.
• Florin Bogosel, Trump Park Avenue, 502 Park Avenue, New York City, phone: 212-223-xxxx, no date.
• Grace Dunne, Trump Park Residence, 3770 Barger Street, Shrub Oak, New York, phone: 914-245-xxxx, date 1/26/2006.
• Greg Bradley, Vice President, Trump Pavilion for Nursing and Rehabilitation, 9028 Van Wyck, East Richmond Hill, New York, phone: 718-291-xxxx, no date.
All these employees appear to have been under NSA phone surveillance, plus various of them under financial surveillance as well.
The Project Dragnet database suggests Trump was under surveillance not only for phone conversations, but also for financial information, including most likely bank account transactions, credit card transactions, and tax filings.
Both federal and state law enforcement have had access to the Project Dragnet database, allowing widespread use for methods such as parallel construction. The practice, outlined in the 2013 Reuters article, “U.S. directs agents to cover up program used to investigate Americans,” reveals the breadth of information that trickles down to law enforcement from high-level intelligence agencies.
Also listed as under NSA surveillance in the period 2004-2010 was Trump’s former wife, Ivanka Trump at House of Ivanka, 10 East 64th Street, New York City.
The Project Dragnet database also indicates that the NSA was conducting electronic surveillance on an extensive list of Trump employees in the years 2004-2010 – the only years for which Sheriff Arpaio had data.
Alex Jones is listed as being under electronic surveillance for phone records, as well as under surveillance for financial records, in 2006. The address listed for Alex Jones in the NSA Project Dragnet database was correct for his residence at that time. So too, Alex Jones confirmed the phone number listed was also correct.
Sheriff Arpaio and Chief Investigator Zullo have validated through law enforcement channels the validity of the name, address, and telephone numbers for the dates that appear in the Project Dragnet database.
Sheriff Arpaio and Chief Investigator Zullo are prepared to share relevant information with appropriate federal law enforcement agencies, including the FBI, as well as the Department of Justice, Homeland Security Department, the White House, and members of Congress the Project Dragnet Database in whole, or in part, as it pertains to NSA electronic surveillance of Donald J. Trump and his various employee.
Sheriff Arpaio and Chief Investigator Zullo also show up in the database, listed as being under both phone and financial surveillance.
Zullo explained that he and Arpaio came in contact with the information from Operation Dragnet during an unrelated investigation that began in October 2013 and ended January 2015.
A whistleblower by the name of Dennis Montgomery brought forward information that Montgomery alleges was collected while he was employed as a subcontractor for the NSA, working on various surveillance projects.
Court documents do verify Montgomery was contracted by the NSA, in part to develop computer breaching software that has been utilized in government mass surveillance operations targeting American citizens without legal justification.
While Montgomery’s credibility has been called into question, Zullo maintains that the amount of information provided by Montgomery related to Operation Dragnet was extraordinarily voluminous and that Montgomery had shared information with investigators in 2013 that is only now being revealed by media outlets.
BREAKING! Documents Show Obama Surveilled Entire Trump Family For 8 Years
EXCLUSIVE! New NSA Whistblower Goes Public About Trump Surveillance
Crowdstrike, the cybersecurity company working for the Democratic National Committee (DNC), released a report tying “Russian hacking” to an incident that never happened, yet even after the report had been debunked, FBI Director James Comey still referred to Crowdstrike as a “highly respected private company” at a Senate hearing.
Executives from Crowdstrike and Director Comey are both scheduled to testify in front of the House Intelligence Committee set for Monday morning at 10 am.
By issuing a still-unrestricted report about an incident that never happened and then tying it to the alleged Russian hacks that Democrats claim tipped the elections for Pres. Trump, the DNC-employed Crowdstrike’s credibility deserves to be called into question, however, despite excellent reporting by cybersecurity expert Jeffrey Carr, Bloomberg’s Leonid Bershidsky, and Voice of America reporter Oleksiy Kuzmenko, the media has ignored the story and continued to cite Crowdstrike’s work… even after the Ukrainian Defense Ministry issued a statement on January 6th, 2017 refuting Crowdstrike’s claims.
Even more troubling than the media malfeasance about the discredited Crowdstrike report, in testimony in front of the Senate intelligence committee on January 10 – four days after the Ukrainian DOD denied Crowdstrike’s report — Director Comey admitted that the FBI had been denied access to the DNC servers and praised Crowdstrike, without mentioning that they worked for the DNC or that their recent report had been debunked.
The Crowdstrike report, titled “Use of Fancy Bear Android Malware in Tracking of Ukrainian Field Artillery Units“, was issued by the company on December 22, 2016. It’s a slickly produced document, with a frightening comic book-style cover and plenty of charts and graphs. Crowdstrike’s villain in the report is Fancy Bear, which they say is a hacking group controlled by Russia’s GRU intelligence agency. Crowdstrike itself gave the group the name Fancy Bear, with ‘Bear’ referring to Russia and ‘Fancy’ referring to the song Fancy by Iggy Izalea.
On June 15, 2016 Crowdstrike claimed that Fancy Bear was behind the DNC hacks in an article title Bears in the Midst: Intrusion into the Democratic National Committee. That post came the day after the Washington Post published an article claiming Russian government hackers penetrated DNC and stole opposition research on Trump, quoting Crowdstrike’s co-founder Dmitri Alperovitch, who is scheduled to testify Monday in front of the House Intel committee hearing. In that June WaPo article, Alperovitch seemed unsure on details but pinned the hack on Fancy Bear:
CrowdStrike is not sure how the hackers got in. The firm suspects they may have targeted DNC employees with “spearphishing” emails. These are communications that appear legitimate — often made to look like they came from a colleague or someone trusted — but that contain links or attachments that when clicked on deploy malicious software that enables a hacker to gain access to a computer. “But we don’t have hard evidence,” Alperovitch said. The two groups did not appear to be working together, Alperovitch said. Fancy Bear is believed to work for the GRU, or Russia’s military intelligence service, he said.
In light of his possible testimony Monday, it’s worth noting Alperovitch’s statements in the June 2016 Washington Post article that there’s no “hard evidence” of how the hack occurred and that Fancy Bear is “believed to work” for GRU.
That June WaPo article also quoted Crowdstrike’s President and former FBI agent Shawn Henry, who is also scheduled to testify Monday.
“It’s the job of every foreign intelligence service to collect intelligence against their adversaries,” said Shawn Henry, president of CrowdStrike, the cyber firm called in to handle the DNC breach and a former head of the FBI’s cyber division. He noted that it is extremely difficult for a civilian organization to protect itself from a skilled and determined state such as Russia.
If Henry’s statement to the Washington Post seems more political than technical, that’s because Crowdstrike was being utilized by their clients at the Democratic National Committee to put out a narrative about Russian hacking to use against the Trump campaign. As later confirmed by a laudatory piece in Esquire magazine, starting in June 2016 the DNC used Crowdstrike executives Alperovitch and Henry as part of an anti-Trump publicity plan related to allegations of Russian hacking:
The DNC wanted to go public. At the committee’s request, Alperovitch and Henry briefed a reporter from The Washington Post about the attack.
The Democrats’ attempts to smear Donald Trump with allegations of Russian involvement failed to win them the election and by December the Obama administration was taking a number of steps to make the incoming president’s job as difficult as possible. On December 13th, the New York Times published a major piece pushing the narrative – without any new definitive technical evidence – that the Russians were behind “a cyberespionage and information-warfare campaign devised to disrupt the 2016 presidential election, the first such attempt by a foreign power in American history.”
If influential media outlets like the New York Times were completely sold on the Democrat-promote idea that the Russian government was behind hacking operations intended to hurt Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, independent technical experts were not so sure. On the same day that the Times published its piece, cybersecurity expert Jeffrey Carr wrote that while there was technical evidence that the Hacker’s may have spoken Russian, that there “is also ZERO technical evidence to connect those Russian-speaking hackers to the GRU, FSB, SVR, or any other Russian government department.”
Carr continued to eviscerate those claims, such as an October statement released by the Director of National Intelligence:
The ODNI/DHS statement’s opening paragraph ends with their rationale for placing blame on the Russian government:
“We believe, based on the scope and sensitivity of these efforts, that only Russia’s senior-most officials could have authorized these activities.”
I have no explanation for what the author of that statement was thinking when he or she composed it. It is, in my opinion, ludicrous on its face. There is nothing about the attacks against the DNC, the DCC, high profile email accounts like Podesta’s, or even election data bases like those in Arizona and Illinois (that the ODNI/DHS statement specifically excluded) which preclude them from being attacked by any individual hacker or hacker team from anywhere in the world, on their own, and without any government control or direction.
What could provide the link between the Russian intelligence agency GRU and Fancy Bear, the group that Crowdstrike claimed was behind the DNC hack? Enter the Ukrainian story.
Crowdstrike needed to strengthen the hack’s connection to the GRU, as Dmitri clearly stated in an interview he did with PBS on December 22:
…this is why we wanted to produce more evidence that raises the level of confidence that we have, even internally, that this is Russian intelligence agency called the GRU.
That interview was part of the promotional campaign for Crowdstrike’s ominous December 22nd “Use of Fancy Bear Android Malware in Tracking of Ukrainian Field Artillery Units” report, which claims that it provides evidence that “further supports CrowdStrike’s previous assessments that FANCY BEAR is likely affiliated with the Russian military intelligence (GRU)”.
The Crowdstrike report opens with a few key claims about malware that they say infected tablets, including:
• From late 2014 and through 2016, FANCY BEAR X-Agent implant was covertly distributed on Ukrainian military forums within a legitimate Android application developed by Ukrainian artillery officer Yaroslav Sherstuk.
• Successful deployment of the FANCY BEAR malware within this application may have facilitated reconnaissance against Ukrainian troops. The ability of this malware to retrieve communications and gross locational data from an infected device makes it an attractive way to identify the general location of Ukrainian artillery forces and engage them.
• Open source reporting indicates that Ukrainian artillery forces have lost over 50% of their weapons in the 2 years of conflict and over 80% of D-30 howitzers, the highest percentage of loss of any other artillery pieces in Ukraine’s arsenal.
In other words, Crowdstrike was making a truly shocking claim: that the Ukrainian military had lost 80 percent of its D-30 Howitzers due to malware installed by the Russian hacking group FancyBear that they said is connected to the GRU.
The Crowdstrike report provided just the connective tissue that was needed in late December to connect the Russian government to a shocking example of cyberespionage affecting the real world, but it had one big problem; it wasn’t true.
True to form, however, the establishment media simply took Crowdstrike’s word and failed to fact-check the report.
Within the day, major establishment media outlets faithfully promoted Crowdstrike’s tale of Russian hacking destroying 80 percent of Ukrainian D-30 Howitzers. In addition to the PBS interview mentioned above, Forbes, Newsweek, The Inquirer, Reuters, Engadget and others were echoing Crowdstrike’s claim that this was a major piece of new proof for the GRU’s involvement in the DNC hacks.
However, some dissenting voices began to speak up. On the same day that the report was released, a Bloomberg article by Leonid Bershidsky was published criticizing the level of confidence that Crowdstrike was placing in their new statements. Bershidsky cites several first-hand sources associated with the Ukrainian military who were criticizing Crowdstrike’s report:
Yaroslav Sherstyuk, the Ukrainian military officer who developed the application, reacted angrily on Facebook to the CrowdStrike report, saying he never published the software on any public forums and encouraging fellow Ukrainian servicemen to keep using the latest version of his app. Via Facebook Messenger, he told me that he didn’t believe an infected version of the app even existed. “This is a hoax to scare everyone and make us go back to the old methods of targeting fire,” he wrote. A CrowdStrike spokesperson did not respond when I asked if it had contacted Sherstyuk. He said it hadn’t.
The spokesperson, Ilina Dimitrova, wrote that “it is indisputable that the app has been hacked with Fancy Bear malware — we have published the indicators related to it and they have been confirmed by others in the cybersecurity community.” CrowdStrike said that it found the infected app “in limited public distribution on a Russian language, Ukrainian military forum.” I doubt anyone in the Ukrainian military would download software for targeting artillery fire from a forum. Typically, they obtain it directly from known developers such as Sherstyuk. If I can contact him directly, so can Ukrainian artillery officers seeking to improve their performance in battle.
Hence, it’s hard for me to believe that this infected app — found somewhere on the internet and likely never used by Ukrainian soldiers — offers evidence tying the GRU to APT28.
There was more good reporting the next day when Voice of America (VOA) reporter Oleksiy Kuzmenko’s article titled Skeptics Doubt Ukraine Hack, Its Link to DNC Cyberattack was published. Like Bershidsky he referenced the developer of the app, who had in a Facebook post called the Crowdstrike report “delusional.” Kuzmenko also interviewed a Ukrainian military technical advisor named Pavlo Narozhnyy, who admitted that tablets had been sent to the Ukraine’s armed forces, but also made a stunning statement that directly contradicts the premise of Crowdstrike’s report.
He told VOA that contacts in the Ukrainian military units that used the app reported no losses of D-30 howitzers, which contradicts large battlefield losses referenced in the CrowdStrike report.
“I personally know hundreds of gunmen in the war zone. None of them told me of D-30 losses caused by hacking or any other reason,” Narozhnyy stressed to the VOA.
Kuzmenko also reported that the equipment statistics cited in the report had come not from the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS), as Crowdstrike had claimed, but instead from a pro-Russian propagandist’s blog:
The article is an English translation from a post first published by Boris Rozhin, a popular Russian blogger, who covers Russian military operations under the moniker “Colonel Cassad” from Russian-annexed Crimea.
His posting provides a table, based on what he said was data from the IISS reports, that shows Ukraine had 369 D-30 howitzers in 2013 and 75 in 2016. It included links to Rozhin said were the original IISS studies uploaded to a Russian torrent site dedicated to pushing pirated software and movies.
Although the source of the information listed by CrowdStrike is not the actual website of IISS, CrowdStrike defended its findings.
With both their sourcing and underlying claim refuted, Crowdstrike could have at that point admitted that they were wrong, issued a retraction, and pulled the report. Given the size of their error and the importance of the entire topic of alleged Russian hacking to international affairs, a retraction would not only have been the responsible thing to do but a necessity for anyone concerned about presenting the truth.
Instead, Crowdstrike chose to simply ignore the heart of the criticism and defend themselves, telling VOA in an email that it “is indisputable that the app has been hacked with FANCY BEAR malware — we have published the indicators related to it and they have been confirmed by others in the cybersecurity community.” Pavlo Narozhnyy remained skeptical even of that claim and told VOA he would like to see more proof.
The critiques by Bloomberg and VOA were ignored by the establishment media, however, who had bigger fish to fry a week later when the Obama administration delivered a one-two punch on the Russian hacking story.
On December 29, the Obama White House announced sanctions against Russia over the allegations of hacking, ordering 35 Russian diplomats to leave the United States. On the same day, Obama’s DHS and FBI released a joint analysis report (JAR) that they thought would cement the Russian hacking connection once and for all.
Once again, the lapdog media did its part and acted as stenographers for the Obama administration on the ‘Russian hacking’ narrative. The New York Times declared Obama Strikes Back at Russia for Election Hacking, while the Washington Post trumpeted Obama administration announces measures to punish Russia for 2016 election interference.
Criticism of the Crowdstrike report from a week earlier went down the memory hole.
Then on January 3, cybersecurity expert Jeffrey Carr posted an article on Medium titled The GRU-Ukraine Artillery Hack That May Never Have Happened. This was another devastating critique of Crowdstrike’s report, but like the VOA and Bloomberg articles, it was ignored by the establishment media. Carr sums up the Crowdstrike report by saying:
Crowdstrike’s latest report regarding Fancy Bear contains its most dramatic and controversial claim to date; that GRU-written mobile malware used by Ukrainian artillery soldiers contributed to massive artillery losses by the Ukrainian military. “It’s pretty high confidence that Fancy Bear had to be in touch with the Russian military,” Dmitri Alperovich told Forbes. “This is exactly what the mission is of the GRU.”
Once again, the establishment media had failed to do basic technical vetting on the claims of Russian hacking by Crowdstrike and were exposed by a few brave, lone voices in the media wilderness.
However, the most devastating rebuttal of Crowdstrike’s December 22 report came from the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense itself.
On January 6, the Ukrainian Defense Ministry posted a denial on their official website, stating flatly that the claim that 80 percente of D-30 Howitzers had been destroyed by Russian malware was false. (The following is a Google Translate version of the Ukrainian information posted by their defense ministry.)
In connection with the emergence in some media reports which stated that the alleged “80% howitzer D-30 Armed Forces of Ukraine removed through scrapping Russian Ukrainian hackers software gunners,” Land Forces Command of the Armed Forces of Ukraine informs that the said information is incorrect .
According Command Missile Forces and Artillery Land Forces of Ukraine, artillery weapons lost during the time of ATO times smaller than the above and are not associated with the specified cause. Currently, troops Missile Forces and Artillery Army Forces of Ukraine fully combat-ready, staffed and able to fulfill the missions.
Ministry of Defence of Ukraine asks journalists to publish only verified information received from the competent official sources. Spreading false information leads to increased social tension in society and undermines public confidence in the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
As Jeffrey Carr summed it up, “Not only did Crowdstrike choose to quote improbably high losses estimated by a Pro-Russia analyst, we now have confirmation from Ukraine’s MOD that (1) those figures were wrong, (2) Crowdstrike’s reason for the losses were wrong, and (3) Crowdstrike’s spread of false information caused harm.”
This produced more crickets from the establishment media that had used Crowdstrike as the basis of their narrative for months.
Worse than the obvious media malpractice that left Crowdstrike’s claims fully debunked, the DNC-employed group continued to be given praise by embattled FBI Director James Comey, even after this shocking refutation by the Ukrainians.
On January 10th, Comey testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee and made a stunning admission: despite “multiple requests at different levels,” the Democratic National Committee had denied the FBI’s requests to examine the servers themselves. Instead, the FBI took the word of Crowdstrike, who Comey called a “highly respected private company.”
It bears repeating that this complimentary assessment by James Comey of Crowdstrike came days after the Ukrainian military itself had challenged the basic factual premise of their report from just weeks earlier.
Furthermore, Comey’s January 10th testimony praising Crowdstrike – who was working for the DNC at the time, remember – came after the DNC had told Buzzfeed on January 4th, days before Comey testified, that the FBI had never asked to examine their servers in the first place. DNC deputy communications director Eric Walker had said in an email that:
The DNC had several meetings with representatives of the FBI’s Cyber Division and its Washington (DC) Field Office, the Department of Justice’s National Security Division, and U.S. Attorney’s Offices, and it responded to a variety of requests for cooperation, but the FBI never requested access to the DNC’s computer servers.
This claim by a DNC official that the FBI had never asked for access to the servers clearly rankled some within the Bureau because the next day The Hill reported that an anonymous source not only contradicted the DNC’s claim, but said that the DNC’s lack of cooperation had caused severe problems for the investigation:
“The FBI repeatedly stressed to DNC officials the necessity of obtaining direct access to servers and data, only to be rebuffed until well after the initial compromise had been mitigated,” the official said.
“This left the FBI no choice but to rely upon a third party for information. These actions caused significant delays and inhibited the FBI from addressing the intrusion earlier.”
If any of this raised any suspicions for James Comey, he failed to show it in his January 10th testimony. Instead, Comey calmly told the Senate committee that while he would have liked to have the information directly from the DNC servers, that he was okay with getting the information from the company that they employed, the “highly respected” Crowdstrike. As The Hill reported:
“We’d always prefer to have access hands-on ourselves if that’s possible,” Comey said, noting that he didn’t know why the DNC rebuffed the FBI’s request.
But none of this behavior by the DNC, Crowdstrike, or James Comey fit the media’s narrative that somehow Donald Trump was connected to the Russians who had helped to throw him the election because… something. For the establishment, the technical details didn’t matter, Crowdstrike’s connection to the Democrats didn’t matter, their gross errors and misstatements didn’t matter, none of it mattered. The media pile-on of Donald Trump would continue after his inauguration and right through to this day.
Now, on Monday at 10 am, FBI Director James Comey and Crowdstrike’s Dmitri Alperovitch and Shawn Henry are all scheduled to testify in front of the House Intelligence Committee, and once again Republicans will have a chance to question Comey and Crowdstrike and finally bring some clarity to the American people.
The only question at this point is whether the House Republicans will do their duty to the American people to shed light on the story, or allow the members of the opposition party – Democrats and the media alike – to continue to spread disinformation.
Lee Stranahan is the lead investigative reporter at Breitbart News. You can sign up for his free daily news roundup, covering national and global events from across the political spectrum, by using one of the forms on Stranahan.com.
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