Tag Archives: Intelligence

Former DNI Director Says Hunter Biden Laptop Coverup Had To Be Helped By DOJ, FBI

Carmine Sabia
April 9, 2022

OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author’s opinion.

Former Director of National Intelligence, Ric Grenell, has laid out a major charge against the nation’s highest intelligence agencies as he said that China is “laughing all the way” over what has happened with the Hunter Biden laptop.

Speaking with the Newsmax show “John Bachman Now,” the former ambassador to Germany said that there was “no possible way” that laptop was covered up sans help from officials in the Department of Justice and FBI, Newsmax reported.

“I don’t say it lightly,” he said. “There’s no possible way that someone at DOJ didn’t see what was happening with that laptop three weeks before the 2020 election.”

“Let me be very clear,” he argued. “That is the Beijing line. That’s what China wants you to do. China does not want you looking at that laptop because of all the details about the Chinese businessmen with the Biden family.”

He also said that there was “no possible way” FBI agents did not notice that the Biden team and Democrats were blaming the laptop on a Russian disinformation campaign.

He said when “the Democrats and the DOJ and the FBI allowed the narrative to shift,” the Chinese “love it.”

He also argued that there was no need for a special counsel to investigate the matter.

“Why do we need an outside special counsel?” the national security analyst said. “The only time you need an outside special counsel is if you come to the table and you assume that DOJ can’t do its job and it’s too biased. I’m not there yet.”

And he argued that there needs to be changes made in the FBI.

“I can tell you from being the acting director of national intelligence when I looked at these FBI agents whose names were on the information that said redacted information, and I would say ‘why did you redact this?’ they would say to me ‘I actually didn’t redact it my boss did,’” he said.

This means there are a lot of hard-working FBI agents who are trying to do the right thing, but there needs to be “prosecutions and a total clean-out” at the top of the federal agencies, he added.

Grenell also discussed reports that four Secret Service members, including a person on first lady Jill Biden’s detail, have been suspended for accepting gifts from men charged with impersonating federal officials.

“The Inspector-General needs to get involved,” he argued. “The DOJ needs to get involved. I don’t want to default to outside organizations. They’ve got to clean up themselves.”

And he said that when agents know that other agents, or bosses, are engaged in chicanery, “you need to start outing them, and there needs to be self-policing.”

It was reported this week that Ron Klain, the Chief of Staff for President Joe Biden, apparently reached out to Hunter Biden in September 2012 to ask for help to raise 20,000 for the Vice President’s Residence Foundation (VPRF) and asked him to “keep this low low key” to prevent “bad PR,” emails reviewed by Fox News Digital showed.

Klain was the head of the foundation, a year after leaving his position as the vice president’s chief of staff, and told Hunter that he needed his help “tackle a piece of unpleasant business,” Fox News reported.

“The tax lawyers for the VP Residence Foundation have concluded that since the Cheney folks last raised money in 2007 and not 2008, we actually have to have some incoming funds before the end of this fiscal year (i.e., before 9/30/12 – next week) to remain eligible to be a ‘public charity,’” he said to Hunter in the email.

“It’s not much – we need to raise a total of $20,000 – so I’m hitting up a few very close friends on a very confidential basis to write checks of $2,000 each,” he said to Hunter.

He added in the email: “We need to keep this low low key because raising money for the Residence now is bad PR – but it has to be done, so I’m trying to just collect the 10 checks of $2,000, get it done in a week, and then, we can do an event for the Residence Foundation after the election.”

Ex-CIA Official Who Signed Letter Warning Hunter Biden Laptop Story Was Disinfo Proud Trump Lost

An ex-CIA official who signed a letter along with dozens of other former U.S. intelligence officials in the backstretch of the 2020 presidential election warning that stories about Hunter Biden’s laptop being disinformation now says his efforts led to then-President Trump losing reelection.

“I take special pride in personally swinging the election away from Trump,” John Sipher, a former CIA deputy chief of Russian Operations, recently posted on Twitter. “I lost the election for Trump? Well, then I [feel] pretty good about my influence.”

The October 2020 open letter – released as voters were making final decisions about whether to reelect Trump or elect Democrat Joe Biden – was signed by 51 ex-intelligence officials including former National Intelligence Director James Clapper, former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, and former CIA Director John Brennan.

Hunter Biden is the son of President Biden. The discovery of the laptop at a Delaware repair shop and its content, reported first by the New York Post, was of major interest in 2020, considering the questions surrounding Hunter Biden’s overseas business dealings while his father was vice president.

Twitter suspended the Post’s account after the news outlet used it to link to the laptop story.

“We want to emphasize that we do not know if the emails, provided to the New York Post by President Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani, are genuine or not and that we do not have evidence of Russian involvement – just that our experience makes us deeply suspicious that the Russian government played a significant role in this case,” the letter in part reads.

Sipher has said his previous claims of helping Trump lose were sarcasm, according to the Epoch Times.

Capitol Police Accused Of Spying on Members Of Congress, Staffers

Cullen McCue  
February 8th, 2022

The inspector general for the U.S. Capitol Police (USCP) has opened a formal investigation into whether the law enforcement agency has been inappropriately surveilling elected members of Congress, their staff, and visitors to their offices. USCP Chief J. Thomas Manger confirmed the opening of the inspector general investigation in his response to congressional inquiries about USCP police tactics.

According to an article from Politico, the USCP intelligence unit has been compiling information on individuals who meet with lawmakers. Among those who have been subject to new Capitol Police scrutiny are Congressional staffers, three separate sources told Politico. All spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter.  Most of those surveilled by the UCSP have not committed or been accused of a crime, but the agency argues the measures are necessary, citing the 2021 U.S. Capitol protests, which the UCSP refers to as an “insurrection.”

Rep. Kelly Armstrong (R-N.D.) said in an interview that he is unaware of any members who know about the “very, very bad” practice.  “Whatever they think that sounds like for security, it sounds dangerously close — if not already over the line — to spying on members of Congress, their staff, their constituents and their supporters,” said Armstrong. “Anybody involved with implementing this without making it known to the actual members of Congress should resign or be fired immediately,” he added.

Per Politico, analysts in the department’s intelligence division have put together documents called Congressional Event Assessments for years. That process entails the House and Senate Sergeants at Arms, Congress’ chambers’ internal logistical and security leaders sharing information with Capitol Police on lawmakers’ plans for meetings and events away from the Capitol. After the Capitol protests, analysts were instructed to look closely at the people meeting privately and publicly with members. The changes were implemented by former Department of Homeland Security official Julie Farnam, who joined the unit in fall of 2020.

Farnam’s new template instructed analysts to scour the social media feeds of individuals who meet with lawmakers or attend their events. It also told Capitol Police analysts to search for information about lawmakers’ opponents and their opponents’ supporters. “List and search all political opponents to see if they or their followers intend to attend or disrupt the event,” reads the template, according to Politico.

The Capitol Police defended their practices in a statement. “The more public information we have, the better we can understand what kind and how much security is necessary.”

On Tuesday, U.S. Rep. Troy Nehls (R-TX) accused the Capitol Police of entering his office and photographing confidential legislative information. “On November 20th, 2021, Capitol Police entered my office without my knowledge and photographed confidential legislative products protected by the Speech and Debate clause enshrined in the Constitution, Article 1 Section 6,” Nells wrote in a tweet.

According to Nehls, USCP intelligence agents again tried to gain entry to his office two days later while Congress was in recess. “Upon discovering a member of my staff, special agents dressed like construction workers began to question him as to the contents of a photograph taken illegally two days earlier,” Nells wrote in a follow-up tweet. “They had no authority to photograph my office, let alone investigate myself or members of my staff. So, why is the Capitol Police Leadership maliciously investigating me in an attempt to destroy me and my character?”

According to The Federalist, an IG investigation has been opened at the behest of Capitol Police Chief Tom Manger. “The inspector general is independent, so we cannot comment on his behalf,” a USCP spokesman told The Federalist. “But the chief has requested such a review as he is confident the USCP security assessments are legal, appropriate, and strictly limited to gathering basic information about events to ensure the safety of members of Congress.”

Biden Family Received ‘Some $31 Million’ from Individuals Linked to ‘Highest Levels of Chinese Intelligence’

Schweizer, the author of Red-Handed: How American Elites Get Rich Helping China Win, said Biden’s son Hunter, while the elder Biden was serving as both vice president and president, was engaged in deals with individuals tied to the highest levels of Chinese intelligence. He called the Biden family’s business dealings “unprecedented.”

“One of the most startling things we uncovered is the simple fact that the Biden family, while he was vice president of the United States and continuing when he became president, received some $31 million from Chinese individuals who are linked to the highest levels of Chinese intelligence,” Schweizer outlined on Fox News Channel’s Life, Liberty & Levin.

He continued, “And these deals, which we lay out in the book, were carried out by a couple of individuals. One is a guy named Che Feng. Hunter Biden, in the Hunter Biden emails, refers to him as the Super Chairman. That’s kind of his nickname for him, and he says in one email, ‘I don’t believe in the lottery anymore, but I believe in the Super Chairman.’”

“His business partner was the vice minister at the ministry for state security,” Schweizer added. “He was in charge of, among other things, recruiting foreign nationals to spy for China. He was the head of something called the Number Eight Bureau. It doesn’t get any higher than that. These are the sorts of individuals that were striking deals with Hunter Biden. In this particular case, Che Feng happened to help a $20 million deal be secured. Another individual that helped arrange that deal is a guy named Mr. Zhao. Mr. Zhao helped with that $20 million deal. He also sent $5 million to Hunter Biden, and he sent that money from a very interesting business called Harvest Global.”

According to Schweizer, Jiao’s business partner is “the daughter of the former head of the ministry of state security.”

“This is the guy who runs the entire spy apparatus for China,” Schweizer emphasized. “Again, it does not get any higher than that.”

“And for the life of me, Mark, this is unprecedented,” he added. “I don’t know of a time in American history where the American first family has had this kind of a financial bond with a foreign intelligence service, particularly a foreign intelligence service that wants to defeat the United States in global competition.”

Quiet War: 900-Page Senate Russia Report Includes No Evidence for How Emails Were Taken From DNC

IVAN PENTCHOUKOV  
August 25, 2020

The Senate Select Committee on Intelligence concluded its three-year Russia investigation on Aug. 18 with the release of the fifth and final volume of the report on its work, a 966-page tome resulting from interviews with more than 200 witnesses and the review of more than a million pages of documents.

While offering a broad and detailed view of the counterintelligence issues related to Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election, the hefty volume included just one sentence of vague evidence about the central and essential crime at the epicenter of the debacle—the alleged theft of more than 40,000 emails from the Democratic National Committee.

The two major Russia investigations that preceded the Senate intelligence report didn’t offer the public much more in terms of details or evidence. The final report by special counsel Robert Mueller featured a single paragraph on the matter. The unredacted portion of the report by the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence included two sentences, neither of which mentioned emails.

The three reports on these formal investigations aren’t the only government records with a glaring lack of evidence about how the emails were taken from the Democratic National Committee (DNC). Over the course of four years, the intelligence community, media organizations, and the private sector released a trickle of hazy and contradictory claims that did nothing to augment the government’s claims.

An exhaustive review by The Epoch Times of more than four years of public records determined that all of the claims and evidence boil down to a single allegation and one piece of circumstantial evidence in Mueller’s final report.

“Between approximately May 25, 2016, and June 1, 2016, GRU officers accessed the DNC’s mail server from a GRU-controlled computer leased inside the United States,” the report, released on April 18, 2019, stated, referencing the acronym for one of Russia’s spy agencies. “During these connections, Unit 26165 officers appear to have stolen thousands of emails and attachments, which were later released by WikiLeaks in July 2016.”

Despite relying heavily on the Mueller report, the fifth volume of the report by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence (SSCI) doesn’t feature any of the details from the specific claim by the special counsel. The late-May time frame alleged by Mueller is entirely absent from the committee’s 20-page timeline of the DNC hack. Instead, the SSCI report includes a single vague sentence, as part of an undated timeline entry that mentions neither emails nor hacking.

“Henry testified that CrowdStrike was ‘able to see some exfiltration and the types of files that had been touched’ but not the content of those files,” the Aug. 18 report states, citing the committee’s interview with Shawn Henry, the head of the team from cybersecurity firm CrowdStrike, which the DNC brought in to handle the breach on April 30, 2016.

The office of Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), the acting chairman of the SSCI, didn’t immediately respond to a request by The Epoch Times for comment.

CrowdStrike’s official timeline of the DNC event likewise omits the hack that Mueller alleged to have taken place on or about May 25 to June 1, 2016. The cybersecurity firm claims that no hack occurred.

“There is no indication of any subsequent breaches taking place on the DNC’s corporate network or any machines protected by CrowdStrike Falcon,” the company told The Epoch Times.

The likelihood of a hack taking place without CrowdStrike noticing is low, but not impossible. The company had deployed 200 sensors on the committee’s network within the first week of its engagement with the DNC, which began on May 1, 2016, more than three weeks before the alleged hack.

The revelation about the sheer number of sensors deployed on the DNC network is significant for another reason. In his interview with the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence on Dec. 5, 2017, Henry told lawmakers that CrowdStrike “didn’t have a network sensor in place that saw data leave” when answering questions posed by Rep. Chris Stewart (R-Utah) about evidence of email exfiltration.

It’s possible that CrowdStrike didn’t deploy a sensor to monitor the DNC mail server. CrowdStrike didn’t provide a response to a question about whether this was the case, referring The Epoch Times to its statement that no hack had occurred.

Hazy Disclosures

The contradictions and vague statements are abundant beyond the incongruent claims by Mueller and CrowdStrike.

In order to separate which of the myriad claims about the DNC emails actually deal with how the files were taken from the committee’s mail server, timing is essential. The most recent DNC email released by WikiLeaks was dated May 25, 2016, which matches with the time window in Mueller’s allegation. Roughly 99 percent of the emails were sent between April 19 and May 25, 2016, a window that roughly fits the DNC’s 30-day email retention policy. Considering the 30-day window, the emails were most likely taken in the handful of days around May 25.

Because the DNC systems were allegedly subjected to multiple breaches on different dates by at least two separate actors, any allegations that are undated or don’t include the May 25, 2016, timeframe are too vague to be useful to inform the public about how the emails were taken. The claims could be conflating another exfiltration with the enigma of what happened with the emails, or they could be referring to a different theft altogether.

In addition, a separate theft of data is alleged to have occurred on April 22, 2016, during which the alleged hackers took files other than the DNC emails published by WikiLeaks in July 2016. As a result, claims that provide a broad timeline including May 25 and April 22—while not specifically describing what was taken—are equally of little use because it is unclear which events they describe.

The two categories of vagueness described above plague every claim made by the government about the DNC emails since Oct. 7, 2016, when the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) attributed the hacking to the Russian government.

“The U.S. Intelligence Community (USIC) is confident that the Russian Government directed the recent compromises of e-mails from US persons and institutions, including from US political organizations. The recent disclosures of alleged hacked e-mails on sites like DCLeaks.com and WikiLeaks and by the Guccifer 2.0 online persona are consistent with the methods and motivations of Russian-directed efforts. These thefts and disclosures are intended to interfere with the US election process,” the joint statement said.

The absence of dates from the allegation would become the norm over time. The choice of broad and imprecise language in the statement about the “alleged hacked emails” isn’t accidental. The FBI, which wasn’t a party to the statement, apparently hadn’t yet received the forensic images of the DNC systems from CrowdStrike when the statement was released.

According to the SSCI report, CrowdStrike billed the FBI $4,000 on Oct. 13, 2016— one week after the DHS-ODNI statement—for the “forensic images that FBI requested.” While it’s possible the FBI received the files earlier, the FBI official who spoke to the committee used the word “requested” rather than “received.” According to Shawn Henry’s interview with the SSCI, CrowdStrike handed over the images to the FBI sometime in October 2016. The FBI didn’t respond to a request to confirm when it received the images.

Despite the certainty with which the DHS and ODNI attributed the broader hacking campaign to Russians, the statement described the hacking of the emails as alleged. The statement’s earlier mention of “recent compromises of e-mails,” is an apparent reference to the email phishing campaign that occurred prior to the theft of the emails.

The government’s haziness about the dates and other details about how the emails were taken tainted every subsequent statement and assessment on the matter. The Dec. 29, 2016, joint analysis report by the DHS, ODNI, and FBI; the Jan. 6, 2017, intelligence community assessment by the CIA, FBI, and NSA; and the March 22, 2018, report on Russian active measures by the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI) all featured a blatant lack of specificity about when and how the emails were taken.

In addition to reviewing all of the government records on the matter, The Epoch Times reviewed all of the media articles featuring interviews with firsthand witnesses, CrowdStrike’s evolving blog post about the remediation, third-party assessments of CrowdStrike’s work, transcripts of witness interviews, congressional testimony, and third-party analyses of the metadata of the DNC emails.

The sum total of the most detailed claims about how the emails were taken still boils down to roughly the allegation made by Mueller, which is itself directly contradicted by CrowdStrike.

A more detailed version of Mueller’s allegation appeared in the indictment of 12 Russian intelligence officers Mueller filed nine months prior to his final report on July 13, 2018.

“Between on or about May 25, 2016 and June 1, 2016, the Conspirators hacked the DNC Microsoft Exchange Server and stole thousands of emails from the work accounts of DNC employees,” the indictment alleged. “During that time, Yermakov researched PowerShell commands related to accessing and managing the Microsoft Exchange Server.”

It is unclear why the special counsel’s version of events grew more vague over the months between the filing of the indictment and the publication of the final report. Notably, the report softened the language about the certainty of what transpired from the definitive “stole thousands of emails” to the circumstantial “appear to have stolen thousands of emails.”

What Didn’t Happen

While details about what happened with the DNC emails have been scant, details about what didn’t happen have recently emerged. On May 7, the HPSCI released the transcripts of the interviews it conducted as part of the investigation for the Russian active measures report. The transcript of the interview of Shawn Henry showed that CrowdStrike “did not have concrete evidence that data was exfiltrated from the DNC.”

“We have indicators that data was exfiltrated. We did not have concrete evidence that data was exfiltrated from the DNC, but we have indicators that it was exfiltrated,” Henry told lawmakers on Dec. 5, 2017.

When asked about the date on which the indicators occurred, Henry referred to the separate exfiltration event on April 22, 2016, which occurred a month before the emails were allegedly stolen.

Later in the interview, when asked specifically about the emails, Henry said it was possible for the alleged hackers to view and copy the content of the emails in addition to taking screenshots. The monitoring activity he described is unlikely to have yielded the raw email files published by WikiLeaks and was different from the allegation by the special counsel, who claimed that the emails were taken during a separate breach.

A source with the HPSCI told The Epoch Times that the committee relied on sources other than CrowdStrike to conclude that Russians stole the DNC emails, but couldn’t provide further details because they were classified. The evidence for the theft of the emails was as strong as the evidence of the attribution of the overall hacking campaign to Russia, the source said.

The release of Henry’s transcript prompted CrowdStrike to issue on June 5 the fourth significant update in as many years to its DNC incident response blog post. The update, running at more than 2,400 words, consisted of a Q&A and a timeline of events surrounding CrowdStrike’s remediation work.

The CrowdStrike timeline extensively references the Mueller report, but doesn’t include the crucial May 25 to June 1, 2016, time frame the special counsel provided for the alleged hacking of the DNC mail server.

The Q&A features an apparent misinterpretation of Henry’s testimony, claiming, contrary to what Henry told lawmakers, that CrowdStrike has evidence that data was exfiltrated from the DNC but omitting Henry’s qualification that the evidence was circumstantial. Regardless, the statement, as expected, included no dates and didn’t use the word “emails.”

Follow Ivan on Twitter: @ivanpentchoukov

Senate Intelligence Committee Wants Public to See Government’s UFO Records

GAVIN EVANS
Jun 23, 2020

A vote by the Senate Intelligence Committee will require the Defense Department and U.S. intelligence agencies to put together in-depth analysis for public consumption based on the data they have on “unidentfied aerial phenomenon,” according to POLITICO. Put in a way that’s easier to understand, those reports should include all the weird shit that Navy pilots have been seeing lately.

The next hurdle (for those of us who wish to view such a thing) is whether or not this provision to a yearly intelligence authorization bill will be adopted by the rest of the senate. Nevertheless, even if that doesn’t happen, a debate will be held that could give the public an idea of just how closely the government has been monitoring UFOs. 

In the report, the Committee makes it clear that they’re concerned about how seriously the government is (or, more accurately, is not) taking the “potential threat” of aerial phenomena of unknown origins. Whether it’s aliens, or another country, you can see why that would be of some interest to the government, oh, and also us citizens.

“The Committee understands that the relevant intelligence may be sensitive; nevertheless, the Committee finds that the information sharing and coordination across the Intelligence Community has been inconsistent, and this issue has lacked attention from senior leaders,” they write in their report on the bill.

POLITICO adds that “[t]he unclassified analysis, which can include a classified annex, is to be completed by the director of national intelligence and the secretary of defense within 180 days of passage.”

A year ago, senators on the panel were told about a run of incidents in which navy pilots were followed by unidentified aircrafts off the nation’s coasts. Included in these briefings were a set of videos that were made public earlier in 2020

These briefings came after it was learned that the Pentagon had looked into these sightings a few years earlier, in late 2017. It was also learned that a new set of guidelines had been given to military members on the subject of how to report such incidents in the future.  

The Senate panel is now directing relevant information on that subject to be collected from the various agencies/organizations that have data on the subject for the purpose of centralizing that information. 

Obviously this is a win for our nation’s Fox Mulders, Dale Gribbles, and whatever third fictional character you can name that I’m unaware of.

“It further legitimizes the issue,” said ex-Pentagon intelligence official and Senate staffer Christopher Mellon, himself a longtime proponent of getting the info out. “That in itself is extremely important. People can talk about it without fear of embarrassment.”

He also elaborated on the significance of a report done correctly. 

“Assuming the report is properly prepared and delivered, there is no telling what the impacts could be,” Mellon added. “That could range from revealing an unknown threat or military vulnerability to there have been probes visiting our planet, or anything in between.”

SOURCE: https://www.complex.com/life/2020/06/senators-want-government-to-release-ufo-reports-to-public