This week, the most popular cable news host in the Country and perhaps the most prominent contemporary ally to free speech, Tucker Carlson, was vindicated when the NSA was all-but-proven to have been spying on Carlson, an American journalist, and his American production team. More on this and the leaks from the intelligence community to leftist news agencies on Carlson’s plans to interview Vladimir Putin here.
In a statement not really denying these claims so much as defending their actions, the NSA said:
“Tucker Carlson has never been an intelligence target of the Agency and the NSA has never had any plans to try to take his program off the air…”
“NSA has a foreign intelligence mission. We target foreign powers to generate insights on foreign activities that could harm the United States…”
“With limited exceptions (e.g. an emergency), NSA may not target a US citizen WITHOUT A COURT ORDER THAT EXPLICITLY AUTHORIZES THE TARGETING…”
So basically what they are probably saying is that they were spying on him but they had a warrant. Further, they were quite careful with their words to say that Carlson was not a “target” which does not mean his communications were not under surveillance. It just means that whoever was the target (we now know Putin) was part of the Carlson communications they were surveilling.
So now the leftists and “conservative” swamp squishes are claiming somehow that the NSA has the right to spy on any of our journalists if they want so long as they say it’s okay. They say it’s legal cause there was a foreign leader involved, so I guess it must be okay! They have a warrant!
So let’s take a look at some key times in the last few years the Feds (various political spying agencies like the NSA, FBI, DEA, etc) have used a FISA (foreign intelligence service act) warrant to abuse power:
- When President Obama instructed the FISA Court to ignore a higher federal court order and Congress to stop bulk surveillance
On June 9, 2015 just hours after Congress passed the USA Freedom Act which banned the US intelligence agencies from practicing bulk surveillance, President Obama sicked his DOJ on FISA asking them to ignore a federal court order which halted the use of the Patriot Act for bulk surveillance. This was happening nearly simultaneously to Obama signing a law that banned this practice proving that the DOJ and Federal surveillance bodies and their political masters are truly above the law.
- NSA relationship with CrowdStrike
In July of 2015 just 10 days after Hillary Clinton’s emails became subject to investigation by the FBI, Obama’s DOJ issued a 58 page legal opinion barring the objective third party Inspector General from overseeing the investigation of NSA (implicated in the Clinton emails).
Immediately following this move, the DOJ hired CrowdStrike for $150 million dollars. CrowdStrike was founded by a Russian-born former senior FBI official and was funded by Google, NATO, Saudi Arabia, and the US Military. Following this hiring, CrowdStrike would go on to release the report – the only report in the world – claiming the DNC servers were hacked in 2016 by Russia. The NSA and CrowdStrike refused to turn over their alleged evidence of the hack to the FBI and the Obama Administration never confirmed the claims or even reviewed the evidence.
It was this action by the NSA and CrowdStrike that led to WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange conducting his own investigation and ultimately being arrested for espionage despite all-but-proving that the DNC never had a hack but instead had an internal leak.
Russian hack or no Russian hack – why would the NSA choose an outside for-profit company funded by foreign nations to oversee the propriety of an investigation instead of the long-standing credibility of the Office of the Inspector General?
- The NSA spied on Members of Congress
In December 2015, while pursuing a nuclear deal with Iran, the NSA took to spying on one of America’s closest allies, Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu. In this effort – where Netanyahu was the official target (sound familiar) – the NSA surveilled the emails of United States Members of Congress and U.S. pro-Israel and Jewish relations groups.
The executive branch spying on the legislative branch and American political groups opposing their current agenda? It can’t be nefarious because technically they “weren’t the target” right?
- The Intelligence community’s orchestrated take down of Michael Flynn
In the fall of 2016 prior to the inauguration of President Trump but after the election, Flynn wrote an op-ed in a popular Capitol Hill news publication, The Hill, detailing allegations against the Obama Administration and the Clinton Foundation in relation to the political situation in Turkey and their backing of a Turkish coup (essentially).
The DOJ and FBI decided this op-ed was “unregistered lobbying” and began investigating Flynn. Flynn cooperated and in his initial interview claimed he had written the op-ed but later admitted that the Turkish government had penned a lot of the op-ed and he had been paid to sign his name. Because of this initial characterization that he had fully written the op-ed, Flynn was charged by the DOJ with both unregistered lobbying and lying to the FBI.
Following this investigation, the media somehow had all the details except who Flynn had been lobbying for. The Media inserted “Russia” where “Turkey” should have gone.
Immediately following this action and after being appointed National Security Advisor by President Trump but just prior to President Trump’s official inauguration, Flynn made a fateful call to the Russian Ambassador, Kislyak for logistical purposes to set up meetings for when he took over with President Trump. The FBI interviewed Flynn to determine the nature of the call.
Despite the fact that released communications now prove that the FBI including James Comey himself believed the call to be “legit” and not in violation of the Logan Act (which prohibits private citizens from speaking with foreign heads of state about very specific issues such as the specifics of sanctions. Essentially a private citizen can’t represent themselves as negotiating on behalf of the US government), the FBI continued to surveil Flynn’s communications under the auspices of the Logan Act after briefing President Obama.
In fact, in December of 2016, the case against Flynn was considered closed and ordered to be closed by FBI chief officials. But in January of 2017, FBI Deputy Assistant, Peter Strozk became aware that the case wasn’t closed yet for logistical delay reasons. He immediately seized the opportunity telling his “incompetent” lower-level agents to keep the case open until he “Decides what to do with him [Flynn]”. For the full Strozk/Page texts view here.
Enter the Mueller investigation which was tasked with proving that President Trump had nefarious ties to Russia. In public documents, it is proven that the Mueller team threatened and coerced Flynn (including threatening his family) into pleading guilty of lying to the FBI about his call to the Russian Ambassador in 2016, therefore, proving (falsely) the liberal narrative that Donald Trump only won his election because of “Russian ties.”
Documents publicly available show that the FBI hand wrote notes to avoid detection including this one which all but admits to entrapment:
“What’s our goal? Truth/Admission or to get him to lie, so we can prosecute him or get him fired?” reads a handwritten note included among the documents. “If we get him to admit to breaking the Logan Act, give facts to DOJ & have them decide. Or, if he initially lies, then we present him [redacted] & he admits it, document for DOJ, & let them decide how to address it.”
All of this pressure from the DOJ and the systematic destruction of a man’s life and career made possible by a warrant to surveil Michael Flynn in connection with a single phone call all based on expanded NSA powers granted by Obama behind closed doors as he signed the USA Freedom Act
- The illegal surveillance of President Donald Trump’s campaign
In an extremely convoluted effort, even more so than the Flynn effort, the FBI obtained a warrant to spy on four senior officials of the Trump campaign using the debunked Steele dossier as their evidence to the FISA Court. This came after the FISA court denied their initial request to spy on the Trump campaign. The court initially decided the FBI lacked credible evidence to monitor American officials. So when “out of the blue” came the Steele dossier, the FBI was happy to vouch repeatedly to its credibility lying to the FISA court about the fact that the dossier had been widely distributed to the media as a clear campaign tactic to discredit President Trump. They doubled down on this lie when they vouched again to renew the warrant long after it was debunked.
Do you know who now is a primary advisor for the FISA court? Unbelievably, Mary McCord who is named as one of the FBI officials who erroneously vouched for the credibility of the Steele Dossier to illegally obtain a warrant to spy on Trump campaign officials. McCord was the supervisor of the spying activity and is named 25 times in the investigative report as a co-actor in this scheme.
Writing all this out for you all makes me feel like a lunatic but all of this information is available publicly and was actually reported in bites by most major news outlets who were caught in the crossfire of reporting on faulty intelligence leaks. As unbelievable as it all is, the intelligence community has abused warrants in an increasingly convoluted and disturbing way for political gain over the past few years and their use of one on an American journalist is just the next step.