Thursday, July 2, 2020

Russiagate, with Real Russians?

Probably not. WaPoo whines, White House does not plan any immediate response over intelligence reports on Russian bounties targeting U.S. troops. And just how are you supposed to respond to a threat you aren't sure occurred?

Via Wombat's In The Mailbox: 07.01.20 American Conservative finds Three Glaring Problems With the Russian Taliban Bounty Story
1. Anonymous U.S. and Taliban sources? The Times article repeatedly cites unnamed “American intelligence officials.” The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal articles “confirming” the original Times story merely restate the allegations of the anonymous officials, along with caveats like “if true” or “if confirmed.” Furthermore, the unnamed intelligence sources who spoke with the Times say that their assessment is based “on interrogations of captured Afghan militants and criminals.” That’s a red flag, said John Kiriakou, a former analyst and case officer for the CIA who led the team that captured senior al-Qaeda member Abu Zubaydah in Pakistan in 2002. “When you capture a prisoner, and you’re interrogating him, the prisoner is going to tell you what he thinks you want to hear,” he said in an interview with The American Conservative. “There’s no evidence here, there’s no proof.”
. . .
2. What purpose would bounties serve? Everyone and their mother knows Trump wants to pull the troops out of Afghanistan, said Kiriakou. “He ran on it and he has said it hundreds of times,” he said. “So why would the Russians bother putting a bounty on U.S. troops if we’re about to leave Afghanistan shortly anyway?”
. . .
3. Why is this story being leaked now? According to U.S. officials quoted by the AP, top officials in the White House “were aware of classified intelligence indicating Russia was secretly offering bounties to the Taliban for the deaths of Americans” in early 2019. So why is this story just coming out now? This story is “WMD [all over] again,” said McGovern, who in the 1980s chaired National Intelligence Estimates and prepared the President’s Daily Brief. He believes the stories seek to preempt DOJ findings on the origins of the Russiagate probe. The NYT story serves to bolster the narrative that Trump sides with Russia, and against our intelligence community estimates and our own soldiers lives.
Matt Margolis, PJ Media, Here's Why the 'Russian Bounties' Story Is the New 'Russian Collusion' Hoax
This story is clearly as bogus as claims that President George W. Bush had failed to respond to intelligence in an August 2001 PDB titled “Bin Ladin Determined To Strike in US.” After the Democrats claimed Bush had direct knowledge that 9/11 was about to happen, but the PDB, Condeleeza Rice noted, was “historical information based on old reporting.” She added, “There was no new threat information. And it did not, in fact, warn of any coming attacks inside the United States.”

That didn’t stop Democrats then from claiming Bush had been warned that 9/11 was coming and ignored it, nor will the Democrats care that Trump wasn’t briefed about the alleged Russian bounties because the intel was uncorroborated. They will continue to pretend that Trump ignored a warning and put our troops at risk. Why? Because it’s an election year and they’ll do anything, even push a lie, to defeat him.
From Da Hill, GOP senator calls reporting on Russia bounties 'absolutely inaccurate' after White House briefing, IJR, Ernst Calls Reports on Russian Bounties ‘Absolutely Inaccurate’. Courney O'Brien at Town Hall reports how Rep. Kinzinger Tells Jim Acosta to 'Ask Steny Hoyer' Why Dems Didn't Come to Russia Bounty Briefing. The actual facts don't matter, just the charge. Ray McGovern calls it Russiagate’s Last Gasp. I doubt it's the last; it's been a long, slow death. And from Diogenes Little Finger, Media Stepped in the Russia Poop Again
They never learn, do they? After three years of pushing the bogus “Trump/Russia collusion” narrative, only to be utterly humiliated when the whole thing was a complete fabrication, the media are far too invested in the idea of DJT as Vladimir Putin’s stooge to resist coming back for more now. That’s why, for the past several days, they’ve been literally wetting their pants about a supposed report that Russia paid a bounty to Afghan assassins to kill Americans – and that Trump knew!

This is like wanting desperately to believe in Bigfoot, only to have everyone you know sit you down and explain as calmly and rationally as they can that there ain’t no Bigfoot. Then, suddenly, you think you spot some strange brown fur out of the corner of your eye, and you think: I knew it! Yet the reason the media’s narrative is quickly falling apart here is that not even they have a consensus about this nonsense. Contrary to what the New York Times, the Washington Post and the AP are trying to tell you, the intelligence community did not consider the notion credible enough to tell the president about it.
. . .
And once again, they look like fools. At least this time it took three days instead of three years to find out the whole thing was bogus.
WND echos Sidney Powell's latest talking point, Obama 'takedown' prevented Flynn from exposing CIA corruption, and from Flynn himself at Western Journal, If We Don't Act, 2% of the People Are About To Control the Other 98%

From ET, Steele Testimony: FBI Coordinated Closely With State Department on Russia Probe. Just different arms of "The Resistance" colluding to take down a duly elected President, nothing to be concerned about. J.E. Dyer at Da Lid introduces one of the little known figures in the scandal, Robert Litt, in Spygate: The Man Who Knew An Awful Lot. I don't remember that name, but it's harder to keep track of the players than a Russian novel.

Frankly, I don't know what to make of this one from Ace, Mike Cernovich Alleges That Two "Journalists" At Allegedly Conservative-Leaning Outlets Wore Wires Supplied to Them by the FBI to Entrap Pro-Trump Journalists in Russiagate Sting
I don't know how much credence to put into this allegation -- Cernovich has already deleted the tweet.
But here's another to the point,
Jerry Dunleavy has been a pretty reasonable voice in Russiagate reporting from WaEx in my view.

Sundance has a video of the President Trump Interview on Current Political Events – COVID-19, Economic Reopening, Stimulus, Russia Nonsense, Joe Biden…. from Fox.  Russiagate stuff starts about 9 minutes in.

IJR, Judge Outlines Reason for Rejecting Roger Stone’s Request to Delay Prison Sentence. No WuFlu in the prison where he's to be put. Also, trying to force Trumps hand to pardon him before the election.
Jackson also noted how Stone’s situation differs from other defendants who have been granted extensions due to the coronavirus because he has already been granted a 60-day delay already approved by the Bureau of Prisons.

Jackson added, “By contrast, Mr. Stone was convicted of threatening a witness, and throughout the course of these criminal proceedings, the Court has been forced to address his repeated attempts to intimidate and to stoke potentially violent sentiment against, an array of participants in the case, including individuals involved in the investigation, the jurors, and the Court.”
Bullshit charges. Sundance, Jim Jordan Discusses House Judiciary Effort to Impeach Bill Barr…

The plan to impeach Bill Barr was clearly visible several months ago. A preemptive strike to diffuse the pending findings of the investigation by USAO John Durham.

The Attorney General has accepted an invitation to testify before the committee on July 28th. If there is going to be a summer show-down between the AG and political operatives -including Lawfare- within the Judiciary committee, that hearing is likely to be the spark.

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