5:05 AM 1/13/2018 – Senate report challenges quality of Facebook, Twitter investigations of Russia’s Brexit influence – The Hill – Saved Stories

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social media in trump campaign – Google News: What has actually changed under Trump? – BBC News
Russian propaganda on social media – Google News: Facebook overhauls News Feed to promote ‘more meaningful’ posts – Telegraph.co.uk
Trump: I don’t want Republicans to shut down Russia investigations – CNN
Fed’s Powell Urged to Keep Trump From Meddling on Deutsche Bank – Yahoo Finance
Putins Trolls Are Targeting Trumps GOP CriticsEspecially John McCain
social media in trump campaign – Google News: Putin’s Trolls Are Targeting Trump’s GOP CriticsEspecially John McCain – Mother Jones
Halkbank not Turkey will pay any US fine, deputy PM says – Reuters
Rep. Adam Schiff outlines Republican efforts to block access to witnesses, documents in Russia probe – MyAJC
Russians Posing as Black Activists on Facebook – Google News: Mark Zuckerberg’s ex-mentor hits out at Fb – Kaplan Herald
Byron York: Paul Manafort has a point – Washington Examiner
Trump accuses FBI agent removed from Mueller probe of committing ‘treason’ – Politico
7:49 AM 1/12/2018 The FBI Hand Behind Russia-gate Consortium News Mike Novas Shared NewsLinks
social media in trump campaign – Google News: How Breitbart became just another right-wing Trump cheerleader – Washington Post
Who Is Peter Strzok, FBI Agent Accused of Treason by Trump? – Newsweek
“Russia-gate is becoming FBI-gate 9:28 AM 1/12/2018 Russian trolls and US senators Mike Novas Shared NewsLinks
Facebook shares fall 4% after it announces big changes to the News Feed – CNBC
cambridge analytica – Google News: Bannon retains counsel, expected on the Hill next week – Gant Daily
10:28 AM 1/12/2018 Russia-gate is becoming FBI-gate The FBI Hand Behind Russia-gate Consortium News
Russia oligarch Deripaska sues Paul Manafort in New York court – JURIST
Donald Trump: Trump Calls FBI Agent’s Critical Text Messages ‘Treason’
social media in trump campaign – Google News: Russians Are Now Trying to Hack US Senate Emails – Newsweek
social media in trump campaign – Google News: Did Trump’s Mastery of Twitter Tip the Election in his Favor? – Newsweek
No Conspiracy: US Military Seeks Control of Your Facebook Account – Mintpress News (blog)
Donald Trump | The Guardian: US ambassador to Panama quits and says he cannot serve under Trump

 

Saved Stories – None
Senate report challenges quality of Facebook, Twitter investigations of Russia’s Brexit influence – The Hill
 


The Hill
Senate report challenges quality of Facebook, Twitter investigations of Russia’s Brexit influence
The Hill
In limiting their investigation to just the Internet Research Agency, Facebook missed that it is only one troll farm which ‘has existed within a larger disinformation ecosystem in St. Petersburg,’ including Glavset, an alleged successor of the  

social media in trump campaign – Google News: What has actually changed under Trump? – BBC News
 


BBC News
What has actually changed under Trump?
BBC News
Mr Trump has said he is defining “modern day presidential” with his free-form use of social media, his continued practice of giving unscripted campaign-style rally speeches and his willingness to disregard many of the time-honoured traditions of and more »

 social media in trump campaign – Google News

Russian propaganda on social media – Google News: Facebook overhauls News Feed to promote ‘more meaningful’ posts – Telegraph.co.uk
 


Telegraph.co.uk
Facebook overhauls News Feed to promote ‘more meaningful’ posts
Telegraph.co.uk
The first changes you’ll see will be in News Feed, where you can expect to see more from your friends, family and groups. As we roll this out, you’ll see less public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media. And the public content you and more »

 Russian propaganda on social media – Google News

Trump: I don’t want Republicans to shut down Russia investigations – CNN
 


CNN
Trump: I don’t want Republicans to shut down Russia investigations
CNN
Trump said his message to congressional Republicans, while perceived as a call to end the investigations into collusion, was nothing more than him asking his party to “be tough.” “The single greatest Witch Hunt in American history continues. There was 
Mueller interview fraught with peril for TrumpThe Hill
Trump just sold a plane to Norway that only exists in Call of DutyVICE News
Democrat says GOP stalls amid evidence of Trump-Russia collusionSacramento Bee
FOX 61
all 339 news articles »
Fed’s Powell Urged to Keep Trump From Meddling on Deutsche Bank – Yahoo Finance
 


Yahoo Finance
Fed’s Powell Urged to Keep Trump From Meddling on Deutsche Bank
Yahoo Finance
President Donald Trump’s nominee to lead the Federal Reserve is being asked to give assurance he would shield the central bank from any White House effort to influence its oversight of Deutsche Bank AG, …
Fed’s Powell Urged to Keep Trump From Meddling on Deutsche BankBloombergQuintall 1 news articles »

Putins Trolls Are Targeting Trumps GOP CriticsEspecially John McCain

When John McCain checked into Walter Reed Medical Center in December as he continued his battle against cancer, Russian trolls seized the moment to spread a conspiracy theory that the veteran Republican senator was using his health as a pretense to dodge a rising scandal concerning the so-called Trump-Russia dossier. Far-right stories attacking McCain a frequent critic of President Trump were among the top 10 shared by Kremlin-backed Twitter accounts in the days after McCain was hospitalized, as well as later in the month after he returned to Arizona, according to recent analysis by the cybersecurity project Hamilton 68.While the vast majority of the attacks from the 600 Twitter accounts tracked in real time by the Hamilton 68 dashboard are aimed at Democrats, the trolls also turn their sights on Republicans who sometimes stand up to Trump. Repeat targets have included Tennessee Sen. Bob Corker, Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. National security adviser H.R. McMaster has also been a target. But no Republican has faced more persistent wrath from the Russian-linked accounts than McCain, says Bret Schafer, an analyst for the Alliance for Securing Democracy, a group of national-security experts behind the dashboard working to expose Kremlin meddling in US politics. And those attacks on McCain have intensified in recent weeks.

In the other cases, its usually one day of concentrated activity going after them, any time one of those figures would come out against Trump, Schafer says. McCain has been a much more consistent target.

Schafer says that the trolls tend to spread disinformation from far-right American sites rather than content from explicitly Russian ones. GatewayPundit.com and TruePundit.comsites to the right of Breitbartthose are our frequent flyers, he says. The Russians are latching onto hyperpartisan content.

In September, McCain drew the trolls fire when he came out against the Graham-Grassley overhaul of the Affordable Care Act; the day after his statement against the bill, six of the top 10 trending topics on the dashboard reflected content attacking the senator. In December, the shared content took a more personal turn, aiming at the senators health, including a story from True Pundit carrying the headline, As the Trump Dossier Scandal Grows and Implicates Him, McCain checks into Hospital. The True Pundit story claimed: This is not the fist [sic] time McCain has sought medical treatment after his role in recent anti-Trump scandals have heated up. Another story promoted from the site quoted Beltway insiders as saying, new demands to answer for his role in either underwriting or promoting the Trump phony dossier are stressing the Arizona senators fragile health.

McCain has a long history of hard-line stances on Russia and he was an early advocate for a bipartisan commission to investigate Trumps Russia connections. In May he called Russian President Vladimir Putin the premier and most important threat, more so than ISIS. After special counsel Robert Muellers team indicted former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort in October, McCain said, I told you months ago that this was a centipede and shoes would drop, and I guarantee you more shoes will drop.”

McCain has been out of the spotlight the past few weeks as hes battled his illness; he missed the end-of-the-year tax-bill vote, but he issued a statement in late December praising the administrations plan to supply Ukraine with anti-tank weapons to fight Russian separatist forces. McCains office hasnt commented on the recent social-media attacks against the senator, but the Arizona senator has previously criticized Russian disinformation efforts and noted that he was targeted in some of the fake online advertisements purchased by Russian troll accountspart of a broader social-media operation that sought to exploit racial divisions and attack U.S. foreign policy. These Kremlin-backed advertisements are just one element of Vladimir Putins long-term goal of undermining democracies around the world, McCain said last fall. Putins Russia has no meaningful allies, so it seeks to sow dissent among us and divide us from each other.

Another longtime Republican critic of both Russia and Trump was briefly targeted by the Hamilton-monitored Russian troll network in early January. Mitt Romney, a potential candidate to run for Utah Sen. Orrin Hatchs seat this November, was the talk of the dashboard accounts on Jan. 2, after Hatch announced his retirement, and #neverromney registered as a trending hashtag on Hamilton the next day. But the accounts soon turned their attention to the fallout from Michael Wolffs Fire and Fury book, and Schafer cautioned that its too soon to say whether they will take an active interest in the Utah Senate race like they did in the Roy Moore Alabama Senate race. He said analysts look for multiple hashtags and urls on a topic to consider it an ongoing campaign. Its something were definitely going to be tracking over the next couple of months, Schafer says. Time will tell whether its a race they take a real interest in, or if Romney is just an occasional target that they drag out to curry favor with the pro-Trump crowd.

Even back in the 2016 presidential primary season, Russian online smear campaigns were spotted attacking Republicans who opposed Trump, according to former FBI special agent Clint Watts, who told the New York Times that Sen. Marco Rubio, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Sen. Lindsey Graham were all targets at the time.

McCains and Romneys support for tough policies on Russia may make them obvious targets for trolls, but the co-directors of the Alliance for Securing Democracy emphasize that the influence campaign transcends party lines. In a recent issue of Democracy Journal, Laura Rosenberger and Jamie Fly wrote: The Kremlins ultimate goal is not necessarily to advance one party over anotherthough that can be a short-term means to the ultimate end. Moscows attack on democracy is not focused solely on elections, but has a broader scope, and a larger target: the norms and institutions that underpin our very democratic system.

In fact, the most prominent theme recently among the Russian-backed accounts is a growing campaign to discredit the Justice Department and FBI, Schafer says. These attacks increased from around 5% of links shared in September to about 15% of the links in December. The trolls push a deep state narrative to undermine the agencies, as well as attack Mueller and his Russia investigation directly. In early December after Muellers team indicted former national security adviser Michael Flynn, the network shared stories deriding the tainted investigation and claiming Muellers investigation is dead. It goes back to the idea that theyre doing this to erode trust in our institutions, Schafer says.

And in the first week of January, one top-shared story from True Pundit attempted to link a Costa Rican plane crash to former FBI Director James Comey, because the story claimed one of Comeys former hedge-fund colleagues was killed in the crash. The article has already kicked off conspiracy theories on sites like Reddit, where citizen investigators have begun to piece together coincidences, analysts wrote in the Alliance for Securing Democracys weekly newsletter. This is the same formula used in the Seth Rich case, where a wild and unfounded claim was placed online, gained credence through posts and reposts on message boards, and was eventually adopted by more credible news sources.

Former senior CIA official John Sipher says the FBI is a prime target for Russian influence campaigns because the agency directly threatens Kremlin intelligence operations in the USand he points out that Trumps own attacks on federal agencies make the trolls job easier. The Russians know that public support for US security institutions is critical, and that President Trump’s attacks aim directly at that public support.  Within the Republican Party, Trumps attacks on the agencies continuing in recent dayshave widened divisions between conservative lawmakers who have piled on the criticism of Mueller and others who worry that the party, which has historically aligned itself with law-enforcement agencies, will be damaged by the offensive. You cant have a situation where people say, Oh, you cant trust the F.B.I., New York Rep. Peter King recently told the New York Times. That creates a spirit of anarchy.

Left-leaning audiences have been targeted by Russian disinformation efforts, too: Fake LGBT United and Blacktivist Facebook pages were among the accounts shut down last year when it was revealed they were operated by the Internet Research Agency troll farm in St. Petersburg, Russia. But campaigns aimed at liberal Twitter users dont often show up in the Hamilton dashboard, which focuses on a coordinated network of accounts that put out 20,000 to 25,000 tweets a day tailored to a far-right, pro-Trump audience, Schafer says. This is an alt-right audience targeted by the Russians that is being spoon-fed disinformation.

Schafer says he and his colleagues are exploring how best to capture Kremlin influence campaigns that target a left-leaning audience on Twitter, and they hope to gain a better understanding of those efforts. The Russian bots and trolls arent just pro-Trump, he says. As long as theyre fomenting division and chaos, they dont really care.

social media in trump campaign – Google News: Putin’s Trolls Are Targeting Trump’s GOP CriticsEspecially John McCain – Mother Jones
 


Mother Jones
Putin’s Trolls Are Targeting Trump’s GOP CriticsEspecially John McCain
Mother Jones
McCain’s office hasn’t commented on the recent socialmedia attacks against the senator, but the Arizona senator has previously criticized Russian disinformation efforts and noted that he was targeted in some of the fake online advertisements purchased  

 social media in trump campaign – Google News

Halkbank not Turkey will pay any US fine, deputy PM says – Reuters
 


Reuters
Halkbank not Turkey will pay any US fine, deputy PM says
Reuters
U.S. jury last week convicted a Halkbank executive of bank fraud and conspiracy to violate U.S. sanctions against Iran in a sanctions-busting case that Turkey has said is a political attempt to undermine its economy. Halkbank, which is majority state
Halkbank, not Turkey, will pay any US fine: ŞimşekHurriyet Daily Newsall 3 news articles »

Rep. Adam Schiff outlines Republican efforts to block access to witnesses, documents in Russia probe – MyAJC
 


The Australian
Rep. Adam Schiff outlines Republican efforts to block access to witnesses, documents in Russia probe
MyAJC
Schiff complained that Republicans were unwilling to press those members of the Trump team who participated in a June 2016 meeting in Trump Tower for a complete record of their communications over email, telephone, and encrypted applications. Then 
Democrat says GOP stalls amid evidence of Trump-Russia collusionSacramento Bee
Allegations of collusion ‘in my lawyers’ hands’, says TrumpThe Australianall 592 news articles »

Russians Posing as Black Activists on Facebook – Google News: Mark Zuckerberg’s ex-mentor hits out at Fb – Kaplan Herald
 

Mark Zuckerberg’s ex-mentor hits out at Fb
Kaplan Herald
Roger McNamee, the former mentor of Mark Zuckerberg, has hit out at and demanded that the company change its ways. In an essay for the , McNamee outlined the problems he saw with the social network, saying that ‘third parties’ had been exploiting the and more »

 Russians Posing as Black Activists on Facebook – Google News

Byron York: Paul Manafort has a point – Washington Examiner
 


Washington Examiner

PennLive.com
Byron York: Paul Manafort has a point
Washington Examiner
It’s not a popular thing to defend Paul Manafort, the international influence peddler who ran Donald Trump’s presidential campaign for a short time in 2016. Just search for “Manafort” and, say, “sleazeball,” and see what comes up. But even bad guys 
Paul Manafort is right – Mueller has overstepped his authority in the Trump/Russia probe | Marc A. ScaringiPennLive.com 
Trump and the Russia investigation: What to knowFox News
 
Allies warn Trump against interview with Mueller: reportThe Hill

Retired FBI Agent: The Real Reason Trump’s Lawyers Don’t Want a Mueller InterviewYahoo Finance 
The HillBBC NewsTCPalm
 
TCPalmThe Columbus DispatchCNBC
 –NBCNews.com

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Trump accuses FBI agent removed from Mueller probe of committing ‘treason’ – Politico
 


Politico
Trump accuses FBI agent removed from Mueller probe of committing ‘treason’
Politico
Trump accuses FBI agent removed from Mueller probe of committing ‘treason’. By POLITICO STAFF. 01/12/2018 06:53 AM EST. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter. President Donald Trump accused an FBI agent formerly involved in special counsel Robert Mueller 
Trump alleges that the FBI agent Mueller ousted committed ‘treason’ by sending anti-Trump textsBusiness Insider 
Trump’s Alarming Definition of TreasonNew Republic
 
Trump Accuses FBI Agents of Treason Over Critical Text MessagesNewsweek

Trump accuses FBI agent of ‘treason’ in Mueller investigationCTV News 
Newsweek
 Fox News

all 41 31 news articles »
7:49 AM 1/12/2018 The FBI Hand Behind Russia-gate Consortium News Mike Novas Shared NewsLinks

Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks The FBI Hand Behind Russia-gate – Consortium News FBI expert concluded Chicago cop’s shooting staged to appear as a suicide FBI expert concluded Chicago cop’s shooting staged to appear as a suicide – Chicago Tribune 9:21 AM 1/11/2018 Mike Novas Shared NewsLinks: FBI as he suspected it had been compromised Christopher … Continue reading“7:49 AM 1/12/2018 – The FBI Hand Behind Russia-gate – Consortium News – Mike Novas Shared NewsLinks”
social media in trump campaign – Google News: How Breitbart became just another right-wing Trump cheerleader – Washington Post
 


Washington Post
How Breitbart became just another right-wing Trump cheerleader
Washington Post
A study by Harvard researchers published last March in the Columbia Journalism Review showed that as Trump moved toward the Republican presidential nomination, the conservative media ecosystem reoriented around Breitbart . Its prominence emerged from a  
How Ivanka and her husband deal with Donald TrumpNew Zealand Herald
all 291 
Exclusive: Quinn to defend Steve Bannon in Fire and Fury claimsThe Lawyer

all 242 news articles »

 social media in trump campaign – Google News

Who Is Peter Strzok, FBI Agent Accused of Treason by Trump? – Newsweek
 


Newsweek
Who Is Peter Strzok, FBI Agent Accused of Treason by Trump?
Newsweek
The messages led to Strzok’s removal from special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into ties between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin’s efforts to interfere in the U.S. election last summer, The New York Times revealed. The messages between the two 
Trump accuses FBI agent removed from Mueller probe of committing ‘treason’Politico
Trump
 
alleges that the FBI agent Mueller ousted committed ‘treason’ by sending anti-Trump textsBusiness Insider
Trump accuses FBI agent removed from Mueller probe of committing ‘treason’Politico
Trump
 says FBI’s Strzok’s text constitutes ‘treasonous act’: report …
Fox News
Daily Beast– HuffPost Wall Street Journal 
all 41
 
Daily Mail
all 32 news articles »
“Russia-gate is becoming FBI-gate 9:28 AM 1/12/2018 Russian trolls and US senators Mike Novas Shared NewsLinks

The FBI Hand Behind Russia-gate – Consortium News “Russia-gate is becoming FBI-gate…” Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks Russian Trolls and US senators – Google Search Russian Trolls – Google Search Putins Trolls – Google Search Putins Trolls Are Targeting Trumps GOP CriticsEspecially John McCain Mother Jones Putin’s Trolls Are Targeting Trump’s GOP CriticsEspecially John McCain – … Continue reading““Russia-gate is becoming FBI-gate…” – 9:28 AM 1/12/2018 – Russian trolls and US senators – Mike Novas Shared NewsLinks “
Facebook shares fall 4% after it announces big changes to the News Feed – CNBC
 


CNBC
Facebook shares fall 4% after it announces big changes to the News Feed
CNBC
Investors are concerned that this could hit Facebook’s advertising figures. Zuckerberg has been managing the fallout from revelations last year that Russians had tried to influence the 2016 U.S. presidential election by buying ads and planting and 
Facebook Overhauls News Feed to Focus on What Friends and Family ShareNew York Times
Facebook
 
changes could mean less time spent on site; shares fall Richmond.com
Facebook (FB) Stock Dips on Major News Feed OverhaulNasdaq
CBC.caTexas Public Radio
all 502 SFGate
Facebook edits feeds to bring less news, more sharingWJBF-TV
Facebook to emphasize friends, not news, in series of changesCBC.ca
TNWNew York Times
all 301
 
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cambridge analytica – Google News: Bannon retains counsel, expected on the Hill next week – Gant Daily
 


NBCNews.com

Newsweek
Bannon retains counsel, expected on the Hill next week
Gant Daily 
Bannon is of interest to House investigators for his time working on the Trump campaign. He joined in August 2016 as chief executive with the backing of the Mercer family and after Trump secured the Republican nomination.
 He was also on the board of Cambridge Analytica, the data analysis firm, later used by the campaign. Alexander Nix of Cambridge Analytica testified via video conference before the House intelligence panel in December, sources previously told CNN 
Who are the Mercers, the wealthy backers of Breitbart?Deutsche Welle
Bannon Expected to Meet With House Panel in Russia ProbeBloomberg
Bannon’s split with Breitbart’s top donors could cost him 40% of his incomeBusiness Insider
Kaplan HeraldDaily Beast
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 cambridge analytica – Google News

10:28 AM 1/12/2018 Russia-gate is becoming FBI-gate The FBI Hand Behind Russia-gate Consortium News

“Russia-gate is becoming FBI-gate Russia-gate is becoming FBI-gate – Google Search Friday January 12th, 2018 at 10:38 AM Russia-Gate Is Becoming FBI-Gate – Google News 1 Share The FBI Hand Behind Russia-gate Consortium News–Jan 11, 2018 By Ray McGovern. Russia-gate is becoming FBI-gate, thanks to the official release of unguarded text messages between loose-lipped FBI counterintelligence official Peter Strzok … Continue reading“10:28 AM 1/12/2018 – Russia-gate is becoming FBI-gate – The FBI Hand Behind Russia-gate Consortium News”
Russia oligarch Deripaska sues Paul Manafort in New York court – JURIST
 

Russia oligarch Deripaska sues Paul Manafort in New York court
JURIST
Deripaska, through his company Surf Horizon Limited, gave $18.9 million to Manafort and Gates to invest in an Ukrainian cable network. The lawsuit alleges that the two American lobbyists instead put the money to use financing their lavish lifestyleand more »

Donald Trump: Trump Calls FBI Agent’s Critical Text Messages ‘Treason’

The president attacked Peter Strzok, who was pulled from Mueller’s investigation in December, in a Wall Street Journal interview Thursday.

 Donald Trump

social media in trump campaign – Google News: Russians Are Now Trying to Hack US Senate Emails – Newsweek
 


Newsweek
Russians Are Now Trying to Hack US Senate Emails
Newsweek
Russian hackers have not slowed down their meddling since the election, according to experts, who point to several social media campaigns in recent months attempting to stir dissent inside the U.S. political sphere. Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s and more »

 social media in trump campaign – Google News

social media in trump campaign – Google News: Did Trump’s Mastery of Twitter Tip the Election in his Favor? – Newsweek
 


Newsweek
Did Trump’s Mastery of Twitter Tip the Election in his Favor?
Newsweek 
Trump, both as presidential candidate, and now as Commander in Chief, has used Twitter to instigate and participate in public debate on politics and policy. On a number of contentious issues, such as immigration, the public debate has turned into 
 
The use and promotion of populist ideas predominated in the official campaigns of both Republican and Democratic candidates, regardless of their ideologies. GettyImages-828896262 A thumbprint is displayed on a cellphone as the logo for the Twitter 
Trump Benefited From ‘Extraordinary’ Influx Of ‘Dark Money’ In Final Days Of 2016 Campaign: StudyInternational Business Times

Trump lashes out over ‘pee tape’ dossier in latest Twitter tirade at DemocratsBlasting Newsall 65 55 news articles »

 social media in trump campaign – Google News

No Conspiracy: US Military Seeks Control of Your Facebook Account – Mintpress News (blog)
 


Mintpress News (blog)
No Conspiracy: US Military Seeks Control of Your Facebook Account
Mintpress News (blog)
Analysis For years the conspiracy theorists have claimed that Facebook is a CIA front operation and that it serves as a way to track everyone in the USA. In the most recent years, especially from the time of the 2016 Presidential elections to now  

Donald Trump | The Guardian: US ambassador to Panama quits and says he cannot serve under Trump
 

  • John Feeley writes letter of resignation and will quit on 9 March
  • Feeley says he signed an oath to serve faithfully but can no longer do so

The US ambassador to Panama, has resigned, telling the US state department he no longer feels able to serve Donald Trump.

Related: Donald Trump denies using the phrase ‘shithole countries’ in immigration talks

Continue reading…

 Donald Trump | The Guardian


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1:26 PM 1/12/2018 – Trump cancels London visit – Saved Stories

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Treasury secretary says new Iran sanctions are coming as administration faces another deadline on nuclear deal

Saved Stories

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Treasury secretary says new Iran sanctions are coming as administration faces another deadline on nuclear deal
The Latest: EU presidency welcomes German political deal – Washington Post
Charlotte man shoots at police after allegedly killing mother of his baby: Police – ABC News
‘He ambushed us’ Charlotte police sought murder suspect, but he found them first – News & Observer
CMPD Chief: Homicide suspect shot dead after ambushing officers – WSOC Charlotte
North Carolina man suspected of murder dies in shootout after ambushing police officers, cops say – Fox News
Iran’s protests reinforce the case for keeping the nuclear deal – Washington Post
Pakistan army chief says nation felt ‘betrayed’ at US criticism – Reuters
Russian hackers are laying the groundwork to spy on the US Senate, cybersecurity firm says – Business Insider
Donald Trump’s health: What we know so far – CNN
Putin’s Trolls Are Targeting Trump’s GOP CriticsEspecially John McCain – Mother Jones
Trump’s first official physical exam could provide new clues about his health – Washington Post
Bannon is gone, but Trump’s movement is stronger than ever – The Hill
A Question of Mental Fitness – U.S. News & World Report
Donald Trump’s 56 most unforgettable lines from his Wall Street Journal interview – CNN
Donald Trump’s Ruling Passions – The Nation.
People Are Suggesting How To #FixTrumpIn5Words
The Early Edition: January 12, 2018
Sessions tries to impress Trump with moves at Justice. It hasn’t worked. – MyAJC
Cybersecurity firm: US Senate in Russian hackers’ crosshairs – The San Luis Obispo Tribune
Labour scared Trump into scrapping UK visit, says Johnson
Donald Trump denies using the phrase ‘shithole countries’ in immigration talks
Trump’s Statement On Canceled London Visit Is Full Of Falsehoods
“Shithole countries? Words worthy of a racist-in-chief | Richard Wolffe

 

Saved Stories – None
Treasury secretary says new Iran sanctions are coming as administration faces another deadline on nuclear deal
Treasury secretary says new Iran sanctions are coming as administration faces another deadline on nuclear deal

The Trump administration said Thursday that it plans additional sanctions on Iran that are separate from those covered under the international nuclear deal with Iran, an indication that President Trump is unlikely to break the 2015 deal now. The president’s top national security advisers met with Trump on Thursday afternoon at the White House ahead of []

Trump cancels London visit to dedicate new U.S. Embassy, citing bad deal to sell and relocate building
 

Trump cancels London visit to dedicate new U.S. Embassy, citing bad deal to sell and relocate building
Trump cancels London visit to dedicate new U.S. Embassy, citing bad deal to sell and relocate building

President Trump said he has called off a planned ceremonial visit to Britain because he didnt want to be associated with what he called a bad real estate deal in which the U.S. Embassy is being relocated from central London to an off location. In a Twitter message shortly before midnight Thursday, Trump implicitly rejected []

The Latest: EU presidency welcomes German political deal – Washington Post
 


Washington Post
The Latest: EU presidency welcomes German political deal
Washington Post
BERLIN The Latest on talks to form a government in Germany (all times local):. 2 p.m.. The nation that holds the rotating European Union presidency has welcomed the tentative deal to form a grand coalition in Germany and said Chancellor Angela
German Leaders Emerge From Marathon Talks With Blueprint For New CoalitionNPR
Germany coalition talks: Merkel welcomes breakthroughBBC News
Merkel strikes deal with social democrats, opening way to new German governmentReuters
CNN –The Guardian –Financial Times –Irish Times
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Charlotte man shoots at police after allegedly killing mother of his baby: Police – ABC News
 

Charlotte man shoots at police after allegedly killing mother of his baby: Police
ABC News
Police in North Carolina shot and killed a man outside the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Law Enforcement Center hours after the man allegedly killed the mother of his infant daughter. According to police, Jonathan Bennett, 23, drove into the parking lotand more »

‘He ambushed us’ Charlotte police sought murder suspect, but he found them first – News & Observer
 


News & Observer
‘He ambushed us’ Charlotte police sought murder suspect, but he found them first
News & Observer
A homicide suspect being sought by police ambushed officers outside Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police headquarters late Thursday, shooting one officer in the leg before being killed by return fire. He ambushed us, Police Chief Kerr Putney told reporters and more »

CMPD Chief: Homicide suspect shot dead after ambushing officers – WSOC Charlotte
 


WSOC Charlotte
CMPD Chief: Homicide suspect shot dead after ambushing officers
WSOC Charlotte
CHARLOTTE, N.C. – A man wanted for allegedly killing his girlfriend Thursday afternoon on Carlyle Drive in west Charlotte was killed during a shootout outside Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department headquarters late Thursday night, police said 
Charlotte man shoots at police after allegedly killing mother of his baby: PoliceABC News
North Carolina man suspected of murder dies in shootout after ambushing police officers, cops sayFox News
Man wanted in Charlotte murder ‘ambushes’ police, shot dead at headquartersWNCN
WRAL.com –International Business Times –myfox8.com
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North Carolina man suspected of murder dies in shootout after ambushing police officers, cops say – Fox News
 


Fox News
North Carolina man suspected of murder dies in shootout after ambushing police officers, cops say
Fox News
A North Carolina man suspected of killing a woman hours before died early Friday from a gunshot wound he sustained in a shootout with police outside a headquarters, authorities said. Jonathan Bennett, 23, drove into the Charlotte-Mecklenburg police and more »

Iran’s protests reinforce the case for keeping the nuclear deal – Washington Post
 


Washington Post
Iran’s protests reinforce the case for keeping the nuclear deal
Washington Post
Want smart analysis of the most important news in your inbox every weekday along with other global reads, interesting ideas and opinions to know? Sign up for the Today’s WorldView newsletter. Today, President Trump is expected to yield to pressure
Trump Is Expected to Stop Short of Reimposing Strict Sanctions on IranNew York Times
FOX NEWS FIRST: White House feels s—storm over Trump immigration comments; Key Iran decision expectedFox News
Iran nuclear deal: Trump to extend sanctions waiver – reportsBBC News
Reuters –CBC.ca –CNBC –The Hill
all 196 news articles »
Pakistan army chief says nation felt ‘betrayed’ at US criticism – Reuters
 


Reuters
Pakistan army chief says nation felt ‘betrayed’ at US criticism
Reuters
ISLAMABAD (Reuters) – Pakistan’s army chief told a top U.S. general the nation felt betrayed at criticism that it was not doing enough to fight terrorism, the military said on Friday, after U.S. President Donald Trump accused Pakistan of lies and 
Pakistani military says US not contemplating unilateral actionDaily Mail
The entire Pakistani nation felt betrayed on US trivialising our decade old cooperation: COASThe Express Tribune
A More Radical Way for Trump to Confront PakistanThe New Yorker
Bloomberg –ValueWalk –Al Jazeera –US Department of State
all 134 news articles »
Russian hackers are laying the groundwork to spy on the US Senate, cybersecurity firm says – Business Insider
 


Business Insider
Russian hackers are laying the groundwork to spy on the US Senate, cybersecurity firm says
Business Insider
The cybersecurity firm Trend Micro found evidence that Russian hackers targeted the US Senate’s internal email system in mid-2017. The phishing emails, while not advanced in nature, are often “the starting point of further attacks that include stealing 
Report: Russian Gov’t Hackers Prepped for US Senate AttackDaily Beast
Fancy Bear is feared to be laying the groundwork to spy on US Senate staffFast Companyall 30 news articles »

Donald Trump’s health: What we know so far – CNN
 


CNN
Donald Trump’s health: What we know so far
CNN
The letter also indicated that Trump’s blood sugar level was 99 milligrams per deciliter, and his triglycerides, which are a type of fat found mentioned that Trump’s testosterone level was 441.6. A testosterone test measures the amount of the male hormone in the blood, were 61 mg/dL. For a fasting blood glucose test, which measures sugar, a level between 70 and and normal measurements for these tests typically are 300 to 1,000 nanograms per deciliter among men and 15 
Trump To Get First Presidential Medical CheckupNPR 
Dozens of experts urge doctor to examine Trump’s neurological health during physicalPolitico

Donald Trump doesn’t need a mental health evaluationChicago Tribune 
Donald Trump poised for medical check amid allegations over his fitness for officeCNBC
all 802 
The IndependentCNBC
all 771
 news articles »

Putin’s Trolls Are Targeting Trump’s GOP CriticsEspecially John McCain – Mother Jones
 


Mother Jones
Putin’s Trolls Are Targeting Trump’s GOP Critics—Especially John McCain
Mother Jones
McCain has a long history of hard-line stances on Russia and he was an early advocate for a bipartisan commission to investigate Trump’s Russia connections. In May he called Russian President Vladimir Putin “the premier and most important threat, more 

Trump’s first official physical exam could provide new clues about his health – Washington Post
 


Washington Post
Trump’s first official physical exam could provide new clues about his health
Washington Post
The exam will not include a psychological test, a White House spokesman said, and officials would not say whether Trumpwill undergo cognitive tests. Trump’s mental fitness has come under scrutiny after the release of a book that portrayed him asand more »

Bannon is gone, but Trump’s movement is stronger than ever – The Hill
 


The Hill
Bannon is gone, but Trump’s movement is stronger than ever
The Hill
The hatred for Steve Bannon is less about white nationalism or the alt-right which Bannon in reality has nothing to do with and more about jealousy and distaste for Bannon’s ability to understand the electorate at large, an electorate who the and more »

A Question of Mental Fitness – U.S. News & World Report
 


U.S. News & World Report
A Question of Mental Fitness
U.S. News & World Report
As journalist Jane Mayer has written in The New Yorker, “By early 1987, several top White House advisers were so concerned about Reagan’s mental state that they actually talked among themselves about invoking the Twenty-fifth Amendment of the and more »

Donald Trump’s 56 most unforgettable lines from his Wall Street Journal interview – CNN
 


CNN
Donald Trump’s 56 most unforgettable lines from his Wall Street Journal interview
CNN
An interesting comment by Trump — and telling. He quite clearly puts considerable stock in the idea that the president must be a cheerleader. It reminds me of a story from The New York Times that suggested Donald Trump Jr. approached Ohio Gov. John 
A Group of Former Nuclear Launch Officers Calls President Trump ‘A Clear and Present Danger’TIME
Donald Trump Signals Openness to North Korea Diplomacy in InterviewWall Street Journalall 5,613 news articles »

Donald Trump’s Ruling Passions – The Nation.
 


The Nation.
Donald Trump’s Ruling Passions
The Nation.
Nothing both new and useful can be said about Donald Trump. Twenty-five years ago, in Trump: The Deals and the Downfall, Wayne Barrett portrayed the man as a wounded monster, a characterization that remains accurate. We can’t know the cause of the  

People Are Suggesting How To #FixTrumpIn5Words

“Swap phone for fidget spinner.”
The Early Edition: January 12, 2018

Signup to receive the Early Edition in your inbox here.Before the start of business, Just Securityprovides a curated summary of up-to-the-minute developments at home and abroad. Heres todays news.

IRAN

Trump is expected to announce today his decision to continue to waive sanctions on Iran as part of the 2015 nuclear deal, according to people familiar with the matter, Trump reached the decision after discussions with his national security team yesterday, meaning that the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (J.C.P.O.A.) would be kept in place for now. Felicia Schwartz reports at the Wall Street Journal.

Trump is also expected to announce a deadline for Congress and European allies to improve the deal or it would lead U.S. withdrawing from the agreement and, according to sources, Trump has approved targeted sanctions against several Iranian government officials for corruption and human rights abuses. Mark Landler reports at the New York Times.

The Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin told reporters yesterday that he expects there will be more sanctions against Iran, these sanctions are likely related to targeted measures against Iranian individuals and entities rather than the major sanctions that were lifted as part of the nuclear agreement. The BBC reports.

European diplomats yesterday called on Trump not to rip up the deal, the officials including the British, German, French foreign ministers and the E.U. foreign affairs chief met in Brussels with the Iranian foreign minister ahead of todays deadline for Trump to decide whether to re-impose sanctions on Iran. Angela Dewan reports at CNN.

Unity is essential to preserve a deal that is working, that is making the world safer, that is preventing a nuclear arms race in the region, the E.U. foreign affairs chief Federica Mogherini said yesterday after talks with European officials. Brian Murphy reports at the Washington Post.

Trumps unpredictability could lead to him taking the U.S. closer to noncompliance with the nuclear deal, the collapse of the J.C.P.O.A. would create a crisis in U.S.-Europe relations as Europe strongly favors the agreement. Julian Borger reports at the Guardian.

Iran must stop its destabilizing activity in the region, the French President Emmanuel Macron said in a phone call with Trump yesterday, according to the White House. Reuters reports.

Keeping the nuclear deal would be in the economic interests of the Iranian protestors and, for the parties who negotiated the J.C.P.O.A., there are concerns that failing to renew the waivers would risk destroying the deal. The former British ambassador to the U.S., Peter Westmacott, writes at POLITICO Magazine.

The importance of the nuclear deal has been reinforced by the recent protests in Iran, the unrest was motivated by economic grievances and has shone a spotlight on the peoples dissatisfaction with Irans foreign policy, a U.S. decision to withdraw could offer Tehran the oxygen it needs to distract from popular demands. Ishaan Tharoor writes at the Washington Post.

The differing reactions of Sunni Muslim states to the recent unrest in Iran demonstrate reveal that the notion of a Sunni bloc to counter Irans influence in the Middle East is fanciful at best. Yaroslav Trofimov writes at the Wall Street Journal.

NORTH KOREA

I probably have a very good relationship with Kim Jong-un, President Trump said in an interview with the Wall Street Journal yesterday, making the comments despite trading insults with the North Korean leader and the escalating tensions on the Korean Peninsula, Trump also suggested that he was open to diplomacy with North Korea. Michael C. Bender, Louise Radnofsky, Peter Nicholas and Rebecca Ballhaus report at the Wall Street Journal.

Trump refused to comment on whether he had directly spoken to Kim during the interview, a senior administration official also declined to comment on the matter when asked. Dan Merica reports at CNN.

Kim Jong-un is an absolutely competent and already mature politician, the Russian President Vladimir Putin said yesterday, adding that Kim has been calming the tensions on the Korean Peninsula. The APreports.

Chinas customs agency said today that its trade with North Korea fell by 50 percent in December, the AP Reports.

FOREIGN INTELLIGENCE SURVEILLANCE ACT

The House yesterday voted 256-164 to extend section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (F.I.S.A.) and voted down an amendment that required stronger privacy protections for Americans. The law which authorizes the National Security Agencys (N.S.A.) warrantless surveillance program is set to expire in January and a vote on the legislation will now go to the Senate, Byron Tau reports at the Wall Street Journal.

The bill approved by the House contains a requirement for a warrant if an F.B.I. agent wants to gain access to emails about a subject of an open criminal investigation and there is no national security aspect, however this provision is narrowly written and does not constitute much of a constraint on the surveillance program. The Senate seems unlikely to favor any major changes to the legislation and the bill is likely to pass, Charlie Savage, Eileen Sullivan and Nicholas Fandos report at the New York Times.

Within the space of two hours, Trump tweeted in favor of the F.I.S.A. extension and then tweeted that he was no longer in favor, the White House supported the bill and House Speaker Paul D. Ryan had to explain the differences between domestic and foreign surveillance in a phone call to the president after Trump mistakenly stated that F.I.S.A. had been used to warrant spying on his presidential campaign. Ashley Parker, Philip Rucker and Josh Dawsey report at the Washington Post.

The vote extending section 702 constitutes a victory for sensible antiterror policy, the surveillance of foreigners who are abroad is crucial to foiling attacks on U.S. soil and there has been no evidence that officials have abused the surveillance program. The Wall Street Journal editorial board writes.

TRUMP IMMIGRATION COMMENTS

Why should the U.S. accept immigrants from shithole countries like Haiti and African nations? President Trump remarked yesterday, according to people with knowledge of the conversation he had with members of Congress, which concerned a deal to give legal status to immigrants illegally brought to the U.S. as children (known as D.A.C.A.). Julie Hirschfeld Davis, Sheryl Gay Stolberg and Thomas Kaplan report at the New York Times.

A White House statement did not deny that the president made the remarks which have drawn widespread condemnation. The White House spokesperson Raj Shah said that certain Washington politicians choose to fight for foreign countries, but President Trump always fights for the American people, Lauren Gambino reports at the Guardian.

Trump claimed that he used tough language in a message posted on Twitter, but denied that he used the language reported. The BBC reports.

The African Union Commission is frankly alarmed at statements by the president of the United States when referring to migrants of African countries and others in such contemptuous terms, a spokesperson for the commissions chair said today, the U.N. Human Rights spokesperson called the remarks racist, and in El Salvador and Haiti the comments were greeted with dismay. Paul Schemm and Eli Rosenberg report at the Washington Post.

Haiti has formally requested that a U.S. official explain his comments, according to the Haitian ambassador to the U.S., Josh Delk reporting at the Hill.

TRUMP-RUSSIA

Republican efforts to block Democrats access to witnesses and documents as part of the House Intelligence Committees Russia investigation were set out by the top Democrat on the panel Adam B. Schiff (Calif.) yesterday, who contended that Republicans were also unwilling to press the members of Trumps campaign team who met with Russians at the Trump Tower in June 2016. Karoun Demirjian reports at the Washington Post.

The former member of special counsel Robert Muellers team, F.B.I. agent Peter Strzok, committed treason when he discussed an insurance policy against Trump in a text message, the president said in an interview yesterday. According to sources close to Strzok, the agents reference to an insurance policy was in relation to the F.B.I.s need to investigate the allegations of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, Rebecca Ballhaus reports at the Wall Street Journal.

The accusations of alleged meddling leveled against our country are absolutely unfounded, the Kremlin spokesperson said yesterday in response to a report by U.S. Senate Democrats which detailed alleged Russian efforts to undermine Western democracies. Vladimir Isachenkov and Angela Charlton report at the AP.

The House Intelligence Committee is set to interview the former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon next week in a closed-door session, according to a source familiar with the matter, and the interview will focus on Bannons role in the Trump campaign rather than his time at the White House. Karen Freifeld and Patricia Zengerle report at Reuters.

Bannon has hired lawyers ahead of his appearance before the House Intelligence Committee, Betsy Woodruff, Lachlan Markay and Asawin Suebsaeng report at The Daily Beast.

Trumps demand earlier this week that Republicans finally take control of the Russia investigation should send shivers down our spines, the Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) said yesterday, stating that Republican lawmakers ought to shout down that kind of appeal. Jordain Carney reports at the Hill.

It would be valuable for the presidents daughter and senior aide Ivanka Trump to testify before the House Intelligence Committee, Schiff said yesterday, Kyle Cheney reports at POLITICO.

SYRIA

The Syrian rebels yesterday launched a counteroffensive against pro-Syrian government forces advancing on the Idlib province, which is the largest territory held by the rebels, a statement by Free Syrian Army (F.S.A.) rebels said that they had set up a joint operations room and the al-Qaeda-linked Tahrir al-Sham alliance said that they had already made gains. Reuters reports.

The Turkish President Tayyip Reçep Erdogan yesterday called on the Russian President Vladimir Putin to halt Syrian attacks on the Idlib province if he wants peace negotiations to be successful, according to Turkish government sources. Reuters reports.

The State Department official David Satterfield suggested that U.S. troops would focus on Irans activities in Syria once the Islamic State group has been defeated, making the comments during an interview with the Senate Foreign Relations Committee yesterday, to which the ranking member of the panel Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.) responded that such a role had not been authorized by Congress. Rebecca Kheel reports at the Hill.

U.S.-led airstrikes continue. U.S. and coalition forces carried out 58 airstrikes against Islamic State targets in Syria and Iraq between December 29, 2017 and January 4, 2018. [Central Command]

TRUMP LONDON VISIT

Trump said that he has canceled a planned trip to the U.K. next month to open the new U.S. embassy in London, saying in a Twitter post that President Obamas decision to move the embassy from its previous location in London was a bad deal and he did not want to cut ribbon. Louise Radnofsky, Felicia Schwartz and Jenny Gross report at the Wall Street Journal.

Trumps announcement demonstrates the increasingly strained ties in the normally close U.S.-U.K. relationship, his comments over the last year about terrorist attacks in London, criticisms of the London Mayor Sadiq Khan, and his decision to share a message from a far-right anti-Islam British group elicited widespread condemnation in Britain. Austin Ramzy reports at the New York Times.

SAUDI-IRAN RIVALRY

We cannot accept interference from anyone in Lebanese politics, the Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri said in an interview yesterday, calling on Iran and Saudi Arabia to have a relationship with Lebanon to be one that serves the national interests of Lebanon, and also saying that he was open to Lebanese Shiite Hezbollah group playing a part in government a position that appears to be at odds with the approach taken by Saudi Arabia. Yaroslav Trofimov reports at the Wall Street Journal.

A U.N. report on Yemens civil war has detailed the extent to which Iran and Saudi Arabia have intervened in the conflict, the report which has not yet been published describes strong indications of Iran supplying arms to Yemens Houthi rebels and strongly criticizes airstrikes conducted by the Saudi-led coalition. Kareem Fahim reports at the Washington Post.

The war in Yemen has been perpetuated by the Saudi-Iran rivalry, Nasser al-Shakkaf and Andrew England explain at the Financial Times.

OTHER DEVELOPMENTS

Pakistan has stopped sharing intelligence with U.S. from its sources on the ground near the border with Afghanistan, according to Pakistani officials, the decision has come shortly after the Trump administration decided to suspend around $2bn of military assistance to Pakistan. Farhan Bokhari, Katrina Manson and Kiran Stacey report at the Financial Times.

The Pentagon plans to bulk up military presence in Afghanistan by reallocating drones, military vehicles and other equipment, according to U.S. and military officials. Nancy A. Youssef and Gordon Lubold report at the Wall Street Journal.

The WikiLeaks co-founder Julian Assange has been granted Ecuadorean citizenship, Ecuador announced yesterday, a move that has further strained the relations with the U.K., and the British Foreign Office said in a statement that Assange must leave Ecuadors embassy in London to face justice. Maggy Ayala and Steven Erlanger report at the New York Times.

Those comments were not the position of the State Department, and you will never hear those words from this podium, the State Department Undersecretary Steve Goldstein told reporters yesterday in relation to baseless claims made a few years ago by the U.S. ambassador to the Netherlands that there were no-go zones in the Netherlands due to the Islamic movement. Eli Rosenberg reports at the Washington Post.

Russia and the U.S. have been holding discussions about the 2010 U.S-Russia New S.T.A.R.T. nuclear arms reduction treaty, the Russian President Vladimir Putin said yesterday. The AP reports.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions is establishing a team focusing on drug-trafficking carried out by the Iran-backed Lebanese Shiite Hezbollah group, a Justice Department statement said that the team would begin by assessing the evidence in existing investigations. Josh Gerstein reports at POLITICO.

Clashes between Palestinian protestors and Israeli troops have led to the deaths of two Palestinian teenagers, the BBC reports.

Turkey today warned its citizens about traveling to the U.S., stating that there were risks of terrorist attacks and arbitrary arrests of Turkish citizens. Al Jazeera reports.

Trumps comments during the presidential campaign that Guantánamo Bay should be loaded up with some bad dudes has prompted a group of lawyers to present a new legal petition on behalf of 11 detainees. Alex Daugherty reports at the Miami Herald.

The U.S. congratulated Libya for destroying the last remnants of its Qadhafi-era chemical weapons stockpile, the White House spokesperson Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement, also calling on Syria to fully dismantle its chemical weapons program. Reuters reports.

Sessions tries to impress Trump with moves at Justice. It hasn’t worked. – MyAJC
 


MyAJC
Sessions tries to impress Trump with moves at Justice. It hasn’t worked.
MyAJC
Sessions’s Justice Department has shown itself to be somewhat amenable to concerns expressed by congressional Republicans, which are similar to those raised by Trump. The attorney general recently directed senior federal prosecutors to look into a host and more »

Cybersecurity firm: US Senate in Russian hackers’ crosshairs – The San Luis Obispo Tribune
 


The San Luis Obispo Tribune
Cybersecurity firm: US Senate in Russian hackers’ crosshairs
The San Luis Obispo Tribune
Like many cybersecurity companies, Trend Micro refuses to speculate publicly on who is behind such groups, referring to Pawn Storm only as having “Russia-related interests.” But the U.S. intelligence community alleges that Russia’s military  

Labour scared Trump into scrapping UK visit, says Johnson

Foreign secretary undermines presidents pretext of opposing Mayfair embassy sale
Donald Trump denies using the phrase ‘shithole countries’ in immigration talks

This was not the language used Trump tweeted, after the White House itself did not dispute reports that he had used profanity to describe several nationsDonald Trump appeared to deny on Friday that he used the phrase shithole countries to describe Haiti, El Salvador, and several African nations during talks with senators the day before, following more than 12 hours in which the White House did not dispute reports of his remarks.

Related: Trump pans immigration proposal as bringing people from ‘shithole countries’

Continue reading…

Trump’s Statement On Canceled London Visit Is Full Of Falsehoods

He blames Obama for the move, even though it was first planned under Bush.
“Shithole countries? Words worthy of a racist-in-chief | Richard Wolffe

Donald Trump has made no secret of his bigotry. The sad truth thing is his comments about Haiti and Africa reflect the USs historic racismDonald Trump knows a thing or two about shitholes  the label he apparently bestowed on El Salvador, Haiti and various African nations during an Oval Office meeting about immigration. His own father was reportedly so ashamed of coming from Germany widely considered to be a shithole by Americans fighting in two world wars that he pretended for most of his life that he was Swedish.These Aryan dreams glowed all blond and bright through Trumps seminal book, The Art of the Deal, in which he claimed his father arrived as a child from Sweden like some kind of Nordic dreamer.

Related: Trump pans immigration proposal as bringing people from ‘shithole countries’

Related: ‘Unkind, divisive, elitist’: international outcry over Trump’s ‘shithole countries’ remark

Continue reading…


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“Russia-gate is becoming FBI-gate…” – 9:28 AM 1/12/2018 – Russian trolls and US senators – Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks 

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The FBI Hand Behind Russia-gate – Consortium News

“Russia-gate is becoming FBI-gate…”

Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks
Russian Trolls – Google Search
Putins Trolls – Google Search
Putins Trolls Are Targeting Trumps GOP CriticsEspecially John McCain Mother Jones
Putin’s Trolls Are Targeting Trump’s GOP CriticsEspecially John McCain – Mother Jones
The Early Edition: January 12, 2018

The FBI Hand Behind Russia-gate – Consortium News

“Russia-gate is becoming FBI-gate…”

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Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks
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mikenova shared this story from Russian Trolls and US senators – Google News.

Story image for Russian Trolls and US senators from Mother Jones

Putin’s Trolls Are Targeting Trump’s GOP Critics—Especially John …

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Schafer says that the trolls tend to spread disinformation from far-right American sites rather than content from explicitly Russian ones. … McCain’s office hasn’t commented on the recent social-media attacks against the senator, but the Arizona senator has previously criticized Russian disinformation efforts …

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Democratic report warns of Russian meddling in Europe, US

Federal Times19 hours ago
Senate Intelligence Committee officials have questioned efforts by Facebook and Twitter to accurately determine the extent of Russian political messaging during the 2016 U.S. election. Cardin’s team also noted discrepancies between the extent of Russian troll activity found by independent researchers …

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Senate report challenges quality of Facebook, Twitter investigations …

The Hill14 hours ago
The report, titled “Putin’s Asymmetric Assault on Democracy in Russia and Europe: Implications for U.S.National Security,” calls into question Facebook’s focus on the Internet Research Agency, a Kremlin-linked “troll farm” responsible for disseminating content on Facebook intended to sow racial and social …

Story image for Russian Trolls and US senators from CNNMoney

Twitter misses Senate deadline on Russian meddling

CNNMoneyJan 9, 2018
Twitter missed a Senate Intelligence Committee deadline to answer questions about Russian meddling in the 2016 election and its platform, Senator Mark … testified before the committee in November on how a Russian troll army had set up accounts posing as American in an effort to influence U.S. politics.

Story image for Russian Trolls and US senators from UNIAN

VOA: Senate Democrats accuse Trump of failing to confront Russian …

UNIANJan 10, 2018
Cardin released a report prepared by the committee’s Democratic staff members that accused Russia of mounting a protracted assault on democracy at home and abroad, and urged a multi-pronged counter-strategy that begins with U.S. presidential leadership. Read alsoRussian troll factory expands its …

Story image for Russian Trolls and US senators from Chicago Tribune

Chicago Tribune

Russian interference at a glance: findings of the congressional report

The TimesJan 10, 2018
A congressional report, written by Democratic staff on the US Senate foreign relations committee, has documented Russian meddling in the affairs of 19 European countries and warned that President Putin poses an existential threat to western democracy. Here is an outline of the findings, state by state.

Story image for Russian Trolls and US senators from KOKI FOX 23

Dem senators‘ report warns of Russian meddling across Europe

KOKI FOX 23Jan 9, 2018
And just as Senate Intelligence Committee officials have questioned efforts of Facebook and Twitter to accurately determine the extent of Russian political messaging during the 2016 U.S. election, Cardin’s team also noted alarming discrepancies between the extent of Russian troll activity found by …

Story image for Russian Trolls and US senators from WIRED

Pro-Kremlin Twitter Trolls Take Aim at Robert Mueller

WIREDJan 5, 2018
Robert Mueller, former director of the FBI and special counsel for the U.S. Department of Justice, is seen as he leaves the U.S. Capitol Building. … The Hamilton68 team keeps its list of suspected Kremlin trollssecret, but it consists of a balance between openly pro-Russia accounts, like Sputnik and RT, as …

Story image for Russian Trolls and US senators from Quartz

Mitt Romney is the latest political target of Russian trolls and bots

QuartzJan 3, 2018
As soon as Utah senator Orrin Hatch announced he would retire this year, speculation mounted (paywall) that Mitt Romney, a longtime critic of president Donald Trump, would vie for his place. Alongside that speculation came a now familiar force in US politics: Russian bots and trolls. Tweets from Russian …

Story image for Russian Trolls and US senators from Washington Times

Twitter misses deadline in Senate intel panel’s Russia probe

Washington TimesJan 10, 2018
The U.S. intelligence community has assessed that Russia interfered in the 2016 White House race by using state-sponsored operatives including … professional trolls to sow discord and disrupt the campaign of Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton, triggering investigations within the Senate, House and …
Russian Trolls – Google Search
 

mikenova shared this story from Russian Trolls – Google News.

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Kremlin trolls burned across the Internet as Washington debated …

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Closer to home for Americans, Russian government trolls in 2012 went after a U.S. ambassador for the first time on social media, inundating his Twitter account with threats. But for U.S. officials, the real wake-up call came in early 2014 when the Russians annexed Crimea and backed separatists in eastern …

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Pro-Kremlin Twitter Trolls Take Aim at Robert Mueller

WIREDJan 5, 2018
It was only a matter of time, then, before the troll army set its sights on special counsel Robert Mueller. On the website Hamilton68, the Alliance tracks some 600 Twitter accounts it says are associated with a Russia-linked influence network. According to newly released figures, in the month of December, …

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Putin’s Trolls Are Targeting Trump’s GOP Critics—Especially John …

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Schafer says that the trolls tend to spread disinformation from far-right American sites rather than content from explicitly Russian ones. “GatewayPundit.com and TruePundit.com—sites to the right of Breitbart—those are our frequent flyers,” he says. “The Russians are latching onto hyperpartisan content.”.

Story image for Russian Trolls from NBCNews.com

Russian trolls went on attack during key election moments

<a href=”http://NBCNews.com” rel=”nofollow”>NBCNews.com</a>Dec 20, 2017
Thousands of Russian trolls targeted national events during the 2016 U.S. presidential election to infiltrate the online conversations of millions of Americans, according to a new analysis of a database of recovered troll tweets by NBC News. The records show how digital communications tools invented by …
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mikenova shared this story from PutinâÂÂs Trolls – Google News.

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Putin’s Trolls Are Targeting Trump’s GOP Critics—Especially John …

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Putin’s Russia has no meaningful allies, so it seeks to sow dissent among us and divide us from each other.” Another longtime Republican critic of both Russia and Trump was briefly targeted by the Hamilton-monitored Russian troll network in early January. Mitt Romney, a potential candidate to run for …

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Spending 10 days inside Putin’s Russia

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… the view from inside Putin’s country as he prepares to run for a new term in March. “Nightline” spent 10 days traveling across Russia meeting a wide variety of citizens, from anti-Putin protestors to a leader of a pro-Putin paramilitary group to self-described former internet trolls, to learn about Putin’scountry …

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New York TimesJan 10, 2018
If there has been any benefit from Russia’s interference in the 2016 election, it’s that it has raised awareness about President Vladimir Putin’s broader … would bring consequences, by forging an agreement among political parties not to use bots or paid trolls, and by ensuring cybercooperation between the …
Putins Trolls Are Targeting Trumps GOP CriticsEspecially John McCain Mother Jones
 

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When John McCain checked into Walter Reed Medical Center in December as he continued his battle against cancer, Russian trolls seized the moment to spread a conspiracy theory that the veteran Republican senator was using his health as a pretense to dodge a rising “scandal” concerning the so-called Trump-Russia dossier. Far-right stories attacking McCain – a frequent critic of President Trump – were among the top 10 shared by Kremlin-backed Twitter accounts in the days after McCain was hospitalized, as well as later in the month after he returned to Arizona, according to recent analysis by the cybersecurity project Hamilton 68.

While the vast majority of the attacks from the 600 Twitter accounts tracked in real time by the Hamilton 68 dashboard are aimed at Democrats, the trolls also turn their sights on Republicans who sometimes stand up to Trump. Repeat targets have included Tennessee Sen. Bob Corker, Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. National security adviser H.R. McMaster has also been a target. But no Republican has faced more persistent wrath from the Russian-linked accounts than McCain, says Bret Schafer, an analyst for the Alliance for Securing Democracy, a group of national-security experts behind the dashboard working to expose Kremlin meddling in US politics. And those attacks on McCain have intensified in recent weeks.

“In the other cases, it’s usually one day of concentrated activity going after them, any time one of those figures would come out against Trump,” Schafer says. “McCain has been a much more consistent target.”

Schafer says that the trolls tend to spread disinformation from far-right American sites rather than content from explicitly Russian ones. “GatewayPundit.com and TruePundit.com—sites to the right of Breitbart—those are our frequent flyers,” he says. “The Russians are latching onto hyperpartisan content.”

In September, McCain drew the trolls’ fire when he came out against the Graham-Grassley overhaul of the Affordable Care Act; the day after his statement against the bill, six of the top 10 trending topics on the dashboard reflected content attacking the senator. In December, the shared content took a more personal turn, aiming at the senator’s health, including a story from True Pundit carrying the headline, “As the Trump Dossier Scandal Grows and Implicates Him, McCain checks into Hospital.” The True Pundit story claimed: “This is not the fist [sic] time McCain has sought medical treatment after his role in recent anti-Trump scandals have heated up.” Another story promoted from the site quoted “Beltway insiders” as saying, “new demands to answer for his role in either underwriting or promoting the Trump phony dossier are stressing the Arizona senator’s fragile health.”

McCain has a long history of hard-line stances on Russia and he was an early advocate for a bipartisan commission to investigate Trump’s Russia connections. In May he called Russian President Vladimir Putin “the premier and most important threat, more so than ISIS.” After special counsel Robert Mueller’s team indicted former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort in October, McCain said, “I told you months ago that this was a centipede and shoes would drop, and I guarantee you more shoes will drop.”

McCain has been out of the spotlight the past few weeks as he’s battled his illness; he missed the end-of-the-year tax-bill vote, but he issued a statement in late December praising the administration’s plan to supply Ukraine with anti-tank weapons to fight Russian separatist forces. McCain’s office hasn’t commented on the recent social-media attacks against the senator, but the Arizona senator has previously criticized Russian disinformation efforts and noted that he was targeted in some of the fake online advertisements purchased by Russian troll accounts—part of a broader social-media operation that sought to exploit racial divisions and attack U.S. foreign policy. “These Kremlin-backed advertisements are just one element of Vladimir Putin’s long-term goal of undermining democracies around the world,” McCain said last fall. “Putin’s Russia has no meaningful allies, so it seeks to sow dissent among us and divide us from each other.”

Another longtime Republican critic of both Russia and Trump was briefly targeted by the Hamilton-monitored Russian troll network in early January. Mitt Romney, a potential candidate to run for Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch’s seat this November, was the talk of the dashboard accounts on Jan. 2, after Hatch announced his retirement, and #neverromney registered as a trending hashtag on Hamilton the next day. But the accounts soon turned their attention to the fallout from Michael Wolff’s Fire and Fury book, and Schafer cautioned that it’s too soon to say whether they will take an active interest in the Utah Senate race like they did in the Roy Moore Alabama Senate race. He said analysts look for multiple hashtags and urls on a topic to consider it an ongoing campaign. “It’s something we’re definitely going to be tracking over the next couple of months,” Schafer says. “Time will tell whether it’s a race they take a real interest in, or if Romney is just an occasional target that they drag out to curry favor with the pro-Trump crowd.”

Even back in the 2016 presidential primary season, Russian online smear campaigns were spotted attacking Republicans who opposed Trump, according to former FBI special agent Clint Watts, who told the New York Times that Sen. Marco Rubio, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Sen. Lindsey Graham were all targets at the time.

McCain’s and Romney’s support for tough policies on Russia may make them obvious targets for trolls, but the co-directors of the Alliance for Securing Democracy emphasize that the influence campaign transcends party lines. In a recent issue of Democracy Journal, Laura Rosenberger and Jamie Fly wrote: “The Kremlin’s ultimate goal is not necessarily to advance one party over another—though that can be a short-term means to the ultimate end. Moscow’s attack on democracy is not focused solely on elections, but has a broader scope, and a larger target: the norms and institutions that underpin our very democratic system.”

In fact, the most prominent theme recently among the Russian-backed accounts is a growing campaign to discredit the Justice Department and FBI, Schafer says. These attacks increased from around 5% of links shared in September to about 15% of the links in December. The trolls push a “deep state” narrative to undermine the agencies, as well as attack Mueller and his Russia investigation directly. In early December after Mueller’s team indicted former national security adviser Michael Flynn, the network shared stories deriding the “tainted investigation” and claiming “Mueller’s investigation is dead.” “It goes back to the idea that they’re doing this to erode trust in our institutions,” Schafer says.

And in the first week of January, one top-shared story from True Pundit attempted to link a Costa Rican plane crash to former FBI Director James Comey, because the story claimed one of Comey’s former hedge-fund colleagues was killed in the crash. “The article has already kicked off conspiracy theories on sites like Reddit, where ‘citizen investigators’ have begun to piece together ‘coincidences,’” analysts wrote in the Alliance for Securing Democracy’s weekly newsletter. “This is the same formula used in the Seth Rich case, where a wild and unfounded claim was placed online, gained credence through posts and reposts on message boards, and was eventually adopted by more credible news sources.”

Former senior CIA official John Sipher says the FBI is a prime target for Russian influence campaigns because the agency directly threatens Kremlin intelligence operations in the US—and he points out that Trump’s own attacks on federal agencies make the trolls’ job easier. “The Russians know that public support for US security institutions is critical, and that President Trump’s attacks aim directly at that public support.”  Within the Republican Party, Trump’s attacks on the agencies – continuing in recent days – have widened divisions between conservative lawmakers who have piled on the criticism of Mueller and others who worry that the party, which has historically aligned itself with law-enforcement agencies, will be damaged by the offensive. “You can’t have a situation where people say, ‘Oh, you can’t trust the F.B.I.,’” New York Rep. Peter King recently told the New York Times. “That creates a spirit of anarchy.”

Left-leaning audiences have been targeted by Russian disinformation efforts, too: Fake “LGBT United” and “Blacktivist” Facebook pages were among the accounts shut down last year when it was revealed they were operated by the Internet Research Agency troll farm in St. Petersburg, Russia. But campaigns aimed at liberal Twitter users don’t often show up in the Hamilton dashboard, which focuses on a coordinated network of accounts that put out 20,000 to 25,000 tweets a day tailored to a far-right, pro-Trump audience, Schafer says. “This is an alt-right audience targeted by the Russians that is being spoon-fed disinformation.”

Schafer says he and his colleagues are exploring how best to capture Kremlin influence campaigns that target a left-leaning audience on Twitter, and they hope to gain a better understanding of those efforts. “The Russian bots and trolls aren’t just pro-Trump,” he says. As long as they’re fomenting division and chaos, “they don’t really care.”

Putin’s Trolls Are Targeting Trump’s GOP CriticsEspecially John McCain – Mother Jones
 

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Mother Jones
Putin’s Trolls Are Targeting Trump’s GOP Critics—Especially John McCain
Mother Jones
McCain has a long history of hard-line stances on Russia and he was an early advocate for a bipartisan commission to investigate Trump’s Russia connections. In May he called Russian President Vladimir Putin “the premier and most important threat, more 

The Early Edition: January 12, 2018
 

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Before the start of business, Just Security provides a curated summary of up-to-the-minute developments at home and abroad. Heres todays news.

IRAN

Trump is expected to announce today his decision to continue to waive sanctions on Iran as part of the 2015 nuclear deal, according to people familiar with the matter, Trump reached the decision after discussions with his national security team yesterday, meaning that the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (J.C.P.O.A.) would be kept in place for now. Felicia Schwartz reports at the Wall Street Journal.

Trump is also expected to announce a deadline for Congress and European allies to improve the deal or it would lead U.S. withdrawing from the agreement and, according to sources, Trump has approved targeted sanctions against several Iranian government officials for corruption and human rights abuses. Mark Landler reports at the New York Times.

The Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin told reporters yesterday that he expects there will be more sanctions against Iran, these sanctions are likely related to targeted measures against Iranian individuals and entities rather than the major sanctions that were lifted as part of the nuclear agreement. The BBC reports.

European diplomats yesterday called on Trump not to rip up the deal, the officials including the British, German, French foreign ministers and the E.U. foreign affairs chief met in Brussels with the Iranian foreign minister ahead of todays deadline for Trump to decide whether to re-impose sanctions on Iran. Angela Dewan reports at CNN.

Unity is essential to preserve a deal that is working, that is making the world safer, that is preventing a nuclear arms race in the region, the E.U. foreign affairs chief Federica Mogherini said yesterday after talks with European officials. Brian Murphy reports at the Washington Post.

Trumps unpredictability could lead to him taking the U.S. closer to noncompliance with the nuclear deal, the collapse of the J.C.P.O.A. would create a crisis in U.S.-Europe relations as Europe strongly favors the agreement. Julian Borger reports at the Guardian.

Iran must stop its destabilizing activity in the region, the French President Emmanuel Macron said in a phone call with Trump yesterday, according to the White House. Reuters reports.

Keeping the nuclear deal would be in the economic interests of the Iranian protestors and, for the parties who negotiated the J.C.P.O.A., there are concerns that failing to renew the waivers would risk destroying the deal. The former British ambassador to the U.S., Peter Westmacott, writes at POLITICO Magazine.

The importance of the nuclear deal has been reinforced by the recent protests in Iran, the unrest was motivated by economic grievances and has shone a spotlight on the peoples dissatisfaction with Irans foreign policy, a U.S. decision to withdraw could offer Tehran the oxygen it needs to distract from popular demands. Ishaan Tharoor writes at the Washington Post.

The differing reactions of Sunni Muslim states to the recent unrest in Iran demonstrate reveal that the notion of a Sunni bloc to counter Irans influence in the Middle East is fanciful at best. Yaroslav Trofimov writes at the Wall Street Journal.

NORTH KOREA

I probably have a very good relationship with Kim Jong-un, President Trump said in an interview with the Wall Street Journal yesterday, making the comments despite trading insults with the North Korean leader and the escalating tensions on the Korean Peninsula, Trump also suggested that he was open to diplomacy with North Korea. Michael C. Bender, Louise Radnofsky, Peter Nicholas and Rebecca Ballhaus report at the Wall Street Journal.

Trump refused to comment on whether he had directly spoken to Kim during the interview, a senior administration official also declined to comment on the matter when asked. Dan Merica reports at CNN.

Kim Jong-un is an absolutely competent and already mature politician, the Russian President Vladimir Putin said yesterday, adding that Kim has been calming the tensions on the Korean Peninsula. The APreports.

Chinas customs agency said today that its trade with North Korea fell by 50 percent in December, the AP Reports.

FOREIGN INTELLIGENCE SURVEILLANCE ACT

The House yesterday voted 256-164 to extend section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (F.I.S.A.) and voted down an amendment that required stronger privacy protections for Americans. The law which authorizes the National Security Agencys (N.S.A.) warrantless surveillance program is set to expire in January and a vote on the legislation will now go to the Senate, Byron Tau reports at the Wall Street Journal.

The bill approved by the House contains a requirement for a warrant if an F.B.I. agent wants to gain access to emails about a subject of an open criminal investigation and there is no national security aspect, however this provision is narrowly written and does not constitute much of a constraint on the surveillance program. The Senate seems unlikely to favor any major changes to the legislation and the bill is likely to pass, Charlie Savage, Eileen Sullivan and Nicholas Fandos report at the New York Times.

Within the space of two hours, Trump tweeted in favor of the F.I.S.A. extension and then tweeted that he was no longer in favor, the White House supported the bill and House Speaker Paul D. Ryan had to explain the differences between domestic and foreign surveillance in a phone call to the president after Trump mistakenly stated that F.I.S.A. had been used to warrant spying on his presidential campaign. Ashley Parker, Philip Rucker and Josh Dawsey report at the Washington Post.

The vote extending section 702 constitutes a victory for sensible antiterror policy, the surveillance of foreigners who are abroad is crucial to foiling attacks on U.S. soil and there has been no evidence that officials have abused the surveillance program. The Wall Street Journal editorial board writes.

TRUMP IMMIGRATION COMMENTS

Why should the U.S. accept immigrants from shithole countries like Haiti and African nations? President Trump remarked yesterday, according to people with knowledge of the conversation he had with members of Congress, which concerned a deal to give legal status to immigrants illegally brought to the U.S. as children (known as D.A.C.A.). Julie Hirschfeld Davis, Sheryl Gay Stolberg and Thomas Kaplan report at the New York Times.

A White House statement did not deny that the president made the remarks which have drawn widespread condemnation. The White House spokesperson Raj Shah said that certain Washington politicians choose to fight for foreign countries, but President Trump always fights for the American people, Lauren Gambino reports at the Guardian.

Trump claimed that he used tough language in a message posted on Twitter, but denied that he used the language reported. The BBC reports.

The African Union Commission is frankly alarmed at statements by the president of the United States when referring to migrants of African countries and others in such contemptuous terms, a spokesperson for the commissions chair said today, the U.N. Human Rights spokesperson called the remarks racist, and in El Salvador and Haiti the comments were greeted with dismay. Paul Schemm and Eli Rosenberg report at the Washington Post.

Haiti has formally requested that a U.S. official explain his comments, according to the Haitian ambassador to the U.S., Josh Delk reporting at the Hill.

TRUMP-RUSSIA

Republican efforts to block Democrats access to witnesses and documents as part of the House Intelligence Committees Russia investigation were set out by the top Democrat on the panel Adam B. Schiff (Calif.) yesterday, who contended that Republicans were also unwilling to press the members of Trumps campaign team who met with Russians at the Trump Tower in June 2016. Karoun Demirjian reports at the Washington Post.

The former member of special counsel Robert Muellers team, F.B.I. agent Peter Strzok, committed treason when he discussed an insurance policy against Trump in a text message, the president said in an interview yesterday. According to sources close to Strzok, the agents reference to an insurance policy was in relation to the F.B.I.s need to investigate the allegations of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, Rebecca Ballhaus reports at the Wall Street Journal.

The accusations of alleged meddling leveled against our country are absolutely unfounded, the Kremlin spokesperson said yesterday in response to a report by U.S. Senate Democrats which detailed alleged Russian efforts to undermine Western democracies. Vladimir Isachenkov and Angela Charlton report at the AP.

The House Intelligence Committee is set to interview the former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon next week in a closed-door session, according to a source familiar with the matter, and the interview will focus on Bannons role in the Trump campaign rather than his time at the White House. Karen Freifeld and Patricia Zengerle report at Reuters.

Bannon has hired lawyers ahead of his appearance before the House Intelligence Committee, Betsy Woodruff, Lachlan Markay and Asawin Suebsaeng report at The Daily Beast.

Trumps demand earlier this week that Republicans finally take control of the Russia investigation should send shivers down our spines, the Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) said yesterday, stating that Republican lawmakers ought to shout down that kind of appeal. Jordain Carney reports at the Hill.

It would be valuable for the presidents daughter and senior aide Ivanka Trump to testify before the House Intelligence Committee, Schiff said yesterday, Kyle Cheney reports at POLITICO.

SYRIA

The Syrian rebels yesterday launched a counteroffensive against pro-Syrian government forces advancing on the Idlib province, which is the largest territory held by the rebels, a statement by Free Syrian Army (F.S.A.) rebels said that they had set up a joint operations room and the al-Qaeda-linked Tahrir al-Sham alliance said that they had already made gains. Reuters reports.

The Turkish President Tayyip Reçep Erdogan yesterday called on the Russian President Vladimir Putin to halt Syrian attacks on the Idlib province if he wants peace negotiations to be successful, according to Turkish government sources. Reuters reports.

The State Department official David Satterfield suggested that U.S. troops would focus on Irans activities in Syria once the Islamic State group has been defeated, making the comments during an interview with the Senate Foreign Relations Committee yesterday, to which the ranking member of the panel Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.) responded that such a role had not been authorized by Congress. Rebecca Kheel reports at the Hill.

U.S.-led airstrikes continue. U.S. and coalition forces carried out 58 airstrikes against Islamic State targets in Syria and Iraq between December 29, 2017 and January 4, 2018. [Central Command]

TRUMP LONDON VISIT

Trump said that he has canceled a planned trip to the U.K. next month to open the new U.S. embassy in London, saying in a Twitter post that President Obamas decision to move the embassy from its previous location in London was a bad deal and he did not want to cut ribbon. Louise Radnofsky, Felicia Schwartz and Jenny Gross report at the Wall Street Journal.

Trumps announcement demonstrates the increasingly strained ties in the normally close U.S.-U.K. relationship, his comments over the last year about terrorist attacks in London, criticisms of the London Mayor Sadiq Khan, and his decision to share a message from a far-right anti-Islam British group elicited widespread condemnation in Britain. Austin Ramzy reports at the New York Times.

SAUDI-IRAN RIVALRY

We cannot accept interference from anyone in Lebanese politics, the Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri said in an interview yesterday, calling on Iran and Saudi Arabia to have a relationship with Lebanon to be one that serves the national interests of Lebanon, and also saying that he was open to Lebanese Shiite Hezbollah group playing a part in government a position that appears to be at odds with the approach taken by Saudi Arabia. Yaroslav Trofimov reports at the Wall Street Journal.

A U.N. report on Yemens civil war has detailed the extent to which Iran and Saudi Arabia have intervened in the conflict, the report which has not yet been published describes strong indications of Iran supplying arms to Yemens Houthi rebels and strongly criticizes airstrikes conducted by the Saudi-led coalition. Kareem Fahim reports at the Washington Post.

The war in Yemen has been perpetuated by the Saudi-Iran rivalry, Nasser al-Shakkaf and Andrew England explain at the Financial Times.

OTHER DEVELOPMENTS

Pakistan has stopped sharing intelligence with U.S. from its sources on the ground near the border with Afghanistan, according to Pakistani officials, the decision has come shortly after the Trump administration decided to suspend around $2bn of military assistance to Pakistan. Farhan Bokhari, Katrina Manson and Kiran Stacey report at the Financial Times.

The Pentagon plans to bulk up military presence in Afghanistan by reallocating drones, military vehicles and other equipment, according to U.S. and military officials. Nancy A. Youssef and Gordon Lubold report at the Wall Street Journal.

The WikiLeaks co-founder Julian Assange has been granted Ecuadorean citizenship, Ecuador announced yesterday, a move that has further strained the relations with the U.K., and the British Foreign Office said in a statement that Assange must leave Ecuadors embassy in London to face justice. Maggy Ayala and Steven Erlanger report at the New York Times.

Those comments were not the position of the State Department, and you will never hear those words from this podium, the State Department Undersecretary Steve Goldstein told reporters yesterday in relation to baseless claims made a few years ago by the U.S. ambassador to the Netherlands that there were no-go zones in the Netherlands due to the Islamic movement. Eli Rosenberg reports at the Washington Post.

Russia and the U.S. have been holding discussions about the 2010 U.S-Russia New S.T.A.R.T. nuclear arms reduction treaty, the Russian President Vladimir Putin said yesterday. The AP reports.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions is establishing a team focusing on drug-trafficking carried out by the Iran-backed Lebanese Shiite Hezbollah group, a Justice Department statement said that the team would begin by assessing the evidence in existing investigations. Josh Gerstein reports at POLITICO.

Clashes between Palestinian protestors and Israeli troops have led to the deaths of two Palestinian teenagers, the BBC reports.

Turkey today warned its citizens about traveling to the U.S., stating that there were risks of terrorist attacks and arbitrary arrests of Turkish citizens. Al Jazeera reports.

Trumps comments during the presidential campaign that Guantánamo Bay should be loaded up with some bad dudes has prompted a group of lawyers to present a new legal petition on behalf of 11 detainees. Alex Daugherty reports at the Miami Herald.

The U.S. congratulated Libya for destroying the last remnants of its Qadhafi-era chemical weapons stockpile, the White House spokesperson Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement, also calling on Syria to fully dismantle its chemical weapons program. Reuters reports.

The FBI Hand Behind Russia-gate – Consortium News
 

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Consortium News
The FBI Hand Behind Russia-gate
Consortium News
Besides forcing the removal of Strzok and Page, the text exposures also sounded the death knell for the career of FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, in whose office some of the plotting took place and who has already announced his plans to retire soon and more »
FBI expert concluded Chicago cop’s shooting staged to appear as a suicide
 

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Veteran Chicago police Sgt. Donald Markham was shot by someone else at point-blank range in his home in 2015 before the scene was staged to appear to be a suicide, a forensic pathologist hired by the FBI concluded in a report obtained Thursday by the Chicago Tribune.

The five-page report contradicts Cook County officials’ ruling that Markham had shot himself in September 2015 after a drunken argument with his wife, Dina, also a veteran Chicago cop. The report was part of a yearlong probe by the FBI, which began after questions were raised within the Chicago Police Department about Markham’s death.

The mystery deepened last May when Dina Markham, 47, was herself found dead, submerged in a bathtub in the couple’s home in the 5900 block of North Newark Avenue. Her death, ruled an accidental drowning by the Cook County medical examiner’s office, occurred before the FBI was able to interview her.

As part of its probe, the FBI hired forensic pathologist Scott Denton to review the autopsy reports and photos from the scene of Markham’s death. Denton, a former chief interim medical examiner for Cook County, works in a private capacity in downstate Bloomington.

Denton’s report — submitted to the FBI last February — found a number of troubling aspects about the scene that led him to conclude the shooting was, in fact, a homicide, or “death at the hands of another.” Among the clues, he said, were blood patterns indicating Markham’s arms were “lifted upward after death,” the strange placement of the gun “loosely in his right hand” and a lack of small abrasions or lacerations on his index finger that typically can be seen after someone fires a gun.

“The position of his body, the blood flow pattern on his face, the blood transfer pattern on his chin and left hand under his chin, and the moved and placed appearance of the gun in his right hand are all consistent with his body having been moved after death,” Denton wrote in the report, obtained by the Tribune from the medical examiner’s office through an open records request.

The medical examiner’s office, meanwhile, has doubled down on its original ruling that Donald Markham, 51, shot himself in his own bed that night, writing in a point-by-point refutation that the FBI expert offered “creative and descriptive scenarios” that were not grounded in science.

In her nine-page rebuttal report, also made public Thursday, Chief Medical Examiner Ponni Arunkumar wrote that Denton’s analyses of the blood spatter and position of Markham’s body ignored scientific literature that a body often continues to move — or even convulse — after suffering a gunshot wound to the head.

The position of the gun in Markham’s hand was consistent with a well-known textbook on gunshot wounds showing that suicide victims often grip guns in a different way than they would if they were shooting at a target, Arunkumar wrote.

And while Donald Markham apparently left no suicide note, Arunkumar said that “neighbors, friends, colleagues and family members” of the Markhams all gave interviews indicating that the couple argued frequently and that “during these arguments they would express statements about killing themselves.”

Last month, the FBI held an unusual meeting with officials at the medical examiner’s office, detailing the bureau’s findings that called into question the suicide ruling. A medical examiner’s office spokeswoman said the initial Markham death investigation was then put through a review by 10 other pathologists with its office, who all agreed with the original finding of suicide.

The Tribune reported Sunday that the FBI concluded its probe into Markham’s death after that meeting and that no federal charges would be sought.

But the case is far from over. Officers and detectives who were present at the scene of Donald Markham’s death have been interviewed by prosecutors with the Cook County state’s attorney’s office as part of a parallel investigation, the Tribune has reported. Also pending is a separate probe by Chicago Inspector General Joseph Ferguson, who launched his own investigation early last year focusing on whether any city administrative rules or codes of conduct were violated.

Among the issues that could be problematic is why detectives waited to call the medical examiner’s office to report the death by the time they were already en route with Markham’s body. It is general practice for medical examiner investigators to go to crime scenes. And county ordinance requires that law enforcement seek permission from the medical examiner’s office before removing a body.

Another questionable decision made at the scene was the removal of a bloodstained mattress. Though Markham was transferred to the medical examiner wrapped in a bloody sheet from the bed, the mattress itself was disposed of that night by a Chicago Streets and Sanitation crew.

In her report, Arunkumar’s revealed that the FBI had also asked the medical examiner’s office to address the location of the spent shell casing from Markham’s .380-caliber Glock pistol, which was seen in crime scene photos on the bed near a blood-stained pillow.

Arunkumar responded that the location of the shell casing was “fully consistent with a self-inflicted gunshot wound.”

She also took issue with Denton’s suggestion that Chicago police had influenced its findings by classifying the case early on as a suicide. If anyone was biased, Arunkumar said, it was Denton, who appeared to “backfill a justification for a determination of homicide as a manner of death when the evidence is simply not there.”

A spokesman for the Markham family, Jim Bastian, could not be reached for comment Thursday, but he told the Tribune in a statement last week that the family has believed all along that Donald Markham’s death was a tragic suicide.

Bastian acknowledged, however, that there appeared to be legitimate concerns about how Chicago police handled the investigation.

“It’s unfortunate because a lot of heartache could have been avoided,” he said.

Donald and Dina Markham had been out drinking at the Firewater Saloon in Edison Park until 1 a.m. on Sept. 2, 2015, according to statements Dina Markham gave to police. She said her husband blamed her for keeping them out so late and that a quarrel that began in the car continued as they arrived home, records show.

According to police reports, Dina Markham said she walked away from the house, and her husband eventually locked her out. About 15 minutes later, she returned to the home and was unable to get inside, according to the police reports. She then knocked on a window and asked one of her children to open the front door.

Once inside, she started searching for her car keys because she planned to sleep in her car, the report said. She entered their bedroom and saw her husband lying on his side in the bed, his back toward her. Markham said she started feeling around his pockets in search of the keys but felt moisture instead. Realizing it was blood, Markham called 911 just after 3 a.m.

On the calls, a distraught Markham begged operators to send help but was unable to answer questions about what happened.

“Please hurry!” she implored in her first 911 call. “He’s a PO (police officer). … There’s blood all over the bed.”

Officers found Donald Markham lying on the bed in the master bedroom suffering from a “contact” gunshot wound to his right temple, according to police and medical examiner’s office reports. Markham’s pistol was still in his right hand, with five bullets in the clip and one in the chamber, according to the reports.

Markham had gunshot residue on his hand, indicating he’d either fired or was close to the weapon when it was fired. Although Dina Markham was the one who reportedly found her husband’s body, her hands were never tested for gunshot residue, records show.

The medical examiner’s office did not conduct its own investigation at the scene because detectives didn’t contact the office about the death until almost 5:30 a.m., at least two hours after the incident. By then, Markham’s body was being transported to the morgue in a police wagon.

Two months later, on Nov. 13, 2015, Chicago police officially closed their investigation into Donald Markham’s death under the classification “non-criminal,” police reports showed.

jmeisner@chicagotribune.com

asweeney@chicagotribune.com

jgorner@chicagotribune.com

RELATED

FBI probe ends, but mysterious deaths of Chicago cop couple remain under investigation »

Break-in reported at home of cop couple who died 20 months apart »

911 calls released in off-duty cop’s death: ‘Please hurry! There’s blood all over the bed’ »

FBI expert concluded Chicago cop’s shooting staged to appear as a suicide – Chicago Tribune
 

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Chicago Tribune
FBI expert concluded Chicago cop’s shooting staged to appear as a suicide
Chicago Tribune
Veteran Chicago police Sgt. Donald Markham was shot by someone else at point-blank range in his home in 2015 before the scene was staged to appear to be a suicide, a forensic pathologist hired by the FBI concluded in a report obtained Thursday by the 
FBI report: Mysterious Chicago cop death ‘is best certified as a homicide’Chicago Sun-Timesall 2 news articles »
9:21 AM 1/11/2018 Mike Novas Shared NewsLinks: FBI as he suspected it had been compromised
 

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Christopher Steele The impression by the professional intelligence officer of the closest allied service is the very serious issue and the very important matter. Investigate the FBI fully, thoroughly and deeply, if you want to understand the Trump Presidency and its origins, the Trump Russia Affair, and the history and the essence of the … Continue reading“9:21 AM 1/11/2018 – Mike Novas Shared NewsLinks: “FBI as he suspected it had been compromised”…”

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Dossier Author Targeted by Senators

New York Times20 hours ago
6): Instead of putting party over country in an attempt to discredit a government source and longtime intelligence ally in Christopher Steele, a former British agent, Senators Lindsey Graham and Charles Grassley would serve their judicial oversight roles and the American public better by working with their …

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What you need to know about Christopher Steele, the FBI and the …

Washington PostJan 9, 2018
5 referred Christopher Steele, the author of the “dossier” alleging ties between President Trump and Russia, for a criminal investigation by the Justice Department. The move is an unexpected twist in the saga over the document, which was gossiped about in journalistic circles during the 2016 presidential …

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New York Times

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Minneapolis Star Tribune

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Politico (blog)

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How Fusion GPS co-founder is doubling down on ‘dodgy’ anti-Trump …

Washington Times12 hours ago
A released Senate transcript shows dossier paymaster Glenn Simpson had pure praise for the work of dossier writer Christopher Steele — an assessment disputed by intelligence professionals who have studied the product. “Chris was, you know, a person who delivered quality work in very appropriate …
Trump Russia Dossier: Fusion GPS Transcript, Glenn Simpson …
Featured<a href=”http://RollingStone.com” rel=”nofollow”>RollingStone.com</a>22 hours ago

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USA TODAY

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Newsweek

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New York Daily News

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Telegraph.co.uk

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The Week Magazine

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BBC News

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Feud over Trump dossier intensifies with release of interview transcript

Washington PostJan 9, 2018
The Senate committee has been probing how the FBI handled allegations it received from a British ex-spy, Christopher Steele, who compiled a series of memorandums, later collected as a dossier, alleging that the Trump campaign coordinated with the Kremlin — a claim the president has repeatedly …
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Analysis: The quiet probe into Clinton email investigation could be a …

USA TODAYDec 26, 2017
Nearly a year later, Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s wide-ranging review of the FBI and Justice’s work in the politically-charged Clinton case now looms as a potential landmine for Russia special counsel Robert Mueller. For months, Horowitz’s investigation — which has amassed interviews with former …

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IG report on Clinton email case, document dump could hold new …

Fox NewsJan 5, 2018
Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz also is reviewing whether FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe should have recused himself from the probe early because of his family’s ties to the Democratic Party. (He did not do so until a week before the election.) Horowitz told lawmakers …

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DOJ inspector general says department did not consult him before …

Business InsiderDec 15, 2017
DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz told House Judiciary Democrats in a letter on Friday that the department did not consult his office before releasing text messages that are currently under OIG investigation to the press. The texts from 2016 were exchanged between former agents on special counsel …
8:25 AM 1/11/2018 Saved Stories: Private investigator stopped cooperating with FBI as he suspected it had been compromised, his employer told committee Trump-Russia inquiry: transcript reveals ex-spy and FBIs cloak-and-dagger dance | US news | The Guardian
 

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Source: Trump-Russia inquiry: transcript reveals ex-spy and FBI’s cloak-and-dagger dance | US news | The Guardian  Private investigator stopped cooperating with FBI as he suspected it had been compromised, his employer told committee The transcript from the Fusion G.P.S. founders testimony raises questions about what the F.B.I. knew at the time and Steeles role in the … Continue reading“8:25 AM 1/11/2018 – Saved Stories: Private investigator stopped cooperating with FBI as he suspected it had been compromised, his employer told committee – Trump-Russia inquiry: transcript reveals ex-spy and FBI’s cloak-and-dagger dance | US news | The Guardian “

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The Hill’s 12:30 Report

The Hill20 hours ago
unilaterally released more than 300 pages of an interview with Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson, whose firm commissioned the controversial dossier on President Trump. The gist of what we learned: The dossier’s author, a former British intelligence officer named Christopher Steele, said the FBI …

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The Early Edition: January 11, 2018

Just Security1 hour ago
The transcript from the Fusion G.P.S. founder’s testimony raises questions about what the F.B.I. knew at the time and Steele’s role in the investigation. Stephanie Kirchgaessner explains at the Guardian. Senior Democrats in the Senate have accused Republican of engaging in efforts to discredit the …
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Fusion GPS transcript undercuts GOP attack on Steele and FBI

Washington Post22 hours ago
The decision by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) to release the transcript of Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn R. Simpson’s testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee did more damage to Republicans on the committee than to President Trump. For starters, it debunked the position of Judiciary …
Fusion GPSFBI Had a Source in Trump’s Circle During Campaign
<a href=”http://Snopes.com” rel=”nofollow”>Snopes.com</a>Jan 9, 2018
Trump Russia Dossier: Fusion GPS Transcript, Glenn Simpson …
Featured<a href=”http://RollingStone.com” rel=”nofollow”>RollingStone.com</a>Jan 10, 2018

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Feud over Trump dossier intensifies with release of interview transcript

Washington PostJan 9, 2018
The political battle over the FBI and its investigation of Russian meddling in the 2016 election intensified Tuesday with the release of an interview with the head of the firm behind a dossier of allegations against then-candidate Donald Trump. The transcript of Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn R. Simpson’s …

Story image for fbi and fusion gps from NPR

Fusion GPS Founder’s Senate Judiciary Testimony Released

NPRJan 9, 2018
The former British intelligence officer who authored the infamous Russia dossier wanted to show it to the FBI because he was concerned that then-presidential candidate Donald Trump was being “blackmailed.” Christopher Steele told the political research firm that hired him, Fusion GPS, that what he …
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Fusion GPS transcript undercuts GOP attack on Steele and FBI

Washington Post22 hours ago
Grassley’s attempt to suppress the transcript comes in conjunction with his entirely inappropriate “referral” to the FBI to investigate Christopher Steele — someone the FBI had already met with, received information from and had an ongoing, respectful and cooperative relationship with. Simpson testified, “My …

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Retired FBI Agent: The Real Reason Trump’s Lawyers Don’t Want a …

Yahoo Finance11 hours ago
Some, as former FBI assistant director for counterintelligence Frank Figliuzzi has mused, speculate that an in-person interview could be employed to “push some buttons.” The Trump legal team would predictably counter with a request to submit written answers to proffered questions—a typical ploy to …
Trump: Hillary Clinton Wasn’t Sworn in Before Her Interview with the …
<a href=”http://CNSNews.com” rel=”nofollow”>CNSNews.com</a>12 hours ago

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FBI Task Force to Expose Russian Social Media Manipulation

Bloomberg15 hours ago
“We’ve been reluctant in some instances to share the amount of information of what we know about what’s happening,” said Jeffrey Tricoli, a top FBI official heading the task force. “You can’t stay with the same strategy if you think there needs to be changes. So going forward there’s going to be opportunities …

Story image for fbi from Motherboard

FBI Hacker Says Apple Are ‘Jerks’ and ‘Evil Geniuses’ for Encrypting …

Motherboard16 hours ago
On Wednesday, at the the International Conference on Cyber Security in Manhattan, FBI forensic expert Stephen Flatley lashed out at Apple, calling the company “jerks,” and “evil geniuses” for making his and his colleagues’ investigative work harder. For example, Flatley complained that Apple recently …

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Trump: ‘Did FBI use intel tool too influence the election’ for Hillary …

Washington Examiner1 hour ago
President Trump said Thursday that the Democratic Party used the Fusion GPS dossier to spy on his campaign in 2016, and asked if the FBI used that in an attempt to influence the election against him. “Disproven and paid for by Democrats ‘Dossier’ used to spy on Trump Campaign. Did FBI use Intel tool to …
The Early Edition: January 11, 2018
 

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Before the start of business, Just Security provides a curated summary of up-to-the-minute developments at home and abroad. Heres todays news.

NORTH KOREA

South Korean President Moon Jae-in admitted that there were policy differences with the U.S. in terms of their approach to the Pyongyang regime in a news conference yesterday, however he also expressed guarded optimism about the future of inter-Korean relations and praised President Trump for facilitating the talks which took place Tuesday. Jonathan Cheng reports at the Wall Street Journal.

The current inter-Korean talks could naturally lead to talks between the United States and North Korea for the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, the White House said in a statement following President Trumps phone call with President Moon yesterday. Reuters reports.

Trump would be open to talks with North Korea at the appropriate time, under the right circumstances, Trump said in the phone call, according to the White House statement. Julian Borger and Justin McCurry report at the Guardian.

I hope you let them know that there will be absolutely no military action as long as inter-Korean talks are ongoing, Trump said, according to the South Korean governments statement on the phone call. Dan Merica reports at CNN.

The U.N. Security Council has welcomed the inter-Korean talks in a statement issued yesterday, which expressed hope that the discussions would open possibilities for confidence building and trust building on the Korean Peninsula. The AP reports.

It would be detrimental to U.S. interests for the U.S. to conduct airstrikes against North Korea, such a measure would risk lives and escalation could lead to a response from China. Reps. Ruben Gallego (D-Ariz.) and Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) write at Foreign Policy in response to an article by Edward Luttwak.

An investigation into a Chinese businesswoman represents a test for China, revealing how far it is willing to support U.S. efforts to put pressure on North Korea. The growth of Ma Xiaohongs commercial empire has been supported by trade with North Korea and American prosecutors charged her for helping North Korea to evade international sanctions, Steven lee Myers explains at the New York Times.

IRAN

Some of Trumps top advisers have urged the president to waive sanctions on Iran that were lifted under the 2015 nuclear deal, according to a senior administration official, Trump has privately expressed reluctance to waive the sanctions and he will seek to make a decision today following a meeting with national security aides. Steve Holland reports at Reuters.

President Trump is expected to continue to waive the sanctions ahead of tomorrows deadline, according to sources familiar with the deliberations, but Trump is likely to add that the waiver be coupled with new, targeted sanctions on Iranian individuals and entities. Matthew Lee and Josh Lederman report at the AP.

A decision to re-impose sanctions could be viewed as a U.S. violation of the 2015 agreement, and senior U.S. officials, including Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, have recommended that Trump continue to waive the sanctions. Zachary Cohen, Elise Labott and Ted Barrett report at CNN.   

Irans Foreign Minister Javad Zarif has traveled to Brussels to meet with European Union officials and European foreign ministers to discuss the 2015 agreement, the E.U. has strongly supported the deal but the recent anti-government protests in Iran have complicated its position. Mehreen Khan reports at the Financial Times.

The German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel said today that the U.S. was right to raise concerns about Irans ballistic program and its role in the Middle East, but those concerns are separate to the particular issue of the nuclear deal. Robin Emmott reports at Reuters.

The British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson is set to meet with Zarif today, where he will discuss the nuclear deal and raise the issue of the recent protests in Iran. Anabelle Dickson reports at POLITICO.

There has been no agreement within the Senate Foreign Relations Committee regarding legislation addressing what Trump deems to be issues with the nuclear deal, the panels top Democrat Ben Cardin (D-Md.) told reporters yesterday, adding that there have been very positive discussions with the committee Chairman Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) and they have an understanding of the framework of issues that need to be dealt with. Rebecca Kheel reports at the Hill.

TRUMP-RUSSIA

President Trump declined to commit to being interviewed by special counsel Robert Mueller as part of the investigation into whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russia during the 2016 U.S. election, saying at a news conference yesterday that when you have no collusion and nobody has found any collusion at any level, it seems unlikely that youd even have an interview. Rebecca Ballhaus reports at the Wall Street Journal.

Ill speak to attorneys, Trump also said in response to the question about meeting with Mueller, adding well see what happens, his answer showing a change from his comments in June, where he said that he would be 100 percent willing to give a sworn statement to Mueller. Julie Hirschfield Davis and Nicholas Fandos report at the New York Times.

For 11 months, weve had this phony cloud over this administration, Trump added, saying that the allegations of collusion were a Democrat hoax and insisting that there has been no collusion. Jeremy Diamond reports at CNN.

Trump attacked Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) for her decision to release the transcript of the founder of the opposition research firm Fusion G.P.S.s testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee earlier this week, calling Feinstein Sneaky in a post on Twitter and urged Republicans to take control of the investigation. The Fusion G.P.S. founder Glenn Simpson hired the former British Intelligence officer Christopher Steele to produce a dossier on Trumps connections to Russia, Josh Dawsey and Ed OKeefe report at the Washington Post.

The transcript from the Fusion G.P.S. founders testimony raises questions about what the F.B.I. knew at the time and Steeles role in the investigation. Stephanie Kirchgaessner explains at the Guardian.

Senior Democrats in the Senate have accused Republican of engaging in efforts to discredit the investigations into Russian interference in the 2016 election, leading to break downs in the congressional investigations, and Republicans have accused Democrats of politicizing the inquiries. Karoun Demirjian reports at the Washington Post.

The cybercrime expert Ryan Dickey has been a member of Muellers team since November, according to a U.S. official, Dickeys role in the team suggests that the Mueller investigation may be focusing on computer hacking. Eric Geller reports at POLITICO.

The Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska has filed a lawsuit against Trumps former campaign manager Paul Manafort and his aide Rick Gates, alleging that they misappropriated millions of dollars of his investments. Manafort and Gates have both pleaded not guilty to charges filed by Mueller as part of the Russia investigation in relation to their work while in Ukraine, Scott Patterson reports at the Wall Street Journal.

Russias threat to Western democracies has been revealed as a consequence of the investigations, report released by Democrats on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee yesterday has revealed the extent of the assault on democratic institutions and the Democrats warnings must be heeded. The New York Times editorial board writes.

The full Russian- Trump- F.B.I. record should be made public, the Wall Street Journal editorial boardwrites, arguing that there should be proper transparency, including the declassification of details relating to the F.B.I.s handling of the Steele dossier.

The possible ways that presidents lawyers are preparing Trump for an interview with Mueller are set out by Bradley P. Moss at POLITICO Magazine.

SYRIA

Syrian pro-government forces have advanced into the rebel-held Idlib province and reached a rebel-controlled air base yesterday. Bassem Mroue reports at the AP.

The offensive on Idlib has led to the displacement of around 100,000 Syrian civilians, according to the U.N., Idlib was designated a de-escalation zone under a Russia-, Iran- and Turkey-brokered deal, nevertheless Syrian forces have continued their advance and Turkey has called on Russia and Iran to pressure Syria to halt the offensive. The BBC reports.

At least 85 civilians have been killed since Dec. 31 in the rebel-held enclave of Eastern Ghouta near the capital of Damascus, the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Raad al-Hussein said yesterday, calling on all parties to respect international law. The U.N. News Centre reports.

The Turkish foreign ministry yesterday summoned the U.S. Embassys Charge dAffaires to express Turkeys discomfort with Washingtons support for Syrian Kurdish fighters, the Syrian Kurdish Y.P.G. militia have received arms and training from the U.S., Al Jazeera reports.

The drones that recently attacked the Russian Hmeimim air base in Syria were launched from a rebel-held village in the Idlib province, the Russian defense ministry held Turkey accountable for the drone attack, which was in contravention of a cease-fire agreement. Liz Sly and Zakaria Zakaria report at the Washington Post.

Rebel attacks on Russian military outposts in Syria have raised questions about the ability of Syrian President Bashar al-Assads ability to consolidate gains and Russias ability to protect its assets. Vladimir Isachenkov reports at the AP.

Russias representative to the E.U. has called on European states to provide financial support to rebuild Syria, the comments highlight tensions faced by European countries who seek to stem the flow of Syrian refugees but do not want to boost the Assad regime. Michael Peel reports at the Financial Times.

U.S.-led airstrikes continue. U.S. and coalition forces carried out 58 airstrikes against Islamic State targets in Syria and Iraq between December 29, 2017 and January 4, 2018. [Central Command]

CUBA EMBASSY INCIDENTS

Canada has no plans to withdraw diplomats who have suffered symptoms at its embassy in Cuba, a senior Canadian government official said yesterday, U.S. diplomats and personnel also reported illnesses which some have alleged may have been caused by some sort of attack. Tracey Lindeman reports at the AP.

The Canadian government said yesterday that it had no idea what caused the mysterious illnesses, Canadian citizens reported similar symptoms to U.S. Embassy employees in Cuba. Abigail Williams and Tracy Connor report at NBC News.

ISRAEL-PALESTINE

A criminal investigation has been opened by Egypt in relation to a New York Times article that described a covert effort by Egyptian intelligence to try and influence public opinion in favor of Trumps decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israels capital. Declan Walsh reports at the New York Times.

The Trump administrations reported decision to fund $125m in funds to the U.N.R.W.A. Palestinian aid agency marks an unprecedented change in policy, the administration should progress from this position by stating that U.N.R.W.A. has outlived its usefulness and that Palestinians are not refugees, following this, the administration should create a detailed plan to shift responsibility from U.N.R.W.A. to the Palestinian Authority. Alex Joffe and Asaf Romirowsky write at the Wall Street Journal.

OTHER DEVELOPMENTS

Punishing Pakistan pushes it towards Americas major adversaries, the Pakistan Defense Minister Khurram Dastgir-Khan said in an interview, warning that Pakistan would move closer to China in light of the U.S. decision last week to freeze military aid to Pakistan. Saeed Shah reports at the Wall Street Journal.

The House is set to vote today on legislation renewing the National Security Agencys (N.S.A.) warrantless surveillance program today, the House is also expected to vote on a bipartisan amendment that would be seen as a victory for privacy advocates. The votea on the legislation and amendment is likely to be close, Katie Bo Williams reports at the Hill.

A U.S. military investigation has been launched after video footage was released appearing to show a U.S. soldier violating the rules of engagement while serving in Afghanistan. Wesley Morgan reports at POLITICO.

The Islamic State group have two options should they decide to come up against the United States, our allies and partners: surrender or die! the Pentagons senior enlisted adviser Sgt. Maj. John Wayne Troxell said in posts on social media yesterday. Dan Lamothe reports at the Washington Post.

The Islamic State affiliate in Egypts Sinai Peninsula have declared on the Palestinian Hamas group, Iyad Abuheweila and Isabel Kershner explain the significance of the declaration at the New York Times.

Chinas rise has been aided by a U.S. absence of leadership, Ishaan Tharoor provides an analysis at the Washington Post.

US Democrats Accuse Russia of ‘Targeting’ Balkans :: Balkan Insight
 

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Photo: Flickr/Mike Mozart

A new report produced by US Democrats says Russia is aggressively targeting countries that have taken “tangible steps” to integrate with Western institutions like the EU or NATO in order to impede integration processes.
“Georgia, Ukraine, and Montenegro are the most recent cases in a long history of Russian aggression along the periphery that stretches back generations — and, as they have drawn closer to NATO and the EU, they have been the focus of arguably the most brazen Kremlin efforts to keep them from sliding across the finish line,” the report published on Wednesday said.

According to Gallup International Association’s “Global Leaders End of Year” survey, published on Wednesday, the most popular world leader among Serbs is Russian President Vladimir Putin (81 percent). According to the B92 report, Putin is followed by Chinese President Xi Jinping (61 percent), Merkel (38 percent), and Macron and US President Donald Trump (33 percent each).

It added that Russian interference in places like Serbia is less visibly aggressive and focuses more on “cultivating sympathetic elements of society to deter government efforts to integrate with the West”.
“In addition to disinformation and the co-opting of political forces, Russia employs energy resources as a weapon to gain leverage in these countries,” it said.
The Associated Press on Wednesday called the report the first from the US Congress to “comprehensively detail Russian efforts to undermine democracies since the 2016 [US] presidential election”.
AP said the report by Congressional Democrats warns of “deepening Russian interference throughout Europe” – but added that no Republicans on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee signed the report.
The document, published on the official website of the Senate, also noted Bulgaria among the “EU members where corruption or vulnerabilities in the rule of law provide openings to erode their bonds to European values and institutions”.
It said most Russian government funding is focused on post-Soviet “swing states” such as Ukraine, Moldova, Georgia, and Armenia, while Kremlin-supported groups also operate in the Balkans, “especially Serbia and Bulgaria”.
The part of the report about Montenegro recalls the events from the 2016 election day when authorities claimed to have quashed a pro-Russian coup.
“Russian malign influence in Montenegro has long been present and intensified in 2016 in an effort to derail the country’s NATO bid,” it said.

“This renewed focus included propaganda, support for NGOs and political parties, and culminated in an alleged Russian effort to overthrow the government following the 2016 parliamentary election,” it added.
Among the recommendations for Montenegro, the report said the United States should recognize its commitment to enter NATO, and that this case should “serve as a wake-up call for other NATO and EU aspirants, especially in the Balkans”.
“The international community should not rest on its laurels now that Montenegro is a NATO member, but should actively help the government to bolster its defenses against other soft power tools in Russia’s asymmetric arsenal,” it said.
In the case of Serbia, the report warned that Russia’s “malign influence” manifests “itself through cultural ties, propaganda, energy, and an expanding defense relationship”.
It added: “Moscow also highlights deep roots between the countries through the Orthodox Church and a shared Slavic culture”.
Despite its close relationship with Moscow, it added, Serbia has made clear that its priority is joining the European Union.
“Serbia’s desire to maintain good relations with both the EU and Russia is reflective of public opinion, but may not be sustainable, as deeper integration may mean adopting EU decisions that run counter to Russian interests,” the report warned, and added that closer ties between Serbia and the EU could result in a surge in Russian influence in the country.
“The government of Serbia has done little to prepare for this eventuality and has taken few discernable actions to defend against Russian malign influence,” it complained.
The report also underlined the energy influence Russia has on Serbia, as it provides 40 per cent of the natural gas consumed in Serbia.
The report urged Serbia to “defend itself against Kremlin interference” and the United States to re-engage with resources and send “a clear message that it is willing to spend the time and effort necessary to support those who want a democratic future in Europe”.
On Bulgaria, report said that the country, “despite pressure, remains resilient”.
“With the dedication of more diplomatic attention and resources—particularly on energy diversification, addressing corruption, and building up the democratic rule of law – the United States will be in a position to help leaders within the Bulgarian government and civil society counter Russia’s asymmetric arsenal,” the report concluded.

US Democrats have accused Donald Trump’s election team of colluding with Russia to win the US presidential election and have fiecely opposed Trump’s call for the US to establish warmer ties to the Kremlin at last in their joint struggle against Islamist terrorists.

Chinas Stealthy Advance in Balkans Should Worry EU :: Balkan Insight
 

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comment11 Jan 182018-01-11 11:06:10

While Europe focuses on the threat of Russian penetration in Eastern Europe, it is neglecting the subtler dangers than come from China’s growing influence in the region.

Vesko Garcevic

BIRN

The region is still unaware of potential risks of dealing with China. Hence, it’s not whether or not to do business with China; the question is how to make yourself able to negotiate a fair deal.

When EU officials, including foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, refer to the Balkans as a new “chessboard where the big power game can be played”, Russia, not China, seems to be on their mind.

But, whether or not they wish to recognize it, China is becoming a powerful player in the strategic chess game in the Balkans.

Beijing’s “One Belt One Road” policy is already affecting the Balkans, and its presence is visible in almost every corner of the region.

The Republicans Fake Investigations – The New York Times
 

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Republicans have refused to release full transcripts of our firm’s testimony, even as they selectively leak details to media outlets on the far right. It’s time to share what our company told investigators.

We don’t believe the Steele dossier was the trigger for the F.B.I.’s investigation into Russian meddling. As we told the Senate Judiciary Committee in August, our sources said the dossier was taken so seriously because it corroborated reports the bureau had received from other sources, including one inside the Trump camp.

The intelligence committees have known for months that credible allegations of collusion between the Trump camp and Russia were pouring in from independent sources during the campaign. Yet lawmakers in the thrall of the president continue to wage a cynical campaign to portray us as the unwitting victims of Kremlin disinformation.

We suggested investigators look into the bank records of Deutsche Bank and others that were funding Mr. Trump’s businesses. Congress appears uninterested in that tip: Reportedly, ours are the only bank records the House Intelligence Committee has subpoenaed.

We told Congress that from Manhattan to Sunny Isles Beach, Fla., and from Toronto to Panama, we found widespread evidence that Mr. Trump and his organization had worked with a wide array of dubious Russians in arrangements that often raised questions about money laundering. Likewise, those deals don’t seem to interest Congress.

We explained how, from our past journalistic work in Europe, we were deeply familiar with the political operative Paul Manafort’s coziness with Moscow and his financial ties to Russian oligarchs close to Vladimir Putin.

Finally, we debunked the biggest canard being pushed by the president’s men — the notion that we somehow knew of the June 9, 2016, meeting in Trump Tower between some Russians and the Trump brain trust. We first learned of that meeting from news reports last year — and the committees know it. They also know that these Russians were unaware of the former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele’s work for us and were not sources for his reports.

Yes, we hired Mr. Steele, a highly respected Russia expert. But we did so without informing him whom we were working for and gave him no specific marching orders beyond this basic question: Why did Mr. Trump repeatedly seek to do deals in a notoriously corrupt police state that most serious investors shun?

What came back shocked us. Mr. Steele’s sources in Russia (who were not paid) reported on an extensive — and now confirmed — effort by the Kremlin to help elect Mr. Trump president. Mr. Steele saw this as a crime in progress and decided he needed to report it to the F.B.I.

We did not discuss that decision with our clients, or anyone else. Instead, we deferred to Mr. Steele, a trusted friend and intelligence professional with a long history of working with law enforcement. We did not speak to the F.B.I. and haven’t since.

After the election, Mr. Steele decided to share his intelligence with Senator John McCain via an emissary. We helped him do that. The goal was to alert the United States national security community to an attack on our country by a hostile foreign power. We did not, however, share the dossier with BuzzFeed, which to our dismay published it last January.

We’re extremely proud of our work to highlight Mr. Trump’s Russia ties. To have done so is our right under the First Amendment.

It is time to stop chasing rabbits. The public still has much to learn about a man with the most troubling business past of any United States president. Congress should release transcripts of our firm’s testimony, so that the American people can learn the truth about our work and most important, what happened to our democracy.

Continue reading the main story

Fusion GPS Speaks | TrumP Россия
 

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1060x600-7763685d68b3f61401827c6db1372603Glenn Simpson

Glenn Simpson and Peter Fritsch, the two former Wall Street Journal reports who founded Fusion GPS, have broken their silence about their role in the Trump-Russia affair.

Simpson and Fritsch penned an opinion piece in today’s New York Times. The purpose of the opinion piece was to let the public know what they spent 21 hours explaining to three congressional committees.

Most of the piece rebuts the many rumors surrounding Fusion GPS, including one big one — former British spy Christopher Steele’s sources were not paid for the information that he compiled about Trump, including the scandalous watersports-in-Moscow story.  This is big because paying sources undermines their credibility.

Simpson and Fritsch note their “dismay” that Buzzfeed published the Steele dossier in January 2017. This bothers me because Fusion GPS was shopping Steele and this dossier to every major news outlet who would listen. I guess this is the Washington game, but washing your hands in dirty water is not how you stay clean.

For Trump-Russia investigators, they did offer up a few tidbits:

  • Simpson and Fritsch told investigators to look into the bank records of Deutsche Bank and others that were funding Trump’s businesses.
  • In Manhattan,  Sunny Isles Beach, Florida; Toronto; and Panama, they found “widespread evidence” that Trump had worked with “dubious Russians in arrangements that often raised questions about money laundering.”

There is a lot of information packed in to those few sentences.

Simpson and Fritsch also note, as we did recently here, that Trump’s allies in Congress have dug through their bank records to tarnish the firm and punish them for bringing light into the darkness of Trump’s Russia dealings.

One person who lit up after reading this piece was Bill Browder, Putin’s self-styled enemy No. 1 who was once his biggest fan. Here he is, borrowing from the Devin Nunes “attack the client” strategy, as he vented his anger on Twitter today:

The Steele dossier, unfortunately, is a distraction. It is raw intelligence, not evidence, and was never intended to be used in a court of law. In the public’s mind, however, it has been impossibly conflated with the legitimate investigation by Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

It does Browder no credit that he stokes this confusion and allows his hatred of Fusion GPS to become grist for conservative media outlets that seek to undermine the Mueller inquiry. (“The dossier is the foundation on which the case for Russiagate, including Mueller’s investigation, is built.”)

As Browder surely knows, since he’s paid for many an investigation himself, who hired Fusion GPS doesn’t really matter. The bottom line is that if Fusion GPS didn’t dish up facts, it wouldn’t be in business. Period.

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Today’s Headlines and Commentary
 

mikenova shared this story from Lawfare – Hard National Security Choices.

President Donald Trump is expected to continue economic sanctions relief to Iran as part of the Iran nuclear deal, but he will impose new targeted sanctions on Iranian individuals and businesses for their involvement in Irans ballistic missile program and human rights abuses, the AP . Trump faces a deadline on Friday to extend or cancel sanctions relief for Irans central bank, which was lifted as part of the 2015 multilateral agreement. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Defense Secretary James Mattis and national security adviser H.R. McMaster have recommended that Trump extend the sanctions. The administration has not yet made a final decision. Maintaining the core sanctions relief while adding new targeted measures could allow the nuclear deal to remain in place while satisfying the administrations desire to put pressure on Iran.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein released the transcript of Fusion GPS founder Glenn Simpsons interview with Senate Judiciary Committee investigators about the Steele dossier, the Washington Post . Simpson spoke to the committee about Fusion GPS, the firm he co-founded, and its work on the dossier. Republicans have tried to discredit the Trump-Russia dossier as a politically-motivated document. Sen. Chuck Grassley, the committees chairman, had refused to release the transcript. Simpson said in his testimony that the FBI believed some of the allegations Steele shared with its investigators about the Trump campaigns ties to Russia because of other intelligence already in the bureaus possession, including information related to a person in the Trump campaign.. That person is believed to be George Papadopoulos, a campaign foreign policy adviser who spoke to an Australian diplomatwhose government then relayed to the FBIinformation about Russian efforts to undermine the Clinton campaign. The testimony refutes GOP talking points that say the dossier served as the basis for opening the investigation into possible collusion with the Russian government.

Separately, Michael Cohen, an attorney and business partner of Trump, filed defamation lawsuits against Fusion GPS and BuzzFeed for publishing the dossier, Politico . The dossier discusses Cohens ties to Russia. BuzzFeeds editor said in an  in the New York Times that it was the right decision to publish the dossier.

Senate Democrats released a report saying Russia conducted a broad campaign to undermine democratic institutions in Western Europe and North America using military operations, cyber attacks, and disinformation over the past 20 years, the Wall Street Journal . The 200-page report from the Democrats on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee says Russian President Vladimir Putins goal was to undermine the transatlantic alliance. It makes 30 policy recommendations, including freezing Russian finances linked to corruption, supporting democratic institutions abroad and levying new sanctions against Russia. Senate Republicans declined to join the report.

Tillerson is opening a State Department investigation into the mysterious attacks on U.S. personnel stationed at the U.S. embassy in Cuba, the New York Times . Senators told senior State Department officials that it should have opened the Accountability Review Board inquiry much earlier to look into the strange illnesses that afflicted U.S. diplomats serving in Cuba. The Cuban government has denied any responsibility for the incidents.

A bill to reauthorize surveillance authorities under Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act advanced to the House floor after the Rules Committee approved it in a 6-3 vote, Politico . The bill would renew Section 702, which is currently scheduled to expire on Jan. 19, for six more years. It is a combination of competing bills from the House intelligence and judiciary committees. Devin Nunes, chairman of the House intelligence committee, said the measure is likely to pass both the House and Senate. Sen. Mark Warner, the top democrat on the Senate intelligence committee, said the bill would receive support in the Senate.

The Islamic State called on its fighters to attack the militant organization Hamas, saying Hamas had betrayed Palestinians by refusing to release Palestinian extremists and by participating in Palestinian elections, the New York Times . A video released from the Egyptian affiliate of the Islamic State, which is currently fighting Egyptian security forces in the Sinai peninsula, showed Islamic State fighters denouncing Hamas. The feud between the militant organizations makes an already unstable situation near the Sinai-Gaza border even more hostile.

Prosecutors in Myanmar formally charged two Reuters journalists who have been detained in the country for more than a month with violating a law protecting state secrets, the Times . The journalists were investigating mass graves in areas where Myanmars military has carried out a campaign of ethnic cleansing against Rohingya Muslims. They denied any wrongdoing. American and European diplomats in Myanmar called for the journalists release.

 

ICYMI: Yesterday on Lawfare

Mieke Eoyang, Ben Freeman and Benjamin Wittes  their analysis of polling data on government and national security matters from December 2017.

Samuel Estreicher  separation of powers issues with the Iran nuclear deal agreement.

Robert Chesney and Steve Vladeck  a primer on the merits issues in ACLU v. Mattis.

J. Dana Stuster  the Middle East Ticker, covering the Iran protests, austerity for the royal family in Saudi Arabia and possible U.S. cuts to U.N. relief for Palestine.

Matthew Kahn  the transcript of the Senate Judiciary Committees interview with Glenn Simpson.

Kahn  Lawfares resource page for documents related to FISA Section 702 reauthorization.

Kahn  the text of a speech FBI Director Christopher Wray gave on Jan. 9 about encryption and cyber security.

Vanessa Sauter  the Lawfare Podcast, featuring an interview between Alina Polyakova and Julia Ioffe about Ioffes recent piece on Putins goals.

Paul Rosenzweig  the context for the Trump administrations decision to end Temporary Protected Status for El Salvadorans.

 

 the Roundup Team noteworthy law and security-related articles to include, and follow us on Twitter and  for additional commentary on these issues.  to receive Lawfare in your inbox. Visit our  to learn about upcoming national security events, and check out relevant job openings on our .

A Jersey Shore doctor killed his wife after she threatened to expose the drug ring he ran, prosecutors say
 

mikenova shared this story .

social media infiltration by russian intelligence – Google Search
 

mikenova shared this story from social media infiltration by russian intelligence – Google News.

Story image for social media infiltration by russian intelligence from NBCNews.com

Russian trolls went on attack during key election moments

<a href=”http://NBCNews.com” rel=”nofollow”>NBCNews.com</a>Dec 20, 2017
Thousands of Russian trolls targeted national events during the 2016 U.S. presidential election to infiltrate the online conversations of millions of Americans, …. but we knew there were underground networks to spread content that would undermine Hillary,” said Emmy Bengtson, former deputy social media …

Story image for social media infiltration by russian intelligence from CNN

CNN

Bess: From Russia with love … sort of

Bolivar Herald-Free Press42 minutes ago
Putin and his disciples have infiltrated numerous public and private institutions and made off with information sensitive to both our government and its citizens. They have exploited our free press, spread disinformation through social media, and have created online propaganda networks and websites.

Story image for social media infiltration by russian intelligence from Washington Post

What does Trump think Mueller will find?

Washington PostJan 4, 2018
Trump and his top advisers were distributors of the Russian social media propaganda, retweeting and distributing it widely. And much of this happened after Trump was briefed in July by top U.S. professional counterintelligence officers who warned him of a Russian effort to infiltrate the 2016 campaign.

Story image for social media infiltration by russian intelligence from The Atlantic

American Elections Remain Unprotected

The AtlanticDec 28, 2017
Two weeks before the inauguration of President Donald Trump, the U.S. intelligence community released a declassified version of its report on Russia’s interference in the 2016 election. It detailed the activities of a network of hackers who infiltrated voting systems and stole documents from the Democrati

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8:09 AM 1/12/2018 – Trump’s Statement On Canceled London Visit Is Full Of Falsehoods – Saved Stories

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Saved Stories

Saved Stories – None
Trump’s Statement On Canceled London Visit Is Full Of Falsehoods
“Shithole countries? Words worthy of a racist-in-chief | Richard Wolffe
Few Republicans Acknowledged Trump’s ‘Shithole’ Slur. These Are The Ones Who Did.
Why reading too much into Trump’s cancelled UK trip is unwise
The fabulous new US embassy is best not tainted by a Trump visit | Oliver Wainwright
Late-Night TV Hosts Skewer Trump For ‘Shithole Countries’ Comment
How many episodes of McMafia are there? – BT TV
Can you match the Donald Trump insult to the country he insulted?
Putin’s tax cuts and a challenge for Obama – St. Louis American
Putin, Of All People, Warns US Against Election Meddling in Russia – Newsweek
Trump blames ‘bad deal’ for London trip cancellation. But Brits think they scared him away. – Washington Post
Russian Billionaire Files Fraud Lawsuit Against Manafort, Cites Mueller Docs – TPM
The FBI Hand Behind Russia-gate – Consortium News
Trump bucked his own White House on a controversial surveillance law after watching FOX News – AOL
Steve Bannon Plans to ‘Fully Cooperate’ with Robert Mueller: Report – AlterNet
Once ‘100 percent’ willing to talk under oath to Robert Mueller, Trump now says ‘we’ll see’ – The Keene Sentinel
Every Trump utterance raises the same three questions – Washington Post
Special Counsel Mueller has not requested interview with VP Pence – NBCNews.com
FBI Canine Agent Sniffs Out Cyber Evidence – Wall Street Journal (blog)
Today’s Big Story: Trump Tells Republicans to Take Control of the Russia Investigation – The Independent Weekly
Trump targets, then backs surveillance program in tweets – Arkansas Online
Trump and the White House have denied Russian collusion more than 140 times – Washington Post
How far will Trump go to avoid Mueller’s questions? Here are several scenarios. – Washington Post
Is there a GOP conspiracy to discredit the Trump-Russia investigation? – Washington Post
FBI expert concluded Chicago cop’s shooting staged to appear as a suicide – Chicago Tribune

 

Saved Stories – None
Trump’s Statement On Canceled London Visit Is Full Of Falsehoods

He blames Obama for the move, even though it was first planned under Bush.
“Shithole countries? Words worthy of a racist-in-chief | Richard Wolffe

Donald Trump has made no secret of his bigotry. The sad truth thing is his comments about Haiti and Africa reflect the USs historic racismDonald Trump knows a thing or two about shitholes  the label he apparently bestowed on El Salvador, Haiti and various African nations during an Oval Office meeting about immigration. His own father was reportedly so ashamed of coming from Germany widely considered to be a shithole by Americans fighting in two world wars that he pretended for most of his life that he was Swedish.These Aryan dreams glowed all blond and bright through Trumps seminal book, The Art of the Deal, in which he claimed his father arrived as a child from Sweden like some kind of Nordic dreamer.

Related: Trump pans immigration proposal as bringing people from ‘shithole countries’

Related: ‘Unkind, divisive, elitist’: international outcry over Trump’s ‘shithole countries’ remark

Continue reading…

Few Republicans Acknowledged Trump’s ‘Shithole’ Slur. These Are The Ones Who Did.

Most Republicans were silent on the issue, but these GOP lawmakers wouldn’t let it go.
Why reading too much into Trump’s cancelled UK trip is unwise

There is something the UK is not getting right in its relations with the US, but then caprice is seen as a strength by this US presidentIn a sprawling interview with the Wall Street Journal this week, Donald Trump said: I dont know what the word permanent means, adding that he could give 20 examples in his life of deep enmities and then all of a sudden somebodys my best friend.

Caprice in his alliances and policy-making is clearly seen as a strength by the US president. The former British foreign secretary Jack Straw, for instance, said a decision expected on Friday on whether to lift the sanctions waiver on the Iranian nuclear deal came down to the flip of a coin in the Oval Office.

Related: Debunked: Trump reasons for cancelling London visit

Related: The fabulous new US embassy is best not tainted by a Trump visit | Oliver Wainwright

Continue reading…

The fabulous new US embassy is best not tainted by a Trump visit | Oliver Wainwright

The president has cancelled his visit, blaming the Obama administration for a bad deal but actually the new building is a progressive beaconRaised on a hill, surrounded by a moat and bristling with all the anti-terrorist measures known to man, the new US embassy in Nine Elms, south-west London, should be exactly the kind of building that Donald Trump would be only too keen to open. Covered in a prickly translucent plastic skin, which looks cheap, foggy and is already stained, the $1bn cube is in many ways the perfect metaphor for his administration. So why has he cancelled the ribbon-cutting ceremony, planned for later this month?Reason I canceled my trip to London is that I am not a big fan of the Obama Administration having sold perhaps the best located and finest embassy in London for peanuts, he tweeted, only to build a new one in an off location for 1.2 billion dollars. Bad deal. Wanted me to cut ribbon-NO!

Related: Londons new US embassy: a very diplomatic America on Thames

Related: Donald Trump cancels London visit amid protest fears

Continue reading…

Late-Night TV Hosts Skewer Trump For ‘Shithole Countries’ Comment

Seth Meyers had to walk away for a minute to process the news.
How many episodes of McMafia are there? – BT TV
 


BT TV
How many episodes of McMafia are there?
BT TV
McMafia explores the global criminal network and its far-reaching influences, but centres on one Russian family in exile in London. Lead character Alex Godman has spent his life trying desperately to escape his family’s criminal connections and build a  

Can you match the Donald Trump insult to the country he insulted?

The US president reportedly branded Haiti, El Salvador and African nations shithole countries. Here are some more of his efforts at international diplomacyDonald Trumps international diplomacy efforts have hit the headlines again, after he reportedly described several African and Central American nations as shithole countries.

Here are12 other ways in which he has insulted a nation since he began campaigning for the US presidency.

When campaigning to be US president, of which country did Trump say: Without us, gone!

Saudi Arabia

Iraq

Turkey

Russia

According to Trump, where gives “no appreciation or respect” to the US, despite receiving hundreds of millions of dollars a year in aid?

Iraq

Turkey

Palestinian territories

Russia

Which state did Trump describe as a corrupt and poorly run country?

Turkey

Iran

Syria

Russia

Which country’s infrastructure did Trump describe as a “disaster”?

Cuba

Mexico

Puerto Rico

Russia

Which country did Trump say sends rapists to the US?

Mexico

Cuba

Syria

Russia

Which country did Trump describe as “a dumping ground for the world”?

Germany

Mexico

US

Russia

Which European country is apparently “a total mess”, according to Trump?

Sweden

Germany

France

Russia

To which country did Trump appoint an ambassador who had previously described that nation as having “no-go areas” and “politicians that are being burnt” due to Islam?

Sweden

Netherlands

Norway

Russia

Of which country did Trump say we pay billions of dollars to for nothing?

Iraq

Pakistan

India

Russia

Which country did Trump say looks “more and more like a paper tiger”?

US

North Korea

Iran

Russia

Which nation did Trump say the US could not continue to allow to rape our country, and that’s what they’re doing?

Mexico

Australia

China

Russia

Which nation did Trump describe as “depleted and food starved”?

North Korea

Iraq

Iran

Russia

6 and above.

Congratulations! A career in the US diplomatic service awaits you

10 and above.

Congratulations! A career in the US diplomatic service awaits you

0 and above.

Congratulations! A career in the US diplomatic service awaits you

Continue reading…

Putin’s tax cuts and a challenge for Obama – St. Louis American
 


St. Louis American
Putin’s tax cuts and a challenge for Obama
St. Louis American
President Obama, you knew the Russians were hacking our 2016 election and you did not speak up. You probably did not think Trump would win. But you and we now know how severely Putin’s stooge is damaging our country. It is time, Mr. Obama, for you to and more »

Putin, Of All People, Warns US Against Election Meddling in Russia – Newsweek
 


Newsweek
Putin, Of All People, Warns US Against Election Meddling in Russia
Newsweek
Russian President Vladimir Putin has warned the U.S. not to try and influence the outcome of elections in Russia where he will fight to secure a fourth term in office. Putin, who has been accused of meddling in the 2016 presidential election in favor
Putin downplays US report on Russian meddlingBoston Herald
Russia’s pattern of meddling abroad exposes threat to 2018 US elections: reportUSA TODAY
Kremlin pans US Senate reportArkansas Online
RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty –Foreign Policy (blog) –RealClearPolitics –Senate Foreign Relations
all 333 news articles »
Trump blames ‘bad deal’ for London trip cancellation. But Brits think they scared him away. – Washington Post
 


Washington Post
Trump blames ‘bad deal’ for London trip cancellation. But Brits think they scared him away.
Washington Post
Shortly after Trump’s inauguration, around 100,000 demonstrators hit the streets of London for the Women’s March in solidarity with anti-Trump rallies worldwide. A group called Stop Trump promised the biggest demonstration in British history should 
Trump cancels London visit over ‘bad’ embassy dealCNN
Donald Trump cancels February visit to UKBBC News
Donald Trump Cancels UK State VisitDeadline
Variety –HuffPost –CNBC
all 246 news articles »
Russian Billionaire Files Fraud Lawsuit Against Manafort, Cites Mueller Docs – TPM
 


TPM
Russian Billionaire Files Fraud Lawsuit Against Manafort, Cites Mueller Docs
TPM
A Russian billionaire and Putin ally sued former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his longtime deputy Rick Gates Wednesday, alleging that the two men siphoned for themselves millions of dollars as part of a Ukrainian investment scheme that and more »

The FBI Hand Behind Russia-gate – Consortium News
 


Consortium News
The FBI Hand Behind Russia-gate
Consortium News
Besides forcing the removal of Strzok and Page, the text exposures also sounded the death knell for the career of FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, in whose office some of the plotting took place and who has already announced his plans to retire soon and more »

Trump bucked his own White House on a controversial surveillance law after watching FOX News – AOL
 

Trump bucked his own White House on a controversial surveillance law after watching FOX News
AOL
WASHINGTON, UNITED STATES: US Deputy Attorney General James Comey (L) and FBI Assistant Director for Counterterrorism Gary Bald take questions 05 August, 2004, at the Justice Department in Washington, DC, after announcing that two men from Albany, New  

Steve Bannon Plans to ‘Fully Cooperate’ with Robert Mueller: Report – AlterNet
 


AlterNet
Steve Bannon Plans to ‘Fully Cooperate’ with Robert Mueller: Report
AlterNet
Former Trump political strategist Steve Bannon is lawyering up in preparation to fully cooperate with special counsel RobertMueller’s Russia probe. The Daily Beast reports that Bannon has recently retained the services of Bill Burck, of the firm 
Steve Bannon Lawyers Up… as Russia Investigators Get Ready to PounceDaily Beastall 5,105 news articles »

Once ‘100 percent’ willing to talk under oath to Robert Mueller, Trump now says ‘we’ll see’ – The Keene Sentinel
 


CBS News
Once ‘100 percent’ willing to talk under oath to Robert Mueller, Trump now says ‘we’ll see’
The Keene Sentinel
The president’s legal team has anticipated that Mueller will request an interview with Trump at some point, a possibility that the special counsel’s office and Trump’s lawyers have declined to comment about. At a news conference in the summer, Trump 
Trump Sidesteps Question on Mueller InterviewNew York Times
Trump says an interview with Mueller is ‘unlikely.’ That’s wrong.Washington Post
Trump Publicly Wavering on Mueller InterviewPatheos (blog)
Fox News –Week Facts
all 354 news articles »
Every Trump utterance raises the same three questions – Washington Post
 


Washington Post
Every Trump utterance raises the same three questions
Washington Post
He advertised his conviction that could directly force former FBI director James BComey to lay off former national security adviser Michael Flynn and/or end the investigation. So here we go: Does he not grasp the concept of obstruction of justice  

Special Counsel Mueller has not requested interview with VP Pence – NBCNews.com
 


NBCNews.com
Special Counsel Mueller has not requested interview with VP Pence
NBCNews.com
Special Counsel Mueller has not requested interview with VP Pence. by Carol E. Lee and Kristen Welker. Share; Share · Tweet · Comment · Email; Print. WASHINGTON While discussions are underway about President Donald Trump possibly speaking with  

FBI Canine Agent Sniffs Out Cyber Evidence – Wall Street Journal (blog)
 


Wall Street Journal (blog)
FBI Canine Agent Sniffs Out Cyber Evidence
Wall Street Journal (blog)
NEW YORK This week’s International Conference on Cyber Security, hosted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Fordham University, attracted high-level government officials to discuss trends in cyber crime, including FBI directorChristopher and more »

Today’s Big Story: Trump Tells Republicans to Take Control of the Russia Investigation – The Independent Weekly
 


The Independent Weekly
Today’s Big Story: Trump Tells Republicans to Take Control of the Russia Investigation
The Independent Weekly
As the NYT notes: That answer was a marked change from June, when Mr. Trump defended his firing of the F.B.I. director,James BComey, denying that it was related to his handling of the Russia investigation, and said he would be ‘100 percent’ willing 
Every Trump utterance raises the same three questionsWashington Postall 81 news articles »

Trump targets, then backs surveillance program in tweets – Arkansas Online
 


Arkansas Online
Trump targets, then backs surveillance program in tweets
Arkansas Online
About an hour after taking a stance against reauthorization, Trump seemed to backtrack and pushed for the act to be re-upped. “Today’s vote is about foreign surveillance of foreign bad guys on foreign land. We need it! Get smart!” Trump wrote on  
House Passes Spy Program After Confusing Trump TweetsTIME
US House Approves Renewal of Anti-terror Surveillance LawVoice of America
Senate votes to debate key NSA surveillance program after Trump’s contradictory tweetsChicago Tribune
TwitterTwitter
all 487 
President Trump targets, then backs surveillance program in tweetsSanta Rosa Press Democrat
Controversial Spy Law Passes House After Shots From Trump, Who Then Supported ItNPR
House rejects limits on surveillance programThe Detroit News
Boston HeraldCBC.ca
all 398
 news articles »
Trump and the White House have denied Russian collusion more than 140 times – Washington Post
 


Washington Post
Trump and the White House have denied Russian collusion more than 140 times
Washington Post
Trump’s denials of collusion also don’t address a more pressing concern: whether by firing Comey he tried to obstruct the Russia investigation. A Quinnipiac University poll released Thursday found that more than half of Americans think Trump tried to and more »

How far will Trump go to avoid Mueller’s questions? Here are several scenarios. – Washington Post
 


Washington Post
How far will Trump go to avoid Mueller’s questions? Here are several scenarios.
Washington Post
If you’re one of President Trump’s attorneys, the thought of him sitting down with special counsel Robert S. Mueller III to answer questions about the Russia scandal is absolutely terrifying, even if you knew it would eventually come to this. We 
Mueller has not requested interview with PenceNBCNews.com
Trump allies urge him not to talk to MuellerCNN
Trump Sidesteps Question on Mueller InterviewNew York Times
NewsweekPolitico 
all 437
 
NBCNews.com
all 376 news articles »
Is there a GOP conspiracy to discredit the Trump-Russia investigation? – Washington Post
 


Washington Post
Is there a GOP conspiracy to discredit the Trump-Russia investigation?
Washington Post
He must step down immediately, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) said as he introduced a resolution urging Mueller to do as much. (The House hasn’t touched this with a 10-foot-pole, possibly because GOP leaders in Congress don’t agree Mueller should go.) If  and more »

 
Republicans Have Dramatically Ramped Up Their Attacks On Russia Probe In 2018HuffPostall 381 news articles »

FBI expert concluded Chicago cop’s shooting staged to appear as a suicide – Chicago Tribune
 


Chicago Tribune
FBI expert concluded Chicago cop’s shooting staged to appear as a suicide
Chicago Tribune
Veteran Chicago police Sgt. Donald Markham was shot by someone else at point-blank range in his home in 2015 before the scene was staged to appear to be a suicide, a forensic pathologist hired by the FBI concluded in a report obtained Thursday by the  
FBI report: Mysterious Chicago cop death ‘is best certified as a homicide’Chicago Sun-Timesall 2 news articles »


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10:31 AM 1/11/2018

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Saved Stories

Saved Stories – None
Senate Democrats accuse Russia of ‘assault on democracy’ in conspiracy-laden report – RT
Palmer Report: Someone is still paying Fusion GPS to investigate Donald Trump and Russia
Donald Trump: Anderson Cooper Ruthlessly Mocks Donald Trumps Latest Claim About The Media
analysis of trump electorate – Google News: Michael Smerconish: Speculation about Trump’s mental health is offensive – Winona Daily News
Putin and the Mob – Google News: Reviving Old Lies to Unite a New Russia – New York Times
Trump-Russia inquiry: President says he is unlikely to be interviewed – BBC News
Donald Trump: Fake Melania Trump Separates Fact From Fiction In Michael Wolff’s Book For Colbert
Democrats Unveil A Blueprint For Battling Putin, Daring Trump To Act – NPR
Abbas to meet Putin in February to discuss Trump’s Jerusalem moves – The Jerusalem Post
Trump liar – Google News: Trump and the Liar’s Paradox – Memphis Flyer
I Blew the Whistle on Russian Meddling. Now I’m Running for Congress. – Politico
Felix Sater – Google News: Who Paid for the HuffPost Puff Piece on Trump’s Felonious Friend? – Daily Beast
Stephen Colbert puckishly ponders why Jared Kushner suddenly wants to take on prison reform – The Week Magazine
Trump anxiety – Google News: Robots Can’t Vote, but They Helped Elect Trump – New York Times
Republicans Have Dramatically Ramped Up Their Attacks On Russia Probe In 2018 – HuffPost
Donald Trump is squandering a chance to lead global efforts against Putin’s regime – report – Express.co.uk
US elections and russia – Google News: The US Military Is Set to Meet With the Russian General Who Called For Cyberattacks Against the West – Mother Jones
trump under federal investigation – Google News: Sessions tries to impress Trump with moves at Justice. It hasn’t worked. – Washington Post
putin won US 2016 election – Google News: Kremlin says US Senate report on Putin ‘unfounded’ – Guardian (blog)
organized crime and terrorism – Google News: Attorney general’s team to review Obama-era Hezbollah probes – WRAL.com
organized crime and terrorism – Google News: Jeff Sessions creates narcoterrorism team to prosecute supporters of Hezbollah – Washington Times
9:21 AM 1/11/2018 Mike Novas Shared NewsLinks: FBI as he suspected it had been compromised
Indicted Trump Adviser Is Being Sued by a Russian Billionaire – Newsweek
Andrew McCabe – Google News: Andrew McCabe told FBI staff to ‘hang in there’ after James Comey firing – Washington Examiner
mueller – Google News: Trump Sidesteps Question on Mueller Interview – New York Times

 

Saved Stories – None
Senate Democrats accuse Russia of ‘assault on democracy’ in conspiracy-laden report – RT


RT
Senate Democrats accuse Russia of ‘assault on democracy’ in conspiracy-laden report
RT
The report includes more than 30 recommendations that would involve the US, EU and NATO taking action against Russia. These would include the establishment of a global body on hybrid threats modeled after the coalition to fight Islamic State (IS

and more »

Palmer Report: Someone is still paying Fusion GPS to investigate Donald Trump and Russia

During her show on Wednesday evening, MSNBC host Rachel Maddow revealed something about the newly released Trump-Russia dossier transcripts that everyone else had missed. She pointed to verbiage in the testimony from Glenn Simpson of Fusion GPS which revealed that his company is stillinvestigating Donald Trump’s Russia scandal. This is a major find. The even bigger story may be the part that Maddow declined to address: Fusion GPS doesn’t work for free. So who’s paying them? It may explain a lot about what we’ve seen over the past few weeks.

It was originally a Republican entity who hired Fusion GPS to conduct research into Donald Trump and Russia; the company ultimately hired former MI6 agent Christopher Steele to conduct and assemble the research. At some point the original funding source dried up, and a Democratic entity began funding the research. In fact the funding of the dossier has been a source of partisan contention, as Trump and some Republicans in Congress have (falsely) claimed that it was Hillary Clinton who was funding the dossier. But the point is that someone has to fund this kind of research, and now we know that it’s still ongoing.

So who on earth is paying Fusion GPS to continue its research into the Trump-Russia scandal? We have no idea. We do know that several major news outlets reported during the course of 2017 that at one point the FBI tried to hire Steele to continue his research, but according to these reports, that never happened. But what if that’s wrong? Is it possible that the FBI is still paying Fusion GPS to continue its Trump-Russia research?

If so, this could explain why Donald Trump’s Republican allies in Congress have spent the past few weeks working so hard to try to discredit the Trump-Russia dossier and the people behind it, while also mercilessly attacking the FBI. They’ve been desperate to prevent these transcripts from seeing the light of day. Is this the detail that they’ve been afraid someone would figure out? Is the FBI paying Fusion GPS to keep digging into Trump? If not, who is paying for it?

The post Someone is still paying Fusion GPS to investigate Donald Trump and Russia appeared first on Palmer Report.

 Palmer Report

Donald Trump: Anderson Cooper Ruthlessly Mocks Donald Trumps Latest Claim About The Media

The CNN host did not hold back.

 Donald Trump

analysis of trump electorate – Google News: Michael Smerconish: Speculation about Trump’s mental health is offensive – Winona Daily News


Winona Daily News
Michael Smerconish: Speculation about Trump’s mental health is offensive
Winona Daily News
But to arbitrarily impose a post hoc analysis after voters have seen such a person run a campaign is not right. Winston Churchill, who Ghaemi noted overcame tremendous physical and mental maladies, got it right when he said, Nothing so tests the 

and more »

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Putin and the Mob – Google News: Reviving Old Lies to Unite a New Russia – New York Times


New York Times
Reviving Old Lies to Unite a New Russia
New York Times
Such pernicious lies helped provoke particularly brutal eruptions against Jews in Russia, making the word pogrom part of a gruesome universal vocabulary. One of the most notorious pogroms broke out in Kishinev (now Chisinau, Moldova) on the Easter 

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Trump-Russia inquiry: President says he is unlikely to be interviewed – BBC News


BBC News
Trump-Russia inquiry: President says he is unlikely to be interviewed
BBC News
It has come out that senior members of Mr Trump’s team – including his son, Donald Jr, and the former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn – met Russian officials or alleged go-betweens, and some of the meetings were not initially disclosed. Mr  
Some of the times Trump has called Russia probe a ‘witch hunt’CNN

Mueller team adds prosecutor specializing in cyber crimeThe Hill
Donald Trump ‘discussing options’ for Mueller interview as part of Russia investigationThe Independent

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Donald Trump: Fake Melania Trump Separates Fact From Fiction In Michael Wolff’s Book For Colbert

“Oh no no, that is true.”

 Donald Trump

Democrats Unveil A Blueprint For Battling Putin, Daring Trump To Act – NPR


NPR
Democrats Unveil A Blueprint For Battling Putin, Daring Trump To Act
NPR
A strange twist of national security politics in Washington, D.C., has meant the United States isn’t responding seriously to the ongoing threat of foreign interference, Senate Democrats charged in a new report. The study, about Russian leader Vladimir 

and more » 
White House Official Floated Withdrawing US Forces to Please PutinDaily Beast
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Senate Dems issue scathing report: ‘Trump stands practically idle’ against Putin’s threat to US democracyRaw Story
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Abbas to meet Putin in February to discuss Trump’s Jerusalem moves – The Jerusalem Post


The Jerusalem Post
Abbas to meet Putin in February to discuss Trump’s Jerusalem moves
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According to Abbas, Trump’s decisions on Jerusalem have disqualified the US from sponsoring the peace process between the Palestinians and Israel. 1 minute read. Share on facebook. Share on twitter. Putin Abbas. Russian President VladimirPutin (right 

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Trump liar – Google News: Trump and the Liar’s Paradox – Memphis Flyer


Memphis Flyer
Trump and the Liar’s Paradox
Memphis Flyer
Until recently, the famous liar’s paradox was a liar saying, “I am lying.” Now, though, it has to be when any of Donald Trump’sfriends or associates claims not to have called the president an ignoramus, a liar, an egomaniac, or heroically unsuited for 

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I Blew the Whistle on Russian Meddling. Now I’m Running for Congress. – Politico


Politico
I Blew the Whistle on Russian Meddling. Now I’m Running for Congress.
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As a candidate, I’ve pledged to make all my social media ads public. I’d like Facebook to do the same with my opponent’sads, and those from any outside group trying to influence voters in my district, whether they’re doing it with dollars or rubles 

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Who Paid for the HuffPost Puff Piece on Trump’s Felonious Friend?
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HuffPost scrubbed the article, written in December, from its website after a blogger in Northern Ireland, Dean Sterling Jones, inquired about the piece, which hailed the dismissal last year of a $250 million tax fraud case against Felix Sater, a 

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Stephen Colbert puckishly ponders why Jared Kushner suddenly wants to take on prison reform – The Week Magazine


The Week Magazine
Stephen Colbert puckishly ponders why Jared Kushner suddenly wants to take on prison reform
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Trump anxiety – Google News: Robots Can’t Vote, but They Helped Elect Trump – New York Times


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Robots Can’t Vote, but They Helped Elect Trump
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When you look across America to see where jobs and wages have been lost to robotics, machine learning, artificial intelligence and automation, it is the middle of the country that stands apart from the rest. The accompanying map, which was produced by

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Republicans Have Dramatically Ramped Up Their Attacks On Russia Probe In 2018 – HuffPost


HuffPost
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Republicans in the House are diving into text messages between FBI agent Peter Strzok and FBI lawyer Lisa Page to investigate whether the pair interacted with reporters. Strzok served on Mueller’s team and was removed over the summer after the special 

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Donald Trump is squandering a chance to lead global efforts against Putin’s regime – report – Express.co.uk


Express.co.uk
Donald Trump is squandering a chance to lead global efforts against Putin’s regime – report
Express.co.uk
Countries around the globe are at risk of the Kremlin spreading malicious fake news, fuelling corruption and even assassinating political enemies, the report said. The US has the muscle power to lead a global fight against Russia, but has so far 
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9:21 AM 1/11/2018 Mike Novas Shared NewsLinks: FBI as he suspected it had been compromised

Christopher Steele The impression by the professional intelligence officer of the closest allied service is the very serious issue and the very important matter. Investigate the FBI fully, thoroughly and deeply, if you want to understand the Trump Presidency and its origins, the Trump Russia Affair, and the history and the essence of the … Continue reading“9:21 AM 1/11/2018 – Mike Novas Shared NewsLinks: “FBI as he suspected it had been compromised”…”
Indicted Trump Adviser Is Being Sued by a Russian Billionaire – Newsweek


RAPSI
Indicted Trump Adviser Is Being Sued by a Russian Billionaire
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A billionaire Russian businessman with ties to the Kremlin filed a lawsuit on Wednesday against President Donald Trump’s campaign manager, who’s already under indictment in the Trump-Russia probe, according to reports. The suit was filed by Surf
Cypriot company accuses Manafort of financial fraudRAPSI
Deripaska’s company sues Manafort over fraud in relation to investment in Ukrainian companiesInterfax-Ukraine

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Andrew McCabe – Google News: Andrew McCabe told FBI staff to ‘hang in there’ after James Comey firing – Washington Examiner


Washington Examiner
Andrew McCabe told FBI staff to ‘hang in there’ after James Comey firing
Washington Examiner
Along with McCabe’s letter, the FBI also released an email from Attorney General Jeff Sessions to FBI staff on May 9 announcing Trump’s decision to fire Comey. “The president of the United States has exercised his lawful authority to remove James B 
‘Hang in there’: The FBI’s deputy director sent an emotional memo to staff days after James Comey was firedBusiness Insider
The FBI Has Released a Letter Andrew McCabe Wrote to Agents After James Comey Was FiredTownhall
FBI releases internal memos from week of James Comey’s firing: ‘We all miss him’CNBC 
GotNewsCNN
 
CNNGotNewsKaplan Herald

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mueller – Google News: Trump Sidesteps Question on Mueller Interview – New York Times


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WASHINGTON President Trump declined on Wednesday to commit to being interviewed by Robert S. Mueller III, the special counsel investigating whether his campaign colluded with Russia to sway the 2016 election, backing off his statement last year that 
Mueller adds veteran cyber prosecutor to special-counsel teamWashington Post
Mueller adds DOJ cybercrime prosecutor to his teamPolitico
Trump: ‘Seems unlikely’ I’ll need to speak with MuellerNBCNews.com
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Russian trolls went on attack during key election moments

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Thousands of Russian trolls targeted national events during the 2016 U.S. presidential election to infiltrate the online conversations of millions of Americans, …. but we knew there were underground networks to spread content that would undermine Hillary,” said Emmy Bengtson, former deputy social media …

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mikenova shared this story .

A bombshell revelation made public Tuesday that “somebody’s already been killed” as a result of the publication of an unconfirmed anti-Trump dossier has sparked speculation that it was a reference to an ex-KGB agent mysteriously found dead in his car a year ago in Moscow.

The attorney for Fusion GPS founder Glenn Simpson told Senate investigators in a 300-page deposition released Tuesday that a murder had been carried out as a result of the publication of an unverified and salacious dossier about Donald Trump.

“Somebody’s already been killed as a result of the publication of this dossier and no harm should come to anybody related to this honest work,” said Joshua Levy in the deposition, which was taken Aug. 22, but released by Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the ranking Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee.

“Somebody’s already been killed as a result of the publication of this dossier and no harm should come to anybody related to this honest work.”

– Joshua Levy, attorney for Glenn Simpson

The cryptic reference spurred a guessing game about who the unlucky person was. The best guess, at least for now, seems to be former KGB general, Oleg Erovinkin, who was found dead in the back of his car on a Moscow street in December 2016.

Oleg Erovinkin1

According to a January 2017 report in British newspaper The Telegraph, Erovinkin was a top aide to Igor Sechin, a former deputy prime minister who was named repeatedly throughout the dossier. The KGB chief was also suspected at the time of helping former MI6 spy Christopher Steele compile info on Trump for the dossier.

Erovinkin and details of his death were published in the book, “Collusion: Secret Meetings, Dirty Money, and How Russia Helped Donald Trump win.” It alleges that the street his body was found on in Moscow was desolate with no cafes or other businesses and not much pedestrian traffic, making it an ideal spot to carry out an assassination.

“The vehicle had halted in Kitaigorodsky Proyezd – a street devoid of pedestrians and home to government buildings and an unfinished office block,” reads a line from the book detailing where Erovinkin’s body and the car were found. “It was three weeks after [Center for Information Security head Sergei] Mikhailov’s arrest, Monday, December 26. At number 9 there is a military academy named after Peter the Great. Guards turn back any errant drivers who try to enter the courtyard.”

Local media reports suggested at the time of his death that foul play was involved, but it was later claimed that his death was a result of a heart attack.

FILE - In this Nov. 14, 2017, file photo, Glenn R. Simpson, co-founder of the research firm Fusion GPS, arrives for a scheduled appearance before a closed House Intelligence Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., has released a transcript from an interview with Simpson, the firm that commissioned a dossier of allegations about President Donald Trump's ties to Russia. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

Glenn Simpson, the founder of Fusion, which commissioned the dossier, was deposed in August  (Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

In the aftermath of his death, media reports speculated that Erovinkin was an unnamed informant for the dossier and Christo Grozev of Risk Management Lab, a think-tank based in Bulgaria claimed in a January 2017 Haaretz article eluded to the former KGB general being the main source of information for the dossier.

“Insiders have described Erovinkin to me alternately as ‘Sechin’s treasurer’ and ‘the go-between between Putin and Sechin,’” Grozev said to the newspaper. “One thing that everyone seems to agree – both in public and private sources – is that Erovinkin was Sechin’s closest associate.”

“I have no doubt that at the time Erovinkin died, Mr. Putin had Mr. Steele’s Trump dossier on his desk. He would – arguably – have known whether the alleged… story is based on fact or fiction,” Grozev also said. “Whichever is true, he would have had a motive to seek and find the mole… He would have had to conclude that Erovinkin was at least a person of interest.”

Levy did not immediately return messages requesting information about who he was referring to.

Perry Chiaramonte is a reporter for <a href=”http://FoxNews.com” rel=”nofollow”>FoxNews.com</a>. Follow him on Twitter at @perrych

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Before the start of business, Just Security provides a curated summary of up-to-the-minute developments at home and abroad. Heres todays news.

TRUMP-RUSSIA

The transcript of the Glenn R. Simpsons interview with the Senate Judiciary Committee was unilaterally made public by the top Democrat on the panel, Dianne Feinstein (Calif.), Simpson is the co-founder of the opposition research firm Fusion G.P.S. and the transcript provides details about the commissioning of a dossier which alleged ties between the Trump campaign and Russia compiled by former British Intelligence officer Christopher Steele. In an op-ed for the New York Times last week, Simpson and his co-founder Peter Fritsch called on the Judiciary Committee to release the transcript, but this was met with a pushback from Sen. Charles E. Grassley (R-Iowa). Nicholas Fandos, Matthew Rosenberg and Sharon LaFraniere report at the New York Times.

The transcript of Simpsons testimony is available at Just Security.

Steele sat down for a full debriefing with the F.B.I. in September 2016 over his concerns about possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, and that Trump could have been blackmailed over an alleged sexual escapade at a hotel in Moscow in 2013. Ken Dilanian and Mike Memoli report at NBC News.

An internal Trump campaign source reported his or her concerns about Trump-Russia connections to the F.B.I., Simpson said in the testimony, also saying that Steele severed his relationship with the F.B.I. as he was concerned based on an article that was published by the New York Times in October 2016 that agents were being manipulated by Trump insiders. Alan Yuhas, Julian Borger and Stephanie Kirchgaessner report at the Guardian.

Its political rhetoric to call the dossier phony. We can argue about whats prudent and whats not, but its not a fabrication, Simpson said in the interview, adding that Fusion G.P.S. were mostly concerned with Trumps business dealings until Steele brought back something very different. Katie Bo Williams and KJonathan Easley report at the Hill.

Somebodys already been killed as a result of the publication of the Steele dossier, Simpsons testimony claimed, declining to reveal further details because, Simpsons lawyer claimed, he wanted to be very careful to protect his sources. Brandon Carter reports at the Hill.

Feinstein said that she decided to release the transcript because the American people deserve the opportunity to see what he [Simpson] said and judge for themselves, a spokesperson for Grassley said that Feinstein made the transcript public with no agreement from committee Republicans and accused her of undermining the integrity of the committees oversight work. Kyle Cheney reports at POLITICO.

Speculation over the New York Times article published in October 2016 has increased following the release of Simpsons testimony, Erik Wemple explains at the Washington Post.

The key points from Simpsons interview are provided by Amber Phillips at the Washington Post.

Trumps personal lawyer Michael Cohen has filed a defamation lawsuit against BuzzFeed for publishing the Steele dossier, Cohen said that allegations against him in the dossier are provably false, including claims that Cohens wife is Russian and that her father is a leading property developer in Russia. Alex Johnson reports at NBC News.

The editor in chief of BuzzFeed News has defended his websites decision to publish the Steele dossier in an op-ed at the Washington Post, saying that a year of government inquiries and blockbuster journalism has made clear the dossier is unquestionably real news.

Twitter has failed to meet a deadline to provide lawmakers with further information on Russian interference in the 2016 election, the top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee Mark Warner (Va.) yesterday expressed disappointment with the social media company. Ali Breland reports at the Hill.

U.S.-Russia relations would be done if Russia attempts to interfere in the 2018 midterm elections, the U.S. ambassador to Russia Jon Huntsman said yesterday in a closed-door session with members of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. Andrew Desiderio reports at The Daily Beast.

NORTH KOREA

North Korea has agreed to send a delegation to the Winter Olympics in South Korea next month but the issue of North Koreas nuclear weapons program was not mentioned in the joint statement released after yesterdays inter-Korean talks, which were the first official face-to-face talks in over two years, with North Koreas chief delegate saying that the nuclear weapons were strictly aimed at the U.S. and it would be ridiculous to discuss the program. Andrew Jeong reports at the Wall Street Journal.

I am giving a lot of credit to President Trump, the South Korean President Moon Jae-in said in a press conference today, recognizing Trumps contribution to forcing North Korea to engage in discussions, but adding that relations between the two Koreas were ultimately dependent on Pyongyangs willingness to dismantle its nuclear weapons program. Choe Sang-Hun reports at the New York Times.

While Moon praised Trump, he also warned that pressure on North Korea could raise tensions and bring about unintentional clashes, James Griffiths reports at CNN.

South Korea presented North Koreas agreement to send athletes to the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics as a significant breakthrough in bilateral relations, however it is unclear whether North Korea would engage sincerely with South Korea to further improve relations. Anna Fifield reports at the Washington Post.

The talks between North and South Korea were a good first step in the process to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula, a spokesperson for the U.S. State Department, Steve Goldstein, said yesterday in response to the North and South Korea joint statement. Christine Kim and David Brunnstrom report at Reuters.

President Moon said today that he was willing to meet with the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un under certain conditions, saying that a summit must be committed to resolving the nuclear issue and not just for the sake of holding a summit. Bryan Harris and Katrina Manson report at the Financial Times.

The U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres welcomed the progress made at the inter-Korean talks and welcomed North Koreas decision to send a delegation to the Winter Olympics. The U.N. News Centrereports.

North Korea stepped up its criticism of the U.S. and Trump as the talks with South Korea took place, putting forward a message that calls on the U.S. to steer clear of the crisis and let Koreans solve the issue, however such a message would be hard for South Koreans to accept due to Seouls close relationship with Washington. Eric Talmadge provides an analysis at the AP.

The State Department has proposed a military sale of more than $133m worth of missiles and equipment to Japan to counter the North Korean threat, the State Department told Congress yesterday. Ellen Mitchell reports at the Hill.

A profile of President Moon, and a discussion of whether he has the ability to resolve the crisis on the Korean Peninsula, is provided by Paula Hancocks and James Griffiths at CNN.

The inter-Korean talks offered Kim a propaganda victory and drove a wedge between the U.S. and South Korea, President Moon faces huge obstacles in achieving reconciliation and the presence of the a U.S. military aircraft off the coast of Korea during the Olympics offers a more reliable guarantor of peace than the gestures of a young dictator who pretends to want peace even as he threatens war. The Wall Street Journal editorial board writes.

Moon and Kim are well-placed to resolve the crisis due to their respective abilities to leverage political capital, they must now use this political capital to promote the possibility for peace. S. Nathan Park writes at Foreign Policy.

IRAN

[Trump] must realize that these extreme and psychotic episodes wont be left without a response, the Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said yesterday, blaming the U.S. for fomenting the recent unrest in Iran. Thomas Erdbrink reports at the New York Times.

Iran foiled the U.S., Britain and others in their attempts to overthrow the Islamic Republic, Khamenei also said, making the comments as the protests in Iran have started to wind down. Babak Dehghanpisheh reports at Reuters.

Around 3,700 people have been arrested during the demonstrations in Iran, according to an Iranian member of parliament. Al Jazeera reports.

Withdrawing from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal could make it difficult to make an agreement with North Korea in the future, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) warned yesterday, making the comments ahead of a series of deadlines that Trump faces regarding the deal and whether to continue to waive sanctions on Iran. Rebecca Kheel reports at the Hill.

The decision to whether to waive or re-impose sanctions on Iran is expected to be made Friday, the State Department said yesterday, Reuters reporting.

Trump should waive sanctions on Iran and play the long game, with the aim of fixing the nuclear deal. Michael Doran writes at the Wall Street Journal.

The U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley faces a difficult task when it comes to Iran and the nuclear deal, if she aspires to be president, she would be wise to avoid trouble with Iran that could easily backfire. Richard Gowan writes at POLITICO Magazine.

SYRIA

The Syrian army has started to advance on the rebel-held Idlib province, leading to around 70,000 civilians to flee the area. Kareem Shaheen reports at the Guardian.

Turkey today urged Russia and Iran to pressure Syria to respect the de-escalation zone in Idlib and to stop the Syrian military advance. Tuvan Gumrukcu reports at Reuters.

A spate of attacks on the Russian Hmeimim air base in Syria has raised numerous questions, it is unclear who is responsible and it appears to be part of a concerted assault. Liz Sly reports at the Washington Post.

Russia appeared to suggest that the U.S. were behind the attacks in a statement yesterday, the APreports.

Russias ambassador to the U.N. yesterday expressed hope that a new round of U.N.-led peace talks in Geneva would be more fruitful and contribute to the peace initiative being held in the Russian city of Sochi. The AP reports.

U.S.-led airstrikes continue. U.S. and coalition forces carried out 58 airstrikes against Islamic State targets in Syria and Iraq between December 29, 2017 and January 4, 2018. [Central Command]

CUBA EMBASSY INCIDENTS

The U.S. are exploring a range of theories in relation to the symptoms experienced by employees at the U.S. Embassy in Cuba in 2016, the State Department said yesterday, 24 U.S. personnel and family members experienced mysterious illnesses in Havana and there have been speculation that they were subjected to some sort of acoustic or sonic attack. Matt Spetalnick reports at Reuters.

The State Department did not follow the law in failing to set up a review board months ago to establish what happened in Havana, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) said at a hearing yesterday. Gardiner Harris reports at the New York Times.

ISRAEL-PALESTINE

An Israeli man was killed by a suspected Palestinian gunman yesterday, according to Israeli military and medical officials, the man was a resident of a West Bank settlement near the Palestinian city of Nablus. Reuters reports.

The Israeli military has conducted raids near Nablus following the shooting, Al Jazeera reports.

The Swedish ambassador to the U.N. yesterday expressed concern about the Trump administrations plan to review funding for the U.N.R.W.A. aid agency for Palestinian refugees, saying that such action would have negative humanitarian implications and would be destabilizing for the region. Reutersreports.

OTHER DEVELOPMENTS

The Trump administrations nuclear posture review plans to loosen constraints on the use of nuclear weapons, according to what is believed to be the final draft of the review. Julian Borger reports at the Guardian.

Ecuador has been exploring ways for the WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange to leave its embassy in London, the Ecuadorean foreign relations minister said, who was quoted as saying that it was unsustainable for Assange to remain at the embassy indefinitely and that the solution would require international cooperation and the cooperation of the U.K., Ryan Dube reports at the Wall Street Journal.

Trump has signed a memorandum calling on the Director of National Intelligence to establish a new policy on unmasking Americans in intelligence reports, Morgan Chalfant reports at the Hill.

Senior National Security Council official Kevin Harrington proposed withdrawing some U.S. troops from Eastern Europe to please the Russian President Vladimir Putin, according to two former administration officials. Spencer Ackerman reveals at The Daily Beast.

Trump and the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu are playing the same game, both are embroiled in domestic issues that involve their sons and both are pursuing illiberal agendas. Ishaan Tharoor writes at the Washington Post.

Foreign spies are watching and probably targeting Fox News Channel
 

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Doctor Charged With Having Wife Killed to Protect Drug Ring – U.S. News & World Report
 

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U.S. News & World Report
Doctor Charged With Having Wife Killed to Protect Drug Ring
U.S. News & World Report
Authorities say a New Jersey doctor running an illegal prescription drug ring with a motorcycle gang hired one of the members to kill his wife after she threatened to expose the scheme. Jan. 9, 2018, at 7:32 p.m.. Doctor Charged With Having Wife Killedand more »

inquiry on electronic mass surveillance of eu citizens – Google Search
 

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NSA and GCHQ activities appear illegal, says EU parliamentary …

The GuardianJan 9, 2014
The inquiry by the European parliament’s civil liberties committee says the activities of America’s National Security Agency (NSA) and its British counterpart, GCHQ, appear to be illegal … The former allows the NSA to conduct mass surveillance on EU citizens through the servers of US internet companies.

Story image for inquiry on electronic mass surveillance of eu citizens from PCWorld

NSA created ‘European bazaar’ to spy on EU citizens, Snowden tells …

PCWorldMar 7, 2014
The European Parliament had invited Snowden to provide testimony for an inquiry into the electronic mass surveillance of EU citizens. That surveillance, often instigated by the NSA but carried out with help of EU member states, is quite extensive, he wrote. The NSA has been pressuring EU member states …

Story image for inquiry on electronic mass surveillance of eu citizens from The Guardian

‘Extreme surveillance‘ becomes UK law with barely a whimper

The GuardianNov 19, 2016
Even in Germany, with East Germany’s history of mass surveillance by the Stasi and where Snowden’s revelations produced the most outcry, the Bundestag recently passed legislation giving the intelligence agencies more surveillance powers. The US passed a modest bill last year curtailing bulk phone …

Story image for inquiry on electronic mass surveillance of eu citizens from EUobserver

EU counter-terrorism laws “stripping rights”, says Amnesty

EUobserverJan 17, 2017
Executive power grabs and counter-terrorism laws are rolling back freedoms across the EU, according to a report by Amnesty International. … Germany, Poland, and the UK, among others, have recently passed laws described by London-based Privacy International as “a new era of mass surveillance” in …
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Story image for electronic mass surveillance of eu citizens from The Boston Globe

The Boston Globe

Europe’s Courts Decide: Does US Spying Violate Europe’s Privacy?

EFFOct 3, 2017
The decision confirms the suspicion of Ireland’s privacy regulators (and EFF) that Facebook’s business practices are not the only matters under the microscope in Europe: the EU courts also care about the American mass surveillance of ordinary innocent Europeans. The judge in the matter, Justice Caroline …
High Court asks ECJ to examine Facebook case
InternationalIrish TimesOct 3, 2017
High Court asks European Court of Justice to examine Facebook …
InternationalIndependent.ieOct 3, 2017
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Story image for mass surveillance in the us from Daily Beast

Devin Nunes Messed With NSA’s Most Cherished Surveillance Power

Daily BeastJan 9, 2018
It’s the NSA’s most cherished masssurveillance law, albeit one civil libertarians consider dubiously constitutional. … include in the bill an unrelated a provision on so-called unmasking, the process that intelligence agencies use to reveal the names of U.S. persons who may be involved in crimes like spying.

Story image for mass surveillance in the us from RT

Snowden hosts Reddit AMA over Congress’ mass surveillance plan

RTDec 20, 2017
As early as tonight, Congress plans to sneak an expansion of mass surveillance into law. Only your call, right now, can stop them. The @ACLU and I are here to help, doing a live Q&A on @reddit in a half hour (<a href=”https://t.co/qlo4REMoFl” rel=”nofollow”>https://t.co/qlo4REMoFl</a> @ 2PM EST). Ask usanything! (SuddenlySnowden) pic.twitter.com/ …

Story image for mass surveillance in the us from Reason (blog)

Federal Agencies May Be Regularly Hiding Surveillance Methods in …

Reason (blog)22 hours ago
A DEA training slide on parallel constructionAlthough mass surveillance is usually identified with the war on terror and the National Security Agency, a subsequent USA Today investigation found the DEA and Justice Department had been collecting logs of billions of phone calls originating from the U.S. in a …

Story image for mass surveillance in the us from The Intercept

Welcome to Law Enforcement’s “Dark Side”: Secret Evidence, Illegal …

The Intercept20 hours ago
Federal agents at the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration speak in veiled terms about the secret DEA unit that shares intelligence from the National Security … The Special Operations Division receives raw intelligence from the NSA’s surveillance programs, including from the mass surveillance programs …

Story image for mass surveillance in the us from Washington Examiner

The tech generation should reject mass surveillance

Washington ExaminerDec 20, 2017
Last week, the two gave a joint talk at George Washington University about the implication of mass surveillance and the eroding of the Fourth … This lessens their confidence in the U.S. economy and can lead to fewer jobs for millennials, who will be shouldering the brunt of expenses when it comes to …
mass electronic surveillance – Google Search
 

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Story image for mass electronic surveillance from WIRED

Congress Is Debating Warrantless Surveillance in the Dark

WIREDDec 23, 2017
For the first time, the American people learned that the NSA was collecting millions of their phone calls and electronic communications—emails, Facebook … Hanging in the balance is the legal framework the government largely relies on to conduct mass surveillance of foreigners, and Americans who …

Story image for mass electronic surveillance from EFF

Urgent: We Only Have Hours Left to Stop the NSA Expansion Bill

EFFDec 19, 2017
According to reports published Tuesday evening by Politico, a group of surveillance hawks in the House of Representatives is trying to ram through a bill that would extend mass surveillance by the National Security Agency. We expect a vote to happen on the House floor as early as tomorrow, which means …

Story image for mass electronic surveillance from EFF

Court Challenges to NSA Surveillance: 2017 in Review

EFFDec 28, 2017
“[T]he volume of documents and electronic data that the government defendants must review for potentially responsive information is massive,” the … “We have long advocated for reining in NSA mass surveillance, and the ‘incidental’ collection of Americans’ private communications under Section 702 …

Story image for mass electronic surveillance from Newsmax

America No Safer Under Mass Surveillance

NewsmaxDec 12, 2017
Just in time for Christmas, the deep state wants to give America the gift that keeps on giving — never-ending mass surveillance. … second of every day, the American people are being spied on by the U.S. government’s vast network of digital peeping Toms, electronic eavesdroppers and robotic snoops.
How the Government Hides Secret Surveillance Programs
 

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In 2013, 18-year-old Tadrae McKenzie robbed a marijuana dealer for $130 worth of pot at a local Taco Bell in Tallahassee, Florida. He and two friends had used BB guns to carry out the crime, which under Florida law constituted robbery with a deadly weapon. McKenzie braced himself to serve the minimum four years in prison.

But in the end, a state judge offered McKenzie a startlingly lenient plea deal: He was ordered to serve only six months’ probation, after pleading guilty to a second-degree misdemeanor. The remarkable deal was related to evidence McKenzie’s defense team uncovered before the trial: Law enforcement had used a secret surveillance tool often called Stingray to investigate his case.

Stingrays are devices that behave like fake cellphone towers, tricking phones into believing they’re pinging genuine towers nearby. By using the device, cops can determine a suspect’s precise location, outgoing and incoming calls, and even listen-in on a call or see the content of a text message.

Many people may have been convicted using techniques that violated their rights.

McKenzie’s lawyers suspected cops had used a Stingray because they knew exactly where his house was, and knew he left his home at 6 a.m. the day he was arrested. The cops had obtained a court order from a judge to authorize Verizon to hand over data about the location of Mckenzie’s phone. But cell tower data isn’t precise enough to place a device at a specific house.

The cops also said they used a database that lets law enforcement agencies locate individuals by linking them with their phone numbers. But the phone McKenzie was using was a burner, and not associated with his name. Law enforcement couldn’t adequately explain their extraordinary knowledge of his whereabouts.

The state judge in the case ordered police to show the Stingray and its data to McKenzie’s attorneys. They refused, because of a non-disclosure agreement with the FBI. The state then offered McKenzie, as well as the two other defendants, plea deals designed to make the case go away.

The cops in McKenzie’s case had ultimately failed to successfully carry out a troubling technique called “parallel construction.”

First described in government documents obtained by Reuters in 2013, parallel construction is when law enforcement originally obtains evidence through a secret surveillance program, then tries to seek it out again, via normal procedure. In essence, law enforcement creates a parallel, alternative story for how it found information. That way, it can hide surveillance techniques from public scrutiny and would-be criminals.

A new report released by Human Rights Watch Tuesday, based in part on 95 relevant cases, indicates that law enforcement is using parallel construction regularly, though it’s impossible to calculate exactly how often. It’s extremely difficult for defendants to discern when evidence has been obtained via the practice, according to the report.

“When attorneys try to find out if there’s some kind of undisclosed method that’s been used, the prosecution will basically stonewall and try not to provide a definitive yes or no answer,” says Sarah St. Vincent, the author of the report and a national security and surveillance researcher at Human Rights Watch.

In investigation reports, law enforcement will describe evidence obtained via secret surveillance programs in inscrutable terms. “We’ve seen plenty of examples where the police officers in those reports write ‘we located the suspect based on information from a confidential source;’ they use intentionally vague language,” says Nathan Freed Wessler, a staff attorney at the ACLU’s Speech, Privacy, and Technology project. “It sounds like a human informant or something else, not like a sophisticated surveillance device.”

Sometimes, when a savvy defense attorney pushes, an unbelievable plea deal is offered, or the the case is dropped entirely. If a powerful, secret surveillance program is at stake, a single case is often deemed unimportant to the government.

“Parallel construction means you never know that a case could actually be the result of some constitutionally problematic practice,” says St. Vincent. For example, the constitutionality of using a Stingray device without a warrant is still up for debate, according to the Human Rights Watch report. Some courts have ruled that the devices do violate the Fourth Amendment.

Hemisphere, a massive telephone-call gathering operation revealed by The New York Times in 2013, is one of the most well-documented surveillance programs that government officials attempt to hide when they use parallel construction. The largely secret program provides police with access to a vast database containing call records going back to 1987. Billions of calls are added daily.

In order to create the program, the government forged a lucrative partnership with AT&T, which owns three-quarters of the US’s landline switches and much of its wireless infrastructure. Even if you change your number, Hemisphere’s sophisticated algorithms can connect you to your new line by examining calling patterns. The program also allows law enforcement to have temporary access to the location where you placed or received a call.

The Justice Department billed Hemisphere as a counter-narcotics tool, but the program has been used for everything from Medicaid fraud to murder investigations, according to documentation obtained in 2016 by The Daily Beast.

“What Hemisphere’s capabilities allow it to do is to identify relationships and associations, and to build people’s social webs,” says Aaron Mackey, staff attorney at the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). “It’s highly likely that innocent people who are doing completely innocent things are getting swept up into this database.”

The EFF filed Freedom of Information Act and Public Records Act requests in 2014 seeking info about Hemisphere, but the government only provided heavily redacted files. So the EFF filed a lawsuit in 2015. It’s currently waiting for a California judge to decide whether more information can be made public without impeding law enforcement’s work.

“[The government] is obscuring what we believe to be warrantless or otherwise unconstitutional surveillance techniques, and they’re also jeopardizing a defendant’s ability to obtain all the evidence that’s relevant,” says Mackey.

Parallel construction can also involve a simple event like a traffic stop. In these instances, local law enforcement follows a suspect and then pulls them over for a mundane reason, like failing to use a turn signal. While the stop is meant to look random, cops are often working on a tip they received from a federal agency like the DEA.

“Sometimes when tips come through, the federal authorities don’t even tell the local authorities what they’re looking for,” says St. Vincent. The tip could be as simple as to watch out for a car at a specific place and time.

These stops are referred to as “wall off” or “whisper” stops, according to the Human Rights Watch report. In these instances, local law enforcement has to find probable cause for pulling the suspect over to avoid disclosing the tip. The tip is then never mentioned in court, and instead the beginning of the investigation is said to be the “random” stop.

The Human Rights Watch report concludes that Congress should pass legislation forbidding the use of parallel construction because it impedes on the right to a fair trial. Some representatives, like Republican Senator Rand Paul, have also called for banning the practice.

Opponents of parallel construction believe it should be outlawed because it prevents judges from doing their jobs. “It really gives a lot of power to the executive branch,” says St. Vincent. “It cuts judges out of the role of deciding whether something was legally obtained.”

One of the most concerning aspects of the practice is it shields government surveillance technology from public scrutiny. Stingrays, the cellphone-tracking device used in the Florida robbery case, have existed for years, but they’ve only recently been disclosed to the public. Lawyers and legal scholars haven’t yet conclusively decided whether their use without a warrant violates the Fourth Amendment, in part because so little is known about them. That means many people may have been convicted using techniques that violated their rights.

In the future, if the government hides new surveillance technology like facial recognition, the public will be unable to discern if it’s biased or faulty. Unless judges and citizens understand how surveillance techniques are used, we also can’t evaluate their constitutionality.

The public needs to determine if hiding surveillance programs is something it’s comfortable with at all. On one hand, keeping certain techniques secret likely helps authorities apprehend criminals. But if we don’t know how at least the basic contours of how a program works, it’s hard to have any discussion at all.

How the Government Hides Secret Surveillance Programs – WIRED
 

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How the Government Hides Secret Surveillance Programs
WIRED
In investigation reports, law enforcement will describe evidence obtained via secret surveillance programs in inscrutable terms. We’ve seen plenty of examples where the police officers in those reports write ‘we located the suspect based on  

9:16 PM 1/9/2018 FBI was being manipulated for political ends by the Trump people, Simpson said FBI knew of possible Trump-Russia collusion, according to Glenn Simpsons Senate testimony Mike Novas Shared NewsLinks
 

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“Steele broke off contact with the FBI sometime between Oct. 31, 2016, and the election on Nov. 8, Simpson said, because Steele concluded that the information he had given to the FBI was not elevated to the highest levels of the bureau and was not being vigorously pursued. A front-page New York Times article on Oct. 31 … Continue reading“9:16 PM 1/9/2018 – “FBI was being manipulated for political ends by the Trump people”, Simpson said” – FBI knew of possible Trump-Russia collusion, according to Glenn Simpson’s Senate testimony – Mike Novas Shared NewsLinks”

Pakistan halts intelligence cooperation with US, but US embassy denies knowledge
 

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Pakistan said on Tuesday that it had suspended military and intelligence cooperation with the United States in the wake of Washingtons decision to stop security assistance to Pakistan. But the US embassy in Islamabad said it had no information about Khans announcement.

Democratic Senator Releases Transcript of Interview with Dossier Firm
 

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“The American people deserve the opportunity to see what he said and judge for themselves,” she said. “The innuendo and misinformation circulating about the transcript are part of a deeply troubling effort to undermine the investigation into potential collusion and obstruction of justice. The only way to set the record straight is to make the transcript public.”

For Ms. Feinstein and Mr. Grassley, two senior senators who worked closely last summer to initiate a joint Russia investigation, the breach was striking. But it reflects the growing divide between the two parties.

Republicans have repeatedly and vocally raised concerns that the dossier — a set of reports paid for by Democrats — could have been mishandled by the F.B.I. as it was opening its own investigation into the Russian effort and the Trump campaign. Democrats say scrutiny of the dossier’s provenance is a distraction from the central question: Did the Trump campaign knowingly seek aid from Russia?

The Fusion GPS founder appeared before the Senate Judiciary Committee in Aug. 2017 to answer questions about the dossier on President Trump that the research company compiled with the assistance of Christopher Steele, a former British spy.

OPEN Document

Democrats were still seething on Tuesday at the decision by Mr. Grassley and another Republican on the panel, Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, to issue a criminal referral last week for Mr. Steele. The senators said they had reason to believe Mr. Steele had lied to federal authorities about his contacts with the media and urged the Justice Department to investigate.

A spokesman for Mr. Grassley said Ms. Feinstein’s decision was “totally confounding.”

“Her action undermines the integrity of the committee’s oversight work and jeopardizes its ability to secure candid voluntary testimony,” the spokesman, Taylor Foy, said.

Mr. Simpson said he hired Mr. Steele in the late spring of 2016, and the former spy grew alarmed soon after getting to work. With Mr. Simpson’s blessing, he reached out to an old contact at the F.B.I. in early July.

“To me, it was like, you know, you’re driving to work and you see something happen, and you call 911,” Mr. Simpson said.

Current and former American and foreign officials with direct knowledge of the investigation say that the federal inquiry did not start with Mr. Steele’s dossier, early parts of which did not reach counterintelligence investigators at the F.B.I. until August, after the bureau’s inquiry had already begun. But the officials have said that the dossier added material and buttressed what American law enforcement and spy agencies were gleaning from other sources.

According to Mr. Simpson, it was not until late September, nearly two months after the F.B.I. investigation had begun, that the F.B.I. reached out to Mr. Steele. He then met with agents in Rome to brief them on his work.

At that meeting, Mr. Steele learned that his information was considered credible by the F.B.I. “because they had other intelligence that indicated the same thing and one of those pieces of intelligence was a human source from inside the Trump organization,” Mr. Simpson testified.

Mr. Simpson did not disclose the identity of the human source in his August testimony. But people familiar with the matter said that Mr. Steele, after being questioned by the F.B.I., came to believe that the bureau’s human source was George Papadopoulos, a former Trump campaign foreign adviser.

In fact, the source was an Australian diplomat who had spent a night drinking in London with Mr. Papadopoulos in the spring, and then shared with American officials what he had learned from the Trump aide.

Mr. Simpson said Fusion played no role in deciding what to include in the memos that would eventually be compiled into the dossier.

But Mr. Simpson said that Mr. Steele “broke off” his connections with the F.B.I. after The New York Times ran an article on Oct. 31 that said the bureau had found no conclusive or direct link between Mr. Trump and the Russian government.

Citing law enforcement officials, the Times article said that “none of the investigations so far have found any conclusive or direct link between Mr. Trump and the Russian government.”

Since then, investigators and journalists have developed extensive evidence linking Mr. Trump’s associates to Russian government and intelligence operatives, but as yet there is still no public evidence of a direct link between President Trump himself and the Kremlin.

At the time, many in the F.B.I. did not believe Russia was aiming to explicitly help Mr. Trump. That consensus did not emerge fully until January 2017 when American intelligence agencies released a report saying that the Kremlin’s intentions were twofold: to “undermine public faith in the U.S. democratic process” and to “help President-elect Trump’s election chances.”

Mr. Simpson, in his testimony, called the Times article “a real Halloween special.”

“There was a concern that the F.B.I. was being manipulated for political ends by the Trump people and that we didn’t really understand what was going on,” Mr. Simpson said. “So he stopped dealing with them.”

The concerns prompted Mr. Steele to share his work with a former British diplomat, who passed the information to Senator John McCain after the election.

Mr. McCain is believed to have then met with James B. Comey, then the F.B.I. director, to discuss the dossier. In January, weeks before the inauguration, the dossier became public after news broke that Mr. Comey had briefed President Barack Obama and Mr. Trump on Mr. Steele’s work.

The release of the transcript broke what had more or less been a prevailing rule of secrecy around Congress’s various investigations into Russia’s efforts and the Trump campaign. Though pieces of information from witness interviews in the House and the Senate have leaked to the news media, only two complete transcripts — from House Intelligence Committee interviews with Carter Page and Erik Prince — had been publicly released among hundreds.

In a brief interview, Ms. Feinstein left open the possibility of releasing other transcripts from the committee’s investigation.

Continue reading the main story

FBI knew of possible Trump-Russia collusion, according to Glenn Simpson’s Senate testimony
 

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WASHINGTON — By the time the FBI sat down in September 2016 for a full interview with the ex-British spy who had been researching Donald Trump’s Russia connections, the bureau had already received information raising concerns about possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, according to a transcript made public Tuesday.

Glenn Simpson, a former newspaper reporter and the founder of a research firm called Fusion GPS, spoke to the Senate Judiciary Committee for more than 10 hours in August about his research into Trump, and on Tuesday more than 300 pages of his testimony were released by the committee’s ranking Democrat, Dianne Feinstein of California.

Feinstein releases Fusion GPS testimony on Trump dossier 3:14

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Simpson told the committee that his associate, the former British intelligence operative Christopher Steele, sat down for a “full debriefing” with an FBI contact in Rome in September 2016. During the debriefing, Steele shared information from his Russian sources, who said Trump had been coordinating with the Russian election-interference campaign of hacking and leaking.

For the FBI, it wasn’t entirely new information, Simpson testified.

“They believed Chris might be credible because they had other intelligence that indicated the same thing,” Simpson said. “One of those pieces of intelligence was a human source from inside the Trump organization.” He added that the FBI had a “walk-in” whistleblower who was someone in Trump’s orbit.

‘People are entitled to know’: Sen. Feinstein responds to releasing transcripts on possible Trump-Russia collusion 1:14

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However, two sources close to Fusion GPS told NBC News that Simpson’s testimony inaccurately conflated what he had been told, and that the human source was actually George Papadopoulos, the Trump campaign aide who has pleaded guilty and is cooperating with special counsel Robert Mueller.

By the time Steele sat down with the FBI in September, an Australian diplomat had passed to U.S. officials details of his conversation with Papadopoulos, who seemed to know that the Russians possessed hacked Democratic emails.

Steele first reached out to the FBI in early July 2016, because he was alarmed by the information he collected in June and felt obligated to step forward, Simpson said.

“He said he was professionally obligated to do it,” Simpson testified. “Like if you’re a lawyer and, you know, you find out about a crime, in a lot of countries you must report that.”

Steele was concerned that Trump could be blackmailed by the Russians over an alleged 2013 sexual escapade Steele believed had been recorded at the Ritz Carlton hotel in Moscow, Simpson testified.

The FBI responded to Steele “by September,” Simpson said, and Steele then met in mid- or late September with an FBI legal attaché in Rome.

Steele broke off contact with the FBI sometime between Oct. 31, 2016, and the election on Nov. 8, Simpson said, because Steele concluded that the information he had given to the FBI was not elevated to the highest levels of the bureau and was not being vigorously pursued.

front-page New York Times article on Oct. 31 about the Trump-Russia investigation said the FBI had found no conclusive link between Trump and Russia.

After the article was published, Simpson said, Steele severed his relationship with the FBI. “There was a concern that the FBI was being manipulated for political ends by the Trump people and that we didn’t really understand what was going on,” Simpson said.

It has since emerged that there was an active FBI counterintelligence investigation, which began in July 2016 but which the bureau kept secret.

Simpson said a dossier, which contained unverified allegations that Russia had been cultivating Trump for years and had gathered compromising information on Trump, contained all the memos Steele had produced for Fusion GPS, and that neither Fusion nor Simpson selected the content or edited the memos. The dossier was published by Buzzfeed.

Simpson said when he began his research into Trump, he was struck by Trump’s many connections to people linked to Russian organized crime, including Felix Sater, who pleaded guilty in 1998 to a mafia stock swindle and later helped Trump develop the Trump Soho hotel.

Simpson said he found Steele’s reports that the Russians were coordinating with the Trump campaign credible.

During the Senate hearing, he was asked to respond to a comment from a White House spokeswoman, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, that his was a “Democrat-linked firm” that “took money from the Russian government” and “created the phony dossier that’s been the basis for all of the Russia scandal fake news.”

“It’s a false allegation,” he said. “It’s political rhetoric to call the dossier phony. The memos are field reports of real interviews that Chris’s network conducted and there’s nothing phony about it. We can argue about what’s prudent and what’s not, but it’s not a fabrication.”

Simpson acknowledged that at the time he was working with Steele he was also working with a law firm that was defending a Russian oligarch in a lawsuit brought by the U.S. Attorney in New York. But he testified that the two cases were entirely separate, and did not influence one another.

Two of the people working on the New York case with Simpson were Natalia Veselnitskaya and Rinat Akhmetshin, both of whom attended a now-notorious June 2016 Trump Tower meeting that had been billed as an attempt by Russian officials to give negative information about Hillary Clinton to the Trump campaign. Simpson said he was unaware of that meeting at the time it occurred.

Simpson said he concluded from his research that Trump was not as rich as he has claimed, and that he had a lot of questionable business entanglements that bear further scrutiny.

“There were various allegations of fraudulent business practices or dishonest business practices or connections with organized crime figures,” Simpson said. “It was a long history of associations with people accused of involvement in criminal activity.”

Democratic Senator Releases Transcript of Interview with Dossier Firm – New York Times
 

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New York Times
Democratic Senator Releases Transcript of Interview with Dossier Firm
New York Times
In his testimony, Mr. Simpson sought to portray himself as an astute researcher well versed in the Russian government and that country’s organized crime. And he said Mr. Steele, the former British spy he hired to investigate the campaign’s ties to 
Senate Democrats just released full testimony on the Trump dossierCNBC
Top Dem releases testimony from Steele employerCBS News
FBI knew of possible Trump-Russia collusion, according to Glenn Simpson’s Senate testimonyNBCNews.com
New York Daily News –USA TODAY –New York Times –New York Times
all 235 news articles »
Trump-Russia dossier transcripts expose Donald Trumps ties to organized crime
 

mikenova shared this story from Palmer Report.

The worst kept secret in the entire Trump-Russia scandal is that Donald Trump has decades of business relationships with organized crime figures, and those deals are likely a big part of how the Russian government took control of Trump financially ahead of his entry into politics. Today’s release of Trump-Russia transcripts reveals that organized crime is indeed at the heart of the Trump-Russia scandal.

Glenn Simpson of Fusion GPS, the company behind the Trump-Russia dossier, testified privately before the Senate Judiciary Committee in the summer of 2017. Democratic ranking member Dianne Feinstein released the transcripts of that testimony today over the objections of Trump’s Republican apologists on the committee. The transcripts reveal what was behind the effort to assemble the dossier: “It was, broadly speaking, a kind of holistic examination of Donald Trump’s business record and his associations, his bankruptcies, his suppliers, you know, offshore or third-world suppliers of products that he was selling. You know, it evolved somewhat quickly into issues of his relationships to organized crime figures but, you know, really the gamut of Donald Trump.”

In fact the three hundred-plus page transcript references “organized crime” fourteen different times. While the testimony does not give away the specifics of how Trump is tied to organized crime, it’s a given that Fusion GPS has already provided these details to Special Counsel Robert Mueller. Some of Trump’s ties to organized crime, and more specifically Russian organized crime, have already been publicly documented.

For instance, the Trump Organization has done several major real estate deals in New York City with a guy named Felix Sater, who has done prison time in relation to laundering money for the Russian mafia. In addition, the U.S. Treasury Department hit the Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City with a hefty fine for years of facilitating money launderers, which included the period of time in which Donald Trump still owned a commanding stake in the property.

The post Trump-Russia dossier transcripts expose Donald Trump’s ties to organized crime appeared first on Palmer Report.

trump kazakhstan – Google Search
 

mikenova shared this story from trump kazakhstan – Google News.

Story image for trump kazakhstan from Reuters

Trump will meet with Kazakhstan’s Nazarbayev at White House on …

Reuters33 minutes ago
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump will meet with Kazakhstan’s President Nursultan Nazarbayev at the White House on Jan. … They will also talk about several international challenges, including Afghanistan, that Kazakhstan will face during its tenure as president of the U.N. Security …

Story image for trump kazakhstan from Raw Story

Explosive Fusion GPS testimony details Trump’s alleged ties to …

Raw Story6 hours ago
During his testimony, Simpson detailed ways that money had been stolen from a bank in Kazakhstan, then laundered throughout multiple countries — before possibly being funneled in part to the TrumpSoho hotel project. At the center of the ordeal appears to be Felix Sater, a Trump-linked Russian-born …

Story image for trump kazakhstan from Bloomberg

Was Trump SoHo Used to Hide Part of a Kazakh Bank’s Missing …

BloombergDec 10, 2017
The cases could shed light on how cash flowed between Kazakhstan and the U.S. in the past decade, a time when Trump and his partners were soliciting investments in the East. It’s a period that Robert Mueller, the special counsel investigating whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russia to interfere …

Story image for trump kazakhstan from New York Daily News

Bannon predicts Kushner investigators will ‘get down deep in his s–t …

New York Daily NewsJan 4, 2018
Numerous wealthy Russians have bought into Trump apartments, and Kushner’s meeting with the head of a sanctioned Russian bank in December 2016 had raised questions about whether he was trying to receive financing for his family’s projects. Kazakhstan has also featured in the Russia probe, with …
Trump Kazakh connection – Google Search
 

mikenova shared this story from Trump Kazakh connection – Google News.

Story image for Trump Kazakh connection from Bloomberg

Was Trump SoHo Used to Hide Part of a Kazakh Bank’s Missing …

BloombergDec 10, 2017
The Trump Organization hasn’t been accused of any wrongdoing in connection with the BTA Bank litigation. The company’s chief legal officer, Alan Garten, said it “had nothing to do with the sale of units in Trump SoHo,” which were handled by Bayrock, and had never done any business in Kazakhstan or …

Letter: We must face that Trump is a crook

Times RecordDec 23, 2017
They would use shell companies in all sorts of countries to move and launder the money so the Russian mafia connection was hidden. Trump and family turned a blind … More details in “Was Trump SoHo Used To Hide Part Of Kazakh Bank’s Missing Billions” (Forbes Magazine, Dec. 10, 2017). The Kazakh …

Story image for Trump Kazakh connection from The Diplomat

Felix Sater and Trump’s Strange Kazakh Connections

The DiplomatJul 11, 2017
As previously reported, Khrapunov’s family allegedly used multiple shell companies to purchase a trio of Trump SoHo properties. The total expenditures on these properties ran $3.1 million. Continued FT, “It is unclear how much money has flowed from the alleged Kazakh laundering scheme to Mr. Trump.”.
Trump – Russia Affair – Google Search
 

mikenova shared this story from Trump – Russia Affair – Google News.

Story image for Trump - Russia Affair from Townhall

NYT: Fusion GPS Still Investigating TrumpRussia Ties, But No One …

Townhall1 hour ago
Mr. Simpson himself has been hauled before three congressional committees for some 20 hours of questions and answers, placing him among the most significant players in the TrumpRussia affair, if math is the metric. “Uncooperative,” Senator Charles E. Grassley, Republican of Iowa, said of Mr.
Dossier investigation intensifies
Mt. Vernon Register-News12 hours ago
Fusion GPS Founder Hauled From the Shadows for the Russia …
Highly CitedNew York Times19 hours ago
7 eye-opening revelations from the Fusion GPS testimony
In-DepthThe Week Magazine3 hours ago
GRU Russian Military Intelligence – Google Search
 

mikenova shared this story from GRU â Russian Military Intelligence – Google News.

Story image for GRU Russian Military Intelligence from Business Insider

WikiLeaks tweeted, deleted, and then reposted a link to the full text …

Business InsiderJan 8, 2018
The CIA, the FBI, and the NSA concluded in in January of last year that WikiLeaks had “actively collaborated” with Russia’s “principal international propaganda outlet RT” as it published the DNC emails. CIA Director Mike Pompeo also said last April that the GRURussia’s military intelligence arm, had used …
Politics: WikiLeaks deleted a tweet linking to the full text of the …
ZODFA Magazine (satire) (press release) (blog)15 hours ago

Story image for GRU Russian Military Intelligence from Daily Beast

The KGB Playbook for Infiltrating the Middle East

Daily BeastDec 28, 2017
Badawi was a less-than-inconspicuous asset of Soviet intelligence, the GRU or military branch of it to be exact, and, perhaps hoping to entice his former pupil into betraying their country, he took it upon himself sweeten the pot for heisting one of the most sophisticated warplanes then in use by NATO …

Story image for GRU Russian Military Intelligence from bellingcat

Details on Newly Uncovered GRU Online Personas

bellingcatDec 26, 2017
On Christmas, Ellen Nakashima of the Washington Post published two widely shared reports on GRU(Russian military intelligence) activities in creating fake profiles on social networks, along with “astroturfed” political activist groups. The first, longer article, entitled “Kremlin trolls burned across the Internet …

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6:44 AM 1/10/2018 – Transcript of Fusion GPS founder’s testimony intensifies feud over FBI, Trump dossier – Chicago Tribune – Saved Stories

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Saved Stories – None
Former British spy turned to FBI after dossier revealed Russia might blackmail Trump – New York Daily News
Czechs head to the polls amid Russian meddling concerns – The National
‘Somebody’s already been killed’ because of Trump dossier, Fusion GPS rep revealed
What happened when the Big Three tried to tame Trump – Detroit Metro Times
David Brooks: The decline of anti-Trumpism – Santa Cruz Sentinel
Czechs to elect new president amid Russian meddling concerns – The National
Dem senators’ report warns of Russian meddling across Europe – Fox News
A Trump-Mueller sitdown: Could the endless Russia probe soon be over? – Fox News
The Mystery of the Exiled Billionaire Whistleblower – New York Times
Trump’s mental health issues and fitness for office can no longer be avoided – Salon
Deutsche Bank Ties May Spur Recusals by New US Attorneys – Bloomberg
Pakistani mob angered by rape, murder of girl attacks police – Fox News
Where is the Republican outrage as Trump turns America into a banana republic? – WBIR-TV
Erasing Obama’s Iran Success – Middle East Online
Dems: Trump doing almost nothing to curb growing Russian meddling – CBS News
Trump’s inner circle escapes televised grillings on Russia – Politico
Democrats warn US remains unprepared for Russian election interference – NBCNews.com
Senate Dem: Trump ignoring Russian cyberattack threat – Washington Examiner
Russia’s Election Meddling Fits a Global Pattern, Senate Report Says – New York Times
Senate Democrats: Future Elections May Be Threatened By Russian Attacks
European Countries Have Battled Russian Interference for Years. Here’s What the US Can Learn From Them. – Mother Jones
Democrats target Russia, Trump in report on election interference – Reuters
US must act now to ward off more Russian election meddling, report says – CNN
Trump faces presidential fitness test on Friday amid raised mental health concerns – NBCNews.com

 

Saved Stories – None
Transcript of Fusion GPS founder’s testimony intensifies feud over FBI, Trump dossier – Chicago Tribune
 


Chicago Tribune
Transcript of Fusion GPS founder’s testimony intensifies feud over FBI, Trump dossier
Chicago Tribune
Conservatives have accused the bureau’s senior leaders of being biased or corrupt in their handling of investigations involving Clinton and Trump, attacking the reputation of an institution that has long held itself to a standard of being nonpartisan 
‘A real Halloween special’: Fusion GPS co-founder questions New York Times report on Trump-RussiaWashington Post
Dems roil probe with release of Fusion GPS transcriptThe Hill
New dossier testimony reveals how badly NYT screwed up in Trump’s favorShareblue Mediaall 305 277 news articles »

Former British spy turned to FBI after dossier revealed Russia might blackmail Trump – New York Daily News
 


New York Daily News
Czechs head to the polls amid Russian meddling concerns – The National
 


The National
Czechs head to the polls amid Russian meddling concerns
The National
However, liberal critics fear that if Mr Zeman is re-elected, he will use his influence over Mr Babiš to encourage stronger ties toRussia at a time when Moscow is trying to exert its power over EuropeRussia has already been accused of meddling in a and more »

‘Somebody’s already been killed’ because of Trump dossier, Fusion GPS rep revealed

An attorney for the co-founder of opposition research firm Fusion GPS revealed during a closed-door interview this summer with congressional investigators that somebody’s already been killed as a result of the publication of the anti-Trump dossier.
What happened when the Big Three tried to tame Trump – Detroit Metro Times
 


Detroit Metro Times
What happened when the Big Three tried to tame Trump
Detroit Metro Times
federal investigation into whether Trump’s campaign colluded with Russia is ongoing, as is an obstruction of justiceinvestigation into his firing of former FBI director James Comey over the Russia probe. Despite the president’s attempt at a cease  

David Brooks: The decline of anti-Trumpism – Santa Cruz Sentinel
 

David Brooks: The decline of anti-Trumpism
Santa Cruz Sentinel
First, people who go into the White House to have a meeting with President Donald Trump usually leave pleasantly surprised. They find that Trump is not the raving madman they expected from his tweetstorms or the media coverage. They generally say that  

Czechs to elect new president amid Russian meddling concerns – The National
 


The National
Czechs to elect new president amid Russian meddling concerns
The National
However, liberal critics fear that if Mr Zeman is re-elected, he will use his influence over Mr Babis to encourage stronger ties toRussia at a time when Moscow is trying to exert its power over EuropeRussia has already been accused of meddling in a and more »

Dem senators’ report warns of Russian meddling across Europe – Fox News
 


Fox News
Dem senators’ report warns of Russian meddling across Europe
Fox News
It also calls on the government to increase the amount of aid it provides to promote democracy in Europe and publicly to expose any organized crime and corruption links to Putin. It adds that social media companies should be required to publicize the and more »

A Trump-Mueller sitdown: Could the endless Russia probe soon be over? – Fox News
 


Fox News
A Trump-Mueller sitdown: Could the endless Russia probe soon be over?
Fox News
The news, first reported by NBC, was quickly confirmed elsewhere. The New York Times says that “Robert S. Mueller III told President Trump’s lawyers last month that he will probably seek to interview the president, setting off discussions among Mr and more »

The Mystery of the Exiled Billionaire Whistleblower – New York Times
 


New York Times
The Mystery of the Exiled Billionaire Whistleblower
New York Times
In October, the Communist Party of China (C.P.C.) convened its 19th National Congress, a twice-a-decade event that sets the contours of political power for the next five years. The country is in the throes of a far-reaching anti-corruption campaign and more »

Trump’s mental health issues and fitness for office can no longer be avoided – Salon
 


Salon
Trump’s mental health issues and fitness for office can no longer be avoided
Salon
Trump’s election and administration have already done fundamental damage to the country, which may be impossible to undo. Trump is a symptom of a larger crisis of faith among the American people regarding the country’s democratic institutions and and more »

Deutsche Bank Ties May Spur Recusals by New US Attorneys – Bloomberg
 


Bloomberg
Deutsche Bank Ties May Spur Recusals by New US Attorneys
Bloomberg
Deutsche Bank has settled with the U.K., New York’s Department of Financial Services and the U.S. Federal Reserve, admitting that anti-money-laundering lapses allowed wealthy Russians to covertly move some $10 billion out of the country from 2011  and more »

Pakistani mob angered by rape, murder of girl attacks police – Fox News
 


Fox News
Pakistani mob angered by rape, murder of girl attacks police
Fox News
LAHORE, Pakistan Pakistani police say a mob angered over the recent rape and murder of an 8-year-old girl has attacked a police station in eastern Punjab province, triggering clashes that left several people injured. Wednesday’s violence erupted inand more »

Where is the Republican outrage as Trump turns America into a banana republic? – WBIR-TV
 


WBIR-TV
Where is the Republican outrage as Trump turns America into a banana republic?
WBIR-TV
In the years that remain in Trump’s presidency, will they succumb to the pressure and crack apart? The most alarming case is perhaps the most critical: the Justice Department, which oversees the FBI and is charged with ensuring the fair and impartial and more »

Erasing Obama’s Iran Success – Middle East Online
 


Middle East Online
Erasing Obama’s Iran Success
Middle East Online
For example, former counterterrorism adviser Lisa Monaco is said to have expressed concerns about using RICO [RacketeerInfluenced and Corrupt Organizations Act] laws against top Hezbollah leaders and about the possibility of reprisals. As thePost’s and more »

Dems: Trump doing almost nothing to curb growing Russian meddling – CBS News
 


CBS News
Dems: Trump doing almost nothing to curb growing Russian meddling
CBS News
It also calls on the government to increase the amount of aid it provides to promote democracy in Europe and publicly to expose any organized crime and corruption links to Putin. It adds that social media companies should be required to publicize the and more »

Trump’s inner circle escapes televised grillings on Russia – Politico
 


Politico
Trump’s inner circle escapes televised grillings on Russia
Politico
Adam Schiff and Eric Swalwell of California, also said Republicans have blocked their requests for financial documents from key players like Trump Jr., Kushner, former national security adviser Michael Flynn, former Trump campaign chairman Paul  

Democrats warn US remains unprepared for Russian election interference – NBCNews.com
 


NBCNews.com
Democrats warn US remains unprepared for Russian election interference
NBCNews.com
WASHINGTON One year after U.S. intelligence agencies detailed the scale and scope of Russian efforts to undermine the 2016 presidential elections, the United States still lacks a coherent, comprehensive and coordinated approach to countering and more »

Senate Dem: Trump ignoring Russian cyberattack threat – Washington Examiner
 


Washington Examiner
Senate Dem: Trump ignoring Russian cyberattack threat
Washington Examiner
This threat existed long before President Trump took office, and unless he takes action now, it will continue long after his administration, Sen. Ben Cardin, the ranking member on the Foreign Relations Committee, said in a Wednesday statement. The 
Dems: Trump doing almost nothing to curb growing Russian meddlingCBS News
Senate Democrats: Future Elections May Be Threatened By Russian AttacksHuffPost
Russia’s Election Meddling Fits a Global Pattern, Senate Report SaysNew York Times
Minneapolis Star Tribune –Baltimore Sun –NBCNews.com
all 27 news articles »
Russia’s Election Meddling Fits a Global Pattern, Senate Report Says – New York Times
 


New York Times
Russia’s Election Meddling Fits a Global Pattern, Senate Report Says
New York Times
… and President Vladimir V. Putin. It tracks Russian efforts in 19 countries, chronicling misinformation campaigns, the funding of far-right political causes and the manipulation of energy supplies long before 2016 in an attempt to glean lessons for and more »

Senate Democrats: Future Elections May Be Threatened By Russian Attacks

“It is imperative that the American people better understand the true scope and scale of Putins pattern of undermining democracy.
European Countries Have Battled Russian Interference for Years. Here’s What the US Can Learn From Them. – Mother Jones
 


Mother Jones
European Countries Have Battled Russian Interference for Years. Here’s What the US Can Learn From Them.
Mother Jones
Spain has worked aggressively to prosecute Russia-based organized crime groups that use the country for money laundering and other crimes, the report notes. And Spanish money laundering operations have specifically targeted officials close to Putin. In  

Democrats target Russia, Trump in report on election interference – Reuters
 


Reuters
Democrats target Russia, Trump in report on election interference
Reuters
The document consists of eight chapters and several appendices detailing tools the Senate investigators said Russia used to influence elections in Europe and making more than 30 recommendations for how to prevent further interference in elections in
New congressional report blasts Trump for ignoring Russian interference around the worldABC Newsall 28 news articles »

US must act now to ward off more Russian election meddling, report says – CNN
 


CNN