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Spawn Of The Fake Steele Dossier

Sharyl Attkisson

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lee Smith, in an article for the Federalist has taken a deep dive into the Steele dossier, the document that formed the basis for the two-year campaign defame President Donald Trump and obstruct his agenda.

What Smith’s article reveals, more cogently than any other piece we’ve seen, is the scope and logistics of the information operation designed to sabotage an American election. Players include the press, political operatives from both parties, and law enforcement and intelligence officials.

Smith points out that the Mueller investigation has thoroughly tested the veracity of the dossier’s claims. Yet, after the FBI’s monitoring of Page for nearly a year, with access to his electronic communications prior to the FISA warrant, the special counsel has brought no charges against the former Navy officer alleged in the dossier to be at the center of a criminal conspiracy.

Yet, says Smith, the dossier abides. Even as prominent and early collusion theory promoter journalist Michael Isikoff now questions its probity, many still contend that Steele’s reports have not been “disproven.” After nearly two years since the Steele dossier was published, it remains the cornerstone of the case for collusion. Moreover, the dossier model has given rise to similar operations, joining the press, political operatives, and intelligence officials, not all of them American, targeting Trump policies.

What’s more says Smith, the Steele dossier has spawned a host of similar information operations targeting Trump, his appointees and his policies:

The reported murder of Arab intelligence operative and Washington Post contributor Jamal Khashoggi was used as a platform by Turkish intelligence, the government of Qatar, and U.S. operatives to advance a campaign through the press, with the Post playing a leading role, against the administration’s pro-Saudi policies.

Democratic officials teamed with the media to thwart Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, also using an FBI investigation as a political tool. “We were very concerned when Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee pushed for another FBI investigation of Kavanaugh,” said a congressional investigator on the Republican side familiar with the dossier operation. “We didn’t know who would get it at the bureau and who we can trust over there.”

Cyber-security experts hired by the Senate Intelligence Committee to write a report on how Russian social media accounts helped Trump beat Clinton themselves created fake Russian social media accounts to dirty the GOP Senate candidate in last year’s special Alabama election. As the dossier operation targeted Trump, the bot operation created the impression that Roy Moore was supported by the Kremlin.

The dossier operation has not only damaged institutions like the FBI and DOJ, it has also poisoned the public sphere, perhaps irremediably.

As a result, concluded Mr. Smith, it is now accepted journalistic practice to print, and reprint, any garish fantasy so long as it’s layered with Russian intrigue and Trump team treason. Even as the rest of the country sees an institution that has made itself a laughingstock, the press continues to salute itself for its bravery—or the courage and industry required to take leaks from law enforcement and intelligence officials and Democratic operatives in an effort to topple a president it doesn’t like, elected by neighbors it holds in contempt.

And it wasn’t just Democrats that were in on the game. Smith points out the operation that sought to defraud the American voter had bipartisan support all along. Court documents released in December show that Steele gave his final report to Republican Rep. Adam Kinzinger and House Speaker Paul Ryan’s chief of staff, Jonathan Burks.

After 300 political campaigns I can say one thing about the Steele dossier with some authority: It was no opposition research memo, at least as the term is understood by any political operative with even the thinnest ethical sense would understand the term; it was a good old-fashioned hit piece that no one even bothered to pretend was true, merely “credible” to its recipients.

As our friend, investigative journalist Sheryl Attkisson put it in an article for The Hill, “It’s incredible to think of how many FBI and Justice Department officials would have touched the multiple applications to wiretap Trump campaign adviser Carter Page — allegedly granted, at least in part, on the basis of unverified and thus prohibited information — if normal procedures were followed.”

Attkisson quotes a former FBI agent as saying, “DOJ verifies the accuracy of every fact stated in the [FISA warrant] application. If anything looks unsubstantiated, the application is sent back to the FBI to provide additional evidentiary support – this game of bureaucratic chutes and ladders continues until DOJ is satisfied that the facts in the FISA application can both be corroborated and meet the legal standards for the court. After getting sign-off from a senior DOJ official…”

The choice, and it was a choice, not a failure on the part of the FBI, not to follow procedure then begs the question where were the FISA Court judges in all of this? Did they join Glenn Simpson in suspending judgement on the veracity of the Steele dossier, or were they hoodwinked by the rogue elements of the Obama-era FBI and Department of Justice? And if they were hoodwinked, what are they going to do about it?

Sheryl Attkisson’s outstanding article for The Hill is the best distillation we’ve seen of how the FISA warrant application process is supposed to work, and what it shows is not just a breakdown in communication or the failure of one or two people to follow procedures – it shows that for the unverified and unverifiable Steele dossier to form the basis for a FISA warrant application there must have been not just a breakdown, but an intentional waiver of the normal constitutional safeguards supposed in place at the Department of Justice and the FISA Court.

It seems clear to us, based on the work of Attkisson and Smith, that this was not a procedural breakdown, it is a criminal conspiracy to overturn the 2016 election and to violate the constitutional rights of President Trump, Carter Page and various other individuals who were caught up in the net cast by the illegal acts behind the FISA warrant applications based on the Steele dossier.

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Clinton and co-conspirators

Clinton and co-conspirators should be tried by military tribunal for treasonous attack on the Commander in Chief.