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The GOP memo has been released – and it is as damning as promised

“Our findings… raise concerns with the legitimacy and legality of certain DOJ and FBI interactions with the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court…”

Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calf., answers questions during an interview with Julie Pace, AP chief of bureau in Washington, Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017, at the Associated Press bureau in Washington. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

It must be all the cannabis that they are legally allowed to smoke in Washington, D.C. There has to simply be some sort of logical explanation for how a group of people involved in illegal activity launches an investigation into an opponent, when they must surely know this is going to blow up in their own faces.

Or, do they even know this, anymore.  Has the pot afflicted their brains so badly?

Today, the long-anticipated document affectionately known as the “FISA memo” or the “Devon Nunes” memo, was ordered declassified and released by President Trump.  This document is now public domain, and you can read it for yourself, here.

To summarize the document’s findings, here is the situation.  There was request made to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (“FISC”) to investigate the actions of former Donald Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.  This request had to be approved by the Director or Deputy Director of the FBI, the Attorney General or the Deputy Attorney General, or the Senate-confirmed Assistant Attorney General for the National Security Divsion.

Carter Page, former adviser to the Trump Campaign, target of illegal FISA warrants.

Further, the FISC can only authorize surveillance warrants for 90-day periods which must then be renewed, with separate findings of probable cause, each timeThis means that whatever reason was used the first time to get a FISA warrant cannot just be recycled.  This mechanism exists to protect citizens from intrusive activities by the federal government.  In short, it a protection against snooping into one’s life with bad motives.

According to the mechanisms set in this process, the FISA warrant was obtained for further surveillance of Mr. Page at least three more times.  The authorizations were signed by then-Director James Comey three times, Andrew McCabe once, and Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates, Acting DAG Dana Boente and DAG Rod Rosenstein also each signed one or more FISA applications on behalf of the Department of Justice.

All that sounds proper enough until we look at the basis for probable cause.

That basis was a piece of “opposition research” paid for by the Hillary Clinton campaign and composed by former British MI6 agent Christopher Steele.  This “research” was rife with fabrications and / or allegations against then-candidate Donald Trump, suggesting that he was involved in very compromising actions in Moscow, such as hiring prostitutes to urinate on a hotel bed where the Obamas were known to have stayed.  This document, known popularly as the “Trump Dossier” has many allegations that have never been proved true.  All the allegations it suggests have been completely denied or laughed out of countenance by Mr. Trump.

This document, unverified as it was, served as the basis, and the primary and even SOLE basis of launching surveillance on a private citizen of the United States.

The purpose? Simple:

  • Prevent, by any means necessary, the election of one Donald J. Trump to the office of President of the United States of America. 
  • Further, after he DID get elected, use this to find a way to destroy his career and remove him from office.

The dossier was opposition research, intended to come up with information that could be used as slander or accusations to damage Mr. Trump’s campaign for President.  This is dirty politics, of course, but it is not illegal in the strictest sense to lie about your opponent.  However, this document was utterly unverified and used as the fundamental reason for securing a Surveillance warrant.  Further, Christopher Steele was known to have had very strong, passionate feelings about not wanting Trump to win election to the Presidency, and this was stated and recorded by Deputy Attorney General Bruce Ohr, and so Mr. Steele’s bias was known.

None of these facts – the uncertifiability of the dossier, Mr. Steele’s personal bias against Trump, the nature of the dossier itself as a piece of “opposition research”, dressed up to look like an intelligence document – and, most damning of all, the fact that without the dossier, there would have never been a surveillance warrant sought from FISC – none of these were discussed in the process of applying for the FISA warrants. The dossier was treated as a legitimate document, apparently either without proper vetting as an accident, but given the biases alive, and the consistency of repetition, this was done purposely, most likely with some “magical ignorance” to make it look legitimate.

This is a profoundly unbelievable situation.  It reveals the lack of integrity in both the FBI and the Department of Justice, that personal bias employed such intrusive and illegal actions to be carried out – firstly on ANY private citizen, but even more, for the purpose of destroying a presidential campaign.  This is dirty politics, Clinton style at its maximum, perhaps, but it is also amazing that a full investigation into Donald Trump and suspected collusion with Russian agents or agencies was also predicated after Hillary Clinton’s loss in the 2016 presidential campaign, because the goal remained the same – get rid of Donald Trump.

The Duran has questions to pose, starting with these:

  • What is it about Donald Trump that makes him such a danger to the DC apparatchik?
  • What is it about Mr. Trump that takes him “beyond the pale” – GOP candidates have been elected President before and the Dems didn’t like them, but the fury against Mr. Trump is much greater than anything we’ve seen in modern times.  Why?
  • Immediately prior to the release of this memo, Democrat Representative Adam Schiff was trying to create further “last ditch” attempts to prevent release of this document.  Why?

These are just three questions, and one wonders just how big the answers really are.  President Trump is a very successful businessman.  He has long been admired – even by Democrats – and has kept good relations with people on both parties, pursuant to his ability to continue to do business in his field and prosper.  Prior to the Presidential campaign, the man was even a Democrat at one point.

He did not run afoul of the political establishment until two things happened – one was that he registered as a Republican, and the other was that he decided after years of urging by many people, to make a run in a bid to make America what it once was. “Make America Great Again” has been a rallying cry for many people here.  Most of them are not elitists.  They are regular people that work for a living, and want to get by in life decently well.

They believe in the potential of America as the “Land of Opportunity” as we were taught back in the ’70’s and before, and they hearken back to this.  They believe in God, and not only that, they believe that God is the ultimate Ruler of the world and certainly of our nation.

And somehow, this is all a huge threat – a threat to the political establishment in Washington, a threat to the cultural and intellectual elite, who constantly speak and act as if such attitudes are out of date and no longer functional.

For years American political pundits on the right have told us that the Republic hangs on the knife-edge of its own destruction.  This situation unfolding now shows how true this is.  The American legal system, its National Security services and its legislative branch are all implicated in the actions of some people who tried to game the system for the sole purpose of gaining or securing political power.

And, this is the case that we now know about. Edward Snowden blew the whistle on the NSA’s activity of spying on American citizens at will for whatever purpose pleased them.  How far does this go?  And what are we willing to do to stop it?

This news article only covers part of it.  Unlike most Washington, DC scandals, this one is not something small to be blown up and hyped.  Indeed, this is the opposite.  This makes Watergate look small, and that is not an exaggeration.

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