I hate blogging on Easter Sunday. The blood pouring out of my palms messes up the keyboard. Yet blog we must: Although I had given up on the idea of a rapid impeachment, there may be reason for hope.
A couple of days ago, the big rumor was that Rudolph Giuliani was poised to testify to the FBI on Trump's mis-doings. The leading promulgator of the rumor was The Palmer Report
We’ve seen weeks of headlines pointing to Rudy Giuliani coming under increasing legal fire for his antics with imprisoned alleged criminal Reza Zarrab, who has financial connections to Donald Trump. Now comes word from two consistently accurate sources that Giuliani is looking to make a deal with the FBI, but that James Comey doesn’t want or need Giuliani’s cooperation in order to move forward.
First came word from former Bill Clinton White House staffer Claude Taylor, whose inside sources have tended to prove correct. He tweeted today that “Just spoke to a New York source and Rudy Giuliani is in legal jeopardy and is desperate to make a deal but James Comey is having none of it” (link). Then came confirmation from Jester, an online political pundit who also has a strong track record of calling these things correctly: “Rudy ‘Cyberman’ Giuliani is apparently in a legal quagmire and is desperate to ‘make a deal’. Comey isn’t interested” (link). This tells us quite a bit about just how far the FBI’s case against Trump and his associates has progressed.
So why wouldn’t James Comey want to cut a deal with Rudy Giuliani? For one thing, Giuliani appeared to have been instrumental in sabotaging the FBI during the election by leaking information he had obtained from one of its agents. So it’s unlikely Comey would be willing to give Giuliani any sort of leniency in his current legal troubles, unless his input was crucial to the overall case. And based on tonight’s parallel storyline that arrests in the Trump-Russia scandal could begin as soon as next week (link), the FBI appears to be far enough along that it simply doesn’t need Giuliani’s help.
We have a couple of problems here. First, placing all of our faith in Comey seems quite a stretch, considering what happened to Hillary. Second, all of this breathless talk of "Indictments soon! Any day now!"
has become annoying. I don't know about you, but for me, "Boy-who-cried-Wolf" syndrome set in about a month ago.
That's one reason why I've retained a cynical attitude toward the whole spooks-against-Trump Twitterverse, where that kind of breathless talk is a constant, and where doubters are damned as infiltrators.
(Palmer also says that the first arrests in Russiagate may come next week
-- one of those aforementioned spooks-against-Trump -- also believes that Rudy has offered to testify against Trump. Alas, that claim is non-falsifiable (unless the FBI changes its "no comment" policy).
Did Russia hack the state voter databases?
One writer within the spooks-against-Trump Twitterverse still commands my loyalty: Louise Mensch. I just can't quit her. You should check out her latest offering on Patribotics
. (For some reason, she still refuses to sign her posts, even though everyone knows that she is the writer.)
As I previously reported in an exclusive story on this blog, the Trump server at Cendyn was communicating to Alfa Bank in Russia hacked data from state voter databases and the DNC’s own voter targeting engine, Vertica. The precise combination of these two databases allowed Cambridge Analytica and SCL both to create Russian-directed propaganda and target it at voting groups with extraordinary precision. Intelligence sources now tell me that SVB bank, the second bank named in the FISA warrant I exclusively reported on Nov 7th, was also involved in messaging Alfa Bank. There will be further explanation of that in another post.
The technology behind Cambridge Analytica’s targeting was stolen from Facebook by Alexander Kogan, who has gone to Singapore and renamed himself Alex Spectre.
This is true
. In fact, Kogan now styles himself Dr. Spectre
I'm not making this up. A mystery man calling himself Dr. Spectre
helped to subvert American democracy, according to Louise Mensch. If you follow the link, you'll see that he's now studying "the biology and psychology of human kindness and well-being," which sounds rather ominous.
Back to Mensch:
In many ways, the Trump-Russia story begins and ends at Cambridge University. Dimtry Firtash, the corrupt Russian oligarch who is Paul Manafort’s patron, gave Cambridge £6 million pounds since 2010. With that money evidently came a large ring of Russian spies, probably including Kogan.
That's Mensch talking, not me. For legal purposes, let the record show that this blog has never accused the mysterious Dr. Spectre of being a Russian spy. If you can't trust a man who calls himself Dr. Spectre, who can
(Isn't it fun
, living in a movie?)
Sir Richard Dearlove, the former head of MI6, told the Financial Times that he and other British former spies had left a dining club at Cambridge – a club to which Flynn belonged – because of concerns about Russian intelligence penetrating it. General Flynn had been a regular attendee, the story said. It added that British intelligence was extremely concerned about some ‘startups’ in Cambridge being Russian intelligence, notably Veruscript.
Sir Richard and his colleagues suspect that Veruscript — a newly established digital publishing house that has provided funding to set up a new journal of intelligence and to cover some of the seminar’s costs — may be acting as a front for the Russian intelligence services
is the Wiki entry on Veruscript.
In December 2016, Veruscript was the subject of allegations that it was involved in Russian attempts to influence the UK intelligence community via the Cambridge Intelligence Seminar.
Let us now interrupt our perusal of the Mensch piece to take a look at what the Cambridge student newspaper
has to say about Veruscript and its links to Russian spying.
Following the unforeseen resignations of senior experts from the Cambridge Intelligence Seminar (CIS), questions have been raised over the forum's alleged links with Kremlin operatives and alleged threats from the Russian intelligence services.
The CIS is an academic forum for visiting speakers to discuss innovative intelligence research in progress.
The resigned posts were held by former MI6 chief Sir Richard Dearlove, who has previously held the position of Master of Pembroke College, Cambridge, former policy adviser at the White House Stefan Halper, and historian Peter Martland.
According to reports, the Kremlin is allegedly behind a newly-established intelligence journal, which also provides funding to the group.
The new London-based digital publishing house Veruscript, which helps cover some of the CIS’s costs, is also alleged to be acting as a front for the Russian intelligence services.
The CIS was set up by official MI5 historian Professor Christopher Andrew. The weekly seminars, which take place on Fridays at the university's Corpus Christi College, are advertised on the University website.
Previous attendees include Mike Flynn, Donald Trump’s choice for national security adviser to the US, and Dr Paul Martin, the ex-director of parliamentary security.
American newspapers completely ignored this important story. I wonder why?
And now we return to the Mensch piece in Patribotics:
The Guardian followed this up with a story about a probable woman FSB agent or asset at Cambridge, to whom General Flynn, who is as vain as he is stupid, had signed billets-doux marked “General Misha”, the Russian word for Mike.
In Cambridge, intelligence sources say, Flynn was meeting with not only those who had coded the technology but Russian spies talking about the propaganda it should distribute.
However, Flynn did not stop there. With the full knowledge of both Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin, “General Misha” continued his Nazi “tour of Europe”, with meetings both in Europe and of the EU far right at Trump Tower, discussing how the Russian propaganda of SCL could be targeted directly in their countries in order to swing their elections. Notably, Flynn was caught with the head of the far-right party in Austria. This man was then invited by Donald Trump to the inauguration. Other far-right Russian allies invited to the inauguration, or who came to meet Trump Russia associates at Trump tower, and who were assisted by the Russian botnet and Russian propaganda, include Marine Le Pen and Nigel Farage.
Mensch goes on to discuss one Peter Chayanov, whom she describes as "the hacking villain" of this whole affair. Chayanov, says Mensch, was the Putin/Assange go-between who allowed the Russian services to see the IP addresses of anyone using Wikileaks. (Lots of blackmail potential there, if this claim is correct.)
All of which brings us to the part I consider most important: The possibility of actual election rigging
. As some of you know, I have argued in favor of this idea all along, despite the many poohs that have been poohed by the usual pooh-poohers.
I further reported, based on intelligence sources that it was Chayanov’s company Hostkey that US intelligence determined hacked the state voter databases (named in their October 7th statement as ‘a Russian company’). Because the USIC named Wikileaks as a Russian government actor in that same statement, and because Chayanov holds Wikileaks SSL keys and servers, USIC now knows, if it did not before, that the Russian government hacked the state voter databases.
We know from other sources that the Russians acquired the Wisconsin database.
The motherlode of the DNC leaks was not the DNC emails Wikileaks released; rather, it was the Vertica database that the DNC used and which had files on the voting behavior of all listed voters (hence the BernieBros that disappeared from Twitter – they were designed to suppress the Clinton vote). The Steele Dossier, which sources say is true in all important respects, states that Russian moles in the DNC leaked the files to Russia – they were as much hackers as Snowden was at the USA. Because there are too many states to place leakers in, Chayanov was forced actually to hack the state voter registration databases.
The Trump server was washing these two databases together for targeting by the campaign as I exclusively reported, with further exclusive reporting on the precise method by TeaPainUSA, here.
Some of you will say that stealing the voter databases is hardly the same thing as hacking the vote itself. True enough. But once you're in, you're in. Do you recall those counties in WI where the number of votes counted exceeded the number of voters?
The secret of ballot tampering is that you can't rig the results unless your candidate has already gotten within a few percentage points of his opponent in any given county. A boost of anything more than, say, three percent is likely to arouse suspicion. (Bernie's unlikely big win in Michigan was far too obvious.)
Yes, yes, yes, I know: Too much of what Mensch has to say is backed only by "sources say." Once more we face the problem of non-falsifiability. Nevertheless, my gut -- which has had a pretty good record of late -- tells me that this is important