Reader’s Links for May 25th, 2023

Here is a link to the VladTepesBlog social media Mastodon Pod. Please feel free to check it out and sign up for an account if you are sufficiently annoyed with Twitter and Facebook to try something new.

Each day at just after midnight Eastern, a post like this one is created for contributors and readers of this site to upload news links and video links on the issues that concern this site. Most notably, Islam and its effects on Classical Civilization, and various forms of leftism from Soviet era communism, to postmodernism and all the flavours of galloping statism and totalitarianism such as Nazism and Fascism which are increasingly snuffing out the classical liberalism which created our near, miraculous civilization the West has been building since the time of Socrates.

This document was written around the time this site was created, for those who wish to understand what this site is about. And while our understanding of the world and events has grown since then, the basic ideas remain sound and true to the purpose.

So please post all links, thoughts and ideas that you feel will benefit the readers of this site to the comments under this post each day. And thank you all for your contributions.

This is the new Samizdat. We must use it while we can.

About Eeyore

Canadian artist and counter-jihad and freedom of speech activist as well as devout Schrödinger's catholic

60 Replies to “Reader’s Links for May 25th, 2023”

  1. “They’re banning whiskey.”
    “Why?” he said as he downed the shot of whiskey. The pub was a riotous cacophony on a Saturday night.
    “Because it loosens lips and thoughts, lad. Lips and thoughts,” the other man repeated as he stared through the air to some distant place.
    “Irishmen won’t survive it. The Irish need to explain themselves. It’s why we’ve produced some of the greatest writers in history.”
    “Agreed. But if you put a cork in the minds of men the pressure builds until it pops. It’s unhealthy.”
    “Yes. And they’re building a new museum in Dublin. The government is calling it the Museum of Unforgiven Thoughts. People will go there to look at what they can no longer think–old fashioned thoughts that are outlawed.”
    “I don’t get it. How can you–?”
    “Because old books are banned, or should we say burned.”
    “But if you’re exposed to thoughts you think them.”
    “That’s why it will be illegal to enter the building.”
    “Right. Makes sense. You won’t catch me in there.”
    “Here’s to whiskey,” said the first man raising his glass.
    “To whiskey.”
    “And the thoughts inside your head.”
    “May they rest in peace.”

  2. Missouri v. Biden Lawsuit Discovery: Biden Regime Designates YOUR THOUGHTS as Part of Government Infrastructure – They Call It “Cognitive Infrastructure” and They Believe It Is Their Right to Control It
    By Jim Hoft May. 25, 2023 7:45 am0 Comments

    The Gateway Pundit previously reported in May that then Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt, along with Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry, filed a lawsuit (Missouri v. Biden) against the Biden Administration, including Biden himself, Anthony Fauci, the Department of Homeland Security, and nearly a dozen federal agencies and Secretaries. Schmitt has moved on to represent Missouri in the US Senate.

    The suit alleges a massive coordinated effort by the Deep State (permanent administrative state) to work with Big Tech to censor and manipulate Americans – from average citizens to news outlets – on issues including the Hunter Biden Laptop from Hell, 2020 Election Integrity, COVID-19 origin and extent skepticism, COVID-19 vaccine skepticism, among other issues.

    The Gateway Pundit reported back in August 2022, that TGP’s Jim Hoft himself became the lead non-governmental plaintiff in the lawsuit against the government.

    Tracy Beanz at UncoverDC has been closely following the Missouri versus Biden case for several months now.

    On Wednesday Tracy posted on recent findings in the case. The most shocking item discovered is that the Biden regime designates YOUR THOUGHTS as part of the government infrastructure. They call it the “cognitive infrastructure” and they believe that they have the right to control it.

    Talk about Orwellian!

    These lawless beasts believe they have the right to control your thoughts. And that is exactly what they have been doing.

    The Missouri and Louisiana attorneys

    Missouri v. Biden was filed on May 5, 2022. Since it was initially filed, it has taken quite a trip through the court system. The complaint has been amended 3 times, with the most recent Amendment being to transform the case into a class suit – due to the overwhelming evidence of broad harm to the constitutional rights of all Americans. You can view the docket by using this link.

    The complaint alleged that the US Government was not only threatening and coercing social media companies to censor Americans on social media, but they were also working WITH social media companies to accomplish that goal.

    It alleged that topics surrounding COVID-19, the origins of COVID, the Great Barrington Declaration, election integrity concerns, the COVID shot, the Hunter Biden laptop story (and more) were under scrutiny by the White House and other government agencies – and that the government had very publicly threatened to take action against social media companies should they not act to censor viewpoints on those topics that were disfavored by the government.

    The Plaintiffs in the case (the states of Missouri and Louisiana, along with several other private plaintiffs) moved for expedited discovery to be able to obtain a limited set of evidence as well as depositions of certain officials. They argued that this evidence would allow them to make the case for a temporary injunction to stop the government from infringing on the first amendment rights of Plaintiffs and their citizens.

    Unlike what many have come to expect, the judge GRANTED the motion for expedited discovery and depositions. A struggle ensued between the Government and the Plaintiffs, with the government fighting against the judge in this case (Judge Terry Doughty) to stop discovery and certain plaintiffs from being deposed. They took those complaints to the 5th Circuit of Appeals and a court in Virginia – a court that *usually* is friendly to the government.

    At the appellate court level, the government argued that NO ONE should have to leave their government jobs to sit for lengthy depositions in this case, but certainly not the HEAD of CISA, for example.

    The appellate court wouldn’t play ball with the government and remanded the case back to Louisiana with some guidance on how the judge should proceed. If memory serves me right, this happened three times.

    One particularly interesting exchange came with the deposition of former White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki. She made threats to social media companies from the podium. They sought to depose her about those threats. She left the office. The government said they had no responsive documents to explain her comments. So Missouri and Louisiana said, “Then we have to depose Jen Psaki.”

    The court agreed and ruled that now private citizen Psaki needed to testify. The government and Psaki- represented by Rhee – went to a court in Virginia to try to get THAT judge to stop the deposition.

    The judge, in that case, laid into both the government and Psaki. It was so stunning I literally read the transcript of the hearing as its own video.

    Trending: Reverend Franklin Graham Issues Warning to America: “The Storm is Coming…Every Demon in Hell Has Been Turned Loose”

    Another interesting tidbit – once Fauci was deposed, the government sought to seal all depositions and video – along with discovery materials arguing that the government “employees” were being threatened and harassed and faced imminent harm but couldn’t produce any examples. The judge ruled against sealing anything but personal info like addresses.

    So far, I’ve only really discussed the procedural happenings — however, what limited expedited discovery, in this case, has exposed (separate and apart from the Twitter files) is unprecedented and abhorrent.

    The most widespread and troubling discovery? CISA has designated YOUR THOUGHTS part of the government’s infrastructure. They call it “cognitive infrastructure.”

    They argue they can regulate what you think as they consider it under their purview.

    • Has to be over a decade, decade and a half ago that my parents bought 2 dogs from a reputable breeder, who also happened to be a nurse (for humans).

      As part of their purchase/adoption contract, she made my parents sign that they will NEVER administer any vaccination to the dogs because even back then, many veterinary vaccines were mRNA based…and she understood the implications.

  3. NEW YORK POST- How Google manipulates search to favor liberals and tip elections

    While the focus has been on Twitter and Facebook’s censorship and liberal bias, the worst Big Tech culprit of all has been getting a free pass — and now it’s coming for our children.

    That’s the warning from research psychologist Dr. Robert Epstein, a Californian Democrat with a Harvard Ph.D, who has spent the last decade monitoring Google’s manipulation of newsfeeds, search results and YouTube suggestions.

    He shared his latest research with The Post when he was in New York this week to raise donations for the next stage of his project.

    Epstein’s research shows that Google has the power to change minds and move elections to suit its liberal corporate worldview.

    And despite regular protestations of innocence to Congress, the $1 trillion multinational tech giant is using its virtual monopoly as a search engine to elevate liberal views, stifle conservatives and manipulate the impressionable minds of our children.

    You thought Twitter and Facebook censoring The Post’s Hunter Biden laptop stories was bad?

    How about 6 million votes shifted to Joe Biden by Google in the 2020 election by manipulating what we read and see online?

    That’s the electoral impact Epstein, 69, claims Google secretly had in 2020, using biased algorithms which skewed search results towards positive links for Biden and negative links for Trump, as well as Get Out The Vote messaging on Google’s home page targeted primarily at Democrat voters.

    Preliminary results from Epstein’s new project, monitoring how Google’s massive psy-op is targeting children through YouTube and other products, show liberal bias is even more pervasive.

    For instance, he found that YouTube’s “Up Next” suggestions to adults for the next video to watch were biased towards liberal sources 76% of the time.

    But for children and teens, initial data from the past three months shows the percentage of suggested videos on YouTube which come from liberal sources is 96%.

    “That’s how aggressive they are with our kids,” he said this week. “Because they think they’re gods. And no one has ever taken them to task, ever.”

    He did not evaluate the content of the suggested videos but used an average ranking from three nonpartisan organizations which measure media bias to assign liberal, conservative or centrist labels to the sources of the videos.

    Out in the wilds of cyber space just 38% of video sources are liberal. The rest are conservative or centrist. But YouTube wildly skews its content in favor of the minority viewpoint.

    While Epstein can’t tell you what exactly is in the videos being promoted to children, it’s not hard to guess the sorts of toxic woke ideas being pushed, thus normalizing the abnormal and rendering wholesome childhood fare the outlier.

    The problem for the average person trying to guard against the manipulation is that you can’t catch Google in the act because its search results or YouTube suggestions are “ephemeral,” meaning they disappear once you click off onto one of the links provided, and can never be recovered.

    It really is the perfect crime.

    Capturing data

    But Epstein has developed a way to capture that ephemeral data by effectively “looking over the shoulders” of real users, whom he calls field agents.

    He now has 7,566 registered voters in all 50 states, who have given him permission to monitor and record their every Google interaction, in much the same way that Nielsen monitors TV ratings.

    More recently he has added 1,600 children, aged 5 to 17, and has big plans to expand his panel to more than 25,000 field agents of all ages and political bents.

    He says the best way to stop Google is to expose what they do, so he has built a public dashboard which he hopes will go live later this year at, in time for the 2024 election.

    It will feature live tracking of bias on Google, YouTube, Facebook and Bing using real time data from his field agents across the country.

    It also will show how many estimated votes would be shifted based on the level of bias.

    Moderate Republicans are the most susceptible to having their minds changed, he says.

    Before the 2020 election Google CEO Sundar Pichai promised Congress: “Google does not modify any products, including Search, to promote a particular political viewpoint . . . [We] will not do so for the upcoming 2020 presidential election.”

    But he’s not fooling anyone. In terms of motive, Google is renowned for its liberal bias.

    You can see that in political donations by employees of Google, YouTube, and other subsidiaries of parent company Alphabet which went 94 percent to Democrats in 2016.

    Hillary Clinton’s largest donor was Google/Alphabet.

    Google’s boss of almost two decades, the $25 billion man, Eric Schmidt, played a crucial role in Hillary’s campaign, as emails released by Wikileaks showed.

    He also was Barack Obama’s 2012 campaign tech adviser. Obama’s analytics director, Elan Kriegel, told that he credited that tech team for up to half of Obama’s four point winning margin in 2012: nearly 2.5 million votes.

    A leaked video of a Google executive meeting after the 2016 election gives an insight into the extreme partisan mindset of co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin, CEO Sundar Pichai, and other bosses lamenting Trump’s win and vowing to do better next time.

    Conflicting values
    Brin brands Trump supporters “extremists” and says the election outcome “conflicts with many of [Google’s] values.”

    In a portent of censorship to come, Pichai says “investments in machine learning and AI” are a “big opportunity” to address what another employee describes as “misinformation” shared by “low-information voters.”

    CFO Ruth Porat promises Google will “use the great strength and resources and reach we have to continue to advance really important values.”

    Leaked emails after the 2016 election also indicated Google had a get-out-the-vote effort with Hispanic voters in swing states in an effective in-kind contribution to the Hillary Clinton campaign.

    More leaked emails, published by the Wall Street Journal, show Google employees in 2017 discussing ways to tweak search functions to change people’s views about Trump’s travel bans, including prioritizing pro-immigration organizations “to donate to” and “actively counter Islamophobic . . . results.”

    Google subsequently claimed it did not follow through with the plan.

  4. redacted – This is how they will CONTROL every Ukrainian

    We told you that the app that the U.S. was testing on Ukraine was coming to the U.S. next and it’s here.

    The app was created by Google and it is a government’s dream.

    It lets you track you and lets you track your neighbors.

    What more could a nefarious government agency want??

    • Zelensky is surprise speaker at Johns Hopkins commencement ceremony

      Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky surprised graduates at Johns Hopkins University on Thursday, appearing in a live stream at their commencement ceremony.

      Zelensky told the crowd that time is of the essence and urged them not to waste it.

      “Every person eventually realizes that time is the most valuable resource on the planet — not oil, or uranium, not lithium or anything else, but time. Time,” he said. He told them he was proud that Ukraine is not losing a single day in its defense against Russian aggression.

      Zelensky addressed the crowd for about 10 minutes, and as he concluded, the audience of about 10,000 people in Baltimore rose and applauded the Ukrainian leader. Zelensky smiled from the giant video screen and softly said, “Thank you.”

      Johns Hopkins President Ronald J. Daniels had written Zelensky a personal letter inviting him to address the ceremony.

      On Thursday, Daniels announced that Zelensky was being awarded an honorary doctorate.

      • Ken Roth – arch-fiend, famous for his unhinged, obsessive jooo-hate – was invited as speaker at Harvard’s graduation ceremony today. Harvard doesn’t want Princeton taking away its position as the most antisemitic Ivy League university.

    • Judge Nap pulls his “guests” from the toilet, so misrepresentation is understandable.

      Alistair Crook-ed, NOT exactly an ambassador. A career MI6 spook operating out of the British Embassy under various titular positions. In Tel Aviv he was “security adviser to the EU’s special envoy to the Middle East” during the Second Intifada. Coordinating with Hamas as they’re blowing up buses and pizza parlors, he had to be withdrawn immediately “against his wishes”.

      A Jeremy Corbin-flavored enemy: bloody red communist and apologist for terrorist tards.

      ‘As for terrorism, I hate that word. I have spent some time in my life with freedom fighters like in Colombia.’

      Robert Spencer sums it up, 2005:

      Islamic ideas inspire “resistance to imperialism” (2009):
      Red Shi’ism, Iran and the Islamist revolution

      Kicked out of MI6, he formed a consulting company to serve Iran and her proxies, as well as Russia’s interests in Syria and beyond. He’s buddies with Seymour Hersh, both publish in London Review of Books and garbage enemy blogs like Strategic Culture.

      PTrump can do without this bent old hippy’s name-dropping. No doubt Judge Nap has skeletons in his own closet that will certainly take on new life in PT’s second term. Why feed guilt-by-association? Why waste precious time, repeating that odious “both sides” defense?

  5. Iran Converting Civilian Ships into “Floating Terror Bases”

    Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant revealed Monday that Iran is converting civilian merchant ships into “floating terror bases…

    “These vessels are of considerable size…[and] are intended to carry various types of combat capabilities, including aircraft, missiles, offensive systems and advanced intelligence, in order to serve as forward terror bases in areas located far from the Iranian border.
    “Recently, one of these ships was observed when it sailed to the Gulf of Aden. This is a direct continuation of Iran’s maritime terrorism, which it controls in the Persian Gulf and the Arabian Sea. It aims to expand its operations to the Indian Ocean, followed by the Red Sea and the Mediterranean Sea. It is a well-coordinated and planned policy: to threaten maritime routes, both military and civilian, and to create a constant threat in the maritime domain.

    “This is a troubling policy of maritime terrorism. Iran conducts itself in this context more like a collection of pirates than a civilized nation.
    “Since I took office, the number of Israeli attacks against Iranians in Syria has doubled. As part of this campaign, we systematically work to target Iranian intelligence capabilities in Syria, and these attacks cause significant damage to the consolidation efforts of the Revolutionary Guards, just a few kilometers from the Israeli border.”

    • Dealing with the Threat from Iran’s New Underground Nuclear Facilities

      Reports that Iran is building a new nuclear facility deep underground near Natanz are not new and were first reported in 2020. If there have been debates about whether Israel could successfully strike Tehran’s underground nuclear facility at Fordow, placed under a 960-meter mountain, the concerns jump significantly with the new facility, which is under a 1,608-meter mountain.

      The IDF’s capabilities for hitting underground facilities are often creative. To stop these underground nuclear facilities from being used, they do not need to be destroyed – just caused to cave in. They might be able to be destroyed by several rounds of 5,000-pound bombs dropped one after another in the same spot. In a crisis moment, this facility is still not an Iranian checkmate against the Jewish state.

      • Israeli National Security Chief: New Iranian Nuclear Facility Not Immune from Attack

        Israeli National Security Adviser Tzachi Hanegbi discussed reports on a new underground Iranian nuclear facility that is likely impervious to U.S. bunker-buster bombs. He told the 2023 Herzliya Conference that “of course, it limits the ability to attack,” but “there is no place that can’t be reached.”

        If we reach the conclusion “that there is no avoiding military action against the nuclear facilities in Iran, I think that any Israeli leader will have full backing from Israel’s society and the state to do what Menachem Begin did in 1981, what Olmert did in 2007 – to act when all the other options aren’t effective anymore.”

        “We are sending the message, so is the U.S., that if you cross the red line, the price you will pay as a regime and as a country is one you wouldn’t want to pay, so be careful.” The “red line” is when Israel determines that Iran is “coming close to the moment of no return.”

        • Iran unveils Khaybar missile capable of reaching Israel

          Iran on Thursday presented to the world a new ballistic missile with a range of 2,000 kilometers (around 1,240 miles) and capable of carrying a 1,500-kg. (approximately 3,300-pound) warhead, Tehran’s state-run IRNA news agency reported.

          The fourth-generation Khorramshahr-class missile is Iran’s longest-range projectile to date and is capable of reaching Israel.

          It is named KHAYBAR after the place in present-day Saudi Arabia where the Muslim Prophet Muhammed’s forces defeated Jewish tribes in 628 C.E. Muslims often chant, “Khaybar, Khaybar, oh Jews, the army of Mohammed will return” at anti-Israel rallies.

          Can it get any cuter?

    • the telegraph UK – WHO pandemic treaty could impose lockdown on UK, ministers fear

      MPs alarmed over plans to increase the organisation’s powers which would enable it to enforce border closures and vaccine passports

      Lockdown measures could be imposed on the UK by the World Health Organisation (WHO) during a future pandemic under sweeping new powers, ministers fear.

      Member states would be obliged to follow the agency’s instructions when responding to pandemics, including by introducing vaccine passports, border closures and quarantine measures, under a draft update to its regulations.

      A new “pandemic treaty” under discussion would also force Britain to spend five per cent of its health budget on preparing for another virus outbreak.

      Ministers are understood to be alarmed by plans to increase the WHO’s powers enabling its governing body to require countries to hand over the recipe of vaccines, regardless of intellectual property rights, and to counter misinformation.

      Conservative MPs have written to ministers to warn of an “ambition evident…for the WHO to transition from an advisory organisation to a controlling international authority”.

      Foreign Office urged to block powers

      In their letter, seen by The Telegraph, they urge the Foreign Office to block powers that “appear to intrude materially into the UK’s ability to make its own rules and control its own budgets”.

      Responding to the concerns on Thursday, Andrew Mitchell, a Foreign Office minister, told The Telegraph that he would block any law that prevents the UK from setting its own health policy.

      “The UK is supportive of the pandemic treaty currently being negotiated by national governments, which could speed up the sharing of data on new pandemic threats so we are able to respond quickly in the event of future pandemics,” he said.

      “We’re clear that we would never agree to anything that crosses our points of principle on sovereignty or prevents the UK from taking decisive action against future pandemics.”

      Changes to make WHO advice ‘binding’

      The rule changes have been proposed as part of plans to update the WHO’s International Health Regulations (IHRs) in light of the coronavirus pandemic and establish a new Pandemic Preparedness Treaty.

      The treaty was first proposed by world leaders including Boris Johnson in 2021 during the pandemic and was originally designed to improve alert systems, data-sharing and the production of vaccines to “foster an all of government and all of society approach”.

      But among 300 proposed amendments to the IHRs are changes to make the WHO’s advice “binding” and introduce a new requirement for countries to recognise it as the global authority on public health measures.

      The plan would require member countries to “recognise WHO as the guidance and coordinating authority of international public health response…and undertake to follow WHO’s recommendations in their international public health response”.

      If passed, the change would mean the WHO could enforce border closures, quarantine measures and vaccine passports on all member countries, including the UK.

      A draft of the treaty itself would commit member states to spending five per cent of their health budgets, plus a proportion of GDP, to pandemic preparedness.

      ‘Particularly worrying’

      Six conservative MPs led by Esther McVey, the former Cabinet minister, have written to Mr Mitchell to call for a Commons vote on the draft treaty and regulations before they are signed.

      Ms McVey said: “There is, rightly, growing concern about the WHO’s Pandemic Treaty and International Health Regulations.

      “The plans represent a significant shift for the organisation, from a member-led advisory body to a health authority with powers of compulsion.

      “This is particularly worrying when you consider the WHO’s poor track record on providing consistent, clear and scientifically sound advice for managing international disease outbreaks.”

      The letter has also been signed by the Tory MPs Sir John Redwood, David Davis, Philip Davies, Sir Christopher Chope and Danny Kruger.

      Mr Kruger said: “Coordination and cooperation in a public health emergency is sensible but ceding control over health budgets and critical decision-making in a pandemic to an unelected international organisation seems profoundly at odds with national autonomy and democratic accountability.”

      Campaigners also expressed concern about increasing the WHO’s role in identifying misinformation, after its experts dismissed the “lab leak” Covid origin theory only to later accept it “remain(s) on the table”.

      Molly Kingsley, co-founder of the UsForThem campaign group, said: “We should all be concerned about the WHO being ordained as an arbiter of pandemic truth, especially given its poor record during the pandemic, such as its claim that Covid was definitively zoonotic in origin and its April 2020 denial of the role of natural immunity in protecting against infection.”

    • Elon Musk’s Neuralink gets FDA approval for study of brain implants in humans

      Elon Musk’s brain-implant company Neuralink on Thursday said it had received the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) approval to launch its first-in-human clinical study.

      On at least four occasions since 2019, Musk has predicted that his medical device company would soon start human trials of a brain implant to treat intractable conditions such as paralysis and blindness.

      Yet the company, founded in 2016, did not seek permission from the FDA until early 2022 – and the agency rejected the application, seven current and former employees told Reuters in March.

      The FDA approval comes as U.S. lawmakers urged regulators earlier this month to investigate whether the make-up of a panel overseeing animal testing at Neuralink contributed to botched and rushed experiments.

      Neuralink has already been the subject of federal probes.

      Reuters reported on Dec. 5 that the USDA’s Inspector General was investigating, at the request of a federal prosecutor, potential violations of the Animal Welfare Act, which governs how researchers treat and test certain types of animals.

      The probe has also been looking at the USDA’s oversight of Neuralink.

      In a tweet on Thursday, Neuralink said that the company is not yet open for a clinical trial.

      “This is the result of incredible work by the Neuralink team in close collaboration with the FDA and represents an important first step that will one day allow our technology to help many people,” Neuralink said in a tweet on Thursday.

      Neuralink is developing a brain implant it hopes will help paralyzed people walk again and cure other neurological ailments.

      The FDA did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.

    • I couldn’t have had a charming chat a couple days after the bombing. I was right at the finish line too. Only medical professionals directly involved with patient care were moving around. And CNN, I guess.

      We were ordered to shelter-in-place by the National Guard. Till both brothers were hunted down. An MIT security guard was killed by the older brother before being shot himself. The younger one chose the wrong neighborhood as hideout: Watertown, an Armenian diaspora community.

      After the younger brother was captured, protestors demonstrated outside the hospital where he was being treated. Along with horribly maimed victims of his jihad. He had to be taken to a military base – he would’ve been torn apart.

  6. =======



    thw gateway pundit – Top FBI Official Admits She Never Read Durham Report and Doesn’t Know Anyone at FBI Who Has Read It (Video)

    During a recent Homeland Security Subcommittee hearing a top FBI official admitted she has never read the Durham Report.

    Jill Murphy who serves as the FBI’s deputy assistant director of counterintelligence, told a room full of Republican lawmakers that she has not had time to read the Durham report.

    In response to Murphy’s shocking statement Rep. August Pfluger of Texas said he was speechless.


    Murphy later told Rep. Dan Bishop that she doesn’t know any FBI official that has read the Durham Report.



  7. (Richard: The Obiden administration is showing it’s true colors, they are totalitarians who want to crush all opponents.)9

    Biden Regime Lumps Christians, Conservatives, and Republicans into Same Category as Nazis in New DHS Anti-Terrorism Program
    By Jim Hoft May. 25, 2023 11:00 am581 Comments

    Earlier this year we learned that the FBI was targeting and infiltrating Catholic parishes to spy on the congregations.

    The FBI has also infiltrated protests and admitted to having dozens of federal assets who were working inside the January 6, 2021 protests in Washington DC.

    The Biden regime was also caught working with private companies to censor speech in America.

    Now this…
    The Biden regime is lumping Christians, conservatives and Republicans into the same category as Nazis in their new Department of Homeland Security terrorism program.

    This in unprecedented in American history. Not only is the regime targeting its political oppenents and jailing hundreds of Trump supporters but they have broadened their targeted population to include Christians.

    At what point will Americans wake up and understand they the country is in the middle of a Marxist takeover?

    FOX News reported:

    The Biden administration is doling out taxpayer money through an anti-terrorism grant initiative to a university program that has explicitly lumped the Republican Party, as well as Christian and conservative groups, into the same category as Nazis, according to documents shared exclusively with Fox News Digital.

    The Media Research Center, a conservative watchdog group, obtained documents through Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests showing a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) program meant to fight terrorism is funding a group whose work has explicitly targeted the American political right. The MRC outlined its findings in a report, arguing what the group found warrants criminal prosecution.

    “This terrorism task force is engaged in an active effort to demonize and eliminate Christian, conservative, and Republican organizations using federal taxpayer dollars,” said Brent Bozell, founder and president of the Media Research Center. “What we have uncovered calls for criminal prosecution. The American people need to know those who are abusing their positions in the federal government will be held accountable for their criminal behavior.”

    DHS’s Targeted Violence and Terrorism Prevention Grant Program (TVTP) provides funds to various public, private, and non-profit institutions — such as universities and county governments — “to establish or enhance capabilities to prevent targeted violence and terrorism.” Grant applicants must be based in the U.S. and implement a U.S.-based program.

    • (Richard: Pay close attention to this one. If the left continues in control, or if they lose control but the criminals aren’t prosecuted this genocide will grow in Canada And migrate down to the US.

      Read the article above because those are the next groups to be assisted in dying.)

      Canadistan Is Out of Control: New Survey Shows Growing Population Support for Euthanizing the Poor and Homeless – Number of Assisted Suicides Skyrockets Ten-Fold in Half a Decade to 10 Thousand People
      By Paul Serran May. 25, 2023 10:45 am222 Comments

      The culture of death is creeping in many countries of the world. One of the most disturbing manifestations of this culture, along with abortion, is the rapid spread of Euthanasia and ‘assisted suicide’ in the last decade.

      Nowhere is the lunacy of such policies showing its true face than Canada. The Justin Trudeau regime is taking the country right into a dystopian situation that is normalizing policies that allow (and encourage) people to make recourse of ‘Medical Assistance in Dying’ not because they have a terminal and painful disease or medical condition, but simply because they are poor and homeless.

      National Post reported:

      “One third of Canadians are apparently fine with prescribing assisting suicide for no other reason than the fact that the patient is poor or homeless.

      The results were contained in a recent Research Co. poll probing just how comfortable Canadians were with the current state of the country’s MAID (medical assistance in dying) regime.

      Starting in March 2021, Canada became one of only a handful of countries to legalize assisted suicide even in instances where a patient does not have a terminal illness. Ever since, a Canadian can be approved for MAID simply for having a ‘grievous and irremediable medical condition’.”

      Canadians increasingly accepting poverty and homelessness as reasons for assisted suicides.
      The Research Co. poll found that 73 per cent of respondents favored the current MAID regime, and only 16 per cent opposed it.

      Many Canadians also favored assisted suicide in cases where no medical condition of any kind was present.

      In 2016, on the first year of the assisted suicide bill, 1,018 people were euthanized, mostly cancer patients. In 2021, Canada recorded shocking numbers: 10,064 medically assisted deaths – a tenfold increase in half a decade: Canadistan is out of control.


      Spectator reported:

      “Since [2021], Canadian law, in all its majesty, has allowed both the rich as well as the poor to kill themselves if they are too poor to continue living with dignity. In fact, the ever-generous Canadian state will even pay for their deaths. What it will not do is spend money to allow them to live instead of killing themselves.”

      Initially, the legislation allowed euthanasia only for those suffering from a terminal illness whose natural death was ‘reasonably foreseeable’.

      The Slippery slope soon came into view, with Bill C-7, a law which repealed requirement that the condition should be ‘terminal’. Now, illness or disability which ‘cannot be relieved under conditions that you consider acceptable’, is deemed reason enough.

      Spectator: “Perhaps, like many doctors, journalists are afraid of being accused of being ‘unprogressive’ for questioning the new culture of death, a fatal accusation in polite circles.”

      Since mid-March 2023, a person whose sole affliction is a mental health condition is eligible for assisted suicide. Absurd? Here’s the actual kicker: ‘conditions include issues that could leave a person suicidal – like depression and post traumatic stress disorder – but also include autism, ADHD, eating disorders and internet gaming disorder.’

      Dr Trudo Lemmens, University of Toronto, on DailyMail: “Imagine that being applied in the context of mental health. You have a person suffering severe depression, seeks help from a therapist and is offered the solution of dying.”

    • Lawless NY Democrat Prosecutors Set May Trial Date for Bogus ‘We Build the Wall’ Charges Against Steve Bannon – Something He Was Already Pardoned For Back in 2020
      By Jim Hoft May. 25, 2023 10:00 am122 Comments

      In September 2022, Former Chief Strategist for President Trump, Steve Bannon, traveled to New York City and turned himself in after was indicted on new junk charges by unhinged New York officials.

      Lawless New York prosecutors are too busy going after President Trump and his top advisers to deal with the record crime wave in their city.

      Steve Bannon was indicted in New York a second time for his alleged role in “defrauding donors” who gave to the We Build the Wall charity.

    • JUST-IN: Maricopa County Attorneys Seek More Bogus Sanctions Against Kari Lake – Do NOT Cite Claim of 274,000 Ballot Signatures Approved in LESS THAN 3 Seconds Each
      By Jordan Conradson May. 25, 2023 8:15 am139 Comments

      Corrupt Maricopa County requested Sanctions and Attorneys’ Fees against Kari Lake and her attorneys on Wednesday, claiming they “repeatedly made demonstrably false statements” before and during their remanded trial.

      Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Peter Thompson dismissed Kari Lake’s lawsuit against the stolen 2022 Midterm Election late Monday night, following a three-day trial exposing election misconduct and fraudulent mail-in ballot signature verification.

      Sanctioning is the tactic we have seen from Maricopa County and other fraudulently elected officials to stop election-related challenges dead in their tracks and “send a message” to or intimidate attorneys. This is all in the interest of the government ruling as the supreme authority on elections and suppressing the rights of citizens to constitutionally redress grievances.

      The Gateway Pundit reported that Kari Lake plans to appeal the bogus ruling. Lake said in a recent press conference she will “continue pushing our case to the United States Supreme Court.”

    • A TRAVESTY OF JUSTICE: Arkansas Man Who Trolled Nancy Pelosi by Putting His Feet On Her Desk During J6 Protests Sentenced to Over FOUR YEARS in Prison by Radical Judge
      By Cullen Linebarger May. 25, 2023 9:45 am127 Comments

      Fox News reported the Arkansas man who became famous for putting his feet on then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s desk was sentenced to four and a half years in prison by so-called DC judge Wednesday.

      62-year-old Richard Barnett, a retired firefighter, will spend over four years behind bars as part of the Biden regime’s continued inquisition against peaceful J6 protesters.

      Jim Hoft reported in January that a DC kangaroo court found” Barnett found guilty on all eight counts in his indictment, including felony charges of civil disorder and obstruction of an official proceeding.

    • Rep. Jim Jordan Sends Letter to FBI Demanding J6 Pipe Bomber Update – FBI Has Information on Suspect’s License Plate Number But Have Made No Arrests?
      By Jim Hoft May. 25, 2023 9:00 am181 Comments

      Over two years ago, on January 5, 2021, a suspect planted pipe bombs near the Washington DC RNC and DNC headquarters the night before the January 6, 2021 protests.

      The culprit was caught on video but never caught by the FBI – the greatest intelligence service in the world.

      The US Capitol was shut down on January 6 after the feds found the bombs near the Republican and Democrat Party headquarters.

    • Trump’s Potential Summer Indictment in Georgia Raises Security Concerns
      Fani Willis, Fulton County’s district attorney, has set an August timetable for criminal charges
      By Cameron McWhirterFollow
      , Jan WolfeFollow
      and Corinne RameyFollow
      May 25, 2023 11:00 am ET

      ATLANTA—Georgia’s capital faces an extraordinary security lockdown in August, when a local prosecutor has indicated she will present criminal charges on alleged 2020 election interference to a grand jury.

      Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, a Democrat, has focused her probe on the actions of former President Donald Trump and his supporters to overturn his narrow loss in Georgia, the first for a Republican presidential candidate in the state since 1992. Although Trump wasn’t called to testify over the course of the more than two-year probe, legal experts have said he is a potential target. Willis hasn’t said what charges Trump or his supporters may face. Trump has said that he did nothing wrong.


    • University program linking Christians, Republicans to Nazis granted DHS funds under ‘anti-terror’ initiative
      Biden admin funding controversial efforts to treat conservative groups as radical, watchdog warns
      By Aaron Kliegman | Fox News

      FIRST ON FOX: The Biden administration is doling out taxpayer money through an anti-terrorism grant initiative to a university program that has explicitly lumped the Republican Party, as well as Christian and conservative groups, into the same category as Nazis, according to documents shared exclusively with Fox News Digital.

      The Media Research Center, a conservative watchdog group, obtained documents through Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests showing a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) program meant to fight terrorism is funding a group whose work has explicitly targeted the American political right. The MRC outlined its findings in a report, arguing what the group found warrants criminal prosecution.

      “This terrorism task force is engaged in an active

  8. Smoking Gun: Hunter Biden’s “Pay for Play” Contract/Emails Revealed From Days Before the Infamous “Son of a Bitch Was Fired” Trip to Ukraine
    By Brian Lupo May. 25, 2023 8:00 am518 Comments

    Joe Biden infamously bragged about his “$1 billion loan guarantee” quid-pro-quo meeting that took place in December 2015 in Ukraine. Joe couldn’t help bragging about getting the prosecutor investigating Burisma, Viktor Shokin, fired years later in a Council on Foreign Relations panel. In his boastings, Biden also implicated then-President Obama in that exchange: “You have no authority…you’re not the President…” to which Biden smugly replied “Call him.”

  9. 63% of Americans Believe Trump-Russia Smear was “Hit Job” Against Trump – Majority Want FBI to be Criminally Prosecuted for Their Actions
    By Jim Hoft May. 25, 2023 11:57 am55 Comments

    In July 2020 documents were released by the Senate Judiciary Committee regarding the Russia collusion hoax.

    The second set of documents exposed the outlandish New York Times story that the Trump team had “repeated contacts with senior Russian intelligence officials.” The declassified documents reveal The New York Times reporting was transparently dishonest and attempted to fuel the Russiagate narrative in its early stages.

    In May 2022, the country learned that it was Hillary Clinton’s campaign that was behind the entire Trump-Russia collusion hoax. We know this because her former campaign manager Robbie Mook said so under oath during the Sussman trial.

  10. NYC Professor Who Threatened New York Post Reporter with Machete Turns Herself In To Police, Cries Victim!
    By Cristina Laila May. 25, 2023 11:20 am144 Comments

    The NYC professor who cursed at pro-life students and threatened a New York Post reporter with a machete turned herself in to police Thursday morning – and cried victim!

    Adjunct professor Shellyne Rodriguez was seen in a video published on Monday by Students for Life America, accusing the two students of being “triggering” and exhibiting “violent” behavior.

    “You’re not educating shi-t, this is f-cking propaganda,” Rodriguez says in the video, “What are you going to do like anti-trans next?”

    Shellyne Rodriguez was fired on Tuesday after she held a machete to a New York Post reporter’s neck and threatened to “chop” him up.

  11. George Washington University Caves to Woke Mob – Unveils “Lame” New Nickname After Crybaby Students Whined the Old One was “Extremely Offensive” (VIDEO)
    By Cullen Linebarger May. 25, 2023 10:30 am197 Comments

    The George Washington University (GWU) officially caved to the woke, crybaby mob Wednesday and changed its nickname.

    The New York Post reported GWU will replace its “Colonials” moniker with “Revolutionaries.” GWU had been known as the Colonials since 1926.

    The Washington, D.C.-based school will implement the new name during the 2023-24 academic year.

    GWU said in a press release that it selected “Revolutionaries” after receiving “8,000 suggestions and 47,000 points of feedback.” The school then narrowed the list down to 10 names that “best reflected the spirit of GWU.”

  12. Get Woke, Go Broke: Target’s Stock Plummets Amid Growing Backlash and Calls for Boycott
    By Jim Hoft May. 25, 2023 9:15 am405 Comments

    Target is facing a significant decline in its stock shares as a result of mounting backlash and widespread calls for a boycott over its satanic and woke LGBT merchandise.

    Target’s massive ‘Pride’ Section, devoted to trans and LGBTQ kids’ clothing including “tuck-friendly swimwear for kids” and chest binders, is displayed at the front of each store nationwide.

    The collection includes shirts and bags with messages that include, “live laugh lesbian,” “cure transphobia not trans people,” “too queer for here,” and “we belong everywhere.”

    Abprallen, an LGBT+ company based in London that sells apparel that includes satanic imagery including pentagrams, horned skulls, and references to the devil collaborated with Target to create the “PRIDE” collection.


    Anheuser-Busch InBev Market Value Has Collapsed $15.7 Billion Since Dylan Mulvaney Partnership
    By Cassandra MacDonald May. 25, 2023 8:30 am399 Comments

    Anheuser-Busch InBev’s market value has collapsed by a massive $15.7 billion since Bud Light’s partnership with transgender activist and influencer Dylan Mulvaney was announced.
    The shocking figure was determined by Investor’s Business Daily using data from S&P Global Market Intelligence.

    “The market value of Anheuser-Busch InBev, whose fourth bestselling brand is Bud Light, dropped $15.7 billion since April 1, based on a conversion to U.S. dollars by Investor’s Business Daily using data from S&P Global Market Intelligence,” Investor’s Business Daily reports. “That’s the day Dylan Mulvaney, a TikTok influencer and transgender woman, pitched the Bud Light brand during the NCAA March Madness tournament.”

    The report added, “Meanwhile, the other major publicly traded global beer brands have added $3.2 billion in

  13. Terry Glavin: David Johnston escapes inquiry into his own China dealings
    The former governor general is a poster boy for ‘elite capture’

    The United Front’s key strategy of “elite capture” has enjoyed successes in Canada that boggle the imagination, not least because of the Trudeau Liberals’ early and wild-eyed embrace of China’s outward-growth policies. Because elite-capture operations are ordinarily out in the open, they’re not “clandestine,” so their inducements and palm-greasings are beyond the purview of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service. And Johnston himself is an “elite capture” poster boy.

    Johnston has professed that it would be “wonderful” if all Canadians learned to speak Chinese — his three daughters have done so, having attended several universities in China. When he was awarded an honorary doctorate from Nanjing University in 2012, Johnston had already made more than a dozen visits to China. As president of the University of Waterloo, Johnston oversaw the establishment of one of China’s propaganda-and-espionage Confucius Institutes. He has met Xi Jinping several times and has accompanied several trade delegations to China.

    Quite apart from his Trudeau Foundation connections, Johnston’s own Rideau Hall Foundation boasts several key figures from the Canada-China trade establishment among its leading lights. From Paul Desmarais III, whose family founded the Canada-China Business Council to Dominic Barton, the global corporate champion of China’s state-capitalist empire and briefly the Trudeau government’s ambassador to China, the Rideau Hall Foundation board is a minor who’s-who of Beijing’s collaborators in this country.

    And now, Johnston is taking it upon himself to draw the Canadian victims of Beijing’s rapacity into a series of public hearings about the United Front’s strangely unmentionable strongarm operations in Canada.

    “This is a really bad day for our democracy,” Mehmet Tohti, executive director of Canada’s Uyghur Rights Action Project, told me yesterday. “It is shockingly disappointing for me that Johnston came to the conclusion not to have a public inquiry.”

  14. Suspect Who Fatally Shoved Man Onto Minneapolis Light Rail Released Without Charges (VIDEO)
    By Cristina Laila May. 25, 2023 3:40 pm304 Comments

    The suspect who fatally shoved a man onto a Minneapolis Light Rail last week was released without charges.

    Last Saturday around 1 am, Minneapolis police responded to calls about a man who had become trapped under a train at the Hennepin Avenue/Warehouse District station.

    According to reports, the victim was pushed onto the Minneapolis Light Rail after an argument with another man and was crushed by an oncoming train.

  15. (Richard: JE is asking a lot of questions but also answering a lot with dami g evidence.)

    The Optimistic Conservative
    Durham’s Nugget: An intelligence tale
    How to bury a plan in three easy lessons.

    In a quick-look treatment on 16 May, Lee Smith unerringly identified a central data point from John Durham’s special counsel report on the FBI’s conduct of Crossfire Hurricane.

    That point is John Brennan’s handwritten record of having briefed President Obama and a group of administration seniors, on 3 August 2016, about “Russian intelligence” on Hillary Clinton’s operation to generate a fake narrative in which Russia colluded with Donald Trump.

    Smith points out that James Comey was reportedly in attendance at that meeting. That would mean Comey knew throughout the execution of Crossfire Hurricane that it was entirely possible much if not all of the supposed “evidence” of Russia-Trump collusion was coming from a campaign “oppo” effort mounted by Clinton.

    Yet with this implication in throbbing neon in the special counsel investigation, Durham ultimately let Comey off the hook for what appears to be the unprofessionalism – not to say misconduct – of continuing Crossfire Hurricane as if he didn’t know about Hillary’s “Clinton Plan.”

    Lee Smith thinks that smells wrong. I’d certainly agree. Smith even suggests Brennan may be getting away with something himself, considering that throughout the years 2017, 2018, 2019, and most of 2020, Congress and the public had no idea Brennan had briefed this information back in August 2016. The public didn’t find out until September 2020, when DNI John Ratcliffe published Brennan’s declassified handwritten notes from the 3 August 2016 meeting. It seemed remarkably convenient that the little bomblet from that meeting finally came out just at the time Brennan had agreed to be interviewed by the Durham team.

    John Brennan’s notes from briefing Obama on Russiagate around the first of August, 2016. Screen cap by author; Fox News copy of notes released by DNI John Ratcliffe
    There is a great deal to unpack from the Durham report, and a cottage industry out there diligently doing it. I may have more points to make later, but there are two I want to make in this article, both incident to Brennan’s 3 August 2016 briefing claim.

    One is something we actually already knew about Brennan, Comey, and “Russian intelligence” on Hillary Clinton’s communications and deeds.

    The other is what I’m calling the Durham Nugget, which we will consider in its turn below.

    “Russian intel”: The known known

    The organizing point on this topic is something I will state up front. We have excellent reason to suspect – even assume – that James Comey, by 3 August 2016, already knew about what the Durham report refers to as the “Clinton Plan.”

    That’s because it’s virtually certain it came from the same source on Russian intel that Comey himself cited in his long-running claim about “Russian intel” figuring in his decision to exonerate Hillary, in her “email matter,” on 5 July 2016.

    Comey briefed this narrative to Congress in 2017, and doubled down on it in his memoir published in 2018. I’ve written about it a number of times; the background is here, here, and here.

    The gist of Comey’s narrative is that he discovered through Russian intelligence that in early 2016, Loretta Lynch, then the U.S. attorney general, had given an assurance to the Hillary campaign that the FBI’s probe of Hillary’s “email matter” wouldn’t “go too far.” Comey says that was the deciding factor in his resolve to take on his own shoulders the action to exonerate Hillary.

    Former FBI Director James Comey does national security face in congressional testimony, 2017. CBS video
    In early 2020, media reporting indicated that Dutch intelligence had provided a trove of information on what Russian intelligence knew about the communications of U.S. government officials and other prominent persons (see my first link on the Comey narrative, above). The Dutch data stream started in 2014, and the FBI was reportedly one of the agencies receiving its product. That was an obvious and likely source for Comey’s claimed knowledge in 2016 of email assurances being made between Loretta Lynch and the Hillary campaign.

    The same Dutch data stream is the obvious and most likely source of John Brennan’s recorded knowledge in 2016 of Hillary Clinton’s campaign “oppo” plan against Trump.

    There were, as Chuck Schumer might say, six ways from Sunday by which the Russians could get hold of the U.S. officials’ communications in question. Certainly Hillary had been spraying her emails about the planet for years. Either the FBI or the CIA might have separate sources of knowledge on that.

    But with Brennan and Comey both referencing “Russian intelligence” products on these two matters, the reasonable certainty lines up that they were both referring to the same data stream.

    Let’s pause briefly to take stock. If we assume both agency heads had access to the Dutch data stream, then Brennan knew about the communications implicating Lynch and the Hillary campaign, and Comey knew about the Clinton Plan against Trump.

    Each man knew about these instances without being briefed by the other. It’s quite probable that each knew the other had the same information.

    Now let’s add in something highlighted on 23 May 2023 by Internet super-sleuth “Fool Nelson.” According to Dutch media reporting, Brennan had the Dutch data stream to the U.S. shut down on a most eye-catching date: 4 August 2016.

    Yes, that would be the day after Brennan records having briefed the Obama seniors on Russian intelligence about the Clinton Plan. A spigot that had opened from the Netherlands back in 2014 was shut down the day after that meeting with the Obama seniors, at Brennan’s behest.

    It’s not helpful to jump to conclusions about why anyone in this mix was doing what he did. We can still legitimately ask Lee Smith’s question; i.e., whether Brennan really, in fact, briefed the national security seniors on the Clinton Plan that day. It could instead have been the sum total of whatever else was discussed at the meeting that prompted Brennan to want to fence off the source of that information.

    Perhaps he did brief the meeting, as his published notes indicate. We can’t be sure. (We do know that recording that as an event covered Brennan’s butt four years later.)

    We can confidently conclude, however, that whatever the intentions of the actors were, they were nefarious. Neither agency head did what he really should have done with the knowledge we can be certain he had.

    Pausing for a thought-adjuster: if it was clear to Durham that Brennan was trying to deflect the onus onto Comey, that puts Durham’s conclusions about the advisability of trying to make a criminal case against Comey in a fresh light. Durham wouldn’t want to be steered into that course of action by what were essentially unverifiable protestations from Brennan. Keep in mind, Comey didn’t sit for an interview with Durham, and neither did the other Obama seniors from the 3 August 2016 meeting.

    Moreover, there is zero likelihood of Durham or any U.S. attorney being given the go-ahead from the Biden Justice Department to issue subpoenas with teeth to those very senior former officials. Or, for that matter, to do a forensic scrub of the Russian intelligence Brennan referred to, which the Durham team doesn’t seem to have had access to in its original form.

    A New York Times article from 13 February 2020 gave some preview of this dilemma. In retrospect, its discussion of disputes uncovered by Durham between the CIA and FBI about intelligence sharing, and the article’s claim that agency officials perceived a “steering” attempt by the CIA – an attempt to finger the FBI as the locus of misconduct in the Russia-Trump probes – looks like a prophetic glimpse of this topic as it is now emerging from the Durham report. Certainly the article’s reporting of a “foreign ally” obtaining copies of U.S. officials’ communications hacked by the Russians appears to allude to the Dutch data stream on Russian intel.

    The Durham Nugget

    This background prepares us for the Durham Nugget, which is related to the points others have already highlighted about Brennan and the 3 August 2016 meeting, but is separate from them.

    Inspected closely, it sheds new light on the, shall we say, non-straightforward nature of what Brennan was doing with his maneuvers in August 2016. It’s found in the account of the U.S. agencies’ knowledge of the Clinton Plan, which unfolds from p. 81 (document)/91 (PDF) to p. 98/108. (Admin note: all page references to the Durham report will use that format.)

    For me, it’s the linchpin of the report. It’s about how Brennan followed up on his Russian intel about the Clinton Plan. It’s not getting attention in the backlash surge, but in the context of other things that were done with intelligence surrounding Russiagate/Spygate, it’s something Congress ought to focus on.

    I think Durham understands that, in fact. I don’t think he blurted it out haplessly; I think he highlighted it in the report to post a big clue.

    It’s 74 words on p. 84/94 of the report:

    Brennan stated that the [CIA-sponsored] inter-agency Fusion Cell, a team to synthesize and analyze pertinent intelligence on Russian malign influence activities related to the presidential election, was put in motion after his meeting with President Obama on July 28th. Email traffic and witness interviews conducted by the [Durham Special Counsel’s] Office reflect that at least some CIA personnel believed that the Clinton Plan intelligence led to the decision being made to set up the Fusion Cell.

    The core of the clue is the final 21 words of the passage: “some CIA personnel believed that the Clinton Plan intelligence led to the decision being made to set up the Fusion Cell.”

    Durham special counsel report May 2023, p. 84 (94 of the PDF).
    Those words were a bell-ringer for me.

    Whoa whoa whoa whoa.

    Hillary Clinton is a U.S. person, being spied on by the Russians.

    Based on the interpretable intent of U.S. law and regulation, the concern is more than just that Brennan should most certainly have briefed the FBI about that. It’s that Brennan’s first move should have been accountably turning over the lead on that to the FBI. He should not have set up a CIA fusion cell as a follow-on action to that intelligence.

    Note: it’s not clear if Brennan himself addressed this point directly with the Durham team. It’s arguable that he created an alternate impression, as hinted in this passage of the report on p. 84/94: “Materials obtained from former Director Brennan’s office holdings reflect that he personally received a copy of the [Clinton Plan] intelligence. When interviewed, Brennan generally recalled reviewing the materials but stated he did not recall focusing specifically on its assertions regarding the Clinton campaign’s purported plan. Brennan recalled instead focusing on Russia’s role in hacking the DNC.”

    However, it’s also not fully clear from the context of that passage if it refers to the meeting with Obama that Brennan attended on 28 July 2016, the 3 August 2016 meeting at which Brennan’s notes indicate he briefed the higher-ups on the Clinton Plan, or the formation of the CIA Fusion Cell.

    Or perhaps it goes only to Brennan’s state of mind at the time.

    MSNBC video
    The vagueness of that reference certainly seems to serve Brennan’s interest more than anyone else’s.

    At any rate, there are ambiguities and coordination gray areas attending the division of counterintelligence responsibility between the FBI and the CIA, which subject matter experts will hasten to point out. They’re right. (See, for example, background here, here [PDF download], here, here, and here.)

    But from U.S. law, the public correctly understands counterintelligence on Russian spy agencies targeting U.S. persons to be the FBI’s purview. CIA involvement comes in when spy or intelligence personnel are the targets, and/or certain Americans are located overseas when they’re being targeted. Even overseas, foreign-government targeting of American citizens like Hillary Clinton is the province of the FBI.

    The problem has rarely involved high-profile cases that are not about counterespionage (i.e., Russia trying to “turn” Americans with government clearances, including CIA spies) or the fairly broad category of corporate or industrial espionage. That’s what you’ll find most counterintelligence commentary focused on.

    But if the target is a U.S. politician, even if the Russians aren’t detectably trying to subvert that politician’s loyalties, it’s the FBI that would be lead dog for the case.*

    YouTube video
    We can assume that’s why the CIA eventually forwarded an investigative referral on the Clinton Plan to the FBI. The date of this instrument was 7 September 2016, according to the Durham report (p. 86/96). That seems to be at least a month, and possibly more, after Brennan set up his Fusion Cell.

    A hiatus Brennan spent spreading a narrative that mirrored the Clinton Plan’s

    And in the interim, Brennan famously ran a circuit on Capitol Hill briefing members of Congress on alleged information that Russia was trying to get Trump elected.

    Here is the New York Times summary of that series of briefings, from an article that appeared on 6 April 2017: “[I]n late August — 10 weeks before the election — John O. Brennan, then the C.I.A. director, was so concerned about increasing evidence of Russia’s election meddling that he began a series of urgent, individual briefings for eight top members of Congress, some of them on secure phone lines while they were on their summer break.”

    The Times continued: “It is unclear what new intelligence might have prompted the classified briefings. But with concerns growing both internally and publicly at the time about a significant Russian breach of the Democratic National Committee, the C.I.A. began seeing signs of possible connections to the Trump campaign, the officials said. By the final weeks of the campaign, Congress and the intelligence agencies were racing to understand the scope of the Russia threat.”

    Said the Times, “In an Aug. 25 briefing for Harry Reid, then the top Democrat in the Senate, Mr. Brennan indicated that Russia’s hackings appeared aimed at helping Mr. Trump win the November election, according to two former officials with knowledge of the briefing.

    “The officials said Mr. Brennan also indicated that unnamed advisers to Mr. Trump might be working with the Russians to interfere in the election.”

    So: while in possession of the Russian intel on the Clinton Plan, Brennan was briefing the Gang of Eight in Congress on the story line from … the Clinton Plan. There has never been any evidence that Brennan told the Gang of Eight about the Russian intel on the Clinton Plan.

    But keep in mind, yet again, that there’s more.

    Another U.S. person in Brennan’s Russian-filtered target sights

    One more observation helps frame the Durham Nugget. Another reason the Nugget is a bomblet is that those 21 words contradict what we have understood since the summer of 2017 about the setting up of Brennan’s Fusion Cell in August 2016.

    The Fusion Cell, we were given to understand by media reporting in 2017 – reporting elliptically corroborated by Brennan’s testimony to Congress – was set up due to intelligence Brennan had been given on Russia and Trump.

    In 2017 we were hearing nothing about Brennan having Russian intel on Hillary’s Clinton Plan, and certainly no hint whatsoever of the Fusion Cell being created because of it.

    The information we were given in 2017, which governed thinking since then about both Crossfire Hurricane and Brennan’s Fusion Cell, was the opposite of Durham’s Nugget.

    Brennan’s claim of receiving intelligence in 2016 about suspect connections between Russia and Trump has been variously reported as dating to April 2016 and July 2016. It involved contact from the signals intelligence chief in the UK, Robert Hannigan, the head of GCHQ.

    GCHQ “The big Donut.” Wikipedia; By Ministry of Defence.
    According to reporting in 2017, Brennan had a sense by late July 2016, at the same time everyone else was having an epiphany on the matter, that there was something to what he was getting from the Brits about Russia and Trump. The GCHQ chief was supposedly feeding Brennan intel on Russia’s involvement, and a potential Trump connection, that came from a number of European sources including the Netherlands, Estonia, and the Czech Republic. The implication seemed to be at a minimum of a potential Russian influence operation with Trump and/or his campaign organization.

    Trump, like Hillary, is a U.S. person. Neither one was a U.S. spy or intelligence asset. They weren’t the kind of U.S. persons the CIA has a clear, priority interest in.

    Seven years later, the account of how that intelligence was referred to the FBI remains murky. Meanwhile, the 2017 media reporting indicated that the foreign Russia-Trump material – not intelligence about a Clinton Plan – prompted Brennan to launch his Fusion Cell in early August 2016.

    What we have been given to understand (by Brennan’s testimony to Congress in 2017) is that this vaguely-characterized Russia-Trump intelligence figured in the judgments of the 2016 Intelligence Community Assessment (ICA) on Russian interference in the U.S. election, which was released to the public in an unclassified version on 6 January 2017.

    Brennan didn’t cop specifically to doing a whole lot with the “intel” from GCHQ, but what he did do was what mattered. The ICA was made possible by assembling the CIA Fusion Cell as a hub for “analyzing” Russian meddling in the 2016 election. And the ICA in turn was the essential document justifying the Mueller special counsel appointment in May 2017.

    A product like the ICA is honchoed by the CIA, and in this case the CIA was one of only three U.S. intelligence agencies endorsing the ICA. Just two, in fact, signed off on it with high confidence: the CIA and the FBI. NSA had only low confidence in the specific current intelligence behind it (as opposed to the pages and pages of boilerplate about historical Russian disinformation campaigns, and the thinly-substantiated analysis of why Vladimir Putin would prefer to get Trump elected).

    The 20/20 of hindsight

    To summarize: forget Comey, for the moment. Here’s what Brennan did when presented – so we’re told – with foreign intelligence on two U.S. persons in 2016: Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.

    During 2016 debate. Guardian News video
    He launched a CIA-sponsored fusion cell on the central topic directly involving both of the U.S. persons, while he was simultaneously in possession of both the alleged Russia-Trump intel and the countervailing Clinton Plan intel. He had both claimed data points by late-July 2016.

    In August 2016 he briefed officials on Capitol Hill on supposed “Russia-Trump intelligence,” which America believed for the next four years came from allied foreign sources. But he apparently failed to mention the Russian intel on the Clinton Plan to the members of Congress. This was in spite of Brennan reportedly briefing Obama, Comey, and others on the Clinton Plan on 3 August 2016.

    And in spite of possessing both of those data points, he launched his fusion cell and wrote an ICA using the Russia-Trump intel, while evidently discounting the Clinton Plan intel (since there is no reference to it, even a non-specific or tangential one, in the ICA).

    It’s essential to finish this off with what Durham’s report tells us about the CIA’s 7 September 2016 referral memo to the FBI on the Clinton Plan intelligence.

    The relevant passage on p. 86/96: “None of the FBI personnel who agreed to be interviewed could specifically recall receiving this Referral Memo, nor did anyone recall the FBI doing anything in response to the Referral Memo.”

    There’s more, so be sure to read it all. The more that’s there doesn’t offer assurance that the FBI actually “did anything in response to the Referral Memo.” Taking action in response to the CIA’s referral memo would have been closing the loop on the counterintelligence handoff from CIA to FBI, and for whatever reason, Durham’s team was unable to establish that there was any consequence traceable to that actually happening.

    Wikipedia: U.S. Department of Justice
    Down payment on some lessons

    We and Congress need to ponder this. As Hillary crony Charles Dolan was capering about Moscow shoveling manure at Igor Danchenko, who, under contract for the Steele dossier, appears to have been filling in plotlines for Nellie Ohr at Fusion GPS, the account above is what the heads of the CIA and FBI were doing with the real-world intelligence they have claimed they had.

    They were acting on the narrative product of the Clinton Plan while apparently informing almost no one outside of a small group of very senior Obama officials about the Plan itself. Brennan also purported to have additional intelligence from separate sources about a Russia-Trump connection, which he briefed to members of Congress without informing them of the Clinton Plan intel. Only after he had done that was there a CIA referral of the Clinton Plan intel to the FBI. The referral seems to have disappeared into the ether at the J. Edgar Hoover headquarters building.

    Hillary was not in charge of how Brennan and Comey reacted. This thing went far beyond Hillary. They knew she was being spied on, and knew she was trying to smear Trump, and their choices in that case were to use that knowledge for larger political purposes.

    Their choices had major impact on the course of events in 2016.

    I can see potential reasons why Durham didn’t elect to attempt criminal prosecutions, not the least of which is that it wouldn’t be a slam-dunk, and Merrick Garland would not have let him do it. Durham also wouldn’t have had the latitude to make that attempt and then publish a report that would frame the information in the accusing terms of a prosecutor. Such a trenchant report wouldn’t see the light of day in unredacted form.

    Eisenhower Executive Office Building. Wikipedia
    But I do think Durham issued a “talking report,” when all was said and done.

    Congress will have to ask Durham about those things. But Americans have a right to be disgusted and to demand not just answers but changes.

    Perhaps Special Counsel Durham refused to be railroaded by Brennan’s handful of dotted i’s into prosecuting Comey and not Brennan. It’s possible Durham wasn’t going to fall for being manipulated.

    But Congress has a different focus, and besides scrubbing this six ways from Sunday in every seamy detail, Congress can take on the loopholes of ambiguity to better define particulars in the oozy-edged business of counterintelligence.

    Besides the sheer sleaze of it all, there is a functional reality Congress can do something about. Brennan and Comey had the latitude to sling intelligence around for their own agendas because of those ambiguities mentioned earlier in the division of counterintelligence responsibilities. The ambiguities have been exacerbated significantly with the flowering of information technology, which renders moot much of the old distinction between foreign spying that takes place on U.S. territory, and foreign spying that takes place overseas.

    Responsibility for counterintelligence in particular used to have that reliable distinction: where the foreign targeting of Americans was taking place. At issue were things like human operatives working clandestinely in the U.S., Americans being paid to provide information from their work places in U.S.-located agencies, and wiretapping and other, more exotic forms of signal-gathering that required foreign assets to be located close to the targets in the United States, or at U.S. facilities overseas.

    In the age of the Internet, much intelligence gathering that once required physical proximity can now be undertaken from foreign agencies in their own windowless workspaces abroad. The list of “counter” activities a U.S. agency could engage in isn’t as easy to limit to the toolset and charter of the FBI.

    That shouldn’t mean, however, that any American whose online activities the Russians are targeting from a Moscow suburb must expect to find himself the subject of a CIA fusion cell.

    It’s time to update the criteria for distinguishing FBI and CIA responsibilities for counterintelligence.

    The Church Committee meets in 1975. C-SPAN via YouTube
    I’ve called at least half a dozen times for a special committee in Congress with a charter the size of the Church Committee’s, if not larger, to comprehensively update intelligence authorities in modern conditions that have decisively altered since the 1970s. It remains imperative that this be done. The extremely sorry, appalling record of what was being done with U.S. intelligence in 2016 is not aging well, and without sunlight and the most abrasive disinfectant it will only get worse.

    * As a reminder, there was alleged evidence of Russians in fact trying to subvert Hillary Clinton’s loyalties while she was serving as secretary of state for Obama. That history too should have figured into decision-making about the course of FBI investigations in 2016, in a correctly-functioning national security apparatus.

    Feature image: The brain trust, briefing Congress in 2014. Defense Intelligence Agency image.

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