Three angles on the FBI scandals – two from experts, one featuring anonymous sources

Two experts have written serious criticisms of the FBI, and a semi-famous blogger repeated some anonymous accusations.

The expert criticisms are coherent, but the scandals are intricate, so pour yourself some extra coffee and prepare to take notes.

Sidney Powell wrote:
The Department of Justice, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Hillary Clinton have a HUGE Weiner problem that is even bigger than we first realized.

According to the recently released inspector general report, on September 28 and 29, 2016 the New York office of the FBI immediately reported to the Washington headquarters its discovery of, first, 141,000 and then 350,000 emails on the laptop of Anthony Weiner — also known as “Carlos Danger,” a now-convicted sex offender. Mr. Weiner is the husband of Hillary Clinton’s inseparable aide Huma Abedin.

Now we know by October 4, the New York office had found 700,000 emails. The New York agents had seen and reported to FBI leadership they had seen email headers, all domain names, Mrs. Clinton’s initials on one sensitive but not classified document, and the missing BlackBerry backups.

The New York agents described it as the “entire file” of all Hillary Clinton emails from 2006 until 2016, including the BlackBerry messages that Comey himself had referred to as “the golden emails.”

The “mid-year team” of FBI agents investigating the email issues had been told by Clinton’s staff and lawyers that there was a complete archive on both a thumb drive and a laptop, but remarkably, no one seemed to have them. At least some on the mid-year team were frustrated and believed Clinton’s attorneys were lying. Others, including Comey, claimed they were looking for those under every “stone” but no one could find them.

Remember: Hillary Clinton’s attorneys produced approximately 30,000 of her emails, and they appear to have claimed that was the entirety of her work-related emails. Mrs. Clinton, staff and technical support had deliberately deleted approximately 33,000 emails that were just about “yoga” and “wedding plans.” They produced nothing from the beginning of her tenure as Secretary of State. Then, her server was wiped with “BleachBit.”

Yet, lo and behold, here so many emails were. Hundreds of thousands of emails, the “entire file” — everything Clinton — including data from the BlackBerrys and other devices for which the FBI and DOJ decided not to run search warrants because they “assumed” they had been destroyed.

So what did the FBI do with this “explosive” “bomb” including the “golden emails” on the BlackBerry that everyone knew was missing from the production?

Nothing — at least nothing to obtain evidence.

There was a flurry of activity at Headquarters. Strzok-Page texts show that Strzok, McCabe and Priestap discussed the Weiner laptop among themselves shortly after the “bomb” dropped in the video conference that day. In fact, Priestap and Strzok were waiting outside McCabe’s office to discuss it while McCabe was with Comey. There were also two calls between Comey and McCabe that evening.

Does anyone really think they were not having their own “oh shit” moment?

The FBI case agent in New York sure had one.

Remarkably, McCabe, Comey, Priestap, Strzok,and then Mary McCord at DOJ have little recollection of much of this at all. It just kind of “fell off the radar.” They were “busy.” it was probably “duplicates,” and their focus was on the “Russia” investigation to which they gave priority. And after all, they did not expect any information on the laptop to “change the outcome of the case.”

Of course they did not, but the only reason for that is that the outcome that she would not be prosecuted was a foregone conclusion from the beginning

Obama and Hillary had both declared it.

Comey, McCabe, Strzok, and others gave various reasons for sitting on the “entire file” of Clinton’s emails for a month. The inspector general examines — and resoundingly rejected —each of them.

For one, they all asserted that they expected and hoped that the emails were simply duplicates of ones they had already reviewed. This is clearly impossible.

First, just do the math. There were 675,000 of them—at least 350,000 of which they knew from the video call of September 28. Clinton produced approximately 30,000 emails — claiming that included all her work-related emails. Supposedly, her staff culled 33,000 emails that were purely personal.

Combined, that is more than 600,000 emails short of this colossal find, which is ten times the total number of emails Clinton and company claimed existed.

Second, the agents and Comey all knew they had no BlackBerry messages from Mrs. Clinton’s production. But from Weiner’s laptop, they knew from the headers and dates, they had all of those — the first two months of her tenure as secretary of state.

This was the motherlode of Clinton culpability — the answers to everything they did not want anyone to know.

And there’s more.

As early as October 3, the Weiner case agent was “agitated” over the sound of “crickets” from headquarters and the “inaccurate” statements of Director Comey regarding the number of emails they possessed. He felt compelled to push the issue in New York, all the way up to U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara.

The case agent himself recognized that the FBI had 10 times the number of Clinton emails that the director had reported on the record, and they had the significant BlackBerry messages as well. He could not believe someone in New York had not called him to get the hard drive.

Extremely concerned, the case agent went to the U.S. attorneys for the Southern District of New York. An assistant United States attorney told the inspector general the agent believed “somebody was not acting appropriately, somebody was trying to bury this.” The attorneys were concerned the agent might “act out.”

“Act out” means blow the whistle.

United States Attorney Bharara was so sufficiently aware of the deafening silence from Washington that he instructed his chief counsel to document everything his office had done — “with a hundred percent accuracy.” “Things seemed unusual” to him, and he wanted a record of their actions, including their recovery of more than 700,000 emails.

Bharara instructed his deputy to call the Justice Department directly in case “something had fallen through the cracks.” That call made it impossible for the FBI and DOJ to continue to keep this “trove” buried. The same day, October 21, Agent Strzok wrote to Lisa Page: Toscas at DOJ was “now aware NY has hrc-huma emails via weiner invest[igation].”

Finally, five days later, on October 26, the New York case agent was able to talk directly to the mid-year agents. (“Mid-year” is the name the FBI gave the investigation.) The case agent reported again: “Based on the number of emails, we could have every email that Huma and Hillary ever sent each other.” [315].

On October 30, the Department of Justice finally got in gear to get a warrant — to include everything dealing during Mrs. Clinton’s tenure with the State Department and all devices — and especially the Comey-denominated “golden emails” from the BlackBerrys and all the messages sent to Abedin to be given to Mrs. Clinton, right?


Shocker #1: Despite everyone’s recognition of the importance of the “explosive” “bomb,” and the “golden emails” on the Weiner laptop, the FBI never even sought to review the “golden” emails. FBI General Counsel Baker pushed hard to expand the application to include those, but Strzok and DOJ prosecutors shot it down.

Shocker #2: They deliberately ignored the emails between Huma Abedin and others — despite knowing she was a proxy for the Secretary and had lied to them in her interview.

Federal investigators knew people would email Abedin, and she would print things out for Clinton. Abedin admitted it was easier for her to print things from home in Brooklyn.

Logically then, it appears it was Abedin who deliberately stripped classified markings from emails to forward the information to Mrs. Clinton so she could then deny ever receiving anything marked classified. It’s called “plausible deniability,” and it was a deliberate and illegal scheme for handling classified information.

Shocker #3: Over analysts’ objections, the FBI never reviewed the Weiner laptop to determine if it had been compromised by foreign agents despite finding that Huma Abedin had forwarded classified information to it. Those were flagrant violations of 18 U.S.C. §793.

There are important conclusions from these facts in the inspector general’s report.

The Weiner laptop almost certainly contains the answers to the public’s questions about all things Clinton — her scandals, the Clinton Foundation pay-to-play, obstruction of justice and also possible espionage act violations.

The FBI’s claim to have reviewed all the relevant Clinton emails is obviously false.

The inspector general’s report belies the FBI’s claim to have left no stone unturned.

The Weiner laptop and content of all iCloud accounts must be immediately obtained and preserved by an independent counsel in whom the public can have confidence.

Justice requires both a full investigation of Mrs. Clinton’s multiple potential crimes and of the efforts of agents of the FBI and the Department of Justice to cover it all up.

Multiple high-ranking officials including Barack Obama were emailing Mrs. Clinton directly or through Huma Abedin. The Weiner laptop and iCloud account had it all. It was the full archive they were supposedly searching for.

Who else among the high-powered elite are the FBI and DOJ protecting by their cover-up?

The Real Lesson of the Inspector General’s Report
By Tadas Klimas
You missed it. But that’s all right: everyone else missed it, too.

Michael Horowitz is the Department of Justice’s Inspector General. He testified on June 18th before the Senate Judiciary Committee about his report concerning the Hillary Clinton national security breach investigation. The revelation came to light during questioning by Senator John Kennedy. (@7:36)

Horowitz testified that “most” of the investigative decisions in that investigation were made not by the FBI but by prosecutors within the Department of Justice.

One might be tempted to conclude that much of the criticism of the FBI for its decisions in the aforesaid Clinton investigation would have to be discounted or re-examined. Perhaps. But that is not the most important conclusion.

For whatever reason, it is clear from the report that the structure of the FBI/DOJ’s Clinton investigation was all off: the FBI was reduced to providing a set of runners (perhaps willing and even avid, because of their demonstrated bias, runners, but runners just the same) for DOJ attorneys.

Now, in our system of justice, this is not unlawful. It is “merely” highly unusual.

Skipping over, for a bit, reflections on the incidence of the DOJ calling the shots in investigations, what should be stressed is that if there is a need for an FBI, and not for just a set of runners and errand boys for geekish DOJ clerks, perhaps it might be logical to posit that if so, then the FBI should actually handle its investigations itself.

Now, simply, it is very rare for criminal investigations to be handled directly from FBIHQ. But it may have been unprecedented in the history of the FBI to have run the Hillary Clinton investigation, an intelligence/espionage investigation, out of FBIHQ.

It probably behooves us to pause here in order to remember that the FBI is organized in what to many may appear to be an upside-down fashion. Ordinarily cases are either assigned to or are developed by “case” agents. Case agents work out of offices scattered across the country.

The reader may find this remarkable, but it is the case agents who make investigative decisions, although ostensibly they are on the lowest rung of the organizational chart. For this reason, many agents have fought to stay at the case-agent level. One cannot be “prince of the city” sitting in an office.

Of course, if a particular investigative step is of a sensitive nature, prior to taking it authority is secured from the requisite supervisory level, which is often at the level of FBIHQ. There is nothing wrong with that, in principle. No one – no case agent – wants to embarrass the Bureau. If there is a “conformity bias” in the field office it is to take the case wherever the facts lead, and not in an overzealous fashion.

Thus, in the ordinary course, it is only once an investigation is complete (!) that the work product is given to the DOJ. Decisions as to discretionary investigative steps are taken in the relatively insulated environment of the field office; they are taken by case agents who are not really beholden to anyone, as they have no need or intention to promote themselves.

All of this militates against bias.

The reverse is true concerning the Clinton espionage investigation. There the structure of the investigation militated towards bias. (Indeed, the reins of the investigation were handed over to the DOJ. If there had been real leadership at the Bureau, this would never have happened.)

For this reason, in order to lessen the chance for such shenanigans to take place, the president, or at the least the FBI director, should ensure that no investigations be conducted out of headquarters. Ever. (That would go for Robert Mueller’s “special counsel” probe, which is an FBI/DOJ to itself.)

There is yet another consideration. The FBI is used to conducting intelligence investigations. It has considerable expertise in doing so. An agent doing intelligence work is an intelligence officer; an IO in Bureau parlance. Such people develop not only expertise but also a sense of the importance of the subject matter (after all, “national security” concerns the very security – and existence – of the nation), and yet the same sense does not appear to be manifested, judging from recent events and the IG’s report, in the DOJ, despite the latter’s having a division dedicated to national security.

For instance, it is almost never stated that one of the great blows that our national security was dealt by Mrs. Clinton was that to our reputation for trustworthiness and professionalism. Consider a CIA officer or FBI agent dealing with a potential highly placed foreign intelligence officer. In order to betray their own country, the foreign intelligence officer has to believe that the U.S. government will safeguard their identity. Yet now visions of Mrs. Clinton’s homebrew server (and, because of her, Anthony Weiner’s laptop computer) must flash before that foreign intelligence officer’s eyes as he considers making a leap of faith. Not to mention the psychological blow to our CIA and FBI intelligence officers: they too have to believe in the integrity of the system.

When one takes considerations such as this away from the table, one is left with what appears the case in the IG report: either feigned or no real understanding of the gravity of the offense on the part of the investigators and prosecutors.

But there is more to be said regarding FBI/DOJ bias in the IG’s report. Former judge Jeanine Pirro castigated IG Horowitz on her Fox News show. She said in essence that in a murder case one proves the state of mind of the perpetrator by indirect evidence, and that therefore the IG could not reasonably find, as he did, that no investigative decisions were made because of bias. Especially because the report is full of evidence of a biased state of mind.

Mrs. Pirro forgets that in a murder trial there is a body. It is clear, obviously, that a crime has been committed.

But there is no crime as such committed by the players in the IG report. As the IG concluded, every investigative decision was made upon an arguably reasonable foundation.

This is not at all to say that the investigation was properly handled. But what we are dealing with is prosecutorial and investigative under-zealousness in regard to Mrs. Clinton and rabid jihadic over-zealousness with regard to Mr. Trump. Neither of these are crimes; neither of these are, ordinarily, “prosecutable” ethical violations.

In this regard we should remember that what Andrew McCabe was alleged to have done was pretty darn bad: he leaked information to the press. But that’s not a crime, and the criminal referral made by the IG in McCabe’s case is on the basis of his allegedly lying to the FBI, a violation of 18 USC 1001.

That is why the IG did not pass judgment upon the players in the Clinton espionage investigation. The IG is not the tool for this. We may desperately wish it to be, but in truth, it is the height of asininity to insist that a screwdriver will function the same as a hammer.

Indeed, we cannot expect the system to police itself on using a paradigm of rules-violations in the situation we are dealing with. (It would be much easier were that the case.) That is because often the problem is that discretion is misused, which is not something that can be policed by the system itself.

This should be obvious: after all, the IG said the DOJ/FBI followed the rules, but were biased. We might do well to recall that this is the general case with the Deep State and has been for some time; it is no news that the Deep State is biased against one of the two main political parties.

The historian Victor Davis Hanson in a recent article describes the same phenomena and goes on to state he believes that “For all the investigations and IG reports, for all the revelations of scandals and wrongdoing, there will probably in the end be little consequence.”

Hanson may be correct.

But he need not be.

We have a unitary executive (at para.13). If the president can act to level the playing field and ensure fairness, then the matter is salvageable. If not, the outlook is grim.

Tadas Klimas is a former FBI agent, awarded the National Intelligence Medal of Achievement (NIMA).

Truepundit wrote (with notable weasel words):

Access to the FBI is for sale.

Concert tickets. Expensive private dinners. NFL tickets. Parties on booze cruises. Discounts on travel.

FBI insiders said more than 60 agents in D.C. alone have been nailed for taking gifts from the news media. Inspector General Michael Horowitz said earlier this week about 50 FBI agents took 300 free gifts from news media.

However, Horowitz failed to stipulate that number is ONLY in Washington D.C. which covers one field office and FBI headquarters. The Inspector General did not examine the FBI’s other field offices, officials said. And the problem of taking free gifts for Intel is rampant, officials said.

New York. Los Angeles. New Haven. Philadelphia. The list goes on in the FBI’s 55 other field offices.

And so does the corruption. Outright bribery.

FBI sources who spoke to True Pundit divulged the names of three media outlets: NY Times, CNN and NBC News as having surfaced in recent external investigations. But there are dozens more, large and small.

Comment: The use of “sources” in Truepundit’s argument is weasel wording. The argument would be better if it could be based on documents or a named source.

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