Archive for the ‘Seth Rich’ category

Forget about Trump and the Russians. The real action is with the Awan brothers and Fusion GPS.

July 28, 2017

Forget about Trump and the Russians. The real action is with the Awan brothers and Fusion GPS., The American SpectatorScott Mckay, July 28, 2017

From a press release that hit on Thursday…

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) and Judiciary Committee Republicans today sent a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein calling for the appointment of a second special counsel to investigate unaddressed matters, some connected to the 2016 election and others, including many actions taken by Obama Administration officials like Attorney General Loretta Lynch, FBI Director James Comey, and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The letter follows yesterday’s House Judiciary Committee approval of H. Res. 446, as amended, to request documents pertaining to the FBI’s investigation of former Secretary Clinton.

In their letter, the Judiciary Committee members express concern that the directive given to Special Counsel Robert Mueller is narrow in scope and many concerns arising out of the 2016 presidential election and its aftermath are not being investigated. The members call for the appointment of a second special counsel to investigate grave concerns such as former Attorney General Lynch’s directive to former FBI Director Comey to mislead the American people on the nature of the investigation into former Secretary Clinton; the FBI and Justice Department’s investigative decisions related to the Clinton email investigation, including the immunity deals given to potential co-conspirators; selected leaks of classified information that unmasked U.S. persons incidentally collected upon by the intelligence community; and the FBI’s reliance on “Fusion GPS” in its investigation of the Trump campaign, among many others issues.

If you’re sick and tired of the never-ending “Trump And The Russians” scandal, which for all its hype has produced scant little actual evidence of anything other than desultory cooperation on the part of the president’s camp with an investigation it quite reasonably believes is a kangaroo court, this letter from Goodlatte’s committee might just be what the doctor ordered.

Because as Washington scandals go, Trump And The Russians doesn’t even make it out of Double-A ball. What Goodlatte and the Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee want is a special counsel to take us up to the Triple-A or major league scandal level, because there are opportunities for playing time available.

The unmasking issue still has a lot of undiscovered meat on its bones; we’ve already seen a little evidence of that. The Lynch-Comey-Phoenix Airport nexus deserves a lot more scrutiny than it’s received, as do those immunity grants. And the leaks without a doubt deserve a full investigation, and some smug SOB’s from the Deep State surely deserve lengthy prison terms.

But the Fusion GPS business — and the long-simmering and now-burgeoning Awan brothers scandal — are monsters hiding in D.C.’s closet. Here’s to both those scandals continuing to crackle and spark over the next several months, on the way to full explosions the legacy media can no longer contain.

Readers of this column already have an understanding of the Awan brothers scandal, as this space covered a substantial amount of the background of it back in February when things first started happening. Click here to see that background; we’ll give a very short summary of it now.

The central figure in this scandal is a Pakistani national named Imran Awan, who appears to be connected in some way to his country’s intelligence service. Awan is an IT professional who was hired in 2004 to handle computer equipment for Florida Democrat congressman Robert Wexler, and he then picked up a job as a shared staffer to work for Wexler’s colleague Debbie Wasserman Schultz.

Awan rode along with Wasserman Schultz as she ascended to the top of the Democratic Party structure, and soon not only was his boss the chair of the Democratic National Committee but Awan’s relationship with her led to his building a client list of some 80 Democrat House members who were using either Imran or other members of his family (a pair of brothers, one of their wives, his own wife) in a sizable little empire he’d built.

And in the meantime, the Awan family was engaging in a pattern of financial activities that looked a whole lot like a mafia operation — questionable real estate deals, bank fraud, kidnapping and extortion, a used-car dealership that might well have been a front for moving stolen cars to Pakistan for sale, and so on. Awan was arrested at Dulles International Airport on Monday as he tried to flee the country while the FBI and Capitol Hill Police were closing in on a bank fraud indictment. In January he had wired some $283,000 from the Congressional Federal Credit Union to two individuals in Pakistan; he was trying to board a flight to Lahore when he had the cuffs put on him.

But the real juice with the Awans isn’t the bank fraud or the possible stolen cars. The real scandal here is the stolen computers — and the stolen information. It’s alleged that the Awans illegally downloaded documents from their clients, some of whom were on the House Intelligence Committee and other sensitive committees, and even walked off with congressional computers. The FBI, in fact, seized a number of CPU’s and hard drives found at a house owned by Imran that he was renting to a military couple after the tenants had found the equipment partially destroyed in the garage and called the authorities. We don’t know what was on those hard drives.

There are even allegations the Awans were blackmailing their clients with information they’d found in their e-mails. Your imagination can likely conjure up all kinds of entertaining scenarios around that theme.

But the piece de resistance with the Awan brothers scandal is the revelation that Imran Awan, with his foreign intelligence connections, his criminal appearance and his persistent financial problems despite apparently not lacking in the ability to make a buck, had the password to Wasserman Schultz’ iPad from which she answered her e-mail… as DNC chair.

Forget about the Russians and their supposed hacking of the DNC e-mails. If you’re really curious about who got to that information and would have been in a position to shop it to the highest bidder, Imran Awan is the most likely culprit in the room.

Things are moving very quickly on this case, and it’s somewhat telling that Awan was released on bond after being caught trying to flee the country. He has a tracking bracelet on his ankle, but what makes more sense is that he may have turned states’ evidence in exchange for being let out of jail. Awan’s attorney is former Bill Clinton go-fer Chris Gowen, and the lawyer’s statement after he’d been arrested reads like a press release from a campaign operative rather than a criminal attorney; bizarrely so, one might say. It might be that Awan is rolling on Wasserman Schultz and the Clintons have decided to hang her out to dry in order to insulate themselves from whatever blowback the DNC e-mails might generate for them.

Or maybe that isn’t possible anymore. Former Washington police detective Rod Wheeler, who you’ve probably seen on Fox News from time to time and who most recently was in the news as having done some private snooping in the Seth Rich case, has intimated there is a connection between that case and that of the Awan brothers. We’re not going to try to connect those dots without more information, but one’s imagination might run riot with those.

Meanwhile, Republicans in both the House and the Senate are exceptionally curious about Fusion GPS, and with good reason. In case you’re not familiar with this outfit, it’s the “opposition research and strategic communications” firm co-founded by former Wall Street Journal reporters Peter Fritsch and Glenn Simpson which played a significant role in the 2016 election. It was Fusion GPS which commissioned the infamous and debunked “pee pee dossier,” written by former British spy Christopher Steele, sourced largely from Steele’s Russian contacts and containing a mountain of scurrilous and implausible allegations about Donald Trump’s misbehaviors. Fusion GPS was initially contracted by anti-Trump Republican donors, but after Trump got the GOP nomination it was Democrats paying the freight for their work product… and before it was over it looks like James Comey’s FBI, amazingly, was picking up the tab.

That last part is of special interest to Sen. Charles Grassley and the Senate Judiciary Committee, which has made a priority out of Fusion GPS, and had called Simpson to testify. He did, but only in private, and only after threatening to take the Fifth. That’s his right, but what does an oppo researcher need the Fifth Amendment for?

But there’s more with Fusion GPS. On Wednesday Tucker Carlson had as a guest on his show one Thor Halvorssen, a Venezuelan native of Norwegian descent who runs a watchdog outfit called the Human Rights Foundation, and Halvorssen told a harrowing story of Fusion GPS attempting to destroy his life with a smear campaign because he’d blown the whistle on a crooked contract one of Fusion’s clients had with the Venezuelan government to build power plants. That story also got told in a letter Halvorssen sent to Grassley’s committee. And then there is Fusion’s other client, Natalia Veselnitskaya, the “Russian lawyer” whose meeting with Jared Kushner, Donald Trump Jr., and Paul Manafort has been bandied about as some sort of smoking gun proving collusion with the Russians. It turns out that Veselnitskaya had hired Fusion to help her push to overturn the Magnitsky Act, a sanctions bill targeting crooked Russian oligarchs and human rights abusers. In none of these cases did Fusion bother to register under FARA, the Foreign Agent Registry Act, which would put them on the wrong side of the law.

Grassley’s committee, and Goodlatte’s committee, would like to know if this entire Russian business was a setup cooked-up by Fusion’s dirty-tricks shop with the collusion of a few actors in the Obama administration. It’s hard to blame them.

There’s a lot of debate about Trump’s “drain the swamp” mantra these days, but nobody is really denying the swamp exists. And nobody can — not with Fusion GPS and the Awan brothers skulking around in the muck.

Seth Rich Murder: The Corruption Of Washington DC On Full Display

May 31, 2017

Seth Rich Murder: The Corruption Of Washington DC On Full Display, One America News via YouTube, May 30, 2017

(Please see also The Murder of Seth Rich – A Basic Primer for Corporate Media Hostages. There’s lots of additional information in the video strongly suggesting that Rich’s murder was not a mere robbery attempt. The loose strings need to be pulled together. Perhaps the resulting quilt will dispell the “mere conspiracy theory” about the murder, and put to bed the still unproven conspiracy theory about Trump and Russian “hacking” of the election. Or perhaps it won’t.  However, labeling something a “mere conspiracy theory” does not make it one. However it turns out, we deserve truthful answers. — DM)

 

The Murder of Seth Rich – A Basic Primer for Corporate Media Hostages

May 30, 2017

The Murder of Seth Rich – A Basic Primer for Corporate Media Hostages, Canada Free Press, May 30, 2017

(I pondered for a while before posting this, but since the “Seth Rich conspiracy theory” has more basis than the “Trump is Putin’s puppy conspiracy theory,” I decided to post it for whatever it may be worth.

Had a Trump campaign official, who had favored one of Trump’s opponents, been murdered in comparable circumstances and alleged to have had damaging information about Trump, might the media and law enforcement officials have been more interested in having a complete investigation? Judicial Watch is now looking into the Seth Rich murder. — DM) 

This weekend, my neighbor asked me what I knew about the murder of Seth Rich. Instead of answering him, I asked him what he knew about it, which admittedly was not much. He only heard about it from a drive-by media report and couldn’t understand why a shooting during an “attempted robbery” almost a year ago in Washington, DC was being discussed.

It was then I realized that not everyone, even those seemingly knowledgeable about current events, understands the potential significance of this incident. It was then I decided to write this most basic report intended for those who are just learning of the murder of Seth Rich, and explain why it is of such importance.

I also hope to convey why there is such opposition to the investigation and discussion of this tragic event, and why there is such vitriol levied against anyone who is searching for answers to what many want to dismiss as a “botched robbery.”

The following is a very basic introduction of the case compiled from limited releases by official sources, my personal interviews with investigative journalists on my radio show, the Hagmann Report and my own investigation.  First, here are the most basic facts.

Subject & Incident Profile

Victim: Seth Conrad Rich
Address: 2113 1st St.
Washington, DC 20001

Age: 27 DOB:  1/3/1989
Prior Address: 1222 Euclid, Washington DC 20009
Employer: Democratic National Committee (DNC)
Position: Data Analyst
Parents: Joel & Mary Rich, Farnam St, Omaha, NE (Douglas County)
Date of Crime: 10 July 2016 Time: 0419 hours
Location of crime: Southwest corner of W Street & Flagler Place NW, Washington, DC
Incident Type:  GSW (Gunshot Wound(s)) – The victim was reportedly shot twice in the back with a small caliber handgun.

Metropolitan Police Public Incident Report (CCN #16113797; Issued 10 July 2016 at 0710):

“CIC reports the sound of gunshots at 2134 Flagler Pl. NW. Upon arriving to the scene, the decedent was laying in the Southwest corner of the intersection of W St. and Flagler Pl. NW. The decedent was conscious and breathing with apparent gunshot wound(s) to the back. The decedent was transported to local area hospital and was pronounced dead by attending physician at 0557 hours.”

The public incident report listed the following [capitals/punctuation in source document]:

Responding officer: Jody O’Leary (#7859) – MPD. Assisting officer: ROBERT WINGATE ROBINSON (#7634) (Body Worn Camera), Derek Tarr (#9237) (Other Officers At Scene): Shea Ellis (#9499) (Other Officers At Scene), Benjamin Velez (#6631) (Body Worn Camera), Mark Lee (#6141) (Body Worn Camera).

Motive for the shooting

The motive for the shooting, according to subsequent statements by or on behalf of the Metropolitan Police Department or the Rich family, was that the shooting was a “botched robbery” attempt. This despite that nothing was reportedly taken from the victim. The victim also reportedly sustained pre-mortem wounds to his face, hands and knees in what was described as defensive wounds.

Also according to reports, the victim was conscious upon the arrival of police, although he allegedly provided a previous address to authorities. It is unclear whether the responding officers, as is customary in a shooting, asked the victim who shot him or a description of the shooters. No BOLO alerts were sent out as a result of the initial contact with police.

The preceding information concludes the public information either provided by or admitted to by public officials. Numerous important factors and relationships have been left out by police and public officials.

Mr. Rich reportedly sustained two gunshot wounds from a small caliber handgun. One wound was alleged to be a “through and through” wound, while the other bullet reportedly struck his liver. He was transported to an unidentified hospital where he allegedly died a few hours later.

His murder might have gone as just another statistic and testament to the violence that plagues our inner cities, except for nagging questions about the activities of Seth Rich prior to his murder, combined with other oddities that involve departure from standard operating procedure by the MPD.

On March 17, 2017, GOP lobbyist Jack Burkman announced the creation of the Profile Project and announced a $105,000 reward for information leading to the conviction of the Rich murder. As reported by investigative journalist Liz Crokin, Burkman is now claiming that the MPD is thwarting his efforts through non-cooperation.

While other people and groups have added to the reward that now totals well over a quarter of a million dollars, conspicuously absent is his own employer – the DNC.

In the face of accusations of departure from police department SOP and other oddities, the Rich family spokesman, Brad Bauman, has been vitriolic in his condemnation of anyone asking questions about the murder of Seth Rich.

Family spokesman Brad Bauman happens to be a Public Relations crisis manager with the Pastorum Group in Washington, D.C., a firm with progressive ties. In his role as a communications consultant, Bauman offers “strategic communications advice to Democratic candidates and labor unions,” according to his public profile page on LinkedIn.

The real problems with this case, however, have yet to be addressed.

Trouble at the DNC

In the matter of the murder of Seth Conrad Rich, the core issue exists in the growing body of evidence that strongly indicates that Mr. Rich, though his position as a data analyst at the DNC during a hotly contested primary election, might have discovered fraudulent and perhaps criminal activity that could affect the outcome of the party nomination (from Bernie Sanders to Hillary Rodham Clinton).

Subsequent reports verified that Seth Rich was an ardent supporter of then-DNC candidate Bernie Sanders. By virtue of his job description, Rich was positioned to have access to data that could prove poll tampering in favor of Clinton. Concurrently, his importance to anyone conspiring to maintain the specific narrative of foreign interference rose exponentially, if not unexpectedly, should his alleged discovery be exposed. Should such alleged tampering be made public, it would obviously have devastating consequences to those “fixing” the polls.

Accordingly, Mr. Rich might well have found himself in a very lonely and unenviable position of possessing information which, at the very least, is vital to the integrity of our election process. Specifically, this information would be most problematic for those conspiring to assure the party nomination of Hillary Rodham Clinton in the Democratic primaries.

This situation is further clouded and exacerbated by constant media allegations of “hacks” of our election process by foreign entities, specifically the Russians, which has become and continues to be the official account of the DNC and supporters of Hillary Clinton. While these alleged hacks reportedly both pre-date and postdate the murder of Seth Rich, he has nonetheless become a key subject of interest due to his position with the Democratic National Committee and the outcome of the 2016 Presidential election.

It is important to note that on June 14, 2016, about a month before Seth Rich was murdered, The Washington Post reported that “Russian hackers” obtained DNC communications, and reportedly had access to DNC computers for approximately one year before discovery and lockdown. It is also vital to note that this information did not come from the FBI or any law enforcement agency of the United States government, but from the private cyber security firm CrowdStrike, which was called in to handle the DNC breach despite the FBI offering its services which were curiously rejected.

These odd rejections were verified by former FBI Director James Comey himself during his testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee on January 10, 2017. Comey testified that the FBI made multiple requests, but was denied direct access to the Democratic National Committee’s email servers and other “hacked devices” as part of its probe of Russian hacking.

It was within this environment of alleged poll fixing and reports of Russian intrusion into the DNC computers that Seth Rich found himself. Having direct access to the DNC computers and perhaps finding irregularities that could impact the outcome of the primaries, it is conceivable that Seth Rich might have been long on critical information but short on trusted friends.

Anyone who has spent any time in Washington knows that trust within the beltway is a rare commodity. Consider then, the predicament of a young man from Nebraska at the moment he realizes that he possesses evidence of fraudulent and criminal activity at the highest levels of the DNC.

Seth Rich & Wikileaks

For the last decade, Wikileaks has existed and received millions of leaked documents that exposed, among many things, the machinations of the powerful and those in power. The methods used to provide information to Wikileaks have consisted of electronic transfer as well as the transfer of information through handoffs of portable storage devices.

Is it possible that Seth Rich reached out to Wikileaks to expose the possible and alleged fraud within the DNC?

According to published reports by at least two sources, the answer is yes. One source is Rod Wheeler, the DC private investigator hired by a representative of the Rich family to investigate his murder. Another is the infamous hacker Kim-Dot-Com. One might also consider Julian Assange of Wikileaks himself, although not directly, but by his offering a $25,000 reward on August 9, 2016, less than one month after Seth Rich was murdered.

Considered in totality, there appears to be sufficient circumstantial evidence to suggest that Seth Rich did, in fact, communicate with Wikileaks at some point prior to his murder. Direct evidence in the form of forensic analysis of his computer devices and cell phones, however is presently non-existent. Why? There appears to be a problem locating his electronic devices, as both the DC police and the FBI deny custody.

The Russian Conspiracy Theory

The primary component that is used to cast doubt on the legitimacy of the election of Donald Trump is foreign interference of our election process, specifically by Russia. To this day, this unproven conspiracy theory is repeated ad nauseum by the corporate media without any authenticated proof from any government law enforcement agency.

The primary source of this narrative is the private cyber security firm CrowdStrike as referenced by the June 14, 2016 report in The Washington Post and picked up by other media outlets. CrowdStrike was hired and paid for by the DNC in June 2016, essentially making the Russian hacking account a paid product of the DNC.

All told, there were at least four-(4) separate hacks into the DNC computers: the Democratic Caucus “hack(s),” the Podesta email “hack(s),” the DNC “hack(s)” and the Clinton Foundation “hack(s).” Included in the above is the strange account of the Awan brothers, three highly-paid Pakistani nationals who were employed as IT specialists shared among House Democrats. Working under Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, the Awan brothers are at the center of controversy in a series of thefts discovered early this year.

Also overlapping this period was the FBI investigation into the handling of classified emails by Hillary Rodham Clinton and staff. On July 5, 2016, FBI Director James Comey held a press conference at the conclusion of his investigation, where he accused Clinton of serious mishandling of classified information contained in emails and computer documents, but stopped short of recommending any referrals to the Department of Justice.

As one can see, there exist numerous problems with computer security, both party data and government equipment and information. The Seth Rich case, however, surrounds the DNC polling data that might have given the party’s nomination to Hillary Clinton rather than Bernie Sanders.

The importance of exposing the information possessed by Seth Rich is two-fold and very significant. Obviously, it would expose the false Russian hacking narrative that has been used to delegitimize the Presidency of Donald Trump, and also expose the “rigging” of the DNC nomination process.

Just the Beginning

There is more – much more – about this. There is much more information that will break this week about this case. For now, however, I am going to print this explanation for my neighbor, who is a hostage of the corporate media.

Perhaps this will help your neighbor when the murder of Seth Rich arises in conversation in the coming days. And I suspect it will.

 

Tom Fitton gives updates on Obama Spying Scandal, Unmasking Scandal, Rep. Adam Schiff, & Seth Rich

May 26, 2017

Tom Fitton gives updates on Obama Spying Scandal, Unmasking Scandal, Rep. Adam Schiff, & Seth Rich, Judicial Watch via YouTube, May 26, 2017

(This video covers a lot of ground and is very much worth watching. — DM)