If you've been following developments in the wiretapping-Trump scandal, allied with the Russians-influenced-the-2016-election pseudo-scandal, you'll be aware that things are beginning to break wide open. What's most disturbing about this is the timeline.
- In the middle of last year, Susan Rice (President Obama's national security adviser) began to request that intelligence intercepts peripherally involving then-candidate Donald Trump and his election team should be shared among various intelligence agencies. She went so far as to demand collation of any and all related reports, to make finding them easier.
- This surveillance continued up to the election, and increased thereafter.
- There appears to be no national security rationale whatsoever - no evidence, no justification, no nothing - to support Ms. Rice's request or the action taken on it.
This is potentially high explosive, politically speaking. As The Diplomad points out:
Why would they do this?
Well, if you pass around political names to hundreds of people, you know, you absolutely know, that the names will leak. It's a way of not leaving your own fingerprints on the leak. You know that the names will leak and give the aura of a massive criminal enterprise underway by the Trump people to sell out the USA to Russia. It is sabotage of President Trump of the grossest kind.
We still have no evidence of the Russians hacking the election to favor Trump. No evidence has been provided as to why the Russians would want Trump to win. No evidence has been provided of how the Russians would know something the pollsters did not, to wit, that Trump would, in fact, win the November election. Above all, there is no evidence that Trump or his cohorts were in league with Russia--what would they get out of it?
I think, furthermore, that my initial impression that the Democrats made up the story proves the best explanation. This Russia story provided the excuse to conduct surveillance of Trump and his campaign and transition. Just as the Obama people sold guns to Mexican drug cartels and then sought to blame the gun trafficking on the second amendment ("the drugs flow north, but the guns flow south"), they justified their surveillance of political opponents with the Russia story. The overwhelming conceit was that they assumed Hillary would win the election and the story would remain buried.Once they saw she had lost, presto!, Obama's executive order spreading the info all over town making it hard to find the culprit leaker/unmasker.
This is getting very nasty, and the Trump-Russia story is blowing up in the face of the Dems.
There's more at the link.
Kurt Schlichter has his own perspective.
Regardless, it’s safe to say that there was absolutely no collusion of any kind between Team Trump and anyone Russian. None. How do I know this to a near certainty? Because we haven't seen anybody leak any evidence of any in the six-plus months that they've been pushing this nonsense.
. . .
You think the geniuses leading our intelligence community – not the brave and dedicated folks in the trenches but the clowns and political suck-ups lording over them – could have or would have kept real collusion secret? Do you think if Trump was cavorting with the former commies we wouldn’t have heard about it from the NYT, the WaPo and the rest of the Democrat steno pool about a week before November 8th?
. . .
Hell yes, Donald Trump was "wiretapped.” So were you, by the way. And me. From open source information shared by defectors the intelligence community was too incompetent to keep from defecting, we know that every single electronic communication we send is collected in the NSA mainframes. Every single one. And the NSA has algorithms they can use to search it. You don’t go plant a bug in Trump Tower. You wiretap the opposition party’s nominee for president by running a search through the communications that the government “incidentally” collected. And if you find something juicy, then you call up your buddy at the Post and hand it over.
If. Does anyone here think for a millisecond that the Obama-appointed leadership in the intelligence community, whose loyalty is to their own political class and not to the country, would hesitate for a microsecond before leaking something they thought would hurt Trump? We know they wouldn’t hesitate because they didn't hesitate – they feloniously released a classified transcript involving Mike Flynn just to shaft him and the Administration. Flynn did not do anything illegal in that illegally released transcript; he misled the Veep about the topics he (legally and properly) discussed, and for that he got canned. So why is his lawyer demanding immunity? Because his lawyer isn’t a drooling moron working rear-ender soft tissue cases out of a van down by the river; no quarter-competent lawyer is going to let his client walk into a Democrat witch hunt without either ironclad immunity or the words “I take the Fifth” on his lips – you know, just like all of Hillary’s people did.
The only crime we know about for sure – the only one – is that some senior member of Obama’s intelligence community committed a felony by leaking classified information regarding Mike Flynn's intercepted communications. That's it. And that’s why the Democrats would rather talk about anything else.
Again, more at the link.
As the Wall Street Journal opined yesterday:
The news about Ms. Rice’s unmasking role raises a host of questions for the Senate and House intelligence committees to pursue. What specific surveillance information did Ms. Rice seek and why? Was this information related to President Obama’s decision in January to make it possible for raw intelligence to be widely disbursed throughout the government? Was this surveillance of Trump officials “incidental” collection gathered while listening to a foreigner, or were some Trump officials directly targeted, or “reverse targeted”?
We were unable to locate Ms. Rice Monday to ask for comment, and she hasn’t addressed the unmasking as far as we know. But asked last month on the “PBS NewsHour” that Trump officials might have been surveilled, she said, “I know nothing about this” and “I was surprised to see reports from Chairman Nunes on that account today.” She certainly deserves her turn under oath on Capitol Hill.
None of this should deter investigators from looking into the Trump-Russia connection. By all means follow that evidence where it leads. But the media have been running like wildebeest after that story while ignoring how the Obama Administration might have abused domestic surveillance for its political purposes. Americans deserve to know the truth about both.
Quite so. The New York Post appears to agree, and goes even further, claiming "Fresh evidence the Russia 'scandal' is a Team Obama operation".
In that light, you might want to ask yourself why CNN is trying so desperately to bury any mention of Susan Rice's involvement, and dismissing it as a non-event, a non-scandal? My bet is, they've been bought and paid for, and are all-in on the side of the former Obama administration. YMMV, of course.