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The Durham Report
A quick analysis
Special Counsel John Durham’s investigation – an inquiry into government corruption, lies to secret courts, the weaponization of the US intelligence apparatus, the FBI’s attempt to take down a sitting president – has concluded.
Here are some of the main findings:
“The FBI discounted or willfully ignored material information that did not support the narrative of a collusive relationship between Trump and Russia.”
Crossfire Hurricane “was opened as a full investigation without [the FBI] ever having spoken to the persons who provided that information.” Days after it was opened, Peter Strzok was telling a London FBI employee that “there’s nothing to this.”
Internal FBI communications discussing the Crossfire Hurricane during its early stages: it’s “thin” and “it sucks”.
British Intelligence pushed back on Mueller requests for assistance: “[a British Intelligence person] basically said there was no [expletive] way in hell they were going to do it.”
Durham documents TWO investigations into Hillary Clinton - one involving the Clinton Foundation and one involving illegal foreign contributions to Clinton’s Campaign.
In one Clinton Campaign investigation, an FBI confidential human source (CHS) had offered an illegal foreign contribution to the campaign through an intermediary. The Clinton Campaign was “okay with it” and “were fully aware”. The CHS offered the FBI a copy of the credit card charge; the FBI never got receipts. In fact, the FBI handling agent told the CHS “to stay away from all events relating to Clinton’s campaign.”
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In February 2016, FBI Assistant Director Andrew McCabe directed the Clinton Foundation investigation to be shut down. He walked that back after receiving push-back, but McCabe made sure that his approval was required for any further investigative steps.
The New York Field Office was called on behalf of FBI Director Comey and informed to “cease and desist” from the Clinton Foundation investigation.
The FBI and DOJ restricted both of those Clinton investigations, making sure that “essentially no investigative activities occurred for months leading up to the election.” In comparison, the FBI opened a full investigation into the Trump Campaign based on unvetted “intelligence”.
The CIA had direct knowledge of the Clinton plan (“Clinton Plan”) to vilify Trump by linking him to Putin and Russia. On August 3, 2016, CIA Director John Brennon met with President Obama, VP Biden, and other senior Administration officials, including but not limited to Attorney General Loretta Lynch and FBI Director James Comey. At that meeting, Brennan informed them of the Clinton Plan:
In September 2016, the CIA sent the FBI this information on the Clinton Plan to link Trump and Russia:
Somehow, the FBI did nothing to vet or investigate the Clinton Plan - even though they were using parts of the Clinton Plan (the Steele Reports) - to investigate the Trump Campaign. Durham writes: “No FBI personnel who were interviewed by the Office recalled Crossfire Hurricane personnel taking any action to vet the Clinton Plan intelligence.”
In fact, it was as if the CIA’s Clinton Plan memo was somehow buried within the FBI. Most members of Crossfire Hurricane “had never seen the intelligence before”. And, as we have previously discussed, it was never disclosed to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court in contravention to that court’s local rules.
FBI Director James Comey was deeply interested in the Crossfire Hurricane investigation and micromanaged it, demanding the Carter Page FISA warrant, telling Assistant Director Andrew McCabe: “Where is the FISA, where is the FISA?”
The FBI knew, relatively early, that its Carter Page FISA warrants were dubious. That FBI knowledge only intensified by 2018, as FBI analysts discussed how “Steele’s subsources could have been compromised by the Russians.” They were going to prepare their findings in a memorandum. FBI Deputy Assistant Director for Counterintelligence, Dina Corsi, met with the review team and directed them not to document any recommendations, context, or analysis in the memorandum they were preparing.” An FBI attorney was at that meeting. “He confirmed that the team was told not to write any more memoranda or analytical pieces and to provide their findings orally.” Corsi’s demands, according to one FBI Attorney, were “the most inappropriate operational or professional statement he had ever heard at the FBI.”
Igor Danchenko, the Steele primary subsource charged with (and acquitted of) lying to the FBI, was paid $220K by the FBI as a confidential human source. This was paid after the FBI knew Danchenko lied to them. As the Durham Investigation proceeded, Durham learned “the FBI proposed making continued future payments to Danchenko, totaling more than $300,000, while [Durham] was actively investigating this matter.” The FBI, in effect, was seeking to influence a key witness who would later face criminal charges.
The FBI’s reasons for paying Danchenko were certainly curious. Interviews with Durham’s office revealed: “the FBI's Executive Assistant Director for National Security, made clear that they were not even able to accurately describe the value or contributions of Danchenko that would justify keeping him open, much less making hundreds of thousands of dollars in payments to him.”
We’ll follow this up with a much deeper analysis hopefully by tomorrow. Part of that story is the problem with the Durham investigation: the fact that its scope didn’t include the attribution of the DNC hack.