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Old Feb 3rd 2018, 05:26 AM
Tom Palven Tom Palven is offline
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Default The Nunes Memo

FWIW, Reuters, whom one would think has no dog in this fight, called the Nunes memo "explosive."
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-u...KBN1FM1FD?il=0

Retired professor Michael Rozeff says that anti-Trump forces are in desperate denial:
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-u...KBN1FM1FD?il=0

Paul Craig Roberts pulls no punches in his explanation of the situation:
https://www.lewrockwell.com/2018/02/pau ... ee-report/
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Last edited by Tom Palven; Feb 3rd 2018 at 05:32 AM.
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Old Feb 3rd 2018, 05:58 AM
Tom Palven Tom Palven is offline
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Default Re: The Nunes Memo

This is the full link to the Paul Craig Roberts article:
https://www.lewrockwell.com/2018/02/...mittee-report/
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Old Feb 4th 2018, 10:10 AM
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Default Re: The Nunes Memo

The Nunes memo is nothing and always was nothing. The only people who think it is 'something' are Trump and Trump's die-hard supporters, and we know that they are not very bright.

The Republicans and Trump have been hyping to try and spin away a slowly rising mountain of damning evidence.

The American mass media are lapdogs for the rightwing spin machine, so they play along every time. Nothing we haven't seen dozens of times already.
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Old Feb 5th 2018, 07:26 AM
Tom Palven Tom Palven is offline
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Default Re: The Nunes Memo

Rather than my links to what Reuters said about the memo, or to links about what Rachel Maddow, Trump, or anyone else says about the memo, I should have just posted the memo.

Here it is:

1) The “dossier” compiled by Christopher Steele (Steele dossier) on behalf of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and the Hillary Clinton campaign formed an essential part of the Carter Page FISA application. Steele was a longtime FBI source who was paid over $160,000 by the DNC and Clinton campaign, via the law firm Perkins Coie and research firm Fusion GPS, to obtain derogatory information on Donald Trump’s ties to Russia.
a) Neither the initial application in October 2016, nor any of the renewals, disclose or reference the role of the DNC, Clinton campaign, or any party/campaign in funding Steele’s efforts, even though the political origins of the Steele dossier were then known to senior DOJ and FBI officials.
b) The initial FISA application notes Steel was working for a named U.S. person, but does not name Fusion GPS and principal Glenn Simpson, who was paid by a U.S. law firm (Perkins Coie) representing the DNC (even though it was known by the DOJ at the time that political actors were involved with the Steele dossier.) The application does not mention Steele was ultimately working on behalf of — and paid by — the DNC and Clinton campaign, or that the FBI had separately authorized payment to Steele for the same information.

2) The Carter Page FISA application also cited extensively a September 23, 2016, Yahoo News article by Michael Isikoff, which focuses on Pages’ July 2016 trip to Moscow. This article does not corroborate the Steele dossier because it is derived from information leaked by Steele himself to Yahoo News. The Page FISA application incorrectly assesses that Steele did not directly provide information to Yahoo News. Steele has admitted in British court filings that he met with Yahoo News — and several other outlets — in September 2016 at the direction of Fusion GPS. Perkins Coie was aware of Steele’s initial media contacts because they hosted at least one meeting in Washington D.C. in 2016 with Steel and Fusion GPS where this matter was discussed.
a) Steele was suspended and then terminated as an FBI source for what the FBI defines as the most serious of violations — an unauthorized disclosure to the media of his relationship with the FBI in an October 30, 2016, Mother Jones article by David Corn. Steele should have been terminated for his previous undisclosed contacts with Yahoo and other outlets in September — before the Page application was submitted to the FISC in October — but Steele improperly concealed from and lied to the FBI about those contacts.
b) Steele’s numerous encounters with the media violated the cardinal rule of source handling — maintaining confidentiality — and demonstrated that Steele had become a less than reliable source for the FBI.

3) Before and after Steele was terminated as a source, he maintained contact with DOJ via then-Associate Deputy Attorney General Bruce Ohr, a senior DOJ official who worked closely with Deputy Attorneys General Yates and later Rosenstein. Shortly after the election, the FBI began interviewing Ohr, documenting his communications with Steele. For example, in September 2016, Steele admitted to Ohr his feelings against then-candidate Trump when Steele said he “was desperate that Donald Trump not get elected and was passionate about him not being president.” This clear evidence of Steele’s bias was recorded by Ohr at the time and subsequently in official FBI files — but not reflected in any of the Page FISA applications.
a) During this same time period, Ohr’s wife was employed by Fusion GPS to assist in the cultivation of opposition research on Trump. Ohr later provided the FBI with all of his wife’s opposition research, paid for by the DNC and Clinton campaign via Fusion GPS. The Ohrs’ relationship with Steele and Fusion GPS was inexplicable concealed from the FISC.

4) According to the head of the FBI’s counterintelligence division, Assistant Director Bill Priestap, corroboration of the Steele dossier was in its “infancy” at the time of the initial Page FISA application. After Steele was terminated, a source validation report conducted by an independent unit within FBI assessed Steele’s reporting as only minimally corroborated. Yet, in early January 2017, Director Comey briefed President-elect Trump on a summary of the Steele dossier, even though it was — according to his June 2017 testimony — “salacious and unverified.” While the FISA application relied on Steele’s past record of credible reporting on other unrelated matters, it ignored or concealed his anti-Trump financial and ideological motivations. Furthermore, Deputy Director McCabe testified before the Committee in December 2017 that no surveillance warrant would have been sought from the FISC without the Steele dossier information.

5) The Page FISA application also mentions information regarding fellow Trump campaign advisor George Papadopoulos, but there is no evidence of any cooperation or conspiracy between Page and Papadopoulos. The Papadopoulos information triggered the opening of an FBI counterintelligence investigation in late July 2016 by FBI agent Pete Strzok. Strzok was reassigned by the Special Counsel’s Office to FBI Human Resources for improper text messages with his mistress, FBI Attorney Lisa Page (no known relation to Carter Page), where they both demonstrated a clear bias against Trump and in favor of Clinton, whom Strzok had also investigated. The Strzok/Lisa Page texts also reflect extensive discussions about the investigation, orchestrating leaks to the media, and include a meeting with Deputy Director McCabe to discuss an “insurance” policy against President Trump's election.
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Old Feb 5th 2018, 12:17 PM
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Default Re: The Nunes Memo

Quote:
The Nunes memo is a dud

Devin Nunes’s memo allegedly exposing anti-Trump bias at the FBI does nothing of the kind.

Rep. Devin Nunes’s infamous memo — the document numerous House Republicans claimed would demonstrate fundamental anti-Trump corruption at the FBI — was released early Friday afternoon. The entire thing is three and a half pages and only takes a few minutes to read closely and carefully.

After doing that, there is only one conclusion a fair reader could draw: There is absolutely nothing here.

There is no proof in the memo that the FBI is biased against Trump, no proof of abuse of surveillance powers by the FBI, and no proof that the investigation into the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia is fundamentally flawed. The memo is a piece of partisan spin, and not a particularly compelling one at that.

Republicans who claimed it was anything else have been egregiously misrepresenting what the memo actually says.

The memo begins by making a grandiose claim: The FBI’s use of surveillance power under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) during the 2016 campaign was “a troubling breakdown of legal processes established to protect the American people from abuses related to the FISA process.”

The only example the memo cites is an October 21, 2016, request by the Department of Justice and FBI for permission under FISA powers to snoop on former Trump campaign foreign policy adviser Carter Page. The key word there is former: Page had left the Trump campaign at least a month before the application. That’s the first red flag that there’s nothing here, as an FBI campaign to undermine Trump’s campaign would almost certainly involve targeting someone who was actually working on it.

The Nunes memo goes on to allege that the Page FISA application, which was ultimately approved by a judge, was fundamentally flawed. The problem, it claims, is that the application depended on “the Steele dossier,” a document put together by former British spy Christopher Steele alleging deep ties between Trump and Russia (it’s the source of, among other things, the “pee tape” rumors about Trump and Moscow prostitutes).

The Steele dossier, Nunes alleges, “formed an essential part of the Carter Page application,” and he goes on to suggest that the application omitted several key facts about the dossier that undermine its credibility: most notably that the dossier was partially funded by the Democratic National Committee and that Steele himself has expressed his opposition to Donald Trump becoming president.

We can’t check whether these claims are true without seeing the actual FISA application. It could be that the Steele dossier wasn’t very important to the Page application, or that the FBI actually did disclose Steele’s political connections. (This is apparently the argument in a Democratic counter-memo, which was not published because Republicans voted to keep it secret.)

The Nunes memo, in other words, could be full of lies. We just can’t tell based on reading it.

But let’s assume that its core factual assertions — that the FBI heavily relied on the Steele dossier, and that it didn’t mention his funding sources in the FISA warrant — are true. So what?

The FBI relies on sources with axes to grind all the time. People typically don’t go to the authorities with damaging information about people they like. The key question in an application like this isn’t whether the source liked the target; it’s whether the specific claims they’re making are credible.

The memo doesn’t make that case.

“What matters is whether the Steele specific findings *actually material to the application* were unverified,” Julian Sanchez, an expert on surveillance at the libertarian Cato Institute, wrote after reading the memo. “Memo doesn’t seem to make that claim.”
Source

About the only thing the memo shows is that the FISA court process for issuing such warrants is, at the very least, highly questionable. And that process was created by Republicans and defended by them against Democratic party complaints about the process and this long predates this episode. Republicans and their supporters seem to be very selective about this FISA process that they love to use. When it works for them, they love it, when it goes against them, they complain about bias and political witchhunts. This game is getting tiresome.
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Old Feb 6th 2018, 09:36 AM
Tom Palven Tom Palven is offline
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Default Re: The Nunes Memo

Imho this Pat Buchanan article published today explains very well in the first two short paragraphs why the FBI was adamant about the memo remaining secret:
https://www.lewrockwell.com/2018/02/...he-deep-state/
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Old Feb 10th 2018, 06:33 PM
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Default Re: The Nunes Memo

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Palven View Post
Imho this Pat Buchanan article published today explains very well in the first two short paragraphs why the FBI was adamant about the memo remaining secret:
https://www.lewrockwell.com/2018/02/...he-deep-state/
Decision to release and/or declassify is Trump's, not FBI.

Trump declassified and allowed release of Nunes memo. Why, I'm not sure. Since it is full of air, it doesn't advance their case. It is just propaganda, but it has mostly backfired - by releasing the memo, it is easy to call it bullshit.

Trump classifies and prevents release of detailed, line by line, Democratic response - because releasing this memo amounts to showing the 'official' proof that Nunes memo is bullshit and they can't have that!
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