GOP Led House Panel Votes to #ReleasetheMemo, Grassley Tightens Noose Around Steele and the British Putschists

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We now know, as the spotlight turns to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, that Rosenstein approved a reauthorization of FISA surveillance against Page after the 2016 election. Today Page remains a free man, after months of leaks smearing his character and portraying him as a Russian intelligence asset, but with no proof or indictments presented to the public ever justifying the intense surveillance directed his way. Democrats and their allies hide behind protecting 'sources and methods' excuses, claiming other intelligence behind the curtain justified the FISA abuse. Thank God, the ultimate declassification authority lies with the Congress and the President, not with the career bureaucrats. Within five days or less, the public will be reading the memo that so disturbed GOP members of Congress. 

As for the supposed integrity of those the Dems and Fusion GPS payola'd fan boys and girls with press passes are defending, it's telling that Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe resigned, or was told to resign, ahead of his designated retirement date, almost immediately after current director Christopher Wray viewed the Nunes memo in a designated classified viewing room on Capitol Hill. The weasely McCabe told then White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, that a CNN story about Trump campaign was false, only to later leak that Priebus had pressured the FBI into releasing a statement based on McCabe's words.

The following extended quote from the longest serving western correspondent in Moscow, John Helmer, may be of interest regarding whether the Steele Dossier was used to launder fakeint manufactured by CIA and MI6 into the FBI and use it to justify surveillance of the Trump campaign. We know that one of the lines of inquiry Sens. Grassley and Graham have pursued is whether Steele lied to the FBI about the origins of his oppo research and its distribution to (likely Fusion GPS paid off) members of the press. Among the likely reasons why the Obama politicized FBI let Steele get away with lying to its agents are, 1) Comey, McCabe and others put agents sympathetic to Steele like Peter Strzok in charge of handling the Steele contacts 2) CIA thanks to its 5Eyes intel sharing partnership with the British overrode or overawed any voices at the FBI who may have objected to the use of Steele's material without adequate vetting including its inclusion in briefs to the secret FISA court. -- JWS

How did Simpson know with such confidence what the “Intelligence Community” was “saying”, and who were Simpson’s and Steele’s sources in the “Intelligence Community”? Rooney failed to inquire. Instead, he and Simpson exchanged question and answer regarding the approach Simpson and Steele made to the FBI when they delivered their dossier. In the details of that, Simpson repeated what he had already told the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Rooney then asked what contact had been made with the CIA or “any other intelligence officials”. Simpson claimed he didn’t understand the question at first, then he stumbled.

Source: http://docs.house.gov/meetings/IG/IG00/20180118/106796/HMTG-115-IG00-20180118-SD002.pdf — page 61.

What Simpson was concealing in the two pauses, reported in the transcript as hyphens, Rooney did not realize. Simpson was implying that noone from Fusion GPS, his consulting company, had been in contact with the CIA, nor him personally. But Simpson left open that Steele had been in contact with the CIA. Rooney followed with a question about “anyone”, but that was so imprecise, Simpson recovered his confidence to say “No”. That was a cover-up – and the House Intelligence Committee let it drop noiselessly.

Intelligence community sources and colleagues who know Simpson and Steele say Simpson was notorious at the Wall Street Journal for coming up with conspiracy theories for which the evidence was missing or unreliable. He told the Committee that disbelief on the part of his editors and management had been one of his reasons for leaving the newspaper. “One of the reasons why I left the Wall Street Journal was because I wanted to write more stories about Russian influence in Washington, D.C., on both the Democrats and the Republicans… eventually the Journal lost interest in that subject. And I was frustrated…that was where I left my journalism career.”

Left: Glenn Simpson reporter for the Wall Street Journal in 1996, promoting his book, Dirty Little Secrets: The Persistence of Corruption in American Politics. Right: Simpson in Washington in August 2017.

When Simpson was asked “do you – did you find anything to — that you verified as false in the dossier, since or during?” Simpson replied: “I have not seen anything – “. Note the hypthen, the stenographer’s signal that Simpson was pausing.

“[Question]. So everything in that dossier, as far as you’re concerned, is true or could be true?”

“MR. SIMPSON: I didn’t say that. What I said was it was credible at the time it came in. We were able to corroborate various things that supported its credibility.”

Sources in London are divided on the question of where Steele’s sources came from – CIA, MI6, or elsewhere. What has been clear for the year in which the dossier’s contents have been in public circulation is that the sources the dossier referred to as “Russian” were not. For details of the sourcing. The subsequent identification of the Maltese source Joseph Mifsud, and the Greek-American George Papadopoulos, corroborates their lack of direct Russian sources. Instead, the sources identified in the dossier were either Americans, Americans of Russian ethnic origin, or Russians with no direct knowledge repeating hearsay three or four times removed from source.

So were the allegations of the dossier manufactured by a CIA disinformation unit, and fed back to the US through the British agent, Steele? Or were they a Simpson conspiracy theory of the type that failed to pass veracity testing when Simpson was at the Wall Street Journal? The House Intelligence Committee failed to inquire.
— http://johnhelmer.net/the-cia-bull-in-glenn-simpsons-russia-shop/
 Former D.C. bureau chief for Investor's Business Daily (IBD), Hoover Institution media fellow Paul Sperry @paulsperry_ on why Sen. Grassley referred British citizen Christopher Steele to the Justice Department over alleged lying to the FBI about Steele's distribution of his Democrat Party funded Fusion GPS dossier

Former D.C. bureau chief for Investor's Business Daily (IBD), Hoover Institution media fellow Paul Sperry @paulsperry_ on why Sen. Grassley referred British citizen Christopher Steele to the Justice Department over alleged lying to the FBI about Steele's distribution of his Democrat Party funded Fusion GPS dossier

Jan. 28, 2018 (EIRNS)—Senators Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) sent a letter Jan. 25 to four former high-ranking officials in the Clinton campaign and Democratic National Committee, and at least one current DNC leader. The letter asks 12 sharply framed questions centering on the individuals’ knowledge of or collaboration with Christopher Steele, and on their and others’ communication or distribution of Steele’s dossier. The four are John Podesta, former chair of the Hillary Clinton campaign; Joel Benenson, who worked with the Obama 2008 and 2012 campaigns, and was chief strategist for the Clinton campaign in 2016; former DNC Chairwomen Donna Brazile and Debbie Wasserman Schultz; and current DNC Chairman Tom Perez. A deadline of Feb. 8 was set for the individuals to respond.

Grassley and Graham state in their letter, that they are seeking to find out

"the extent to which the FBI may have relied on information relayed by Mr. Steele in seeking judicial authorization [from the FISA court] for surveillance of individuals associated with Mr. Trump."

Grassley and Graham’s questions include:

"Prior to the Washington Post’s article in October of 2017, were you or anyone else at Hillary for America aware of Mr. Steele’s efforts on behalf of the Clinton campaign to compile and distribute allegations about Mr. Trump and the Russian government?... Did you or anyone else at Hillary for America receive copies of any memoranda comprising Mr. Steele’s dossier prior to its publication by BuzzFeed in January of 2017? Did you or anyone else at Hillary for America receive other memoranda written or forwarded by Mr. Steele regarding Mr. Trump and his associates that were not published as part of the BuzzFeed dossier? Did you or anyone else at Hillary for America distribute outside of the organization any of the dossier memoranda, information contained therein, or other information obtained by Mr. Steele? Were you or anyone else at Hillary for America aware of Mr. Steele’s contacts with the FBI or other government agencies prior to the 2016 election?..."

The letter demands specifics.

The final question demands all communications to or from any in a group of 40 named individuals, including John Brennan, Andrew McCabe, Peter Strzok, Bruce Ohr, Fusion GPS, and James Baker, and includes former Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland, who had used Steele’s memos in the coup against the Ukraine government in 2014 which brought pro-Nazi Bandera elements to power.

On Jan. 6, Grassley referred Steele to the U.S. Justice Department for possible criminal prosecution.