, a historian who stumbled into political blogging, offers an important perspective on the Anal problem ("Anal" being my preferred term for Cambridge Analytica).
One of the most telling and interesting threads of the Cambridge Analytica story is something that gets mentioned in most of the big pieces but is seldom a focus of attention. Most of the algorthms, techniques and strategies the company eventually deployed against the UK and the US were first used for elections operations in developing countries, what we once called the Third World. The reason is key: these countries had far less legal and technical infrastructure to defend themselves against these kinds of attacks. It was basically anything goes. And if someone got upset it didn’t matter all that much since these countries are off the main arteries of global news flows and have little capacity to uncover or hold to account a shadowy British company which is actually a subsidiary of a company wedded to the British defense establishment.
One of these days, I'll reprint the "Quartered Man" chapter of Death in Washington
by Landis and Freed. The text details the CIA's psyops operation in Chile, and when you read it, you'll get a very "2016" feeling. Or perhaps I should say: A very "Cambridge Analytica" feeling.
In the paragraph quoted above, the final line is of greatest importance. Cambridge Analytica may be considered an arm of MI6, staffed with personnel from the British secret services and often doing gigs for MI6 and CIA. Only a legal fiction keeps us from seeing Anal as part of Spookworld.
As the clandestine video taken by Channel 4 makes clear, Anal knows all about these legal fictions, creating new companies and subsidiaries as necessity dictates. That's why the "firing" of Alexander Nix means nothing: He can continue as before, officially employed by a newly-formed company which will quietly function as a subcontractor for Anal.
So the enemy is not Putin per se. Putin is the 500-pound gorilla in the zoo, but the zoo holds other animals. We face an even larger force -- something that links Putin to spies and manipulators in the west. A force that seeks to remake the entire world.
My name for that force is the Resurgent Fascism. Do you have a better term?
has offered a defense
, although he seems somewhat hamstrung, in that he can reveal only so much at this time. If and when we see the Inspector General's report, we will be in a better position to discuss details. Until then, we have this:
I have been accused of “lack of candor.” That is not true. I did not knowingly mislead or lie to investigators. When asked about contacts with a reporter that were fully within my power to authorize as deputy director, and amid the chaos that surrounded me, I answered questions as completely and accurately as I could. And when I realized that some of my answers were not fully accurate or may have been misunderstood, I took the initiative to correct them. At worst, I was not clear in my responses, and because of what was going on around me may well have been confused and distracted — and for that I take full responsibility. But that is not a lack of candor. And under no circumstances could it ever serve as the basis for the very public and extended humiliation of my family and me that the administration, and the president personally, have engaged in over the past year.
When we consider that McCabe's boss Jeff Sessions told whoppers to Congress, it is clear that someone "on high" decided to scrutinize McCabe's record and to pretend that a mere pimple was the size of Everest.
The under-discussed factor here is the DOJ IG himself, Michael E. Horowitz. There aren't many mainstream articles about him on the net, but those that have been published usually portray him as a man of good character.
Here's an important fact that you need to know: Although 99% of the American population does not know his name, there was a time when Russian trolls fixated on Horowitz. The same sites that spread Pizzagate stories have also accused Horowitz of being a Soros stooge
. This, despite the fact that he was actually something of a thorn in the side of the Obama administration
, even though Obama appointed him.
The Russian propaganda attacks on Horowitz came to a sudden stop some months ago. Suddenly, tellingly, he's a good guy again -- the one Obama appointee that the Trumpists have decided they like
. Compare this propaganda broadside
from last December to this one
, published in February. Within that short span of time, something changed. Something clicked into place.
Be warned: This IG is going to make more news, and it won't be the kind of news that the Resistance will like. It's not going to stop with McCabe.
We've seen rumblings on the right -- in those regions of the internet where lefties fear to tred -- that the IG's office is preparing an "explosive" report on Hillary Clinton, one that will justify the shouts of "lock her up." Example
. Another example
It was Horowitz who bestowed the Peter Strzok texts upon the world, giving the propagandists an enormous supply of ammunition. Remember when the Trumpist media rewrote the same outraged articles day after day for weeks, always pretending that the Strzok texts were a new
I'll ask the question that nobody else will ask: Did someone get to Michael Horowitz?
Remember: He would have been a key target of FSB/GRU eavesdroppers, just as he was a target of those Russian trolls. Then again, why look toward Russia? Mike Pompeo took personal control of counterintelligence at CIA. Unlike the rest of CIA, counterintelligence operatives may spy domestically. Pompeo could have ordered his personnel to learn everything
about Horowitz, down to the exact length in millimeters of last Tuesday's skid mark in Horowitz' underwear. The founder of CIA's counterintelligence arm, James Angleton, acquired blackmail material on J. Edgar Hoover himself
We all have secrets. The trick is knowing which person to pressure.