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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 6/3/17

Trump, Brennan and the Intel Community's Iron Wall of Secrecy

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From Counterpunch

CIA Director John Brennan
CIA Director John Brennan
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Is Russiagate an investigation of foreign meddling into US elections or retaliation for Washington's stunning defeat in Syria?

The opening of the Russiagate investigation closely coincides with the Battle of Aleppo, which was the turning point in the six-year-long Syrian War. In July 2016 -- the same month the FBI reportedly began its Russia hacking investigation -- Russian-led forces launched their long-awaited Aleppo military offensive. Syrian, Iranian and Hezbollah fighters surrounded the city cutting off critical supply-lines to the Sunni militants who remained inside a rapidly shrinking cauldron. In a bitterly-contested, winner-take-all slugfest, loyalist troops flushed the terrorists out of their hideouts and spider-holes, corralled them into smaller, isolated pockets, and forced them to either surrender or retreat. After months of aerial bombardment and door-to-door urban warfare, the opposition collapsed, the Syrian Army regained control of the city, and the broken jihadist militias fled eastward towards Raqqa, Deir Ezzor and beyond.

The CIA's defeat was a humiliating blow to Director John Brennan whose support for mostly foreign-born extremists was supposed to achieve Washington's regime change aspirations with less fallout than a full-blown ground war like Iraq. But the plan failed miserably casting serious doubt on Washington's ability to maintain its regional hegemony or global domination. Russiagate, which is less of an "investigation" than it is a public relations "smear campaign," is the predictable reaction to Washington's colossal defeat in Aleppo. It is an attempt to expand on the economic sanctions-meme, that is, to use all the tools at one's disposal to wage war on the enemy.

Russia has become the single greatest obstacle to Uncle Sam's imperial ambitions; it is the emergent threat of which Paul Wolfowitz warned during the Bush years. This is why Russia is relentlessly demonized by the media, penalized with harsh economic sanctions, and disparaged among the allies. And this is why Brennan launched Russiagate. It's a form of asymmetrical retaliation, 4th Generation "hybrid" warfare, all of which falls under the heading of "Full Spectrum Dominance," the cornerstone of the Pentagon's war doctrine.

According to Mother Jones, it was not the FBI that initiated the "Trump-Russia connection"... but..."Former CIA Director John Brennan says he was the one who got the ball rolling."

Indeed. Brennan appears to be the central figure in this political fiasco, the font from which many of the spurious accusations, the bogus claims and the ominous pronouncements seem to emerge. Why is that?

It's because Brennan's army of Salafist misfits were clobbered in Aleppo leaving the Director with egg on his face. That's why Brennan wants payback, he wants to hurt the people who hurt him, namely, Putin. That's what Russiangate is all about: Revenge.

But how does Trump fit in with all this, after all, Trump had no part in Syria, and he certainly had nothing to do with Brennan's defeat in Aleppo.

Trump was merely added to the mix after the smear campaign had already begun and the demonization process was in full-swing. It's almost like Trump was an after-thought on the part of the perpetrators who must have figured they could kill two birds with one stone. The only problem is that they forgot that attacking a sitting president can be a lot thornier than slandering a foreign adversary. For one thing, it requires proof of wrongdoing which has been the glitch from the get-go. The media and the political class have mastered the accusations and fearmongering-part, they're a just bit short on the proof-part which is what they really need to work on. Regrettably for them, they have yet to produce any hard evidence of foreign meddling or collusion in the 10 month-long probe. (Ex-DNI Director James Clapper has said repeatedly that there is no "smoking gun" proof of collusion.) On top of that, we now know that the foundation upon which they have built their pyramid of lies, the so called Intelligence Community Assessment, was written by hand-picked analysts whose conclusions were arguably twisted to fit the policy. In other words, the ICA is a thoroughly-unreliable document that represents the political objectives of its authors. In layman's terms, it's worthless.

In last week's testimony before the House Intelligence Committee, Brennan demonstrated once again his uncanny ability to control the narrative. In tightly scripted comments, the former Spook Chief attempted to frame members of the Trump campaign by suggesting their relations with Russian officials were either improper or illegal, a dubious charge that he has yet to prove. Here's part of what he said:

"I encountered and am aware of information and intelligence that revealed contacts and interactions between Russian officials and U.S. persons involved in the Trump campaign that I was concerned about because of known Russian efforts to suborn such individuals. It raised questions in my mind about whether Russia was able to gain the cooperation of those individuals."

That was all the Washington Post needed to demand "a full investigation of Russia's election-year hacking, (and) any sort of Trump campaign collusion."

The Post doesn't quibble about trivial matters like probable cause, reasonable doubt or the presumption of innocence. Heck, no. Let's impanel a Grand Jury and let the impeachment proceedings begin! It's a wonder that the W.P's coverage is taken seriously by its readers. The bias is so glaring, you could cut it with a knife. And Politico is even worse. Here's a blurb from Politico's Austin Wright on the same Brennan quote from above:

"(Brennan's) remarks, before the House Intelligence Committee, are the most direct acknowledgment yet by a current or former U.S. official that Russia sought to recruit Americans to help in its effort to affect the 2016 contest. The remarks also further complicate matters for President Donald Trump, who has dismissed the investigations into Russia's election meddling as a 'witch hunt.'" (Politico)

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Mike is a freelance writer living in Washington state.

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