The ‘Russia Hacked the Election’ Narrative Battle Continues—Are Republicans Paying Attention?

Sessions testifies at his confirmation hearing, January 10, 2017. (Reuters photo: Kevin Lamarque)

Sessions testifies at his confirmation hearing, January 10, 2017. (Reuters photo: Kevin Lamarque)

A Democratic attempt to force Jeff Sessions to recuse himself from investigating Russian meddling in the election is a ploy to make him concede a conflict where none exists.

National Review, by Andrew C. McCarthy, January 18, 2016:

I contended in last weekend’s column that the Justice Department’s inspector-general investigation, focusing on statements by FBI director James Comey in the stretch-run of the presidential campaign, is part of a carefully orchestrated Democratic scheme to win the narrative battle over the 2016 election. The inquiry into whether Director Comey’s disclosures about the Clinton e-mails investigation violated DOJ standards is merely a pretext. The real objective is to bolster the claim that Donald Trump’s triumph was illegitimate, thus undermining his presidency.

The same strategy informs the Democrats’ continued repetition of the theme that “Russia hacked the election.” Notwithstanding that Putin’s regime did not tamper with the actual voting process and that the embarrassing information released by WikiLeaks (mostly e-mails from the DNC and Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta) was true, Democrats are determined to depict President Trump not as elected fair-and-square by Americans but as maneuvered into the White House by Russian “cyber-espionage.”

Now it’s the same old wine in a different bottle.

The Senate Judiciary Committee is currently considering Trump’s nomination of Senator Jeff Sessions (R., Ala.) to be attorney general. On Tuesday, all nine Democrats on the committee signed a letter demanding that, if confirmed, Sessions recuse himself from any investigation of efforts by Russia to interfere in the election.

Let’s once again take a step back and understand what’s going on here.

If Russia merely tried to interfere in an American election, there is no basis to call for Sessions’s recusal. There is no reason to question Sessions’s motivation and commitment to investigate and prosecute espionage by Putin’s regime. The purported conflict of interest would arise only if we accept the narrative — i.e., the fiction — that “Russia hacked the election.” Had that actually happened, then it could be credibly claimed that Trump owes his presidency, and Sessions his stewardship of the Justice Department, to Russian espionage. That would be a major conflict of interest. Thus, Democrats want Sessions to concede, in effect, that he has a powerful motive to conceal Russia’s espionage — such that he must recuse himself because we cannot trust him to lead a fair and impartial investigation. Implicitly, Sessions would be conceding — and thus cementing — the fiction that “Russia hacked the election.”

In other words, the Democrats’ latest recusal ploy has nothing to do with Sessions, just as the IG investigation has nothing to do with Comey. The objective is to engrave a story on the election: The Democrats lost not because their candidate was terrible and their policies unpopular; they lost because Russia stole the election for Trump — rendering Trump illegitimate, and implicitly obliging Americans to resist him as a Putin puppet.

Read more

— Andrew C. McCarthy is a senior policy fellow at the National Review Institute and a contributing editor of National Review.


Judicial Watch’s Chris Farrell gives the facts of Russian “active measures” –

All Hands On Deck: Supporting Trump Through Inauguration Day

handsNew Zeal blog, By: Lloyd Marcus, January 16, 2017:

Trump’s Inauguration is less than a week away. While president elect Trump appears to be extraordinarily strong dealing with the tsunami of 24/7 vitriol launched at him from the Left and Washington establishment, he is still a human being.

The Bible says when Moses grew tired, “Aaron and Hur held his hands up–one on one side, one on the other–so that his hands remained steady till sunset.”

Folks, it is extremely crucial that we hold Trump’s hands up through Inauguration day. The Left is incensed over the prospect of Trump emancipating us from their 8 years of dictatorial slavery. As delusional as this sounds, the Left hopes to block Trump from being sworn in as the 45th president of the United States.

Numerous left-wing wacko groups including paid protesters vow to”shut down” the Inauguration.

Nut case, Rosie O’Donnell wants to impose martial law to delay Trump’s Inauguration.

Joseph Goebbels said, “If you tell a big lie enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it.” The Left is relentlessly repeating their huge lie that the Russians hacked the election. They want Americans to believe Russia tampered with the vote count, stealing the election from Hillary. The Left’s lie is absurd.

Concluding that no gutter tactic is too low to stop Trump, CNN and BuzzFeed partnered in promoting an unverified bogus claim that Trump hired prostitutes to urinate on a hotel bed slept in by Michelle and Obama. Yes folks, this is how disgusting and evil the Left’s insanity to block Trump has become.

As I said, at the heart of the Left’s panic, fear and rage is the prospect of Americans liberated from 8 years of Leftists forcing their far-left radical, anti-God, anti-America and anti-traditional values agenda down our throats.

Pray for our president folks. Let’s all join together and hold his hands up high.

Lloyd Marcus, The Unhyphenated American


In case you missed it Here is Jeannine Pirro’s smack down of the “illegitimate”narrative:

And as always, Andrew McCarthy gives us his penetrating analysis on the truth of what the Dems are up to:

Transition Tales: Draining the Swamp Won’t Be as Easy as You Think


Twice in thirty-five years, Republicans have taken executive power from Democrats. Twice, Democrats enjoyed great success is keeping the ministerial state firmly in the camp of the ideological left.

Some gains were made in reining in the power of bureaucrats — particularly by Ronald Reagan in 1980, but less so by George Bush in 2000. Team Trump can learn from the mistakes of the past. Draining the swamp can’t happen by flicking a switch. But some lessons from history can help.

Here are three smart ways to help #DrainTheSwamp.

Consider what happened at the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice in 2000 as a case study. The Civil Rights Division is the most powerful and radical part of the most powerful and radical federal agency. In 2000, Clinton political appointees at the Justice Department did all they could in the two months between the election and the inauguration to sabotage any incoming agenda of the Bush administration.

These problems will manifest across the federal government, but this agency was the engine of the most radical Obama policies, so it deserves special attention.

1. Reverse the Coming Hiring Spree of Leftists and Burrowed-In Political Hacks

When President Bush left office, there was a single so-called “career” deputy assistant attorney general in the Civil Rights Division. This was a position purportedly designed to provide expertise across different administrations. In practice, it became a perch for leftist lawyers to interfere with and sabotage Republican attorneys general in future administrations.  During the Obama administration, that single “career” position has been increased, I am told by Division staff, to three permanent “career” front-office staff.

But that’s not all. Team Trump cannot allow the current Obama political leadership in the Justice Department, and particularly the Civil Rights Division, to go on a hiring spree, packing the Division with militant liberals before handing over the keys to Trump. This was exactly what the Clinton Justice Department did from November 2000 through January 2001.

Literally dozens of partisan leftists joined the Division’s bureaucratic ranks during those months, as if a blue-light special on federal employment was being conducted at the ACLU.  New George W. Bush appointees were caught completely off guard when they arrived, and their naïveté allowed extraordinary mischief to occur.

Indeed, their failure to take prompt remedial action against these abuses greatly exacerbated the seemingly never-ending political battles that the Civil Rights Division bureaucrats waged with the new political leadership in the ensuing years.

Civil Rights Division lawyers were also responsible for sabotaging the federal judicial nomination of Senator Jeff Sessions before he became a senator. Some of those responsible for sabotaging Sessions, and their progeny and allies, are still in the Division in senior executive service and career lawyer positions.

Jeff Sessions Judiciary Committee hearing witnessesJeff Sessions Judiciary Committee hearing witnesses

Personnel is policy.

As Hans von Spakovsky and I demonstrated emphatically in our Every Single Oneseries at PJ Media, the Obama Civil Rights Division has strategically filled the civil service ranks from top to bottom with some of the most strident ideologues in Washington.

For eight years, these individuals have served as loyal foot soldiers for the Left, standing ready to do the bidding of liberal advocacy organizations, and carrying out Eric Holder’s (and now Loretta Lynch’s) deeply partisan agenda. Meanwhile, the resumes we received in response to our public records requests revealed that not a single conservative joined the Division during those eight years.

It will be next to impossible to dislodge most of these attorneys, because they have vested into full civil service protections.

So, a reduction in force passed by Congress would be needed.

The Trump team must not repeat the mistakes from 2000. The Department of Justice — and all federal agencies — must be told now: No hiring until after the inauguration. Anyone who starts should be let go after January 20.

2. Consider Replacing the Civil Rights Division’s Section Chiefs

The second way to drain the swamp, closely related to the first, is to strongly consider leadership changes among the Civil Rights Division’s section chiefs. These individuals have the ability to advance the new attorney general’s agenda, or bring it to a screeching halt.

Remember, these are the people who waged war against Voter ID laws, attacked Sheriff Joe, attacked border control, attacked birth genders, who pressed out-of-the-mainstream racial tests over every aspect of economic life, and who waged a campaign against law enforcement.

In other words, the Civil Rights Division section chiefs are the people who created the mainstream American backlash that helped elect Trump as president.

It won’t matter if all eight Trump political appointees in a Division of 900 employees are screaming at them to enact the Trump agenda. These skilled survivors won’t listen, or they will sabotage and slow-walk the commands — just as they did in the past.

Not surprisingly, virtually every incumbent is a fierce liberal with barely concealed ideological fervor — particularly towards someone like Trump.

Just a few months ago, DOJ Special Litigation Section Chief Steven Rosenbaum stood before dozens of employees at a staff meeting and openly made derisive jokes about Donald Trump.

Rosenbaum has a long history of hostility to police departments and has mistreated conservative lawyers inside the Civil Rights Division, according to multiple sources there I have spoken with.

This is the man who will be managing federal civil rights policy towards police departments. He is precisely the sort of entrenched federal lawyer who must go — or the swamp will still crawl.

DOJ Special Lit Chief Steve Rosenbaum

DOJ Special Lit Chief Steve Rosenbaum

These Senior Executive Service employees, along with their deputies, routinely leak like a sieve to their ideological comrades in the media and on the Hill. They will not hesitate to gum up the works of any investigation or policy matter with which they have political disagreements.

When the Justice Department inspector general discovered that DOJ employees committed perjury to hide leaks about voter ID decisions to the Washington Post, absolutely nothing was done to punish the transgressors by these Senior Executive Service employees.

When another DOJ employee was caught using a government credit card to fly to see his mistress, and managed numerous laptops that went missing, the same Steve Rosenbaum approved a lucrative buyout of the employee.

According to sources I have spoken with inside his Section, Rosenbaum also retaliated against whistleblowers who first reported the misconduct.

Rosenbaum’s handiwork can be found in the condescending language found in the Section’s recent “findings letters” against numerous police departments and correctional facilities, and in the over-the-top provisions littered throughout the Section’s judicial consent decrees. Much of this is completely untethered from any constitutional or statutory foundation.

But it isn’t just him. There’s the Criminal Section, for example.

This section gave outlandish cover to a lawyer still employed at $155,000 per year who helped frame police officers in a criminal trial in New Orleans.

The Obama administration is leaving a ticking time bomb for Team Trump by appointing Tamara Kessler as the new chief of the Criminal Section. Kessler, a former Civil Rights Division attorney returning to DOJ for a second time, is slated to begin her tenure later this month following a stint as the director of the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Civil Rights and Civil Liberties.

There, Kessler spent the bulk of her time engaging in outreach to Arab and Muslim communities and advocating for the elimination of ethnic and racial “profiling” in policing.

Referred to as an “outspoken Democrat” by those who have worked with her, she is perhaps best known as the lead investigator and co-author of the factually laughable Office of Professional Responsibility/Inspector General report on the Civil Rights Division back in 2007.

Tamara Kessler

Tamara Kessler

It is hard to imagine a bigger “Screw You” to the incoming president, the Fraternal Order of Police and other law enforcement organizations than putting Ms. Kessler at the helm of the Division’s Criminal Section.

Fortunately, she will be in a probationary period for one year after her return to DOJ, so there will be ample opportunity to replace her with someone far more balanced and professional.

This is what a swamp looks like. Draining a swamp requires draining the creatures that make it a swamp.

A federal regulation, 5 CFR § 317.901(c), prevents the involuntary reassignment of any of these individuals for 120 days after the new attorney general or senior political appointee in the Division takes office.

But after that, it’s fair game.

They can be given the choice to move anywhere in the country, at any federal agency — such as the U.S. Geological Survey — or quit.

3. Drain the Swamp of Career Leftist Lawyers

Again, personnel is policy. And Ronald Reagan knew it.

Unless one has actually worked in the Division, it is almost incomprehensible just how partisan and unethical the line attorneys there can be.

The problem is that many do not see their jobs as enforcing the law as written and representing the United States. Instead, they view themselves as advocates for far-left interest groups who are advancing a radicalized agenda — an agenda the American voters squarely rejected last week.

Their behavior won’t change in a Trump administration without remedial measures.

The good news — this part of the swamp can be drained effectively using civil service laws.

It is not always easy, and it is nearly always inefficient (particularly for any “private sector” lawyers who find themselves running the Division after January 20, 2017). As an initial matter, all new attorneys serve a one-year probationary period following their arrival at DOJ.  During that time period, they enjoy virtually no civil service protection, and they can be easily terminated or reassigned. Adverse personnel action cannot be taken on the basis of partisan political affiliation, but almost any other conduct detrimental to the mission of the Department will do the trick.

For example: advancing substantively tenuous legal or enforcement theories would suffice.

Disciplining non-probationary entrenched attorneys who seek to thwart the Trump administration by imposing their own political will on the Division’s policies and enforcement activities is equally imperative. Writing up a problematic attorney is admittedly a cumbersome process — you will curse the amount of time it takes. But papering the personnel files of such individuals from the very outset is essential to accelerating their removal from the Division, if warranted.

Verbal warnings are pointless and, I promise, will be ignored.

In some cases, section chiefs hid from Bush political leadership the misconduct of career lawyers because they shared the same politics. For example, one militant left-wing lawyer was allowed to work from her cabin in Michigan instead of in her office in Washington, even after the section chief was warned that the cozy telecommuting arrangement was not permitted. That lawyer is still employed by the Department.

Any member of the Trump political leadership who thinks they will make friends of the career attorneys is on a fool’s errand. The attorneys are there to pursue their own agenda, not yours, and certainly not the agenda of President Trump. Previous well-meaning appointees failed to grasp these realities.

Regrettably, the Justice Department’s Office of Professional Responsibility became a politicized joke under Eric Holder.

As detailed at National Review Online, Holder’s appointment of a partisan Democrat to lead that office has rendered it useless in monitoring partisan misconduct by Civil Rights Division attorneys. The inspector general is also barely effective now. A far blunter instrument will be necessary.

The new Trump leadership team should immediately reach out to the Civil Rights Division’s Administrative Section.

The staff there are bright, apolitical, and committed to serving whatever political team happens to be in office. They understand the civil service rules as well as anyone, and they will help the new leadership navigate the difficult terrain in this area. They can provide all of the emails the Division has produced over the last several years.

Sadly, they are one of the only parts of the Division that can be fully trusted by Team Trump.

Even if all of this advice is followed, it will still be hard to “Drain the Swamp” as promised. The country elected Donald Trump because he is an outsider who expressed a willingness to eschew the banality of political correctness and “shake up” the system that the Washington establishment holds dear.

There are few places as swampy as the Civil Rights Division at the Department of Justice.

Eric Holder used this Division to try to fundamentally transform the nation. The rank-and-file who willingly helped Holder are still there, enjoying $155,000-per-year salaries, or more.

And they don’t think Trump has any chance of draining their swamp. After all, they survived previous attempts.

Trump Names Steve Bannon as White House Chief Strategist and Reince Priebus as Chief of Staff


Breitbart, by Alex Swoyer, November 13, 2016:

President-elect Donald Trump announced on Sunday that Stephen K. Bannon will be the White House Chief Strategist and Senior Counselor while Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus will serve as White House Chief of Staff.

“Bannon and Priebus will continue the effective leadership team they formed during the campaign, working as equal partners to transform the federal government, making it much more efficient, effective and productive,” stated a press release from Trump’s transition team on Sunday. “Bannon and Priebus will also work together with Vice President-elect Mike Pence to help lead the transition process in the run-up to Inauguration Day.”

“I am thrilled to have my very successful team continue with me in leading our country,” stated President-elect Trump per the press release. “Steve and Reince are highly qualified leaders who worked well together on our campaign and led us to a historic victory. Now I will have them both with me in the White House as we work to make America great again.”

Bannon responded to the position, saying, “I want to thank President-elect Trump for the opportunity to work with Reince in driving the agenda of the Trump Administration.”

“We had a very successful partnership on the campaign, one that led to victory,” Bannon added. “We will have that same partnership in working to help President-elect Trump achieve his agenda.”

“It is truly an honor to join President-elect Trump in the White House as his Chief of Staff,” Priebus stated of the annoucement. “I am very grateful to the President-elect for this opportunity to serve him and this nation as we work to create an economy that works for everyone, secure our borders, repeal and replace Obamacare and destroy radical Islamic terrorism. He will be a great President for all Americans.”

The next great battle for conservatives: Keeping RINO insiders out of the administration


Conservative Review, by Daniel  Horowitz, November 13, 2016″

It’s no secret that Donald Trump is as much of a blank slate on policy as anyone who’s ever been elected president. Both supporters and opponents of the president-elect agree that Trump is still very malleable on many issues and has a lot to learn about both foreign and domestic policy. This is why it is critical for conservatives to win the ‘battle of personnel’ in the coming days. Failure to land conservative outsiders in key cabinet and advisory roles would be akin to failing to establish control of the beach head during the Normandy invasion. We can dream of our policy battles once we get a footing on land, but if the same RINO insiders who broke the system are allowed to control the administration, we will immediately fall back in the sea, rendering the entire election moot.

While many conservatives were and remain apprehensive about Trump’s commitment to conservative values on some issues, the appeal most saw in him was a figure who would bulldoze the failed elites and rid the system of its barnacles. This sentiment was perhaps epitomized during the debates when Hillary Clinton would proudly tout her decades of experience. Trump simply retorted, “Hillary has experience, but it’s bad experience.” It gets back to Bill Buckley’s old adage – “I’d rather entrust the government of the United States to the first 400 people listed in the Boston telephone directory than to the faculty of Harvard University.” Nowhere is this more evident than with foreign policy, national security, and immigration. Almost everyone with experience in these fields within government has been on the wrong side of these issues and harbor views so divorced from reality that even random names in a telephone book would make better decisions. Yet, these same failed insiders are now gravitating to the transition team like a fly on stink and are looking for jobs.

The first challenge is to appoint a chief of staff who is not only resolute and organized but who shares the vision of the movement Trump has led. A good first start is to reject calls from establishment figures to name RNC Chairman Reince Priebus to this top advisory role.

Additionally, failure to keep the following people out of the administration would tarnish the entire appeal of a Trump presidency:

Chris Christie – potential pick for Attorney General

Just take a look at CR’s issue profile of Chris Christie and it will become clear that this man has been pushing liberal views on fiscal, social, and foreign policies for years. He was rabidly pro-amnesty before he latched himself onto Trump. The notion that someone with his principles and mindset would clean out the Justice Department is a fantasy. The notion that a man who appointed liberal judges as governor would fight legal battles against the rainbow jihad is an exercise in pink unicorns. Christie would be better suited at the Department of Transportation where he can manage traffic on the bridges.

Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX) – potential pick for DHS Secretary

There is no doubt that the issues of immigration and Islamic terror are the two biggest factors in Trump’s win. This is why it’s so important to keep McCaul away from DHS. As we’ve chronicled in this column, McCaul has done nothing to fight the open borders crowd, and in fact, proposed terrible immigration bills as chairman of the Homeland Security Committee. This is the exact sort of “bad experience” the voters want Trump to reject.

More importantly, McCaul has been a leader in the promotion of “Countering Violent Extremism,” which is subversion agenda advanced by North American Muslim Brotherhood affiliates to obfuscate any mention of Islamic terrorism. This is the very willful blindness that Americans so desperately wanted to change with the outcome of this election. Appointing McCaul to head Homeland Security would continue to empower groups like CAIR at a time when they must be banned from government. McCaul famously wrote a note to a top CAIR official suggesting that his organization is moderate and an effective weapon against terrorists.

Ambassador to Saudi Arabia would probably be a more appropriate position for Mr. McCaul.

Bob Corker – Secretary of State

There is no better example of elevating the arsonist to firefighter than the prospect of appointing Senator Bob Corker (R-TN) to head the State Department. Even in past Republican administrations, the State Department has served as a fifth column promoting the ‘America last’ agenda. This is why it is even more critical to place someone with an outsider’s mindset in the office of Secretary of State more than any other position. Bob Corker is the worst possible choice.

Corker is every bit as responsible for the Iran deal as Hillary Clinton and John Kerry. His views on foreign policy in general reflect the very inside-the-beltway mentality that must change with a new administration.

As I chronicled in my dossier on Corker back when he was being considered for Vice President, the Tennessee senator has sandbagged us on amnesty, taxes, Dodd-Frank, and the START treaty – just to name a few issues. Appointing Corker to any position of prominence, much less Secretary of State, would undermine Trump’s entire movement and reflect an exercise in making the establishment elites great again.

But maybe if Trump appoints him to a cushy ambassadorship, it could free up his Senate seat for conservatives …

Mike Rogers – National Security

Former Michigan Rep. Mike Rogers (R-MI) is heading up the part of the transition team responsible for national security. He is rumored to be in the running for CIA Director or Director of National Intelligence. If there was ever a politician who emblematized the disease of “Washington insiderism” and represents the failure of Republicans to hold Obama accountable for his perfidious foreign policy, it’s Mike Rogers.

As Chairman of the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, Rogers put out such a weak report on the Benghazi scandal that it was tantamount to a cover-up. As Trey Gowdy said at the time, Rogers didn’t even interview eye witnesses before he issued his report. In May 2014, ace national security report, Eli Lake, reported that Rogers downright opposed the formation of the Benghazi Select Committee and seemed to be defending the Obama administration.

Why was he siding with Obama?

While we might never get the full story, the details that are out in public should automatically disqualify Rogers to serve in the administration. In June 2014, Judicial Watch reported that Rogers’ wife, Kristi, who was a top executive at the British-based security contractor Aegis Defense Services, helped win major security contracts for her group. “Libya also was an area of activity for Aegis, Ms. Rogers’ company. As Rep. Rogers assumed control of the Intelligence Committee, an Aegis subsidiary, Aegis Advisory, began setting up shop in Libya,” wrote Micha Morrison of Judicial Watch.

Read the full report from Judicial Watch, which raises serious questions about a conflict of interest in Libya.

Rogers bizarrely announced his retirement and said he planned to pursue a career in radio, a move that shocked a lot of people in Washington. Yet, now he is groveling for a position in the new administration. What happened to his radio career?

If people around Trump plan to elevate a man like Mike Rogers to a top national security or intel post, they as may as well replace him with Huma Abedin.

In summary …

The key for Trump is to avoid the mistakes of the past and to NOT automatically rely on insiders. Everyone expects Trump to look outside the box for Cabinet positions. That is in fact his mandate. There are plenty of smart, qualified conservatives who have not been infected by the elitist Kool Aide and the corruption of Washington. And if he is ever short on staffing options, he should remember Bill Buckley’s advice and pull out a telephone book before he taps the very people that have endangered our national security.

When the Trump Team Comes Looking for the Secrets of Obama’s Iran File


PJ Media, by Claudia Rosett, November 11, 2016:

Thursday’s cordial meeting between President-elect Donald Trump and President Barack Obama was a reassuring ritual of democracy. But Obama was far from convincing when he told Trump “we are now going to do everything we can to help you succeed.” There are some highly disparate ideas here about what constitutes success, both foreign and domestic. There are also big areas in which one might reasonably wonder if Obama and his team are in a quandary over the prospect of a Trump administration inheriting the internal records of the most transparent administration ever.

Take, for instance, the Iran nuclear deal, Obama’s signature foreign policy legacy, the chief accomplishment of his second term. The Obama administration’s Iran file has been a realm of murk, crammed with dangerous concessions and secret side deals for terror-sponsoring Tehran — to a degree that has left some critics wondering if Obama’s real aim was to empower Iran as the hegemon of the Middle East (equipped with ballistic missiles to complement its “exclusively peaceful” nuclear program).

The cherry on top — officially separate from the nuclear deal, but highly coincident — was the Obama administration’s secret conveyance to Iran early this year of cash totaling $1.7 billion for the settlement of an old claim against the United States.

Like Obama’s other legacy achievement, the unaffordable Affordable Care Act, a.k.a. Obamacare, these Iran dealings were so intricate, extensive and opaque that we are still discovering just how duplicitous the official narratives were. Obama never submitted the Iran nuclear deal as a treaty for ratification by the Senate. Instead, he rushed the deal to the United Nations Security Council for approval less than a week after the final text was announced, and left Congress wrestling through the ensuing weeks, during the summer of 2015, to try to extract vital details from the elusive Obama and his team, subject to a legislative bargain so convoluted that the process, and the deal, never came to a vote.

For simplicity’s sake, let’s focus on the $1.7 billion “settlement” paid to Iran, which Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry, apparently with no prior notice to Congress, announced this past January.  Obama and Kerry did not mention at the time that the administration was shelling out the funds in cash, to be airlifted into Iran — a form of payment especially handy for Iran’s illicit ventures, such as terrorism and procurement for its ballistic missile program (the usual role of ballistic missiles — which Iran has continued testing — being to carry nuclear weapons, which Obama has assured us Iran under his deal is not developing).

Obama and his team also neglected to mention that $1.3 billion of his administration’s cash bonanza for Tehran had come from the pockets of American taxpayers, via an obscure channel at Treasury called the Judgment Fund. It took months before such specifics came to light, which they did thanks not to the administration, but to the efforts of the press, and a number of persistent questioners in Congress — to whom the administration sent tardy and evasive replies.

Questions continue to swirl around this cash-for-Iran arrangement. Was it a ransom for American prisoners released by Iran on the same day the Obama administration announced the $1.7 billion settlement? (The Obama administration has repeatedly asked the public to swallow the logical fallacy that because it is not U.S. policy to pay ransom, this was not a ransom).

Why did the administration — until outed in August and September in a series of stories by the press — make a secret of the cash, the conduits and the dates of delivery? What were — what are — the full terms of this confidential arrangement? Which, according to a Sept. 29 report in The Wall Street Journal, included, as part of a package of three secret documents signed in Geneva, U.S. backing for the lifting of UN sanctions on two Iranian state banks blacklisted for financing Iran’s ballistic missile program.

Why have the relevant texts of all this wheeling and dealing been kept secret? Why has the administration repeatedly stonewalled questions from Congress? What were the machinations behind Obama’s claim, after The Wall Street Journal on August 3 broke the story of the first tranche of $400 million in cash for Iran, that the U.S. government had no choice but to pay Iran with a mountain of hard-currency banknotes? Based on what internal calculus did the administration refuse to provide public confirmation for another few weeks — until after the news broke in the press — that the additional $1.3 billion in taxpayers funds had also been paid in cash? On the basis of what information, precisely, did Attorney General Loretta Lynch certify that Treasury paying out those tax dollars to Iran was in the interest of the United States?

The government of terror-sponsoring Iran knows the answers to many of these questions. The American public does not. But we can reasonably speculate that as this cash-for-Iran saga unfolded, it left a trail of records within the Obama administration. Classified, quite likely — but surely there are some illuminating documents that someone with the proper clearances might wish to read.

Once upon a time, we would have called this a paper trail; these days it would more likely be digital. But at the very least, there ought to be the secret texts, the related justifications, requisitions and all the to-and-fro that would presumably be involved in the State Department, the Pentagon and Treasury (at the behest of the Justice Department, on behalf of State, with the blessing of President Obama), secretly organizing cash shipments totaling $1.7 billion for Iran — and then, for months, despite persistent questions from Congress and the press, covering it up. Add to that the overlap — or was it, as appears more likely, the coordination? — of all that clandestinely conveyed cash with the return of American hostages. Then amplify this scene dramatically, to include the manufacturing of the mothership Iran nuclear deal itself, and the related handling of sanctions (which, as the 2014-2015 Iran talks stretched out from the initially planned six months to 17, appeared, despite administration protests to the contrary, to be ever more casually enforced).

Which brings us back to America’s presidential election a mere three days ago, in which it sure looks like Obama and his team were blind-sided by Trump’s defeat of Hillary Clinton. Misled by their own narratives, by their echo chamber in the press, by erroneous polls, by the same arrogance that begat the presidential rule of pen-and-phone and Ben-Rhodes-narratives, Obama and his team were expecting a handover to Hillary. She might not agree with them on everything, but as a former insider herself, as a candidate who was running to continue Obama’s trajectory and cement his legacies, she wasn’t someone whose access to the Iran file was likely to cause anyone currently in the White House to lose sleep (provided she’d really ditched her non-secure home-server proclivities).

And then Hillary lost.

Read more

The Communists Behind the Anti-Trump Protests

f_trump_cityprotests_161109-nbcnews-ux-1080-600Front Page Magazine, by John Perazzo, November 11, 2016:

Ever since Donald Trump’s election victory Tuesday night, the media have been abuzz with stories about massive, sometimes violent, anti-Trump protests breaking out in cities all across the country. We’ve been told that ordinary Americans everywhere are so frightened and angered by the prospect of a Trump presidency—as opposed to a Hillary Clinton presidency—that they’re taking to the streets to express their grave concerns for the future of the country.

In Chicago, for instance, thousands of people held an “emergency protest” outside a Trump hotel, chanting: “No Trump, No KKK, No Fascist USA!”

In New York, some 5,000 people (including the political oracle Lady Gaga) demonstrated outside Trump Tower. “Their concerns,” said CNN, “ranged from policies, such as Trump’s proposed plan to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexican border, to the polarizing tenor of his campaign that they say stoked xenophobic fears.”

In Oakland, some of the 7,000+ demonstrators damaged police cars, vandalized businesses, hurled Molotov cocktails and rocks at law-enforcement officers, and started at least 40 separate fires.

And in Los Angeles, more than 1,000 people filled the streets, burned Trump in effigy, and sang John Lennon’s Give Peace a Chance. “Several protesters said they feared that family or friends might be deported once Trump takes office,” said CNN.

From reading the various mainstream media accounts of these events, one comes away with the distinct impression that they are grassroots actions that began organically among ordinary, concerned, well-meaning citizens.

But alas, if one were to think that, one would be wrong.

Contrary to media misrepresentations, many of the supposedly spontaneous, organic, anti-Trump protests we have witnessed in cities from coast to coast were in fact carefully planned and orchestrated, in advance, by a pro-Communist organization called the ANSWER Coalition, which draws its name from the acronym for “Act Now to Stop War and End Racism.” ANSWER was established in 2001 by Ramsey Clark’s International Action Center, a group staffed in large part by members of the Marxist-Leninist Workers World Party. In 2002, the libertarian author Stephen Suleyman Schwartz described ANSWER as an “ultra-Stalinist network” whose members served as “active propaganda agents for Serbia, Iraq, and North Korea, as well as Cuba, countries they repeatedly visit and acclaim.”

Since its inception, ANSWER has consistently depicted the United States as a racist, sexist, imperialistic, militaristic nation guilty of unspeakable crimes against humanity—in other words, a wellspring of pure evil. When ANSWER became a leading organizer of the massive post-9/11 demonstrations against the Patriot Act and the U.S. invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, it formed alliances with other likeminded entities such as Not In Our Name (a project of the Revolutionary Communist Party) and United For Peace and Justice (a pro-Castro group devoted to smearing America as a cesspool of bigotry and oppression).

Another key organizer of the current anti-Trump protests is a group called Socialist Alternative, which describes “the global capitalist system” as “the root cause of … poverty, discrimination, war, and environmental destruction.” Explaining that “the dictatorships that existed in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe were [unfortunate] perversions of what socialism is really about,” this organization calls for a happy-faced “democratic socialism where ordinary people will have control over our daily lives.”

And, lo and behold, many components of Socialist Alternative’s agenda mesh seamlessly with Hillary Clinton’s political priorities. For instance, Socialist Alternative seeks to: (a) “raise the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour, as a step toward a living wage for all”; (b) provide “free [taxpayer-funded] … public education for all from pre-school through college”; (c) create “a publicly funded single-payer [healthcare] system as a step towards fully socialized medicine”; (d) impose absolutely “no budget cuts [on] education and social services”; and (e) legislate “a major increase in taxes on the rich and big business.”

In short, the anti-Trump protests that are currently making headlines are 100% contrived, fake, phony exhibitions of street theater, orchestrated entirely by radicals and revolutionaries whose chief objective is to push America ever farther to the political left. Moreover, they seek to utterly demoralize conservatives into believing that public opposition to their own (conservative) political and social values is growing more powerful, more passionate, and more widespread with each passing day.

The bottom line is this: The leaders and organizers of the anti-Trump protests that are currently making so much noise in cities across America, are faithfully following the blueprint of Hillary Clinton’s famous mentor, Saul Alinsky, who urged radical activists to periodically stage loud, defiant, massive protest rallies expressing rage and discontent. Such demonstrations are designed to give onlookers the impression that a mass movement is preparing to shift into high gear, and that its present size is but a fraction of what it eventually will become. A “mass impression,” said Alinsky, can be lasting and intimidating: “Power is not only what you have but what the enemy thinks you have…. The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself.”

And that is precisely what we are witnessing at the moment.

Also see: