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FBI agent Peter Strzok was finally fired Aug. 10 after more than a year of intrigue surrounding his bias against President Donald Trump.
He joins more than two dozen other top FBI and Department of Justice (DOJ) officials who have been fired, demoted, or resigned in the wake of investigations of the 2016 presidential election—in yet another confirmation that the DOJ/FBI swamp is being drained.
The once-respected Federal Bureau of Investigation was compromised by politically motivated insiders, including James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Strzok, and many others. As more evidence of corruption comes to light, their schemes have rapidly begun to unravel. Such schemes included the exoneration of Hillary Clinton for her illegal email practices, the stonewalling of the separate investigation of the Clinton Foundation relating to Uranium One, and the FISA (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act) investigation of Trump associates that’s known as “Spygate.”
Much ink has been spilled in detailing the machinations of Comey, McCabe, Strzok, and Lisa Page, as well as other former DOJ officials such as Loretta Lynch, Sally Yates, and Bruce Ohr. Shockingly, Ohr’s wife, Nellie Ohr, worked for the Clinton-financed Fusion GPS—the firm behind the infamous anti-Trump dossier.
There appears to be an obvious conflict of interest demonstrated by Nellie Ohr’s work for Fusion GPS, which paid for the dossier, while her husband worked for the DOJ and was involved in the dossier investigation. Bruce Ohr then passed this research to the FBI, where Comey, McCabe, Strzok, and others used its “salacious and unverified” findings to obtain a controversial FISA warrant to spy on Trump associates.
The House judiciary committee wants to learn how the dossier was laundered through official channels to be used as the primary basis for the FBI’s FISA warrant. The committee has threatened to subpoena the Ohrs if they refuse to testify in front of Congress regarding their connections to Fusion GPS. Strzok’s text messages refer cryptically to a “secret society” and an “insurance policy” against Trump. Many believe the dossier was part of the FBI and DOJ’s plan to “stop” Trump.
Text messages between Strzok and his paramour, former FBI lawyer Lisa Page, were first revealed last year and exposed Strzok’s and Page’s political biases, repeatedly vilifying candidate Trump and his supporters. In one message, Strzok called Trump an “idiot.” Other messages referred to Trump as a “menace” and a “douche.” Strzok famously denigrated average American voters when he claimed he could smell the Trump support after a visit to Walmart.
The firing was long overdue. Despite frequent characterizations of him as a lowly “FBI agent,” Strzok was a big fish. In June, the Inspector General of the DOJ released a blistering, 568-page report documenting the FBI’s handling of the investigation into Clinton and her use of a private email server while she was secretary of state. While the report offered no “documentary evidence” of Strzok’s political bias, it did say his conduct “cast a cloud” over the entire investigation; He was escorted from the FBI building and stripped of his security clearance shortly after its release. He remained on the payroll, however, until this past week.
Strzok now joins the ranks of more than 25 FBI and DOJ officials who have been forced out—largely in disgrace. Here is a list of the notable Trump-era firings, demotions, and departures:
- James Comey, director (fired)
- Andrew McCabe, deputy director (fired)
- Peter Strzok, counterintelligence expert (fired)
- Lisa Page, attorney (demoted; resigned)
- James Rybicki, chief of staff (resigned)
- James Baker, general counsel (resigned)
- Mike Kortan, assistant director for public affairs (resigned)
- Josh Campbell, special assistant to James Comey (resigned)
- James Turgal, executive assistant director (resigned)
- Greg Bower, assistant director for office of congressional affairs (resigned)
- Michael Steinbach, executive assistant director (resigned)
- John Giacalone, executive assistant director (resigned)
- Sally Yates, deputy attorney general (fired)
- Bruce Ohr, associate deputy attorney general (twice demoted)
- David Laufman, counterintelligence chief (resigned)
- Rachel Brand, deputy attorney general (resigned)
- Trisha Beth Anderson, office of legal counsel for FBI (demoted or reassigned*)
- John P. Carlin, assistant attorney general (resigned)
- Peter Kadzik, assistant attorney general, congressional liaison (resigned)
- Mary McCord, acting assistant attorney general (resigned)
- Matthew Axelrod, principal assistant to deputy attorney general (resigned)
- Preet Bharara, U.S. attorney, SDNY (fired along with 45 other U.S. Attorneys)
- Sharon McGowan, civil rights division (resigned)
- Diana Flynn, litigation director for LGBTQ civil rights (resigned)
- Vanita Gupta, civil rights division (resigned)
- Joel McElvain, assistant branch director of the civil division (resigned)
Why so many departures? As I argue in my new book, the top layers of the FBI have long been troubled by financial self-dealing, political machinations, and coverups for ineptitude. As these deep problems increasingly come to light, the leadership is fleeing like rats from a ship. Expect to see more, as well as possible indictments, as congressional investigations continue.
Seamus Bruner is the associate director of research at the Government Accountability Institute and author of the new book “Compromised: How Money and Politics Drive FBI Corruption.”
Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.