“This site is dedicated to preying on peoples vanity, ignorance, or loneliness, gaining their trust and betraying them without remorse.”

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

The Colluder in Chief - Barack Hussein Obama



THE OBAMA  ENABLERS
American Pravda: CNN Producer Says Russia Narrative “bullsh*t"




THE MOST SHALLOW ROOTED AMERICAN PRESIDENT:


Obama: Back Home Again In Indonesia




Barack Obama is off on another extended vacation abroad this week, this time in Indonesia where he spent much of his formative childhood years.



Since his White House lease expired in January, the ex-president has vacationed at a friend’s house in Palm Springs, on Richard Branson’s private Caribbean island, on David Geffen’s private yacht in French Polynesia and in a Tuscan hamlet purchased in its entirety by John Phillips. Obama appointed Phillips ambassador to Italy. He turned the old town into a private luxury estate.

Now, after a lengthy private jet flight from Hawaii, Obama’s back home again in Indonesia for nine days with a large family entourage, including wife Michelle and half-sister, Maya Soetero-Ng, her family and, of course, Secret Service agents. If you’re walking through Times Square later this week, watch the moving billboards as Indonesia’s Tourism Ministry plays off the Democrat’s trip seeking to attract other foreign visitors.

The Obamas are reportedly staying in a $2,500-a-night set of suites in the Four Seasons Resort on Bali and making several excursions to cultural and heritage sites. Last weekend the Chicagoan was photographed walking among rice paddies. Obama is also scheduled to give a speech next weekend in Jakarta, capital of the world’s most populous Muslim nation.

After his birth in Hawaii, Obama’s mother, Ann Dunham, divorced his biological namesake father, who returned to Kenya and where he died in an automobile accident.

Dunham then married another foreign student, Lolo Soetoro from Indonesia. They moved to Jakarta in the mid-sixties. “I was raised as an Indonesian child,” Obama once said, “and a Hawaiian child and as a black child and as a white child.”
He obviously recalls fondly his childhood years in the Muslim Soetoro household. During presidential visits Obama reminisced with Indonesian crowds about his happy years  in Jakarta, recalling the regular sounds of Muslim calls to prayer echoing through his neighborhood and eating local fare, including dog.

Following her divorce from Soetoro, who died later of liver failure, Dunham shipped her son back to Honolulu to be raised by her parents in Honolulu, where he attended junior high and high school.

Dunham stayed in Indonesia to continue anthropological research. This week Obama and his half-sister intend to visit the ancient city of Yogyakarta, one of Dunham’s research sites.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Thomas Jefferson never held any Iftar dinner and only three out of 45 presidents ever hosted one, so there is no such “tradition” to cancel

Trump breaks White House Eid dinner tradition

US President Donald Trump talks with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson at the White House on 12 June, 2017.Reuters
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson (L) reportedly rejected a request to hold the annual dinner
US President Donald Trump has broken a nearly 20-year-old tradition by failing to host a dinner marking the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.

The White House event had been held every year since President Clinton's tenure.
The Eid al-Fitr feast ends Ramadan, a period when Muslims fast and focus on charitable giving. 

But US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson reportedly rejected a request to hold a reception.

In May, Reuters said Mr Tillerson had refused a recommendation from the State Department's office of religion and global affairs to organise a celebration.
Mr Trump has previously been criticised for his use of anti-Muslim rhetoric, including on the campaign trail when he called for surveillance of US mosques.
He said in a statement: "On behalf of the American people, Melania and I send our warm greetings to Muslims as they celebrate Eid al-Fitr. 

"Muslims in the United States joined those around the world during the holy month of Ramadan to focus on acts of faith and charity. Now, as they commemorate Eid with family and friends, they carry on the tradition of helping neighbours and breaking bread with people from all walks of life.

"During this holiday, we are reminded of the importance of mercy, compassion, and goodwill. With Muslims around the world, the United States renews our commitment to honour these values. Eid Mubarak."

Mr Tillerson also released a brief statement, sending "best wishes to all Muslims celebrating Eid al-Fitr".
Former US President Barack Obama hosts the annual Iftar dinner celebrating the Muslim holy month of Ramadan in the East Room of the White House July 22, 2015Getty Images
The dinner has been hosted by three successive presidents, including Barack Obama here in 2015
The first presidential Iftar dinner (the name for a meal held after sunset, when Muslims break their fast), is said to have been hosted by Thomas Jefferson in 1805 for a Tunisian envoy.

The subject was covered in a blog post on a US Department of State website, IIP Digital

The post, titled "Thomas Jefferson's Iftar", appears to have been removed, but is available in archived form here.

The idea of hosting a dinner was revived by Hillary Clinton in 1996, when she was First Lady. 

It became an annual tradition from 1999 and was attended by prominent US Muslim leaders, diplomats and legislators.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Oh Canada, the road to hell is paved with good intentions!



Fleeing Tyranny or Bringing it with Them?

Terror attacks and other offshoots of Islamic extremism have created an atmosphere of mistrust between Europe's natives and thousands of those who entered European countries to seek shelter.

The situation is turning the Europeans against their own governments and against those advocating help for the war-torn migrants who have been arriving.
Europeans are turning hostile towards the idea of freedom and peaceful coexistence; they have apparently been seeing newcomers as seeking exceptions to the rules and culture of West.

In an unprecedented shift in policy after public fury about security, the German government decided to shut down the mosque where the terrorist who rammed a truck into a shopping market in Berlin, Anis Amri, was radicalized before hecommitted the crime.

The mosque and Islamic center at Fussilet 33 in Berlin had apparently also been radicalizing a number of other youths by convincing them to commit terror attacks in Europe and to join the terror group Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

The authorities had the mosque under surveillance for a time but did not make a move before 12 innocent civilians were butchered by Amri on December 19, 2016, while leaving around 50 others injured.

The police and counter terror authorities also conducted raids in 60 different German cities and searched around 190 mosques to target kingpins of another group called "The True Religion".

Europeans appear to be seeking an alternative way to control this social disruption.

Many Muslims want to live in segregated areas where they strive to create the kind of culture they left behind before settling in the West. This preference, however, seems to lead to a rise in extremism and is proving counterproductive for the society as a whole.

The newcomers soon start demanding privileges. They ask for gender segregation at work and in educational institutions; they ask for faith schools (madrasas), and demand an end to any criticism of their extremist practices such as female genital mutilation (FGM), forced marriages, child marriages and inciting hatred for other religions. They call any criticism "Islamophobia". They additionally seek to establish a parallel system of justice such as sharia courts.

Hardliners have been delivering sermons across the Europe preaching hatred and intolerance of other religious groups.

Most newcomers also seem reluctant to condemn the terror attacks committed by jihadis or the inhumane activities of totalitarian regimes such as Saudi Arabia or Iran. Most newcomers are also unlikely, on different pretexts, to support any anti-terror or anti-extremism program.

These groups seem only to focus on criticizing the policies of West towards the Middle East and Muslim countries and blame the West for everything wrong with the Muslim world.

The Muslim Council of Britain -- a non-government organization claiming to represent British Muslims, and affiliated with over 500 mosques, charities and schools -- introduced its own so-called counter-terrorism campaign, instead of following the one launched by the government.

In the U.S., the Council of American Islamic Relations (CAIR) also shocked many when its leaders demanded the district attorney of Louisiana cancel an ongoing anti-terrorism training program and accused the organizer of being a "notorious Islamophobe".

"We are not a pro-abortion march, we are a pro-women march," one of the advocates for sharia in the West, Linda Sarsour, stated while addressing a feminist event in Washington D.C.

The event was organized right after President Donald Trump's inauguration and was supposed to criticize his anti-abortion stance and seek equal rights for women.

Sarsour, however, seemed less interested in the cause of these women and sounded hungrier for attention and publicity to market her brand of sharia.
Sarsour , who appears to have been seeking imposing sharia on West – in a plan that would entail taking away most of the rights from these liberal women -- was instead standing next to them as if she were the champion of their rights.
Sarsour,known for desiring to slice off the genitals of girls, merely tweets for general Muslim across the globe.

Linda Sarsour speaks onstage during the Women's March on Washington on January 21, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images)

Sadly, we now have in the West extremists who seem hell-bent on dragging civilization back to repression and violence in the name of sharia.

These hardliners are projecting a dogma that implies the advantages of killing and persecuting apostates, non-Muslim minorities, homosexuals, and inflicting the same brutalities on women and minors as we have been seeing in many Muslim majority countries in Middle East, Asia and Africa – as well as, unofficially but increasingly, in Europe and the West.

The British government recently announced a posthumous pardon for thousands of people who were penalized by the state for homosexual activities decades ago.
In the same Britain, however, more than half the Muslim population still believesthat in the U.K., homosexuality should be completely illegal.

The cracks between the Muslim and European cultures seem to be widening even in the most harmonious places.

In Canada, a resolution by a Muslim MP seeking special laws to condemn freedom of speech about Islam, has led to scores of Canadians taking to the streets calling on the government to avoid bending rules in favor of a specific religious group in the country.

Many newcomers to Canada and Europe are demanding similar laws to those from which they claim to be seeking refuge.
Khadija Khan is a Pakistani journalist and commentator currently based in Frankfurt, Germany.

Obama Sorta Choked

THE DEMOCRATS LOVE THE FIFTH AMENDMENT

Frustrated Dems say Obama botched Russia response


The Obama administration is under fresh scrutiny for its response to Russian meddling in the election after new details emerged this week about how the White House weighed its actions against the 2016 political environment.

Then-President Obama was too cautious in the months leading up to the election, frustrated Democratic lawmakers and strategists say. 

“It was inadequate. I think they could have done a better job informing the American people of the extent of the attack,” said Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.), a member of the House Intelligence Committee who co-chairs the Democratic Steering and Policy Committee.

And even after the election was over, they say, the penalties Obama levied were too mild to appropriately punish what by all accounts was an unprecedented attack on a U.S. election.

Rep. Jim Himes (D-Conn.), another House Intelligence member, called the penalties “barely a slap on the wrist.” Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), who supports tougher sanctions Russia, said in a statement Friday that the administration “abjectly failed to deter Russian aggression” and “failed to impose any meaningful costs on Russia.”

Some Republicans argue the Obama administration only started to take the Russia threat seriously after President Trump had won the election.
Trump has called the influence operation a “hoax” and dismissed the various inquiries into Russian interference in the election — which include looking for possible collusion between his campaign and Moscow — as a “witch hunt.”
“By the way, if Russia was working so hard on the 2016 Election, it all took place during the Obama Admin. Why didn't they stop them?” Trump tweeted Thursday.
The Obama administration announced on Oct. 7 that the theft and release of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) emails was part of a widespread campaign “intended to interfere with the U.S. election process.”

But it was not until January that it issued a separate declassified intelligence report that assessed Moscow was attempting to tip the election in t Trump’s favor — and only in December did Obama approve a modest package of retaliatory sanctions and expel a compound of Russian diplomats.

Former Homeland Security secretary Jeh Johnson on Wednesday told lawmakers that the White House held back on responding to Russia because it didn’t want to play into fears, propagated by then-candidate Trump, that the election would be “rigged.”

“One of the candidates, as you'll recall, was predicting that the election was going to be rigged in some way,” Johnson said. “And so we were concerned that, by making the statement, we might in and of itself be challenging the integrity of the election process itself.”

Trump had repeatedly claimed that the outcome of the election would be “rigged” against him, alleging widespread voter fraud and inaccurate polling. He provided no evidence to back up his claims, but critics feared that his rhetoric could undermine public trust in the outcome of the election. 

On Friday, The Washington Post published a detailed post-mortem of the administration’s decision-making process that showed the former president agonizing over how to prevent politicization of the threat — and arguably failing, critics say.

While Democrats appreciated Obama’s sensitivity to the potential appearance of partisanship, they say the Russian influence campaign should have been treated like any other national security threat, without respect to politics. 

“I understand the analysis, but look where we are right now. This was the worst mess our democracy has been in since the Civil War,” Swalwell said.

Other onlookers point to then-ongoing and extremely delicate negotiations with Russia over a ceasefire in Syria. The Obama administration publicly levied blame on Russia for the DNC hack and the wider interference campaign just a few days after former Secretary of State John Kerry officially suspended those talks.

“I think the Obama administration figured, we have to deal with the Russians in the Middle East and they didn’t want the stuff with the hacking to interfere with that,” said Democratic strategist Brad Bannon. “But I think that was a mistake because if voters don’t trust the integrity of the electoral system, we’ve got nothing left.”

Johnson defended the White House’s response, arguing the administration repeatedly banged the drum on election cybersecurity throughout the summer and fall but was appropriately leery of undermining trust in the integrity of the election.

The Oct. 7 statement, Johnson said, was one in a series of public statements — but it was overshadowed in the media by the leak of the “Access Hollywood” tape in which Trump spoke of grabbing women by the genitals.

Other former officials are less confident that Obama went far enough in his response. 

“It is the hardest thing about my entire time in government to defend,” a former senior official involved in the deliberations on Russia told The Post. “I feel like we sort of choked.”

NOW REVENGE:

Friday, June 23, 2017

If Islam Can't Control Islam, Why Does The West Believe It Can?

Isis may be leaderless and facing defeat in Mosul, but the jihadis will fight on


Terror group has always been able to take root and grow out of chaos and war – and will continue to wreak havoc around the world

The Independent Online
mosul-old-city.jpg
Iraqi government forces have suffered heavy casualties in the battle to retake Mosul Getty
The blowing up by Isis of the al-Nuri mosque in Mosul marks a decisive defeat for the caliphate declared by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in the same mosque three years ago. Isis will continue fighting as a guerrilla force, but it will be the end of a state once the size of Great Britain and fielding a military force more powerful than many members of the United Nations. Presumably Isis decided to destroy the ancient mosque and its famous minaret, a symbol of Mosul, to prevent the Iraqi security forces triumphantly raising the Iraqi flag over a place so closely associated with Isis.

The end of the short-lived caliphate will be underscored if the self-declared caliph is himself dead, killed by a Russian airstrike near Raqqa some three weeks ago. Oleg Syromolotov, the Russian deputy foreign minister, repeated today a claim made last week but with greater certainty, saying that fresh information showed that there was “a high degree of probability” that Baghdadi was dead, killed after a meeting he was attending was targeted by Russian aircraft.

Isis is losing its last and most important urban centres. Hundreds of its fighters still hold parts of the Old City of Mosul, where the narrow alleyways and close-packed housing are ideal terrain for its swiftly moving snipers and suicide bombers. But all the east side of Mosul, which is divided in two by the Tigris river, is now in the hands of the Iraqi government, as is most of the west side of the city apart from a small embattled enclave.

It has been an epic siege. The assault on Mosul started on 17 October last year when Iraqi ground forces, supported by the massive air power of the US-led coalition, began the operation. Iraqi and US generals expected heavy fighting on the outskirts of Mosul, but looked forward to a much quicker advance once its outer defences were breached. This had been the pattern when government forces recaptured Ramadi and Fallujah in Anbar province west of Baghdad in earlier offensives. Exactly the opposite happened: Isis adopted different and more effective tactics based on the fluid defence of built-up areas. Instead of defending fixed points to the last man, its snipers, mortar teams and suicide bombers driving vehicles packed with explosives kept moving their positions so they could not easily be located and destroyed by aircraft and artillery.

It took three months for Iraqi forces to capture the eastern part of the city and they were to find the battle even tougher in the west. By 29 March, they had lost 774 dead and 4,600 wounded since October according to a senior US officer. Some 3,500 Isis fighters are reported to have been killed in and around the city between October and May. The government casualties are even more serious than they appear because Iraqi battle-worthy combat troops are limited in number, being mainly concentrated in the counter-terrorism services (Golden Division), federal police and the emergency response division. The soldiers used to occupy captured territory are of far more dubious quality, often belonging to Shia militias or Hashd al-Shaabi.

At the start of the siege the UN reckoned that there were about 1.5 million civilians in Mosul and there are reported to be 100,000 still trapped in the Isis-held Old City. They are forbidden to leave by Isis whose gunmen shoot anybody trying to escape. Some 231 civilians were executed by Isis in recent weeks as they tried to go, according to the UN. The UN High Commissioner for Refugees said separately that since the offensive started in October some 606,000 people have been displaced from Mosul, of whom 190,000 have returned. The level of destruction in west Mosul, going by aerial photographs, looks very high – as do civilian casualties because there is no way of separating Isis fighters from civilians who are living in the same houses.

In pictures: Mosul offensive

Isis will have suffered a serious political and military defeat in Mosul, though fierce street fighting in the Old City could go on for months. But Isis will have held out against superior forces backed by the devastating firepower of planes overhead for over seven months, far longer than anybody expected. Furthermore, the group has withdrawn many of its veteran fighters and administrative personnel who can seek sanctuary in rural areas in Iraq and Syria which Isis still holds. The movement is famous for its cruelty and fanaticism, but it also has a high level of military experience and expertise. It will have foreseen inevitable defeat in Mosul and also in Raqqa, its de facto Syrian capital, and withdrawn forces to long-held strongholds in places like Hawaija, west of Kirkuk and in territory in Syria east of Deir Ezzor on the Euphrates and around Mayadeen.
Isis began to lose the war when, confident that its great victories in Iraq and Syria in 2014 had been divinely inspired, it declared war on the world. As a result it has a long list of enemies who are now closing in on it. In the second half of 2014, it turned on the Kurds in Iraq and Syria, thereby provoking US military intervention against Isis in both countries. Sunni states like Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar, which once tolerated or covertly aided Salafi-jihadis, became more cautious.

Though Baghdadi may be dead and surviving Isis forces are being driven into smaller and smaller enclaves in Iraq and Syria, the group will fight on. It can activate cells and sympathisers all over the world to commit high-profile atrocities guaranteed to dominate news agendas. Celebrations over Isis’s defeat may be interrupted and apparently contradicted by its continuing ability to wreak havoc.
Isis may also draw solace from the growing divisions among its enemies, whose loose collaboration was previously underpinned by fear of the jihadis. As that fear diminishes, there is growing friction between the US and Russia, the US and Iran, Syrian Kurds and Turkey, and, further afield, the confrontation between Qatar, on one side, and Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, on the other. Isis has always been able to take root and grow from chaos and war. 

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Ex Homie Jeh says outright that the Russians failed to alter “ballots, ballot counts or reporting of election results.”

Good riddance to the Russia myth — and blame Team Obama for promoting it

Good riddance to the Russia myth — and blame Team Obama for promoting it
Ex-Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson’s testimony Wednesday should mark the definitive end of “Russia hacked the election” hysteria. Too bad it took so long to get to this point.

Johnson told the House Intelligence Committee outright that the Russians failed to alter “ballots, ballot counts or reporting of election results.”

Yes, it’s clear Russia (with Vladimir Putin’s full approval) orchestrated cyberattacks designed to influence the 2016 contest, and also pushed fake news.
But the hack, and release via WikiLeaks, etc., of Democratic e-mails produced nothing game-changing. The biggest impact was to confirm the obvious: The Democratic National Committee favored Hillary Clinton from the start.
And fake news mainly feeds people’s existing prejudices — which serves Putin’s goal of undermining our democracy, but fails to flip votes from one party to the other.

Johnson also made it plain that Democrats didn’t take the problem too seriously: “The FBI and the DNC had been in contact with each other months before about the intrusion, and the DNC did not feel it needed DHS’s assistance at that time.”
Johnson also explained why the Obama administration kept quiet on the threat. The White House, he recalled, argued that a public admission of possible Russian interference might be seen as an effort to influence the election — particularly since Donald Trump was warning “the election was going to be rigged.”
That is: Because Obama was fervently campaigning for Clinton, the White House figured that raising alarms about Russian interference would seem mere electioneering.

Was it more worried that this would undermine faith in the election, or just that it would help Trump? Note that Team Obama vetoed then-FBI Director James Comey’s plan to publish a late-summer op-ed warning of Russia’s efforts to interfere — which would’ve been the least political-seeming way to get the message out.

Also that when Team Obama finally did go public on the threat, it was after that “Access Hollywood” tape seemed to spell disaster for Trump.
And that the administration didn’t take action until after Election Day, when it slapped Moscow with new sanctions — putting the question of Russian interference on Page One only after Trump had won.

It’s good that the hysteria has finally died down, but too bad Team Obama’s handling of it all helped produce so much misdirected hysteria in the first place.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Syria is None of Our Business

‘US should mind its own business; it shouldn’t be in Syria’ – Ron Paul

‘US should mind its own business; it shouldn’t be in Syria’ – Ron Paul
The US has no right to fly into Syrian airspace where it shouldn’t be and set boundaries but should mind its own business. Otherwise, it is an act of aggression, says former US Congressman Ron Paul.

The US fighter jet downed an armed drone belonging to pro-Syrian government forces in southern Syria, near a base in the al-Tanf region, on June, 20 as the drone was advancing on US-backed forces, according to a coalition statement.
This is happening at a time of escalating tension between Moscow and Washington. Also on Tuesday, Australia said it is temporarily suspending air operations in Syria.

RT discussed the latest developments in Syria with former US Congressman Ron Paul.

RT: Australia halted its cooperation. How significant is this development? Why did they do it?

Ron Paul: I think that is good. Maybe wise enough, I wish we could do the same thing – just come home. It just makes no sense; there’s a mess over there. So many people are involved, the neighborhood ought to take care of it, and we have gone too far away from our home. It has been going on for too long, and it all started when Obama in 2011 said: “Assad has to go.” And now as the conditions deteriorate …it looks like Assad and his allies are winning, and the US don’t want them to take Raqqa. This just goes on and on. I think it is really still the same thing that Obama set up – “Get rid of Assad” and there is a lot of frustration because Assad is still around and now it is getting very dangerous, it is dangerous on both sides. One thing that I am concerned about - because I’ve seen it happen so often over the years are false flags. Some accidents happen. Even if it is an honest accident or it is deliberate by one side or the other to blame somebody. And before they stop and think about it, then there is more escalation. When our planes are flying over there and into airspace where we shouldn’t be, and we are setting up boundaries and say “don’t cross these lines or you will be crossing our territory.” We have no right to do this. We should mind our own business; we shouldn’t be over there, when we go over there and decide that we are going to take over, it is an act of aggression, and I am positively opposed to that. And I think most Americans are too if they get all the information they need.

RT: Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said earlier that he wanted to ask his American counterpart why the US-led coalition isn’t targeting Al-Nusra in Syria. What sort of answer do you think he’ll get?

RP: I think it will be wishy-washy. He’ll probably think it is in their interests not to do anything to damage the radicals, the extremists, the rebels because I think that our government thinks that they could be helpful in undermining Assad. I don’t think they are going to say “Yeah, they are our buddies now, we consult with them all the time.” It won’t be that. They’ll argue “We have to help the Kurds out” or something along those lines and make excuses. I think that there’s a net benefit to the radicals for us to get involved there and it is not helpful in the long run for our position which ought to try to bring about peace.

The propaganda the American people hear is such that they get them pretty excited about it, but I am very confident that if the American people had more information…because when I talk to them, they side with my arguments. It doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to be doing what we are doing, and that’s why I persist in trying to get to the facts but trying to eliminate the danger, try to obey international law, try to do the things that are in our best interest. And if we are talking about America’s interest – it isn’t helped by our policy in the Middle East for the last 15-20 years, I think it has all been negative.

Richard Black, Republican member of Virginia State Senate, told RT that "the US and the coalition are in Syria without any permission, without any lawful authority to be present".

"Some members of the coalition may say “We are in clear violation of international law, maybe this is not right.” Others bought into this coalition to be part of a group fighting ISIS, and now they are saying “Wait a minute. We didn’t go into Syria to fight the legitimate duly elected government of Syria; we went there to fight this terrorist organization.”…The coalition is certainly not there to help the Syrian people; it is there to help Saudi Arabia with its Wahhabi radical Islamic domination of the entire world beginning with the countries close to it".

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Where Are The Republicans?



Judicial Watch: Susan Rice ‘Unmasking’ Documents Moved from NSC to Obama Library




AP Photo/Alex Brandon

The National Security Council cannot hand over records relating to former National Security Adviser Susan Rice’s surveillance of Americans, because they have been moved to the Obama presidential library and may be sealed for as many as five years, conservative watchdog Judicial Watch announced Monday.

The NSC informed Judicial Watch in a letter dated May 23 that materials related to Rice’s requests to know the identities of Americans swept up in surveillance of foreign targets, including any Trump campaign or transition officials, have been moved to the library.

The NSC’s Director of Access Management John Powers said in the letter:
Documents from the Obama administration have been transferred to the Barack Obama Presidential Library. You may send your request to the Obama Library. However, you should be aware that under the Presidential Records Act, Presidential records remain closed to the public for five years after an administration has left office.
Judicial Watch earlier this year filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for those documents, including of communications between Rice and any intelligence community member or agency regarding any Russian involvement in the 2016 elections, the hacking of Democratic National Committee computers, or any suspected communications between Russia and Trump officials.
Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said the group will seek to find out when the records were moved, and warned of legal actions. He said:
Prosecutors, Congress, and the public will want to know when the National Security Council shipped off the records about potential intelligence abuses by the Susan Rice and others in the Obama White House to the memory hole of the Obama Presidential Library. We are considering our legal options but we hope that the Special Counsel and Congress also consider their options and get these records.
In April, blogger Mike Cernovich, Bloomberg, and Fox News revealed that Rice had requested to “unmask” — or unveil the hidden names of — Trump transition officialswho were caught up in surveillance of foreign targets.

Typically, in surveillance of foreign targets’ communications, U.S. citizens mentioned or participating in them would have their names “masked,” or hidden, due to ethical, legal, and privacy concerns. However, government consumers of the intelligence can request to have their names unmasked if it is important to understanding the communications.

According to Cernovich, The White House Counsel’s office identified Rice as the person who had requested the unmasking, after examining her log requests, Cernovich reported on April 2. Bloomberg and Fox News would later corroborate the report. The revelation lent credence to Trump’s assertion that the Obama administration had been surveilling his transition team.

The Wall Street Journal editorial board has argued Rice had no reason to request the unmaskings. Since then, the House intelligence committee has also subpoenaed the intelligence community for information on unmasking requests by Rice, former CIA Director John Brennan, and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power.

The misuse of unmasking came under media scrutiny after U.S. officials illegally leaked to the Washington Post a private conversation between former Trump National Security Adviser Michael Flynn and Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak on December 24. Flynn resigned after those communications, not because anything inappropriate was found, but because he had misrepresented those communications to Vice President Mike Pence.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Criminalizing Politics

DERSHOWITZ: This is becoming very political, when you have the Justice Department itself being on both sides, prosecuting the president - possibly - and also serving as defense witnesses for the president. This is just becoming too political on both sides.

We have to stop criminalizing political differences. The criminal law should be reserved for obvious violations of the criminal law that exists, not for making political points against your political enemies on both sides.




Sunday, June 18, 2017

Jeff Sessions Has To Go

When it comes to canning Mueller, Trump should hold his fire

When it comes to canning Mueller, Trump should hold his fire
An Oscar Wilde line comes to mind: “I can resist everything except temptation,” said the famed playwright and novelist. Let’s hope President Trump is made of sturdier stuff and can resist the temptation to tell special counsel Robert Mueller, “You’re fired!”

Understandably, Trump is considering doing just that. With leaks about the expanding investigation being spoon-fed to anti-Trump media and with Mueller’s hiring spree including Democratic donors, the president has reason to suspect he’s being set up for a fall.

Yet, in the short term at least, there is a better option. Instead of firing the special counsel, which would serve as a rallying cry to the left and alienate some Republicans, Trump should wage a smart campaign to fight Mueller.

He can begin by firing two other people — Attorney General Jeff Sessions and his deputy, Rod Rosenstein.

Trump is not being served well by either man, and with his presidency possibly hanging in the balance of Mueller’s probe, he must regain control of the Justice Department. Replacing the top two officials is the first step.

As I wrote last week, Trump made a mistake in hiring Sessions. While the former Alabama senator is more than qualified for the post, the fact that he felt compelled by Justice rules to recuse himself from any investigation related to the 2016 campaign because he was a key Trump supporter set in motion a series of disastrous events.

Sessions’ decision to step aside, which Trump opposed, made Rosenstein acting attorney general for purposes of the probe into whether the campaign colluded with Russia. The result was that Rosenstein, a career prosecutor with no affiliation to Trump, unilaterally decided to appoint a special counsel and hired Mueller.

That he did so after the firing of FBI Director James Comey is especially odd. Rosenstein authored a compelling memo recommending Comey’s dismissal, but seemed to lose his nerve after Trump offered conflicting reasons and said he was going to fire Comey no matter what Rosenstein said.

If all that weren’t reason enough to replace the AG and his deputy, now comes word that Rosenstein discussed recusing himself if he becomes a witness in Mueller’s probe.

That seems a near certainty because the probe is said to be looking at the Comey firing as part of its examination of whether Trump obstructed justice. If so, Rosenstein’s memo and discussions with Sessions and Trump would be front and center.

Thus, both Sessions and Rosenstein would be sidelined for the most important issue facing the White House. That wouldn’t be acceptable to any president, and Trump should thank them for their service and show them the door.

Because Trump is being battered each and every day, it’s essential for him to install respected leaders at Justice who agree with him that Mueller’s unlimited probe and Comey’s involvement are unfair.

One potential replacement candidate is Michael Mukasey, a former federal judge and attorney general under President George W. Bush. Mukasey told Lou Dobbs on Fox Business last week that, in addition to his doubts about whether any of Trump’s actions fit the definition of criminally obstructing justice, he ­believes “somebody has got to sit down and have a conversation with Rod Rosenstein about the scope of the investigation . . . and see whether something can be done about that.”

Mukasey added another wrinkle: “The simple fact that Mueller and Comey are not just acquaintances but friends” means “Mueller ought to consider whether he should step aside.”

Mukasey, who spoke before the possibility of a Rosenstein recusal surfaced, has the experience and stature to resolve all the complex legal issues.

Because a new attorney general and deputy would require Senate confirmations, Trump needs to move quickly. He would also need to persuade Senate Republicans of the necessity of new leadership at Justice and that Mueller needs to be reined in.

The incentive for Senate leaders to agree, apart from the facts, would be that an endless, leak-driven probe of the president will damage them, too.

If Democrats succeed in blocking the president’s agenda, the GOP could lose sufficient seats in one or both houses in the 2018 midterms for Dems to take back control.

No matter what he does now, Trump retains the option to ­remove Mueller. But he should remember that, if and when he goes that route, he would face a legal battle, and might recall that the federal courts are not his friend.

The politics of such a move could also be a disaster, especially if it’s seen as premature. That’s why he should wait, and fight Mueller first.

One thing on Trump’s side is that impeachment is ultimately a political issue, and building public support for his agenda could also save his job. Most polls show he’s as weak now as he’s ever been, and sacking Mueller could make it next to impossible for him to broaden his base and keep GOP lawmakers from bolting.
Yes, Mr. President, the temptation to fire Mueller must be incredibly powerful, but now is the time to resist it. For your sake, and for America.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Beria Was Right: " Show me the man and I’ll find you the crime. "






Can a Divided America Survive?

The United States is currently the world’s oldest democracy. {Are we? We are not supposed to be}

But America is no more immune from collapse than were some of history’s most stable and impressive consensual governments. Fifth-century Athens, Republican Rome, Renaissance Florence and Venice, and many of the elected governments of early 20th-century Western European states eventually destroyed themselves, went bankrupt, or were overrun by invaders.

The United States is dividing as rarely before. Half the country, mostly liberal America, is concentrated in 146 of the nation’s more than 3,000 counties — in an area that collectively represents less than 10 percent of the U.S. land mass. The other half, the conservative Red states of the interior of America, is geographically, culturally, economically, politically, and socially at odds with Blue-state America, which resides mostly on the two coasts.

The two Americas watch different news. They read very different books, listen to different music, and watch different television shows. Increasingly, they now live lives according to two widely different traditions.

Barack Obama was elected president after compiling the most left-wing voting record in the U.S. Senate. His antidote, Donald Trump, was elected largely on the premise that traditional Republicans were hardly conservative.

Red America and Blue America are spiraling into divisions approaching those of 1860, or of the nihilistic hippie/straight divide of 1968.

Currently, some 27 percent of all Californians were not born in the United States. More than 40 million foreign-born immigrants currently live in the U.S. — the highest number in the nation’s history.

Yet widely unchecked immigration comes at a time when the country has lost confidence in its prior successful adherence to melting-pot assimilation and integration. The ultimate result is a fragmenting of society into tribal cliques that vie for power, careers, and influence on the basis of ethnic solidarity rather than shared Americanness.

History is not very kind to multicultural chaos — as opposed to a multiracial society united by a single national culture. The fates of Rwanda, Iraq, and the former Yugoslavia should remind us of our present disastrous trajectory.

Either the United States will return to a shared single language and allegiance to a common and singular culture, or it will eventually descend into clannish violence.
Does the unique American idea of federalism still work, with state rights and laws subordinate to federal law? We fought a Civil War that cost more than 600,000 lives in part to uphold the idea that individual states could not override the federal government.

Yet sanctuary cities declare that they can freely nullify federal immigration law. The California Senate passed a bill earlier this month that would prohibit the state from contracting with any firms that work on the federal government’s wall at the border with Mexico.

States such as California vow that they will ignore Washington and work directly with foreign nations to promote their own policies on global warming. Read carefully what some prominent Californians are saying about the federal government: It is not much different from what influential Confederate South Carolinians boasted about in 1860 on the eve of secession.

The national debt has almost doubled over the last eight years and at nearly $20 trillion is unsustainable.

Entitlement spending rose even as new taxes increased. The have-nots claim the haves make far too much money; the haves retort that they pay most of the income taxes while nearly half the country pays nothing.
All Americans need to take a deep breath, step back, and rein in their anger — and find more ways to connect rather than divide themselves.

Most Americans agree that the present levels of borrowing and spending cannot continue. But many believe that the tough medicine to cure the disease of chronic annual deficits and mounting debt is unacceptable.

America’s infrastructure and military are vastly underfunded, even though some voters want more subsidies for themselves and apparently want others to pay for them.

America’s once-preeminent colleges and universities are fatally compromised. Universities charge far too much, resist reform, expect exemption from accountability, and assume their students must take on huge amounts of debt. Yet campuses can’t guarantee that their graduates are competently educated or that they will find jobs.

Illiberal attempts to end free speech, to sanction racial and gender segregation, and to attack rather than argue with opponents are disguised by euphemisms such as “safe spaces,” “trigger warnings,” and various -isms and -ologies.
Behind the guise of campus activism and non-negotiable demands is the reality that too many students simply are unprepared to do their assigned work and seek exemption through protests in lieu of hard studying.

America barely survived the Civil War of 1861–65, the Great Depression of 1929–39, and the rioting and protests of the 1960s. But today’s growing divides are additionally supercharged by instant Internet and social-media communications, 24/7 cable news, partisan media, and the denigration of America’s past traditions.
All Americans need to take a deep breath, step back, and rein in their anger — and find more ways to connect rather than divide themselves.

They should assume their opponents are not all sinners, and that their supporters are not all saints.

Things are bad now. But our own history suggests that if we are not careful, they can get even worse.

— Victor Davis Hanson is a classicist and historian at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, and the author, most recently, of The Second World Wars: How the First Global Conflict Was Fought and Won, to appear in October from Basic Books. You can reach him by e-mailing author@victorhanson.com. © 2017 Tribune Media Services, Inc.