Investigating Russia’s Interference in Our Democracy

On Thursday Ray witnessed some imaginative bear hunting by Hillary-Should-Have-Won (HSHW) Democrats at the “progressive” Clinton/Podesta Center for American Progress Fund.  A panel discussed the “serious challenge to U.S. national security by Russia’s interference in our democracy.”  The event began with introductory remarks by House Intelligence Committee member Jim Himes (D-CT) and ended with a question from a skunk at the picnic. (The dramatis personae are listed below.)

https://www.americanprogressaction.org/events/2017/03/31/166902/investigating-russias-interference-democracy/

April 6, 2017 (1 hour 13:45 minutes)

 

All in all, it was a telling performance; watching at least some of it is highly recommended.  Ray got recognized for a question at 1:05:40; survived an attempt by the HSHW moderator to cut off his mic; and then sat through a three-minute rebuttal by former special envoy to Libya Jonathan Winer, who availed himself of the few non-sequiturs left unused by Congressman Himes and the panelists.

Ray began his question by complimenting Jennifer Palmieri (Hillary Clinton’s campaign communications director) for her very candid Washington Post revelations about how hard – and how successfully — she worked at the Democratic National Convention to get the media to focus on Russian “hacking” of Democratic National Committee (DNC) emails, and to ignore what they revealed – to wit, how Clinton and the DNC stole the nomination from Bernie Sanders.

 

Palmieri proudly explained how she managed to accomplish that in a recent feature article in the Washington Post titled The Clinton campaign warned you about Russia. But nobody listened to us.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2017/03/24/the-clinton-campaign-warned-you-about-russia-but-nobody-listened-to-us/?utm_term=.6c79f9d218a8

Palmieri continued in the same vain vein during the panel discussion, and unwittingly let drop tidbits of evidence that could get some former officials in deep kimchi – if a serious investigation of leaking, for example, were to be conducted.  But on Thursday no one seemed to notice.  It was all Hats Off! to Palmieri for putting the media on the trail of the Russian bear.  The event itself reflected the reality that that her success persists to this day.

Transcribed below (verbatim) are some of Palmieri’s more telling remarks after the moderator asked her to comment, from her insider perspective, on “what was actually going on in late summer/early fall.”

It was a surreal experience for us and our campaign so I did appreciate that for the press to absorb, in addition to how/what an unconventional – to put it mildly — candidate Trump was and all of the crazy theater that was happening on stage, the idea that behind the stage that the Trump campaign was coordinating with Russia to defeat Hillary Clinton was too fantastic for people to, um, for the press to process, to absorb…. and for us it did feel that the whole campaign experience was pretty surreal without Russia.  (Emphasis added)

 

But then we go back to Brooklyn and heard from the — mostly our sources were other intelligence, with the press who work in the intelligence sphere, and that’s where we heard things and that’s where we learned about the dossier and the other story lines that were swirling about; and how to process, how do we … And along the way the administration started confirming various pieces of what they were concerned about what Russia was doing.  And how do you weave that story line into the fight we were having with Donald Trump on the campaign trail?  And that was a really hard thing. …  People did not care about Russia … because they didn’t hear about it. …. (Emphasis added)

 

And we did finally get to the point on October 7, when the administration came out with a very stunning [memorandum].  How stunning it was for both the Director of National Intelligence and the Director of Homeland Security to put out a statement – a long statement – that said with high confidence that Russia was interfering in the election and they were also directing the timing of the leaks.  And it named the institutions – WikiLeaks, dcleaks, and Guccifer – as being Russian-led, and how stunning that was to be that certain and that public. …

 

So I do think that the answer for the Democrats now … in both the House and the Senate is to talk about it more and make it more real ….

(End of excerpt from Palmieri’s remarks)

+++++++++++++++++++++++

Dramatis Personae

Featured Panelists:
Jennifer Palmieri, former Communications Director to Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign and former Communications Director to President Barack Obama
Jonathan Winer, former U.S. Special Envoy to Libya and former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for International Law Enforcement from 1994-99
Max Bergmann, Senior Fellow, Center for American Progress Action Fund and Director of the Moscow Project

Moderated by:
Vikram Singh, Vice President, National Security and International Policy, Center for American Progress Action Fund

CNN says RT is “Kremlin propaganda”

By Lori Harfenist, “The Resident” on RT

March 20, 2017 (3 minutes)

Lori: CNN’s Brian Stelter had Larry Johnson on his show, “Reliable Sources,” recently to discuss the “wiretapping” (read electronic surveillance) story.  Stelter called RT a Kremlin propaganda channel.

Johnson disagreed and provided particulars as to how CNN, et al. practice a (not very subtle) form of content control.  It goes by the name of “pre-interview.”  Stelter questioned how it was appropriate for any American to go on RT, didn’t acknowledge Johnson’s answers, and changed the topic. With Stelter not around to interrupt, Harfenist goes ahead and answers Stelter’s question.

Ray on RT International early Friday morning after latest WikiLeaks “Vault 7” release revealing CIA high sophistication in “obfuscating” who is hacking whom, and in blaming the chosen enemy of the day

March 31, 2017 (four minutes)

 

Report/Transcript

FBI never got access to DNC computers, used secondary forensics – Ray McGovern 

We could forgive Crowdstrike, but not the head of the FBI who said they never got direct access to DNC computers. That is a very poor admission to make, says former CIA officer Ray McGovern. 

The CIA possesses a tool for disguising the source of its hacks, that’s according to the latest release of classified documents from WikiLeaks, called “Marble”. Previous batches of CIA documents released by WikiLeaks also revealed some other tactics the agency is said to have used to link cyber-attacks to other countries.

At the same time, the agency is also believed to have a program, called UMBRAGE, which allows it to mimic all sorts of hacking techniques, and can leave traces that will point to foreign sources instead of the US.

RT: Do these tactics revealed by WikiLeaks seem to you, as to a former CIA agent, to be credible? Could the US really have this capability?

Ray McGovern: It is genuine. WikiLeaks and Julian Assange have a 100 percent record on authenticity. That matters. I am an intelligence analyst. This is the kind of unadulterated evidence after which I lust. After which any investigator or newsman should lust. Because Julian Assange doesn’t change anything. It is documentary. And what does that mean? And that means that as an intelligence analyst, I can analyze and interpret it. And there is no way other to interpret this than the poor people from the Crowdstrike, the computer company that the DNC hired to look into who was hacking into their computers, it was beyond its capability to determine who had this virus in there.

CIA has worked with NSA for 15 years on this kind of program. How many lines of code are there? 700 million. How much does each line of code cost? 25 dollars. Do the math. So, only CIA as a beneficiary of NSA technology can do this. Why does CIA do it and not NSA, because the CIA takes riskier actions. As an intelligence analyst, I would say we could perhaps forgive Crowdstrike, but we could not forgive the head of the FBI who was very embarrassed to say 10 days ago, “We never got direct access to DNC computers. So, we had to use secondary forensics and that came from Crowdstrike.” That is a very poor admission to make.

RT: The investigation into Russian alleged meddling in the US is still underway, yet no real proof has been provided. This story has been ongoing for quite a while…. Can we expect any concrete evidence to come out this late?

RM: The problem is that the mainstream media in the US accuses RT of being a propaganda organ. It is sort of like the pot calling the kettle black. The black reality is that some of this information never appears in the mainstream media, witnessed by the fact that one of the deputy assistance secretaries of state of the Pentagon admitted that she was very concerned at the end of Obama administration that the very sensitive information that indicated how the Obama administration, i.e. the CIA, was getting us information that was leaked on personages within the Trump campaign. We had to protect that information because we can never let them know how we got it. That has not even been published and that is three days old.

https://www.rt.com/op-edge/382987-cia-nsa-fbi-marble/