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Paul Schmehl @PaulSchmehl
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The HPSCI has published its summary of findings.…
There are a number of interesting findings that apply directly to what we now know to be true about the collusion investigation.
Finding #25: When asked directly, none of the interviewed witnesses provided evidence
of collusion, coordination, or conspiracy between the Trump campaign and the Russian
Finding #26: The Committee found no evidence that President Trump's pre-campaign
business dealings formed the basis for collusion during the campaign.
So no evidence of collusion or blackmail possibilities.
Finding #27: The Republican national security establishment's opposition to candidate
Trump created opportunities for two less-experienced individuals with pro-Russia views to
serve as campaign advisors: George Papadopoulos and Carter Page.
This is an interesting observation. What they are saying is that the opposition to Trump narrowed the possibilities for advisors in such a way that he ended up with inexperienced people. And as we know, these people were taken advantage of by both the Russians and the Americans.
Finding #28: The change in the Republican Party platform regarding Ukraine resulted in
a stronger position against Russia, not a weaker one, and there is no evidence that Paul
Manafort was involved.
This is exactly the opposite of what has been claimed by the media and the Democrats. Maybe not much of a surprise, but still relevant.
Finding #29: There is no evidence that Trump associates were involved in the theft or
publication of Clinton campaign-related emails, although Trump associates had numerous
ill-advised contacts with WikiLeaks.
By now, everyone should know, even those who won’t admit it, that the DNC was not hacked. The emails were leaked by DNC insiders upset with the Clinton campaign.
Since the Clinton campaign and the DNC destroyed the evidence without ever showing it to any outside entity (Crowdstrike was bought and paid for), we will never be able to definitely prove whether or not their server was hacked. I think this is deliberate, because it was NOT.
Finding #34: The Committee found no evidence that meetings between Trump associates—
including Jeff Sessions—and official representatives of the Russian governmentincluding
Ambassador Kislyak—reflected collusion, coordination, or conspiracy with the
Russian government.
Finding #35: Possible Russian efforts to set up a "back channel" with Trump associates
after the election suggest the absence of collusion during the campaign, since the communication
associated with collusion would have rendered such a "back channel" unnecessary.
This finding is important, because some have claimed that claimed attempts to establish a back channel are proof of collusion. They are proof of the opposite, as this finding points out.
Finding #36: Prior to conducting opposition research targeting candidate Trump's business
dealings, Fusion GPS conducted research benefitting Russian interests.
So Fusion GPS did not have clean hands from the beginning. Coupled with the fact that they worked for the Obama campaign in 2012, their claim of neutrality is laughable.
The following findings are proof of felony actions and should lead to convictions.
Finding #40: Leaks of classified information regarding Russian intentions to sow discord
in the U.S. presidential election began prior to the election day—November 8, 2016.
Finding #41: Leaks of classified information alleging Russian intentions to help elect
candidate Trump increased dramatically after the election day—November 8, 2016.
Finding #42: The leaks prior to the classified Intelligence Community Assessment's publication,
particularly leaks occurring after the U.S. presidential election, correlate to specific
language found in the Intelligence Community Assessment.
Finding #43: Continued leaks of classified information have damaged national security
and potentially endangered lives.
Finding #44: Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, now a CNN national
security analyst, provided inconsistent testimony to the Committee about his contacts
with the media, including CNN.
Clapper is in big trouble.
This is a very interesting recommendation. “ Recommendation #18: Congress should consider repealing the Logan Act.” I agree. It’s never been used for anything but a political cudgel.
Recommendation #19: All U.S. presidential campaigns should receive unclassified counterintelligence
briefings at an appropriate time prior to a nomination convention.
Recommendation #20: When consistent with national security, the Intelligence Community
should immediately inform U.S. presidential candidates when it discovers a legitimate
counterintelligence threat to the campaign, and promptly notify Congress.
“Recommendation #21: Both houses of Congress should consider requiring all staff to
receive an annual counterintelligence awareness briefing.” God knows they need it. Especially after the Awan brothers fiasco. (Or was that deliberate?)
“Recommendation #24: Each component of the intelligence Community should update
its guidance regarding media contacts to ensure the guidance applies to every employee,
including senior officials.” Andy McCabe, John Brennan, Sally Yates, prepare for prison.
“Recommendation #25: Congress should consider legislation to increase the penalties
for unauthorized disclosures of classified information.” This is very important. Leaking MUST result in punitive action that deters the activity. Leakers have hurt this country far too much.
“Recommendation #26: The Executive Branch should consider instituting mandatory polygraphs
for all non-confirmed political appointees that have top secret clearances.” Yes. It’s past time we get serious about government employees’ oaths.
All in all, there are no yuge surprises, but the findings certainly confirm the work of twitter reporters like @ThomasWictor @drawandstrike @LarrySchweikart @NameRedacted7 @Debradelai @unseen1_unseen @_VachelLindsay_ and @rising_serpent
Addendum. Some people have questioned why there was nothing in my thread before finding #25. That’s because I didn’t find anything remarkable or worthy of comment before that finding. However, in the interest of completeness, I’ve decided to add those in for interested readers.
This section addresses Russian actions against European countries. There is nothing remarkable or unknown about any of this, although perhaps it should serve as a reminder that Russia is an aggressor nation. (Did anyone not realize that?)
Perhaps the most remarkable item is this one. “Finding #4: Russia targets disaffected European populations and exploits social, political, and racial divisions in an effort to sow discord, encourage unrest, and incite protests.”
It might be useful to ask yourself why discord in other countries would benefit Russia.
The second section addresses Russia’s activities within the US. They don’t vary greatly from their European activities either in scope or purpose.
The third section discusses America’s flaccid reaction to Russian interference. Perhaps the most notable finding is #16. “ Finding #16: The Intelligence Community Assessment judgments on Putin's strategic
intentions did not employ proper analytic tradecraft.”
This refers to the American intelligence communitiy’s assessment of the purpose of the Russian attacks and implicates the claim that their purpose was to benefit Trump. The evidence shows it was to sow discord not to benefit any individual candidate.
It obviously worked quite well, since we are still dealing with this issue 14 months after Trump took office and will for many months to come. From that POV, the Russian operation was fabulously successful.
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