October 31-November 1, 2016 -- The Clinton email investigation in non-hysterical terms
With FBI director James Comey informing 16 Republican and Democratic congressional committee and subcommittee chairmen and ranking members with responsibility for justice and the judiciary, intelligence, homeland security, and governmental affairs, oversight, and reform that he was re-examining the bureau's probe of Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's email server and related matters, the Clinton team and her loyalists in the media have all had a case of the vapors. Comey's October 28th letter to Congress must be read without the hysterical hair pulling and teeth gnashing now on full display within the Clinton campaign and the editorial offices of The Washington Post, The New York Times, and The Daily Beast.
Comey, in his letter, wrote:
"In previous congressional testimony, l referred to the fact that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) had completed its investigation of former Secretary Clinton's personal email server. Due to recent developments, I am writing to supplement my previous testimony.
In connection with an unrelated case, the FBI has learned of the existence of emails that appear to be pertinent to the investigation. I am writing to inform you that the investigative team briefed me on this yesterday, and I agreed that the FBI should take appropriate investigative steps designed to allow investigators to review these emails to determine whether they contain classified information, as well as to assess their importance to our investigation.
Although the FBI cannot yet assess whether or not this material may be significant, and I cannot predict how long it will take us to complete this additional work, I believe it is important to update your Committees about our efforts in light of my previous testimony."
Comey's letter to Congress was followed by an open-letter to FBI employees:
This morning I sent a letter to Congress in connection with the Secretary Clinton email investigation. Yesterday, the investigative team briefed me on their recommendation with respect to seeking access to emails that have recently been found in an unrelated case. Because those emails appear to be pertinent to our investigation, I agreed that we should take appropriate steps to obtain and review them.
Of course, we don’t ordinarily tell Congress about ongoing investigations, but here I feel an obligation to do so given that I testified repeatedly in recent months that our investigation was completed. I also think it would be misleading to the American people were we not to supplement the record. At the same time, however, given that we don’t know the significance of this newly discovered collection of emails, I don’t want to create a misleading impression. In trying to strike that balance, in a brief letter and in the middle of an election season, there is significant risk of being misunderstood, but I wanted you to hear directly from me about it."
No where in the two letters did Comey say that his re-opened investigation had anything to do with the FBI's recent criminal investigation of former New York Representative Anthony Weiner for allegedly "sexting" pictures of himself to an underage female teen in North Carolina. The information about Wiener's involvement came in the form of anonymous leaks by Democratic political appointees within the Department of Justice, who are loyal to Hillary Clinton. One chief suspect in the leak is Comey's deputy director, Andrew McCabe, the point man for the FBI's investigation of Clinton's email server.
McCabe's wife, Dr. Jill MCabe, received a half million dollars from the political action committee of Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe, an ally of Hillary Clinton, for her 2015 Virginia state senate campaign against incumbent Dick Black. Senator Black was at the forefront of the campaign to release the 28 classified pages in the congressional report on the 9/11 attack. McAuliffe is the subject of yet another FBI investigation of the governor's contributions received from Chinese billionaire Wang Wenliang. Foreign contributions to political campaigns are illegal and the Clintons' association with Chinese money is nothing new as the 1996 Clinton campaign attests. Chinese businessman Johnny Chung and Chinese People's Liberation Army Lieutenant Colonel Liu Chaoying donated $300,000 to Bill Clinton's and the Democrats' 1996 re-election campaign. The Democrats returned $360,000 due to "insufficient information" about the money's origins. The Clintons' chief fundraiser in 1996 was none other than McAuliffe.
Comey never indicated what newly-discovered emails prompted his re-opening of the case but from previous statements, it is known that the FBI has been investigating several e-mail chains and more than one e-mail server operated by Hillary Clinton and her associates.
By leaking information that Comey was looking at Weiner's laptop computer and information found on it that belonged to Weiner's estranged wife and Hillary Clinton's number one aide Huma Abedin, the news media and public were, once again, diverted to sordid sexual events surrounding Weiner.
Weiner became Mrs. Clinton's "fall guy" in the same manner that NBC Today Show host Billy Bush became a fall guy for the Donald Trump "grab her pussy" scandal in the leaked out take videotape from the show "Access Hollywood." The Clinton psychological operations team, in doing damage control, wanted Weiner's "dick pics" to be the focus, as much as Trump's lewd comments about "grabbing pussies" became a diversion for public consumption.
Mrs. Clinton and the Democrats immediately called on Comey to reveal everything about the case before the end of October. With eight days left before the election, the Clinton team tipped their hand in calling for "full disclosure." In fact, the Clinton team does not know what new information Comey has in his possession and whether or not it is limited to the investigation of information found on Weiner's laptop computer. FBI sources indicated that the focus on Wiener's laptop came after a "metadata" search of its hard drive by FBI agents involved in investigating Wiener for violating federal statutes on child pornography.
The fact that Comey decided to inform the congressional intelligence and homeland security committees about his extended investigation is significant. The government oversight and judiciary committees are one thing, but the addition of intelligence and homeland security indicates several possibilities in the ongoing case against Clinton and Abedin.
Abedin said she does not know how her information ended up on her husband's laptop. In 2013, Abedin signed a government affidavit affirming, under criminal liability for false statements, that she returned all classified information while serving as Clinton's chief aide at the State Department. In potentially finding additional classified information on Weiner's laptop, the FBI may have caught Abedin in two cases of lying: once to FBI agents who interviewed her and another in perjuring herself in the State Department classified material retention affidavit. Prison is often the outcome for those charged with lying to federal agents.
Forgetting the Weiner case for the moment, Comey may have information that Abedin was funneling classified information to Teneo, the Manhattan-based hedge fund and intelligence firm where Abedin worked simultaneously to her government employment with the State Department. It has been reported that since August the FBI has conducted an intensive investigation of the Clinton Foundation from the FBI's field office in southern Manhattan. The choice of Manhattan, not Arkansas, as the focal point for the investigation of the foundation would suggest strongly that the FBI's investigation involves Teneo, an outfit founded by Bill Clinton's longtime personal aide Doug Band and on whose advisory board Bill Clinton served.
It is very likely that Comey might have more evidence from the bureau's investigation of the Clinton Foundation, which, of course, involves Abedin. The suspended Clinton email investigation could have very well been reignited as a result of new evidence stemming from two New York-based investigations: that involving Teneo and the other focused on Weiner's laptop. The more recent investigation of Weiner may have also provided ancillary evidence in the investigation of the Clinton Foundation and its foreign donors. And it is the foreign connections, including foreign governments, of the Clinton Foundation that would have resulted in Comey informing congressional intelligence and homeland security committees that his investigation of Mrs. Clinton and her cohorts was resuming. If it turned out that Mrs. Clinton was receiving foreign campaign donations and the FBI knew it prior to the November 8th election, Comey would have been at the center of a Watergate-level criminal conspiracy involving obstruction of justice and acting as an accessory to racketeering.
By informing all the relevant congressional committees before the election, Comey took out an insurance policy for himself and the bureau in the event Mrs. Clinton is elected president. The FBI, in opting for disclosure of the investigation of Mrs. Clinton, avoided being pulled into the same sort of political controversy that plagued FBI director L. Patrick Gray in the Watergate scandal. Gray was raked over the coals during the pre-impeachment events surrounding President Richard Nixon for burning Watergate documents in his fireplace. If Clinton is elected president and there is a subsequent move for impeachment over her perjury and obstruction of justice, Comey is above the political fray and he wanted Republicans and Democrats in the key committees to know that. Longtime Clinton adviser and friend Doug Schoen retracted his endorsement of Mrs. Clinton in the wake of Comey's re-investigation. Schoen cited what he believes will be a near-certain "constitutional crisis" if Clinton is elected president.
Like Watergate, which not only involved the White House Plumbers Unit break-in of Democratic National Committee headquarters at the Watergate building but also the break-in of Daniel Ellsberg's psychiatrist's office and criminal pay-offs of cash to conspirators and political dirty tricks operations, the Clinton scandal is not merely limited to private email servers and destroying hardware and erasing computer files.
From Nixon to Poppy Bush to Hillary: crimes of state.
The Clinton scandals also involve the illegal shipment of U.S.- and foreign-manufactured weapons to jihadist rebels in Libya and Syria against U.S. law. When Clinton and Abedin oversaw the jihadist rebellions in both countries, the U.S. was subject to a United Nations arms embargo against both civil war theaters. The sudden decision on October 5 by the Justice Department to drop all charges against the State Department-licensed Turi Defense Group and its owner, Marc Turi, for violating U.S. law by shipping unregistered weapons to Libyan rebels, some of which were transferred to Syrian rebels by the CIA station in Benghazi, indicates that Attorney General Loretta Lynch wanted the Turi case to disappear before the November 8th election. The federal trial of Turi and his company was due to begin on November 8th. The indictment of Turi was brought in the U.S. Court for the District of Arizona in Phoenix. Phoenix's Sky Harbor International Airport was the scene of an impromptu and highly-questionable tarmac meeting between Bill Clinton and Attorney General Lynch on June 27, 2016. Turi claims that approval for the secret weapons shipments to Libya and onward to Syria were personally approved by Mrs. Clinton and had a green light from the CIA. Any new email or other evidence that Mrs. Clinton authorized illegal weapons shipments to jihadist terrorists would have required Comey to notify the homeland security committees in Congress.
There are multiple FBI investigations of Hillary Clinton, ranging from her private e-mail servers and foreign political contributions to weapons smuggling to terrorists and obstruction of justice.
It is extremely noteworthy that Comey sent his letter to the Senate and House Appropriations Subcommittees on Commerce and Justice. The Commerce Department has a role, along with the State Department, in approving the export and re-export of certain items, pursuant to various export control laws, to countries designated by the U.S. Secretary of State as state sponsors of international terrorism, as well as certain countries, entities and individuals subject to domestic unilateral or UN sanctions. Since Mrs. Clinton, as Secretary of State, violated the law in approving weapons sales to terrorists in Libya and Syria, the Commerce Department may be a partner in the FBI's investigation since Commerce is a more neutral actor. Hence, Comey's letter to the Commerce oversight committees.
It is obvious why the Clinton team, the Obama White House, and the pro-Clinton media wants to divert attention to Weiner's "wiener pics." By taking several deep breaths and examining Comey's letters and other known evidence, the case against Clinton may very well involve major criminal conspiracies, including foreign funding of the Clinton campaign via the Clinton Foundation and Teneo, Clinton's role in illegal weapons smuggling reminiscent of the Iran-Contra scandal, Abedin and Weiner being potential agents for a foreign power or powers, and massive obstruction of justice by Mrs. Clinton and her top State Department and campaign aides.
The 2016 "October Surprise" caught the scandal-plagued Clinton team short.
The Clinton scandal, in many ways, resembles more the Iran-Contra scandal than Watergate. In Watergate, the cover-up by Nixon and his cronies, in many respects, was worse than the original crimes. In Iran-Contra, the arms and drugs smuggling crimes were as bad as the cover-up, including the role of George H. W. Bush in the entire affair. With "E-mailgate," shipping U.S. weapons to terrorists and accepting foreign campaign donations from dodgy regimes in Saudi Arabia, Morocco, and Qatar are every bit as bad as the obvious ensuing cover-up by Hillary Clinton and her and her husband's cronies. If that is what Comey and the FBI are now looking at, they had every right and a major responsibility to inform Congress and the voting public. And Comey has every right not to tip off the data- and equipment-destroying Hillary Clinton about what he and the bureau may have on her.