The liberal left loudly criticized George W. Bush for it surveillance program developed after 9-11 to prevent future terrorist attacks. These included using NSA to survey certain telephone calls without obtaining a warrant. The following article by the Washington Post criticizes Bush, while acknowledging this was only used to monitor suspected terrorists. No one even suspected that Bush would use this to conduct surveillance on political opponents. They were angry that it was being used to conduct surveillance on anyone. Ultimately that program was abandoned and replaced by the Patriot Act.
The Patriot Act was designed to allow for surveillance but to limit it to threats of terrorism.
But under Obama, those restrictions where apparently shredded. The following document titled 2016 Cert FISC Memo Opin Order April 2017 is interesting:
On page 19, it is documented that NSA analysts had been conducting queries that were illegal and non-compliant at a rate that was staggering. The report concluded that this represented an institutional lack of candor (deliberate lying). To put this in perspective, there are some reports that 85% of these queries did not meet the standard. In addition, federal contractors were able to access the database and conduct 40,000 queries. We know something happened, but the magnitude of the problem has not been fully documented. Some of the leaks come from places like info wars that are not necessarily that credible.
There are some who think the Obama administration was engaged in a systematic effort to spy on anyone they considered a threat. That would be consistent with the unmasking we definitely know went on. All we really know if that they were lying about what was happening.
You did not read about this in the Washington Post. They didn’t care. Apparently Bush spying on terrorists is the crime of the century, but Obama spying on everyone is just par for the course. More likely the Washington Post could never bring itself to suspect wrong doing by the Obama administration.
We know a couple of very interesting facts. Admiral Mike Rogers, Director of the NSA is the one who notified the FISA court of the abuse. Rogers, without authorization, flew to New York to meeting with President-elect Trump. Trump moved his transition team out of Trump tower and he also fired Mike Roger, from the transition team. Coincidence? (Same name, different guys) Several people in the Pentagon and the intelligence services tried to get Trump to fire Admiral Mike Rogers. There was a direct request by James Clapper and Ashton Carter. Soon and very soon this is all going to be documented and made public. Admiral Rogers retired on May 5, 2018.
Here is some of what he said:
This nation entrust us with an amazing set of capabilities. We are given access to data of incredible sensitivity. We must continue to safeguard that, ensure the appropriate security, and to remember the trust the nation places in us.
We execute our critical mission of foreign intelligence and cybersecurity at NSA within a legal framework and set of policies that we follow to the letter.
That is our strength. That is what generates the confidence of this nation.
That these many resources that are granted to us are being used appropriately, wisely and in the best interests of the citizens we serve.
Here is a timeline of events transpiring at the NSA in2016.
- November 2015-April 2016 – The FBI and DOJ’s National Security Division (NSD) uses private contractors to access raw FISA information using “To” and “From” FISA-702(16) & “About” FISA-702(17) queries.
- March 2016 – NSA Director Rogers becomes aware of improper access to raw FISA data.
- April 2016 – Rogers orders the NSA compliance officer to run a full audit on 702 NSA compliance.
- April 18 2016 – Rogers shuts down FBI/NSD contractor access to the FISA Search System.
- April-September 2016 – Rogers continues his investigation.
- September 26 2016 – DOJ’s NSD Head John Carlin files the Government’s proposed 2016 Section 702 certifications. The filing does not disclose the FISA Abuses. Carlin is aware of Rogers’ compliance review. The 2016 certifications are scheduled for Court approval on October 26, 2016.
- September 27 2016 – Carlin announces he is resigning. Mary McCord will later assume his position.
- October 15, 2016 – Carlin formally leaves the NSD.
- Mid-October 2016 – DNI Clapper submits a recommendation to the White House that Director Rogers be removed from the NSA. Clapper’s effort fails.
- October 20 2016 – Rogers is briefed by the NSA compliance officer on the Section 702 NSA compliance audit and “About” query violations.
- October 21 2016 – Rogers shuts down all “About Query” activity. Rogers reports the activity to DOJ and prepares to go before the FISA Court.
- October 21 2016 – DOJ & FBI seek and receive a Title I FISA probable cause order authorizing electronic surveillance on Carter Page from the FISC. At this point, the FISA Court is unaware of the Section 702 violations.
- October 24 2016 – Rogers verbally informs the FISA Court of Section 702(17) violations.
- October 26 2016 – Rogers formally informs the FISA Court of 702(17) violations in writing.
- October 26, 2016 – The FISA Court refuses to formalize the 2016 Section 702 certifications. A complete overhaul of Section 702 processes ensues.
- November 17 2016 (morning) – Rogers travels to meet President-Elect Trump and his Transition Team in Trump Tower. Rogers does not inform DNI James Clapper.
- November 17 2016 (evening) – Trump Transition Team announces they are moving all transition activity to Trump National Golf Club in New Jersey.
So ask yourself a question. Is there more evidence of the Trump campaign colluding with Russia or the Obama administration abusing power? Who do you trust? James Comey or William Barr? Seriously, would any sane person trust James Comey?
If you ever watch a crime show, like criminal minds, you learn to watch for the critical moment. That is when the police not only know the suspect, they know they have enough evidence to make an arrest and obtain a conviction. While things can move excruciatingly slow up for a long time, once that happens things move at the speed of light.
It is increasingly obvious that a lot of people tried, and failed, to frame Trump for colluding with Russia. The real question is why? Because they were so upset Hillary lost? Because they really hate him that much? What if the primary motivation was to cover-up their own crimes.