« Operation "Grand Dawn" Post 1 | Main | When Intelligence Isn't - By Patrick Armstrong »

27 May 2017

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

mistah charley, ph.d.

The NYT story seemed to me to make the role of Flynn more evident. I believe, as you state in your point 3, that it was Flynn's idea. Flynn clearly has a paranoid view of the acronym agencies, but apparently not sufficiently paranoid, if he thought he could get away with this.

Purely speculating, I suppose that, from the point of view of the people revealing this information, the end of removing Trump justifies the means. They must believe that it is very important to remove Trump. Possibly they are right.

Eric Newhill

Will the fake news ever cease?

bks

And this all occurred just three weeks after after Trump/Russia connections had been above the fold (e.g. press aide Hope Hicks denied all connections on 11 November 2016).

b

This is a breach of sources and methods by the Washington Post informers. Another happened along the recent alleged sharing of Israeli intelligence.

I would not exclude though that the breach was not a real breach. The Russian ambo is a professional player. Some maskirovka may be part of this.

What is the most important though is that the media and IC try to fabricate a scandal out of contacts between presidential advisors and foreign diplomats.

It is the constitutional prerogative of the president to set and do foreign policy as he sees fit. His advisors acted in his name when they contacted Russian diplomats to set up a communication backchannel. Advisors of former presidents have done the same in such cases. It is nether a scandal nor a crime.

The real scandal are these leaks and the interference by the Intelligence Community and its puppets into the president's constitutional prerogative.

Fellow Traveler

When was the Rogers' brouhaha about talking to Trump? I'll presume before this allegation so the timing would be interesting. Maybe the Admiral was trying to give the POTUS-elect a shot-across-the-bow, that irked the admin and sonny went looking for out-of-band options while Trump emoted about Obama bugging his bedposts.

Norbert M Salamon

It appears, Colonel, that the enemy of the USA is not situated in Moscow [or Beijing] but rather in Washington's bottomless bureaucracy. Aside from the above it is the sole prerogative of the President to run foreign affairs according to the US Constitution, thus what he [or his agent]does in this field is not reviewable by Congress, except if the measure needs funding, then Congress may have input. [or am I wrong?]

Fredw

Agreed in general. But this leak strikes me as so enormous that I immediately began speculating that someone is trying to panic the Russians using information obtained from some other source. On the other hand, you seem to imply that successful interception of communications is common and to be expected. I don't know what to think. I am floored.

Ghostship

US SIGINT successfully intercepts and decrypts what must surely be encrypted Russian diplomatic communications.
Maybe they're the communications the Russian aren't bothered about or even want the U.S. IC to intercept and decrypt. In this case the information is not sensitive as far as the Russians are concerned but it being made public demonstrates there are major problems somewhere in the U.S. government, and I'm assessing probably the State Department.

Andy

As a retired intel weenie myself, this infuriates me. It's a similar situation to the reaction to Pres. Trump telling the Russians about the ISIS intel on the laptop-airline threat. Trump gave no details to the Russians, but provocateurs with clearances and access sought to damage him by leaking all the details, all while claiming the leaks were because they were outraged by Trump's disclosure - a completely illogical and BS excuse. So now any ISIS CI personnel have a lot more information they can use to root out the source(s).

Even as an intel guy I realize that leaks are sometimes necessary and inevitable in a free society, but these recent actions are unjustified and were carried out for the sole purpose of court intrigue/beltway partisan politics.

Jack

Sir

This was exactly my feeling on reading the WaPo story. There should no longer be any doubt the extent the NeverTrumpers in the media and upper echelons of government will go to take him down. No national security secret is sacrosanct enough for these people. What makes them so desperate? Or has the level of callousness reached such a level that any and all of them believe they can act with impunity? The NeverTrumpers should recognize the genie is now out the bottle and every future president will be subject to the whims of this unaccountable fifth column.

IMO, Pat Buchanan has been spot on in his recent notes. His suggestion that President Trump appoint a special prosecutor to investigate and prosecute the leakers is necessary to combat this war of innuendo. And second, who is gonna be next after the Confederate leaders in the cross-hairs of the PC crowd? The respect for both sides in our civil war is being thrown away by denigrating the southern leadership while absolving the Unionists of their rape & pillage.

r whitman

Could any part of this Washington Post story be Russian disinformation??

kao_hsien_chih

I might be talking nonsense out of ignorance, but I was curious...

Assuming that the US SIGINT did not break the Russian diplomatic encryption, the contents of Russian diplomatic messages would still be secret.

If the contents of Russian diplomatic messages are still secret, but there are leaks in the US press alleging what their contents are, the only way for the Russians to show what's "really" going on is to show their hand and reveal the secret contents of their communications, along with some kind of proof that they are not just making stuff up for the show-and-tell.

This seems to me, an admittedly an ignoramus to this sort of stuff, like a sting operation of sorts, to either embarrass Trump in a manner that proof to the contrary cannot be produced (easily), or to force the Russians to reveal potentially secret information (possibly along with clues that would ease the process of breaking their encryption). Other than the reports by US intel folks, we don't have means to verify what was actually in Sislyak's reports in the end. The seemingly obvious (and intended) implication, though, is that Trump, or at least, his trusted advisors, are either foolish or Russian stooges (or both)--both popular narratives for months now.

FB Ali

The US Deep State is leaking like a sieve in its hunger to destroy Trump and his presidency. As you point out, it doesn't seem to care how much collateral damage its own secrets suffer in the process.

The US MSM is party to this frenzy of destruction. Both seem not to care how much damage this is doing to the United States.

The world watches in wonder and bemusement at this spectacle. Russia and China probably cannot believe their good fortune in having their main adversary/competitor thus publicly commit harakiri.

turcopolier

FB Ali

The term "Deep State" implies a bureaucratic conspiracy. IMO that is very unlikely. If there is a conspiracy against trump it is among the Democratic holdovers among presidential appointees. A number of them have the access required to receive such documents. pl

DMC

So, doesn't this confirm Trumps's assertion that the Obama administration was "bugging" him? Or will they claim to have been bugging the Russians when Trump's people showed up?

turcopolier

khc

An unnecessarily complex fantasy. By far the most likely explanation is the disclosure of successful US SIGINT. That is NSA's principal business and they are the best in the world at it. pl

turcopolier

DMC

You are conflating very different things. Surveillance ops against Trump may have taken place but the intercept and decryption of the Russian (or any other) ambassador would be a routine task that NSA does every day. pl

Sam Peralta

Col. Lang

This leak that we can decrypt Russian secure diplomatic communications proves that those intent on bringing down Trump, hate him more than the purported enemy Russia.

It seems rather apparent that the memes of "Russia brazenly interfered in our pure American democracy" and "Trump team meeting with Russian officials had sinister motives" are just cynical sticks to beat Trump with. Actors within our federal government are quite happy destroying our SIGINT advantage if that means they can take down Trump.

Isn't it revealing that the WaPo, Times, CNN, NBC hysteria is all about the request for private communication channels between Trump transition and the Russians and not about the leak that the NSA broke Russian secure communications?

turcopolier

r Whitman

Why would you think that? Is it because the MSM keeps using the phrase probably to protect the leakers? This intercept is entirely within the normal mission of NSA. We want to know what they say to each other as the Russians want to know what we say to each other. This is the normal business of the game of nations. pl

turcopolier

Sam Peralta

At last! someone who understands the level of intelligence disaster involved in this. pl

turcopolier

ghostship

Oh, bull shit! the Russian ambassador's communications home would have been in either encrypted voice or text. You, too, have seen too many movies. pl

Thomas

"What makes them so desperate?"

The cover-up of MH-17 and the consequences of the truth being revealed in the public eye.

Must maintain Cold War 2.0!

turcopolier

b

It is IMO much more likely that the spy (leaker) is a presidential appointee who is a holdover from the BHO Administration rather than a professional employees of the IC. You greatly over estimate the power of the IC. Normally, the political appointees manipulate the IC people and not the other way around. I would point to people like Evelyn Farkas who several times said on TV that she and a group of Democrats have banded together to screw Trump by using their access to government information. As for Maskirovka, what advantage would the Russians see in inventing a story like this? pl

turcopolier

Eric Newhill

IMO this is not fake news. It is a massive violation of the US espionage laws. pl

Ghostship

Their food sections are all rather good.

The comments to this entry are closed.

My Photo

August 2020

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
            1
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29
30 31          
Blog powered by Typepad