Thursday, March 10, 2016

The Final Days of Hillary Clinton


Hillary's super PACs and K Street friends attack Bernie for opposing corporate welfare: Clinton reportedly attacked Sanders for his consistent opposition to the Export-Import Bank.

Odds of a Hillary email grand jury underway just went much higher

I have speculated that, given the immunity offered to Bryan Pagliano, it is possible that a grand jury has been convened.  But I am not a lawyer, much less a former US Attorney.  Joseph E. diGenova, on the other hand, is one of a small group of attorneys generally considered a super lawyer, and not only a veteran US Attorney, but the former US Attorney for Washington, DC, at the very top of federal prosecutors. So when Joe diGenova offers an opinion on the likelihood of a grand jury being empanelled, we (a group that includes Hillary Clinton! – possibly the first time I have even included myself in a grouping with Hillary) should pay attention. 
Richard Pollock of the Daily Caller News Foundation spoke with him:
“My long experience as the United States Attorney and an independent counsel makes me conclude as a matter of professional judgment that a grand jury exists,” diGenova told TheDCNF.  “It is readily apparent to me that there is at least a grand jury impaneled for the purposes of issuing subpoenas,” he said.
The specifics of diGenova’s expert opinion are daunting for Hillary. It is not just that violations of law over classified information that are likely at issue.
“The Bureau has between 100 and 150 agents assigned to the case. They would not have that many people assigned to a classified information case….”
Remember that diGenova has actually run investigations. So he knows about resource allocation, and subject matter for inquiry.
“Based on reports that agents are asking questions about the foundation, it seems to me to properly the subject is a second prong of the investigation,” he said.
And what might that second prong be? He doesn’t say, but Pollock offers this helpful reminder:
The Department of State’s Inspector General (IG) subpoenaed documents from the Clinton Foundation last fall to determine if State Department policies had been influenced by foundation activities. The State IG asked for records held by the foundation and Huma Abedin, who for six months simultaneously worked for former Secretary Clinton and the Clinton Foundation.
A number of the 55,000 pages of government-related emails that were released under a court order also show numerous emails between Clinton’s aides and the Clinton Foundation’s foreign policy director, Amitabh Desai.
And another anonymous source says:
The corruption probe is being led by the Justice Department’s public integrity division, a former FBI agent who requested anonymity told TheDCNF.
That would be consistent with bribery charges and the like. Far beyond abuses of classified information, and if successfully prosecuted, opening the possibility of prison.  Reports that the FBI forensic team has recovered the erased emails from Hillary’s server open the door to many other charges including destruction of evidence and criminal conspiracy.

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Hillary Clinton repeatedly claims that she is the champion of the little guy.  It has always been a risible claim, but if any of her supporters (including at the Post) are actually paying attention to the scoundrel, this latest gambit ought to disabuse them of the notion.  

The last refuge of the scoundrel Hillary

Samuel Johnson’s aphorism that patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel doesn’t apply to Hillary Clinton in her email scandal, because nobody – not even her die-hard supporters – would believe her if she said that she set up the private email server in the interests of the United States.  Rather, the last refuge of this scoundrel is to blame everybody else she dealt with at the State Department, in the process impugning not only her own close aides, but career diplomats and other nonpolitical professionals who deserve better.  

This strategy is reflected in the campaign’s current mantra that “everybody,” including former secretaries Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice, at one time or another sent emails that were later determined to be classified.  A recent Washington Post analysis of Hillary’s released classified emails demonstrates that she directly sent at least 104 to various aides and officials, and that they too, including the current secretary of state, John Kerry, occasionally sent out emails through nonsecure servers that were later deemed classified.  However, what the analysis also shows is that these government officials, when they did use unsecured servers, at least used government accounts, which provide a measure of security, not a private home-brewed server like Mrs. Clinton’s.
The Post’s news editors must be popping a lot of Thorazine, because their coverage of Clinton is increasingly schizophrenic.  As longtime readers of the paper know, the news operation is considerably more left-leaning than the editorial side (which occasionally takes a more centrist view).  News stories are routinely slanted to present the most favorable liberal perspective and mock or demean opposing outlooks.  This tendency is apparent in the Clinton case as well.  The Post has broken some important stories in the email scandal, like the recent revelation that the Justice Department granted former Clinton I.T. aide Bryan Pagliano immunity.  And the Post’s most heroic figures, Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, have separately suggested that the Clinton scandal is the real thing.  But since Hillary is the Post’s gal, they seeded the Pagliano report with expert liberal analysis that suggested that the immunity deal is either nothing to get excited about (a weird way to promote a scoop) or actually a good thing for Clinton, while omitting contrary interpretations

The Post’s analysis of her emails follows the same pattern.  On the one hand, the news that Clinton herself personally authored over 100 classified items cuts against her chosen narrative that she got a lot of emails and that she can hardly have been expected to actually read and analyze them all for security issues as she received them or passed them on.  On the other hand, the article goes out of its way to suggest that this was an endemic problem at State.  And strangely again, the explanation is rather contradictory.  We are told that the sending and receipt of classified information was the result of poor security procedures that preceded Clinton’s arrival.  But we are also told (in line with claims made by Clinton and her campaign) that there is a culture of “over-classification” in the government.  So which is it?  Were officials at State too lax about security procedures or too anal?  If nothing else, one thing this controversy demonstrates is that the Clinton State Department was pretty much a mess. 

But besides the country itself, which is now enduring yet more Clintonian malfeasance in the midst of a critical election, are many individuals that Clinton is cold-bloodily demeaning in an attempt to exonerate herself with the “everybody did it” canard.  This rests on the weak premise that other government officials – aides, ambassadors, career officials – occasionally misidentified information as innocuous or insufficiently sensitive to merit security classification.  There is little doubt this happened, and continues to happen, as government employees do their best to protect sensitive information but not bog the government down in layers of unnecessary security protocol.  But none of the officials identified in the Post analysis did this deliberately by establishing a private home-brewed email system to avoid State Department classification procedures entirely – and this no less, by the head of the State Department itself. 

The Post article anonymously quotes one poor soul (identified as a former senior official) whose good name has now been impugned as a careless operator: “I resent the fact that we are in this situation – and we’re in this situation because of Hillary Clinton’s decision to use a private email server.”      

Hillary Clinton repeatedly claims that she is the champion of the little guy.  It has always been a risible claim, but if any of her supporters (including at the Post) are actually paying attention to the scoundrel, this latest gambit ought to disabuse them of the notion.  

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The Hillary Clinton emails: A record of imperialist crimes

visit judicial watch org for more on hillary's crimes and corruption



The Hillary Clinton emails: A record of imperialist crimes

The Hillary Clinton emails: A record of imperialist crimes

By Tom Hall

7 March 2016
Last Monday, the US State Department published the last batch of declassified emails from a private, unsecured server used by Democratic

presidential candidate Hillary Clinton during her tenure as secretary of state. This latest release draws to a close a year-long review by US intelligence agencies of 52,000 pages of Clinton emails, ostensibly motivated by concerns over possible leaks of classified material.

To date, more than 30,000 emails dating from Clinton’s four-year tenure as secretary of state have been released to the public. Clinton played a central role in the prosecution of aggressive wars in Afghanistan, Syria and Libya as well as the carrying out of drone assassinations and other
illegal actions in a number of additional countries, including Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia. Yet in its extensive reporting of the email scandal, the American media has virtually ignored the actual content of these emails, which contain a wealth of information about the day-to-day functioning of the Clinton State Department.

A review of even a small sampling of the emails, which are available on the State Department’s web site, reveals the reason why: the emails are a damning indictment of the criminal activities of not only Hillary Clinton herself, but the entire imperialist state apparatus, with the corporate-controlled media in tow. The emails could easily serve as evidence in future war crimes trials of Clinton and other top US officials.

One particularly revealing email from 2010, cited by the Interceptn web site but not picked up by the national media, recounts the experiences of former ambassador Joseph Wilson (whose CIA agent wife
Valerie Plame was outed by the Bush administration in retaliation for his criticisms of the war in Iraq) during a recent trip to Iraq in his capacity as an executive for a US engineering firm. The Obama
administration, elected by exploiting mass anti-war sentiment, continued the US occupation of Iraq for three years during Obama’s first term in office, when Clinton was secretary of state, prolonging a conflict that claimed more than 1 million lives. Since then, US troops have returned to Iraq, ostensibly to fight ISIS, as part of the US war for regime-change in neighboring Syria.

Wilson’s email begins: “My trip to Baghdad (September 6-11) has left me slack jawed. I have
struggled to find the correct historical analogy to describe a vibrant,historically important Middle Eastern city being slowly bled to death.Berlin and Dresden in World War II were devastated, but they and their populations were not subjected to seven years of occupation.”

Describing the rampant racism and sadism among US occupation troops, Wilson writes, “Shirts with mushroom clouds [for sale at a gift shop on a US military base at the Baghdad airport] conveyed the Baghdad weather as 32,000 degrees and partly cloudy. Others referred to Arabs as camel
jockeys and those were the least offensive… The service people don’t see themselves there to bring peace, light, joy or even democracy to Iraq. They are there to kill the ‘camel jockeys.’”

Hundreds more emails deal with the US-led proxy war in Libya, in which Clinton played a
leading role. As a recent series of articles in the New York Times confirmed, Clinton was the leading advocate in the White House for the clandestine arming of “rebel” militias comprised largely of Islamic fundamentalists, which comprised the main fighting force against the regime of Muammar Gaddafi.

One email from February 2011, written by a veteran diplomat before the launching of the US-NATO war that ended with the murder of Gaddafi, lays out proposals for the construction of a future “post-Gaddafi” political order in Libya. The memo recommends the use of the United Nations to lend political legitimacy to the imperialist carve-up of the country.

“A UN ‘hat’ for multinational/international assistance efforts could be effective,” the author states bluntly. However, the extensive involvement of Italy, whose participation in the war marked a return to the scene of its bloody colonial occupation, should, the author recommends, be “kept relatively low-profile.” Another email chain discusses how to disburse the tens of billions of dollars of frozen Libyan assets stolen by the imperialist powers during the regime-change operation.

Many other emails concern the organization and coordination of the Obama administration's drone assassination program, which has killed thousands in Afghanistan and Pakistan alone. “Twenty-two of the emails on Mrs. Clinton’s server have now been classified as ‘top secret’ at the demand
of the CIA because they discuss the program to hunt and kill terrorist suspects using drone strikes, as well as other intelligence operations and sources,” the New York Times noted two weeks ago, prior to
the latest release. “The emails [also] contain direct and indirect references to secret programs,” the newspaper added obliquely.

One such secret program was the bribing of high-ranking officials in the Afghan government by the CIA. “[The US embassy in Afghanistan's] line has been and will be the standard approach--that we refrain from comment on stories discussing intelligence matters,” one embassy official
writes in a 2010 email, in response to an impending New York Times story revealing that Muhammad Zia Salehi, head of the Afghan National Security Council, was on the CIA payroll. Later reports by the Times revealed that former President Hamid Karzai for years received shopping bags full of cash from the CIA on a regular basis.

Dozens of emails document the collusion between the corporate-controlled media and the State Department in containing the fallout from the release of US diplomatic cables by Wikileaks. In one
2010 exchange, Washington Post writer Craig Whitlock reaches out to the State Department to request “a mechanism to receive [the] State [Department's] input” before running a series of articles based on cables revealing the existence of a secret US drone base in the Seychelles Islands, off the coast of Somalia.

The exchange demonstrates that the major newspapers, including the Washington Post and the New York Times, provided the State Department with advance printed copies of every cable about which they planned to write, along with drafts to the White House, to be redacted or censored at their discretion. In a conversation between Whitlock’s State Department handlers, they note approvingly
that the practice “was extremely helpful in preparing our redaction requests, as well as anticipating what damage control we’d need to do in diplomatic channels.” Another email describes an editorial by the Washington Post calling for the prosecution of Wikileaks editor Julian Assange and
Chelsea (then Bradley) Manning as “helpful,” adding, “We’ll try and get pickup in [the] international media.”

Clinton also received hundreds of emails via her private server from Sidney Blumenthal, a
former advisor in the Bill Clinton administration, who served as the head of Hillary’s 2008 presidential campaign. Blumenthal, then an employee of the Clinton Family Foundation, functioned as a de facto back channel intelligence gatherer and advisor for Clinton, despite not
officially being a member of her staff. It was Blumenthal’s 2015 testimony to the House Select Committee on Benghazi, the Republican-controlled body set up for the purpose of torpedoing the
likely presidential run of Clinton, which revealed the existence of Clinton’s private email server.

Blumenthal sent Clinton a wide array of intelligence reports from foreign countries targeted by US
imperialism. In one email, he passes on concerns that Islamist militias in Libya might retaliate against the assassination of Osama bin Laden,using weapons obtained from the United States. In another, he recounts the furtive dealings between the Muslim Brotherhood and the Egyptian military to smother the Egyptian revolution, writing that the two will “continue to work together secretly in an effort to establish a stable government” and create “a secure environment throughout the country” for

In another email, Blumenthal advises Clinton on how to orchestrate the cover-up of the circumstances surrounding the assassination of bin Laden in a cross-border raid into Pakistan by US Special Forces. As a report by investigative journalist Seymour Hersh later made clear, the official version of bin Laden’s death was a collection of lies from start to finish.

“Show [the pictures of bin Laden’s body] to members of Congress in a special secure room,
something like when members were permitted to view Abu Ghraib pictures,” Blumenthal writes. “Each of them will emerge speaking to the national and local press on what they have seen… Having members of Congress testify to the reality of the photos will suppress any potential ‘Deather’ movement, that the administration has either fabricated the event or suppressed some aspect of it.”

What the ultimate out come of the Clinton email scandal will be is not yet clear. An FBI criminal
investigation into the emails is ongoing, with signs that the case might be headed to a grand jury. On Wednesday, a former employee of Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign, Bryan Pagliano, who set up the private email server in Clinton’s home, was granted immunity by federal investigators as part of the investigation.

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