As the House Intelligence Committee on Monday announced its findings that there was no collusion between Team Trump and Russia. More evidence of the collusion between Deep State swamp creatures and a disloyal media to undermine the presidency of Donald Trump was also revealed. James Clapper has been exposed as both a perjurer and a criminal leaker of classified information to the press.
The cynicism of Americans regarding integrity and accountability in government grew as swamp thing James Clapper avoided his part of the bog being drained. The statute of limitations for prosecuting his perjury before Congress regarding surveillance of Americans expired on Monday:
Clapper, director of national intelligence from 2010 to 2017, admitted giving “clearly erroneous” testimony about mass surveillance in March 2013, and offered differing explanations for why.
Two criminal statutes that cover lying to Congress have five-year statutes of limitations, establishing a Monday deadline to charge Clapper, who in retirement has emerged as a leading critic of President Trump.
The under-oath untruth was exposed by National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden, who sparked national debate on surveillance policy with leaks to the press.
Many members of Congress, mostly Republicans supportive of new limits on electronic surveillance, called for Clapper to be prosecuted as the deadline neared, saying unpunished perjury jeopardizes the ability of Congress to perform oversight.
“He admitted to lying to Congress and was unremorseful and flippant about it,” Rep. Thomas Massie, R-Ky., told the Washington Examiner. “The integrity of our federal government is at stake because his behavior sets the standard for the entire intelligence community.”
WikiLeaks announces “Vault 8”
Those releases were part of a series of leaks WikiLeaks called Vault 7. Now, WikiLeaks says Hive is just the first of a long string of similar releases, a series WikiLeaks calls Vault 8, which will consist of source code for tools previously released in the Vault 7 series.
The WikiLeaks announcement has sent shivers up the spines of infosec experts everywhere, as it reminded them of April this year when a hacking group named The Shadow Brokers published cyber-weapons allegedly stolen from the NSA.
Some of the tools included in that release have been incorporated in many malware families and have been at the center of all three major ransomware outbreaks that have taken place n 2017 — WannaCry, NotPetya, and Bad Rabbit. More here.
Security Breach and Spilled Secrets Have Shaken the N.S.A. to Its Core
A serial leak of the agency’s cyberweapons has damaged morale, slowed intelligence operations and resulted in hacking attacks on businesses and civilians worldwide
The House and Senate Intelligence Committees are currently investigating allegations the Obama administration spied on Trump associates – and possibly Trump himself – for as long as the year preceding his inauguration. And while former Obama National Security Adviser Susan Rice has been implicated as at least one of the officials who sought redacted names from surveillance transcripts, multiple lawmakers and investigators for the panel told Fox News the CIA, FBI and National Security Agency – all agencies in position to aid the probe – are not cooperating.
“Our requests are simply not being answered,” said one House Intelligence committee source about the lack of responsiveness. “The agencies are not really helping at all and there is truly a massive web for us to try and wade through.”
A Senate Intelligence Committee source said the upper chamber had the same experience.
“Our requests are simply not being answered.”
– House Intelligence Committee source
“Any information that will help find the wide extent on the unmasking and surveillance is purposely not being provided,” said the Senate source.
An FBI spokesperson said the bureau is working in good faith.
“The FBI will continue to work with the congressional oversight committees on their requests,” the spokesperson said.
A CIA spokesperson told Fox News the NSA was the lead agency on the matter and referred questions to it.
In a statement to Fox News, the NSA called the allegations “categorically untrue.”
“Allegations that the National Security Agency is ‘withholding information’ from congressional intelligence committees investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election are categorically untrue,” the statement said. “NSA fully supports the committees’ work. We have already made available significant information in response to their requests, and we look forward to continuing to work with them in the execution of their important responsibilities.”
Sources within the NSA said they are watching the investigation closely, with one telling Fox News, “A number of people saw a lot of very questionable stuff. [The Obama administration was] using national assets and intelligence for politics.”
It was not clear if the alleged lack of cooperation was from top brass or agency holdovers resisting the new administration.
The CIA is now headed by former Rep. Mike Pompeo, who himself served on the House Intelligence Committee prior to his nomination. The FBI and NSA are run by James Comey and Mike Rogers, respectively. Both are holdovers from the Obama administration. Last month, both men declined to appear at a private closed door House Intelligence Committee briefing and have not met with the committee members since.
The meeting was supposed to be a follow-up to public testimony by Comey and Rogers to the committee in late March on the topic of Russian meddling in the presidential election and the alleged mishandling of intelligence related to the Trump transition team.
During the public hearing, the pair had declined to answer more than 100 questions, and Comey has been completely unavailable since.
House Intelligence Chair Devin Nunes, R-Calif., told Fox News he had hoped that behind closed doors, Comey and Rogers would be more forthcoming.
Obama’s national security advisor is a liar — and possibly a felon.
Former President Obama’s National Security Advisor Susan Rice asked for the names of Trump transition officials to be unmasked and made public in raw intelligence files, according to media reports, a move apparently carried out to harm the incoming Trump administration.
As recently as March 22, Rice denied knowing anything about the intelligence reports. In an appearance on “PBS Newshour,” she said pretty definitely, “I know nothing about this.” The new news reports paint Rice as a liar.
The evidence we know about in the Trump-Russia saga so far seems to be pointing at Obama.
Family Security Matters
This article is addressed to the public in general, but especially the media, i.e., journalists who should know better but don’t.
Last week, WikiLeaks released classified documents relating to CIA-funded surveillance programs and techniques. Under the codename Vault 7, Julian Assange’s organization has so far disclosed only a small fraction (1%) of the total documents, which they claim to be the “largest intelligence publication in history.” The “Year 0” release contains 7,818 web pages and 943 attachments. (You can view the entire Vault 7 ‘Year 0′ collection here. For a good overview of what Vault 7 consists of and some potential implications, follow this link.)
Some of the more sensational activities documented in Vault 7 explain how the CIA has retained, through electronic and programming loopholes and proprietary technology, an ability to remotely activate a variety of personal electronic devices, enabling them to – for example – listen to private conversations within earshot of your smartphones microphone. Ostensibly, this is also true for cameras (e.g., on your smartphone phone, laptop, iPad, on your television).
For many Americans, this news comes as an unwelcome surprise. Before we continue, let’s pause and examine whether the public outcry is justified.
The Washington Post has reported that a provision of the Patriot Act which is supposed to be limited to national security and terrorism investigations is being used in narcotics cases.
The New York Times reported that the National Security Agency (NSA) will share that data and whatever else is swept up with it with other intelligence agencies including the FBI (without applying any screens for privacy).
This means that domestic law enforcement will have access to massive American communications that are obtained without warrants. The FBI agents don’t need any ‘national security’ reason to put your basic information into the NSA’s data trove. They can poke around endlessly during routine investigations as described in The Washington Post Thursday.
The information can be used by police to lock up citizens for routine crimes.
The NSA has given law enforcement these opportunities to circumvent the Fourth Amendment before and then advises them to “misdirect, fudge and outright lie about how they obtained incriminating information, according to the Post article.
We have given the federal government enormous power, including the power to circumvent the Fourth Amendment. Without a Fourth Amendment, the Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, and Eighth will fall.
Family Security Matters
According to a bombshell Wall Street Journal article by Adam Entous and Danny Yadron, published online late Monday, the National Security Agency provided the White House with intercepted Israeli communications containing details of private discussions between Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu and U.S. lawmakers and American Jewish groups on the Iran nuclear deal. If true, this could be the biggest scandal of the Obama presidency.
The Journal article explains that President Obama decided to stop NSA collection against certain foreign leaders after the backlash against Edward Snowden’s disclosure that the NSA had eavesdropped on German chancellor Angela Merkel’s cellphone and monitored communications of the heads of state of other close U.S. allies.
According to the Journal story, President Obama did not halt NSA spying against Netanyahu. This is not a surprise, given the president’s chilly relations with the Israeli leader and Israel’s aggressive spying against the United States. It’s also not a surprise that the Obama administration sought intelligence on Netanyahu’s efforts to undermine the nuclear deal. But it is stunning to learn that NSA sent the White House intelligence on private discussions with U.S. congressmen on a major policy dispute between the White House and Congress.
According to the Journal article, to avoid a paper trail that would show that they wanted the NSA to report on Netanyahu’s interactions with Congress, Obama officials decided to let the agency decide how much of this intelligence to provide and what to withhold. The article cited an unnamed U.S. official who explained, “We didn’t say, ‘Do it.’ We didn’t say, ‘Don’t do it.'”
Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons
The American Spectator
One of the primary contentions, yesterday evening, of Establishment Republicans and Democrats in defense of the NSA’s massive data collection program, was that the program was not only free from abuse (something we know is not true), but that it’s ultimately useful in targeting real threats to the American people; maybe not yesterday, maybe not today, but perhaps some day in the future it will ensnare an entire sleeper sell of Jihadists mid-phone call to Iran, giving an unsecured credit card number to their yellowcake suppliers. The data collection, you see, is done only on those whose backgrounds demand it. If you’ve done nothing wrong? Then why worry that your cell phone data records are stored on a massive supercomputer in Utah, where they can be routinely downloaded and searched?
One thing they forgot to mention? The Obama Administration, which has greatly expanded warrantless wiretapping, has a very interesting definition of who consitutes a threat. They haven’t been entirely forthcoming (or maybe they have, really) in who they focus on when it comes to things like “lone-wolf terrorist” or “threats to the very nature of our social fabric.” And that’s because, when they use the terms, they don’t really mean the homegrown groups of Jihadists that Lindsey Graham or Dan Coats envisions, plotting to put a dirty bomb in a shopping mall or release anthrax into Congress’s air ducts.
At least according to the DOJ’s most recent statements, they mean you.
The Daily Sheeple
The Cop Is On the Take
Government corruption has become rampant:
- Senior SEC employees spent up to 8 hours a day surfing porn sites instead of cracking down on financial crimes
- Nuclear Regulatory Commission workers watch porn instead of cracking down on unsafe conditions at nuclear plants
- An EPA employee who downloaded 7,000 porn files, then spent 2-6 hours each workday watching porn. He’s been doing it for years … but the EPA never fired him. Another EPA employee harassed 16 women co-workers … and then was promoted to a higher-paying job with more responsibility, where he harassed more women
With nearly no public notice or debate, Congress on Wednesday approved legislation that critics say blesses the warrantless collection, dissemination and five-year retention of everyday Americans’ phone and Internet communications.
The controversial language was quietly incorporated into an intelligence authorization bill that passed the Senate on Tuesday and then the House on Wednesday.
The legislation, privacy advocates say, sanctions for the first time the executive branch’s warrantless collection of American communications under Executive Order 12333, issued in 1981 to authorize the interception of communications overseas.
Section 309 of the intelligence bill sets a five-year limit, with many exceptions, on the retention of U.S. persons’ communications collected under that order, which was issued well before widespread use of cellphones and the Internet.
Members of Rep. Justin Amash’s staff noticed the section Wednesday morning, and the Michigan Republican rushed to the House floor, rallied opposition with a letter to colleagues and secured a roll call vote.
But opponents failed to defeat the bill, which passed 325-100 and now heads to President Barack Obama for his signature.
“This whole thing is so upsetting to me,” says John Napier Tye, a former State Department Internet policy official who went public as a whistleblower in July. Tye warns that U.S. spy agencies can evade congressional oversight and use the order to scoop up vast amounts of American communications routinely routed through foreign cables and servers.
“It is good that Congress is trying to regulate 12333 activities,” Tye says. “But the language in this bill just endorses a terrible system that allows the NSA to take virtually everything Americans do online and use it however it wants according to the rules it writes.” He says that includes sharing the intercepts with foreign governments and domestic law enforcement.
The provision says “any nonpublic telephone or electronic communication” sent by or among Americans that’s intercepted by intelligence agencies without a court order or subpoena can be stored for five years.
Intercepted communications can be stored longer if they are encrypted, include evidence of a crime or meet other exceptions.
“The NSA can take everything an American does online [and] write its own rules for how to share it with foreign governments and with the FBI, allowing a huge amount of American data to [be used to] prosecute Americans with no court oversight,” Tye says.
The New York Times reported in August that the Obama administration is rewriting internal policies to allow the FBI direct access to a database of raw communications collected under the executive order.
There’s no specification in the legislation of crimes that would qualify communications for distribution to law enforcement. “The executive branch writes its own rules,” Tye says, with the FBI using parallel construction to obscure the true origin of some criminal investigations.
Read the rest of this article here.