Posted tagged ‘Clinton Cash’

Trio of GOP-Led Committees to Investigate Obama-Era Uranium Deal With Russia

October 25, 2017

Trio of GOP-Led Committees to Investigate Obama-Era Uranium Deal With Russia, Washington Free Beacon, October 25, 2017

Russian President Vladimir Putin and former President Barack Obama / Getty Images

A lawyer for a confidential FBI informant said Tuesday FBI officials told him that information about a Russian nuclear bribery scheme he was helping to uncover had reached the highest levels of government—that former President Barack Obama and other senior officials had been briefed on the illegal influence-peddling.

At least one of those presidential briefings occurred before the Obama administration’s approval of a Russian takeover of a large U.S. uranium mine in the fall of 2010, the lawyer said FBI officials told her client.

The deal gave the Kremlin control of up to 20 percent of U.S. uranium supply.

“While he has no first-hand information about what was in the president’s daily briefings, he was told unequivocally by the agents that information from the bribery case had been shared with the president and other senior officials and was given praise for providing that evidence,” the attorney, Victoria Toensing, told the Hill.

Rep. Peter King, (R.,N.Y.), a member of the Intelligence Committee, on Tuesday told reporters that he is particularly concerned about the Uranium One deal because he and three other top Republicans, including Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, (R., Fla.), had warned against approving it in 2010.

King said he knows those concerns were brought to “the highest levels” of the Obama administration because he received a letter in response from then-Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, who served on the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), “saying it was getting full scrutiny.”

“Seven years ago this month, I raised these objections with the Treasury secretary who said they were being fully investigated,” he said. “Obviously, we want to see what happened with that inquiry, what information was brought to their attention and what they knew then, and why they acted or didn’t act and put it into context of what has come out since then.”

Any evidence that senior Obama administration officials, not to mention the president himself, was taking the FBI’s probe into a sweeping Russian bribery scheme seriously before the U.S. government approved Russia’s acquisition of Canada-based Uranium One could provide critical insights into why the U.S. government signed off on the deal amid the probe.

The Russian bribery scheme involved kickbacks, extortion, and money laundering, the Hill and Circa News reported over the last week. The Uranium One chairman through his family foundation donated $2.35 million to the Clinton Foundation, and individuals with ties to the Russian nuclear industry also donated to the charity.

Revelations about the FBI probe also are refocusing attention on a $500,000 payment from a Kremlin-tied Russian bank to former President Bill Clinton and whether it was part of Moscow’s multi-million dollar scheme to sway then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to sign off on the deal giving Russia a controlling stake in Uranium One.

Bill Clinton had tried to meet with a top aide to Russia’s president at the time, Dmitry Medvedev, during the trip in question. The aide was a board director of the Russian state-controlled company. He met instead with Vladimir Putin, who was serving as prime minister at the time.

Clinton delivered the paid speech in Moscow the same month the Russians began the process of acquiring the U.S. uranium.

Hillary Clinton’s role in the approval of the Uranium One deal and Bill Clinton’s $500,000 speaking fee were first scrutinized in 2015 in the book Clinton Cash, by Peter Schweizer. The New York Times later wrote about the millions in donations to the Clinton Foundation from Uranium One board members and others with ties to the Russian nuclear industry.

New reporting last week by the Hill and Circa News about the existence of the FBI criminal investigation dating back to 2009 has once again thrown a spotlight on the deal.

The Justice Department slowly and quietly pursued the case for several years, bringing only one charge of money laundering against Vadim Mikerin, a Russian nuclear agency executive, with little fanfare and press coverage in 2014.

Hillary Clinton on Monday called the renewed focus on the uranium deal “baloney” and accused Republicans of trying to distract from the multiple probes into Russian meddling in the presidential election, including the one lead by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who served as FBI director during the Obama administration.

Three Congressional Committees are now investigating the Uranium One deal to try to find out if Clinton and other Obama Cabinet officials, purposely turned a blind eye to bribery and other illegal activity from major Russian players, including a top Russian nuclear executive, before the U.S. government approved the deal.

Key members of Congress who the Obama administration are required to brief about any high-level, classified foreign policy and national security issues, say they weren’t briefed on the FBI’s Russian bribery investigation.

“This is just the beginning of this probe—we’re not going to jump to any conclusions at this time,” Rep. Devin Nunes (R., Calif.), who chairs the Intelligence Committee, told reporters Tuesday. “One of the things, as you know, we’re concerned about is whether or not there was an FBI investigation, was there a DOJ investigation, and if so why was Congress not informed of this matter?”

Nunes stepped aside from his committee’s investigation into Russia’s ties to the Trump campaign and Moscow’s meddling in the U.S. presidential election earlier this year after a White House meeting about an aspect of the probe spurred criticism he was too conflicted to lead the investigation.

The new Uranium One revelations raise serious conflict-of-interest issues involving several Obama administration officials who either knew or should have known about the bribery scheme involving key Russian nuclear executives, several GOP lawmakers argue.

Clinton in her role as secretary of state sat the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, along with several other cabinet members, including Attorney General Eric Holder. CFIUS is the inter-agency government entity that approved the acquisition of Uranium One deal by a subsidiary of Rosatam, Russia’s state-controlled nuclear-energy arm.

Holder, as the top Justice Department official, would undoubtedly know about a probe involving senior-level Russian officials.

Robert Mueller, the special prosecutor who is now presiding over the federal government’s investigation into Russian ties to associate of President Donald Trump, was FBI director at the time. He would not only know about the probe, he would likely have signed off on it.

“We’ll be focusing on how the inter-agency process worked in this and how we don’t think that it worked out very well,” said Rep. Ron DeSantis, (R., Fla.), who chairs the House Oversight panel’s national security subcommittee.

The House Oversight and House Intelligence Committees on Tuesday announced a joint probe into the Uranium One deal and the Justice Department’s handling of the Russian bribery investigation and prosecution.

Sen. Chuck Grassley, (R., Iowa), who chairs the Judiciary Committee, has been investigating the Uranium One deal for several weeks. He wants to know whether the Justice Department has “fully investigated” whether “the Russians compromised the Obama administration’s decision to smooth the way for the transaction.”

“It turns out that during the transaction, the Justice Department had an ongoing criminal investigation for bribery, extortion, and money laundering into officials for the Russian company making that purchase,” Grassley said last week. “Russians involved in the conspiracy were reportedly coordinating with high-level officials close to Vladimir Putin,” he added.

Grassley also wants the Justice Department to release the confidential informant from a non-disclosure agreement he signed during the Obama administration and has questioned whether Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein would be allowed to conduct any investigation into the Obama’s handling of the uranium sale to the Russians.

Rosenstein was the U.S. attorney in Maryland who investigated and prosecuted the Russian bribery scheme.

Before they knew about the FBI’s Russian racketeering probe, and some of the recent revelations provided by the FBI confidential informant, Republican critics of the Uranium One deal believed it was simply an example of the Obama administration and other naïve U.S. politicians supporting a Russia reset and freer trade between the two nations.

Ever since the fall of the Soviet Union, the U.S. had been building strong business ties to Russia, including commerce involving nuclear energy. Former President George H.W. Bush inked a deal to allow U.S. nuclear providers to buy uranium from Russia’s nuclear warheads that had been downgraded from the highly enriched weaponized levels.

Critics of greater cooperation between the two nations complained former President George W. Bush tried to continue the civilian nuclear cooperation despite concerns that Russia was then providing Iran with nuclear technology and providing Syria with advanced conventional weapons in violation of nonproliferation laws.

Bush only withdrew the proposed nuclear accord after Russia invaded Georgia. The Obama administration quickly picked up where Bush had left off, submitting a new U.S.-Russia nuclear cooperation agreement to Congress in 2010 despite evidence of Russia’s continued involvement in Iran’s nuclear and conventional weapons program, and Moscow’s role in running interference for Iran at the United Nations Security Council.

By Obama’s second year in office, Putin’s ambitions to expand his nuclear energy business operations inside the U.S. were well under way, and Mikerin, the Russian official who headed a U.S.-based subsidiary of Rosatom called Tenam USA, had played a key role in fulfilling those goals.

The same year the Obama administration approved the Uranium One deal it reportedly issued a visa for Mikerin.

The visa was awarded even though the FBI had already gathered “substantial evidence” in the fall of 2009 that he was involved in the Russian racketeering scheme, the Hill has reported. The Justice Department arrested and charged Mikerin with extortion several years later, legal documents show.

Why is Jeff Sessions hiding the Uranium One informant?

October 21, 2017

Why is Jeff Sessions hiding the Uranium One informant? American ThinkerDaniel John Sobieski, October 21, 2017

(Please see also, How Corrupt Are American Institutions? — DM)

Perhaps as startling as the revelation that the FBI was investigating the Hillary Clinton/Russia/Uranium One collusion  and that key figures like Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, Special Counsel Robert Mueller and Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe knew about it and said nothing, is the refusal by Attorney General Jeff Sessions to remove the non-disclosure agreement gag order on the FBI informant who arguably could put Bill and Hillary Clinton and a few others in federal prison.

It was said the Jeff Sessions recused himself from all things Russian because of election campaign conflicts but is it really because he thought it would insulate him from having to divulge what he knew about Uranium One and the people who at the very least knew about the deal, some who approved the deal, including past and present members of the FBI, the DOJ, and Special Counsel Robert Miller’s team? Is Jeff Sessions part of the Uranium One cover-up? If not, then he needs to explain why he is thus far refusing Sen. Chuck Grassley’s request to lift the gag order imposed by the Obama administration as part of the Uranium One cover-up:

A top Senate Republican is calling for the Justice Department to lift an apparent “gag order” on an FBI informant who reportedly helped the U.S. uncover a corruption and bribery scheme by Russian nuclear officials but allegedly was “threatened” by the Obama administration to stay quiet….

“Witnesses who want to talk to Congress should not be gagged and threatened with prosecution for talking. If that has happened, senior DOJ leadership needs to fix it and release the witness from the gag order,” Grassley said in a statement.

Victoria Toensing, a lawyer for the former FBI informant, told Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom” that her client has “specific information about contributions and bribes to various entities and people in the United States.”

She said she could not go further because her client has not been released from a nondisclosure agreement but suggested the gag order could be lifted soon. Toensing also claimed that her client was “threatened by the Loretta Lynch Justice Department” when he pursued a civil action in which he reportedly sought to disclose some information about the case.

In a letter sent Wednesday to Attorney General Jeff Sessions, Grassley said such an NDA would “appear to improperly prevent the individual from making critical, good faith disclosures to Congress of potential wrongdoing.”…

The Hill reported earlier this week that the FBI had evidence as early as 2009 that Russian operatives used bribes, kickbacks and other dirty tactics to expand Moscow’s atomic energy footprint in the U.S. Grassley on Wednesday released a series of letters he fired off last week to 10 federal agencies, raising the question of whether the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) which approved the uranium transaction was aware of that FBI probe — and pointing to potential “conflicts” involving the Clintons. The committee included then-Secretary of State Clinton.

So why not just lift the gag order, vacate the non-disclosure agreement, which Sessions has the power to do, and let the informant come forward with information on how and why the Clintons conspired to put 20 percent of our uranium assets under Russian control while lining the pockets of the Clintons and their pay-for-play foundation? As Toensing notes, Sessions could do it, and thereby bring to light the details of this criminal enterprise:

The lead investigators on the case included Rod Rosenstein, who is now the deputy attorney general, and Andrew McCabe, who is now the deputy FBI director. Rosenstein is the DOJ official who appointed former FBI Director Robert Mueller to investigate alleged collusion between the Trump presidential campaign and Russia.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself from the collusion/campaign investigation.  He could waive the Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) signed by the informant, said Toensing. “Yes, Jeff could do it,” she said. “He is not recused from this matter and should not be.”

However, Rod Rosenstein “is conflicted,” said Toensing, “because he was the U.S. attorney who oversaw the case involving my client.”  Toensing added that she has “asked an oversight committee to pursue the release” of the NDA so her client may testify before Congress about what he knows.

By lifting the gag order, Sessions might have to explain the real reasons behind his recusal and why people who knew of actual collusion between Russia and the Clintons were silent, only to reappear to investigate and pursue prosecution of nonexistent collusion between Russia and Team Trump. He might have to explain why Mueller, McCabe, Rosenstein and others were allowed to hide the truth from the American people and why they should not be summarily fired. As Grassley notes, neither Sessions or anyone in the Justice Department has the authority to block the informant from testifying before Congress or issue non-disclosure agreements to thwart Congressional oversight:

“The Executive Branch does not have the authority to use non-disclosure agreements to avoid Congressional scrutiny,” Grassley wrote. “If the FBI is allowed to contract itself out of Congressional oversight, it would seriously undermine our Constitutional system of checks and balances. The Justice Department needs to work with the Committee to ensure that witnesses are free to speak without fear, intimidation or retaliation from law enforcement.”

Again, perhaps the reluctance of Jeff Sessions stems from the web of deceit and complicity that ensnares many in the FBI and the Justice Department. As Fox News analyst Gregg Jarrett notes on the Uranium One scandal:

It seems it was all covered up for years by the same three people who are now involved in the investigation of President Donald Trump over so-called Russian “collusion.”…

But why has there been no prosecution of Clinton?  Why did the FBI and the Department of Justice during the Obama administration keep the evidence secret?  Was it concealed to prevent a scandal that would poison Barack Obama’s presidency?  Was Hillary Clinton being protected in her quest to succeed him?

The answer may lie with the people who were in charge of the investigation and who knew of its explosive impact.  Who are they?

Eric Holder was the Attorney General when the FBI began uncovering the Russian corruption scheme in 2009.  Since the FBI reports to him, he surely knew what the bureau had uncovered.

What’s more, Holder was a member of the “Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States” which approved the uranium sale to the Russians in 2010.  Since the vote was unanimous, it appears Holder knowingly and deliberately countenanced a deal that was based on illegal activities and which gave Moscow control of more than 20 percent of America’s uranium assets.

It gets worse.  Robert Mueller was the FBI Director during the time of the Russian uranium probe, and so was his successor James Comey who took over in 2013 as the FBI was still developing the case.  Rod Rosenstein, then-U.S. Attorney, was supervising the case.  There is no indication that any of these men ever told Congress of all the incriminating evidence they had discovered and the connection to Clinton.  The entire matter was kept secret from the American public.

It may be no coincidence that Mueller (now special counsel) and Rosenstein (now Deputy Attorney General) are the two top people currently investigating whether the Trump campaign conspired with the Russians to influence the 2016 presidential election.  Mueller reports to Rosenstein, while Comey is a key witness in the case.  It is not unreasonable to conclude that Mueller, Rosenstein and Comey may have covered up potential crimes involving Clinton and Russia, but are now determined to find some evidence that Trump “colluded” with Russia.

Boom. The question is now whether Jeff Sessions wants to help President Trump to drain the swamp be vacating the gag order and letting evidence come forth proving the Clintons orchestrated the greatest criminal conspiracy in U.S. history at the expense of American national security or whether he is just another swamp thing committed to clogging up the drainage pipes. Justice may be blind, but it should never be gagged.

Daniel John Sobieski is a freelance writer whose pieces have appeared inInvestor’s Business DailyHuman EventsReason Magazine and the Chicago Sun-Times among other publications.         

Uranium One Means Mueller Must Recuse Himself from Russia Probe

October 19, 2017

Uranium One Means Mueller Must Recuse Himself from Russia Probe, PJ MediaRoger L Simon, October 18, 2017

(Please see also, How Much Did Mueller and Rosenstein Know about Uranium One? — DM)

(AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

At the end of their lengthy editorial regarding the new Uranium One revelations —  “Team Obama’s stunning coverup of Russian crimes” — the New York Post editorial board writes:

Until September 2013, the FBI director was Robert Mueller — who’s now the special counsel probing Russian meddling in the 2016 election. It’s hard to see how he can be trusted in that job unless he explains what he knew about this Obama-era cover-up.

I’ll go the Post one better. Virtually whatever Mueller has to say about his involvement or non-involvement in this metastasizing scandal, he must recuse himself immediately for the most obvious reasons of propriety and appearance. Frankly, it’s outrageous that he, Ron Rosenstein, or anyone who even touched the Uranium One investigation now be involved with the current probe — unless the real name of the FBI is actually the NKVD.  This is not how a democracy is supposed to work, even remotely.  Forget transparency — this was deliberate occlusion.

The collusion Trump & Co have been accused of is chickenfeed compared to twenty percent of U.S. uranium ending up in Putin’s hands under the aegis of Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and Eric Holder, the latter two members of CFIUS (the inter-agency committee that reviews the transfer of U.S. companies to foreign entities and was then chaired by Timothy Geithner).  We have heard disturbing allegations of this for some time, via “Clinton Cash” and even from the New York Times, but the new disclosure that a 2009 FBI investigation of this possible nucleardeal uncovered kickbacks, money laundering, and bribes from the Russian company involved (Rosatom) and yet it still was given the go-ahead by the Obama administration is — I can think of no better word — appalling.  How could it have come to pass that this occurred?  Why are we supposed to believe anyone now?

On Wednesday, Senator Grassley asked Attorney General Jeff Sessions: “What are you doing to find out how the Russian takeover of the American uranium was allowed to occur despite criminal conduct by the Russia company that the Obama administration approved the purchase?”

Evidently, not much.  At least so far. In fact Sessions said that Deputy Attorney General Ron Rosenstein, who led this long-hidden investigation, should “investigate himself.”

No, Jeff.  You may have properly recused yourself from the Russian investigation, despite Trump’s criticism, but this one is your job.  You run the Department of Justice and therefore the FBI.  Something is rotten as much as it ever was in Denmark.  Indeed it’s worse, since nuclear weapons were not even dreamed of in Hamlet’s time.  So don’t be like Hamlet.  Act now.

For starters, Mueller must step down.  We cannot have an investigation of this magnitude that half the country will completely disrespect — and for increasingly good reason.  History will mock it, also for good reason.  On top of that, with our country as split as it is, the results could be catastrophic.

Equally important, the reputation of the FBI must be resuscitated.  Speaking entirely as a private citizen, I do no trust the FBI anymore. To be honest, it scares me. And I am certain I am not alone.  It feels like an often-biased organization so bent on self-preservation that it hides evidence and lets the powerful off the hook. That’s the royal road to totalitarianism.  No, it’s not the NKVD yet.  No one that I know of is being hauled off in the middle of the night.  But very few of us know what it is really up to, how it makes its frequently dubious decisions, or whether it is working for the good of the citizenry at all.  Almost everything we learn of its investigations is so heavily redacted, no one but one of the myriad leakers seems to know what it means — and they’re usually lying.  This, as they say, will not end well.

People can dismiss my view by claiming I am a right-wing ideologue, but the problem transcends administrations, as have FBI directors.  Something is wrong with the system.  No one seems to be watching the watchers, from the FBI to the NSA.  Other than Senator Grassley, will anyone have the guts to save us?

How Much Did Mueller and Rosenstein Know about Uranium One?

October 19, 2017

How Much Did Mueller and Rosenstein Know about Uranium One? American ThinkerDaniel John Sobieski, October 19, 2017

Back in July, I called for a criminal investigation into Hillary Clinton’s collusion with Russia to turn over control of 20 percent of our uranium supplies to Russian interests in return for some $145 million in donation to the Clinton Foundation. Now it turns out that there was one, an FBI investigation dating back to 2009, with current Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller up to their eyeballs in covering up evidence of Hillary’s collusion, bordering on treason, with Vladimir Putin’s Russia:

Prior to the Obama administration approving the very controversial deal in 2010 giving Russia 20% of America’s Uranium, the FBI had evidence that Russian nuclear industry officials were involved in bribery, kickbacks, extortion and money laundering in order to benefit Vladimir Putin, says a report by The Hill….

John Solomon and Alison Spann of The Hill: Federal agents used a confidential U.S. witness working inside the Russian nuclear industry to gather extensive financial records, make secret recordings and intercept emails as early as 2009 that showed Moscow had compromised an American uranium trucking firm with bribes and kickbacks in violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, FBI and court documents show….

From today’s report we find out that the investigation was supervised by then-U.S. Attorney Rod Rosenstein, who is now President Trump’s Deputy Attorney General, and then-Assistant FBI Director Andrew McCabe, who is now the deputy FBI director under Trump.

Robert Mueller was head of the FBI from Sept 2001-Sept 2013 until James Comey took over as FBI Director in 2013. They were BOTH involved in this Russian scam being that this case started in 2009 and ended in 2015.

If evidence of bribery, kickbacks, extortion, and money laundering in the Uranium One affair are not grounds for a special prosecutor assigned to investigate Hillary Clinton, what is? Rosenstein and Mueller, by their silence on this investigation hidden from Congress and the American people, are unindicted co-conspirators in Hillary’s crimes and should be terminated immediately.

One can understand the Obama Justice Department covering up and slow-waking this investigation, but what about the Trump DOJ and our missing-in-action Attorney General Jeff Sessions? Was this the reason Democrats were hot-to-trot on him recusing himself from all things Russian? How could Rosenstein sit before Congress and not say anything, only to appoint Mueller to investigate Team Trump? Rosenstein and Mueller are poster children for duplicity and corruption.

Collusion itself is not a crime but jeopardizing American national security by conspiring to supply the Russian nuclear program with our uranium is a crime of the highest order. No one to date has provided any evidence that any favor was granted as a result of that meeting or that the Trump campaign benefited in any way from the meeting.

One cannot say the same thing about Hillary Clinton and her role in the Uranium One deal with Russia. Clinton played a pivotal role in the UraniumOne deal which ended up giving Russian interests control of 20 percent of our uranium supply in exchange for donations of $145 million to the Clinton Foundation. That, ladies and gentlemen, is a federal crime. As Clinton Cash author Peter Schweitzer has noted:

Tuesday on Fox Business Network, “Lou Dobbs Tonight,” Breitbart editor at large and the author of “Clinton Cash,” Peter Schweizer said there needs to be a federal investigation into the Russian uranium deal then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s State Department approved after the Clinton Foundation receiving $145 million from the shareholders of Uranium One…

Discussing the Clinton Foundation receiving $145 million from the shareholders of Uranium One, he continued, “Look, there are couple of things that are extremely troubling about the deal we touched on. number one is the amount of money $145 million. We are not talking about a super PAC giving a million dollars to support a candidate. We are not talking about campaign donations. We are talking about $145 million which by the way is 75 percent or more of the annual budget of the Clinton Foundation itself so it’s a huge sum of money. Second of all we are talking about a fundamental issue of national security which is uranium — it’s not like oil and gas that you can find all sorts of places. They are precious few places you can mine for uranium, in the United States is one of those areas. And number three we are talking about the Russian government. A lot of people don’t realize it now, in parts of the Midwest American soil is owned by Vladimir Putin’s government because this deal went through. And in addition to the $145 million Bill Clinton got half a million dollars, $500,000 for a 20-minute speech from a Russian investment bank tied to the Kremlin, two months before the State Department signed off on this deal. It just stinks to high heaven and I think it requires a major investigation by the federal government.”

Yet seemingly the only thing warranting a major federal investigation is a wasted 20 minutes of Donald Trump Jr’s life that he will never get back. Democrats and the media and, again, apologies for the redundancy, had no problem with Bill Hillary Clinton brokering deals giving Russia and Putin 20 percent of our uranium supply to benefit Clinton Foundation donors, including Canadian billionaire Frank Giustra.

Giustra earlier had a cozy relationship with Bill Clinton and participated in and benefitted from his involvement in a scam run by the Clinton Foundation in Colombia.

Clinton donor Giustra benefited significantly from his association, even if the people of Columbia didn’t:

When we met him (Senator Jorge Enrique Robledo) in his wood-paneled office in Colombia’s Capitol building in May, his desk was stacked high with papers related to Pacific Rubiales’s labor practices, the result of years of investigative work by his staff. He did not see the Clinton Foundation and its partnership with Giustra’s Pacific Rubiales as either progressive or positive. “The territory where Pacific Rubiales operated,” he said, thumbing through pages of alleged human-rights violations, “was a type of concentration camp for workers.”…

In September 2005, Giustra and Clinton flew to Kazakhstan together to meet the Central Asian nation’s president. Shortly thereafter, Giustra secured a lucrative concession to mine Kazakh uranium, despite his company’s lack of experience with the radioactive ore. As Bill Clinton opened doors for Giustra, the financier gave generously to Clinton’s foundation.

As the New York Times reported, this mutual back-scratching gave Clinton donor Giustra control of a significant portion of the world’s uranium supply:

Late on Sept. 6, 2005, a private plane carrying the Canadian mining financier Frank Giustra touched down in Almaty, a ruggedly picturesque city in southeast Kazakhstan. Several hundred miles to the west a fortune awaited: highly coveted deposits of uranium that could fuel nuclear reactors around the world. And Mr. Giustra was in hot pursuit of an exclusive deal to tap them.

Unlike more established competitors, Mr. Giustra was a newcomer to uranium mining in Kazakhstan, a former Soviet republic. But what his fledgling company lacked in experience, it made up for in connections. Accompanying Mr. Giustra on his luxuriously appointed MD-87 jet that day was a former president of the United States, Bill Clinton…

Just months after the Kazakh pact was finalized, Mr. Clinton’s charitable foundation received its own windfall: a $31.3 million donation from Mr. Giustra that had remained a secret until he acknowledged it last month. The gift, combined with Mr. Giustra’s more recent and public pledge to give the William J. Clinton Foundation an additional $100 million, secured Mr. Giustra a place in Mr. Clinton’s inner circle, an exclusive club of wealthy entrepreneurs in which friendship with the former president has its privileges…

In February 2007, a company called Uranium One agreed to pay $3.1 billion to acquire UrAsia. Mr. Giustra, a director and major shareholder in UrAsia, would be paid $7.05 per share for a company that just two years earlier was trading at 10 cents per share.

Now isn’t that special? Both the Clintons and their donor made out handsomely. Uranium One, which was gradually taken over by the Russians, would later be involved in a curious deal involving Hillary Clinton when she was Secretary of State. As the New York Times reported:

At the heart of the tale are several men, leaders of the Canadian mining industry, who have been major donors to the charitable endeavors of former President Bill Clinton and his family. Members of that group built, financed and eventually sold off to the Russians a company that would become known as Uranium One.

Beyond mines in Kazakhstan that are among the most lucrative in the world, the sale gave the Russians control of one-fifth of all uranium production capacity in the United States. Since uranium is considered a strategic asset, with implications for national security, the deal had to be approved by a committee composed of representatives from a number of United States government agencies. Among the agencies that eventually signed off was the State Department, then headed by Mr. Clinton’s wife, Hillary Rodham Clinton.

As the Russians gradually assumed control of Uranium One in three separate transactions from 2009 to 2013, Canadian records show, a flow of cash made its way to the Clinton Foundation. Uranium One’s chairman used his family foundation to make four donations totaling $2.35 million. Those contributions were not publicly disclosed by the Clintons, despite an agreement Mrs. Clinton had struck with the Obama White House to publicly identify all donors. Other people with ties to the company made donations as well…

Soon, Uranium One began to snap up companies with assets in the United States. In April 2007, it announced the purchase of a uranium mill in Utah and more than 38,000 acres of uranium exploration properties in four Western states, followed quickly by the acquisition of the Energy Metals Corporation and its uranium holdings in Wyoming, Texas and Utah.

So in exchange for donations, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, along with husband Bill, gave Vladimir Putin’s Russia, a nuclear power, control of 20 percent of the world’s uranium supply. Is that what Hillary Clinton meant by a “Russian reset”? Yet neither Congressional Democrats, who accuse Trump and his son of being too cozy with Moscow, nor their wholly owned subsidiary, the mainstream media, are eager to talk about the Clinton uranium deals with Russia.

Actually, we no longer need an investigation of Hillary Clinton and Uranium One. This FBI investigation in conjunction to what we already knew is prima facie evidence of criminal corruption and intentionally putting of American national security at risk for personal financial gain. If an indictment of Hilary Clinton is not forthcoming, then Jeff Sessions should also be fired.

Daniel John Sobieski is a freelance writer whose pieces have appeared in Investor’s Business Daily, Human Events, Reason Magazine and the Chicago Sun-Times among other publications.

Weekly Update: It’s amateur hour at State

September 16, 2017

Weekly Update: It’s amateur hour at State, Judicial Watch, September 15, 2017

(The second part of the article deals with the failure of the Department of Justice to prosecute former IRS head Lois Lerner. I have not corrected typos in the article because my internet keeps going down and I want to get this posted promptly.– DM)

Clinton Emails Reveal Additional Mishandling of Classified Information

We continue to accumulate details of the communications abuses in the Hillary Clinton State Department, but after you read the following report pause and consider the big picture. For four years the inner workings of her department were porous to prying eyes. Is it just a coincidence that Hillary Clinton’s diplomatic efforts so often failed?

This week we released 1,617 new pages of documents revealing numerous additional examples of classified information being transmitted through the unsecure, non-state.gov account of Huma Abedin, Clinton’s deputy chief of staff, as well as many instances of Hillary Clinton donors receiving special favors from the State Department.

The documents included 97 email exchanges with Clinton not previously turned over to the State Department, bringing the known total to date to at least 627emails that were not part of the 55,000 pages of emails that Clinton turned over, and further contradicting a statement by Clinton that, “as far as she knew,” all of her government emails had been turned over to department.

The emails are the 20th production of documents obtained in response to a court order in a May 5, 2015, lawsuit we filed against the State Department (Judicial Watch, Inc. v. U.S. Department of State (No. 1:15-cv-00684)). We sued after State failed to respond to a March 18, 2015, Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request seeking: “All emails of official State Department business received or sent by former Deputy Chief of Staff Huma Abedin from January 1, 2009 through February 1, 2013 using a non-‘state.gov’ email address.”

On September 11, 2009, the highly sensitive name and email address of the person giving the classified Presidential Daily Brief was included in an email forwarded to Abedin’s unsecure email account by State Department official Dan Fogerty. The State Department produced many more Clinton and Abedin unsecured emails that were classified:

  • On April 16, 2009, Deputy Assistant Secretary Jeffrey Feltman sent to Abedin’s unsecure email account classified informationabout an unknown subject.
  • On June 18, 2009, Abedin sent classified informationsummarizing a June 18, 2009, “Middle East Breakfast” meeting between various senators, representatives and State Department officials, at which Deputy Secretary Jack Lew and George Mitchell briefed the congressmen with “an update on our discussions with the [Middle East] parties.”
  • On June 23, 2009, U.S. diplomat Martin Indyk, who had his security clearance suspendedin 2000 for “possible sloppiness” in the handling of classified information, sent a memo containing classified information to Abedin’s unsecure email account. The memo, written for Clinton, pertained to Indyk’s discussions with top Israeli officials:

Could I ask you to review the memo below that I wrote yesterday on my return from Israel?  If you think it worthwhile, I’d be very grateful if you showed it to HRC (I have already shared it with Mitchell and Feltman). A confrontation with Bibi appears imminent.  I’ve never been one to shy away from that, as she may know.  But it has to be done carefully, and that doesn’t appear to be happening.  And I’m concerned that she will be tarred with the same brush if this leads to a bad end.  So I think she needs to make sure that the friction is productive.  I’ve made some suggestions at the end of the memo

  • On August 1, 2009, Abedin forwarded classified informationfrom State Department official Richard Verma to her unsecure email account. The email from Senator Russ Feingold was sent to Hillary Clinton regarding her upcoming Africa trip.
  • On August 4, 2009, Assistant Secretary Jeffrey Feltman sent classified informationabout discussions with Kuwaiti officials to Abedin’s unsecure email account. Feltman noted that the Kuwaitis felt a lunch they had with Obama was “chilly.” The discussions concerned Guantanamo as well as Kuwait’s treatment of detainees.
  • On Sept 20, 2009, Abedin forwarded classified informationto her unsecure email account. The email was from State Department official Esther Brimmer and concerned foreign leaders’ discussions regarding a UNESCO leadership appointment.
  • On November 1, 2009, U.S. Ambassador to the UAE Rick Olson sent classified informationto Abedin’s unsecure email account. The email shows that Olsen was traveling with Hillary in the Middle East, and Abedin asked him to “work on a list of everything covered in the mbz [presumably Mohammed bin Zayed bin Sultan Al-Nahyan, the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi] meeting for Hillary.” Olson asks: “do you want it on this system (I can sanitize), or on the other system.” She replies: “This system easier. We are staying without class[ified] computers. Thx.”
  • On December 1, 2009, Abedin sent classified informationabout foreign military contributions to the Afghanistan war effort to her unsecure email account. The email originated with State official Sean Misko who wrote to Deputy Chief of Staff Jake Sullivan that he first “accidentally” sent it on the “high side” (secure) but was resending.
  • On December 25, 2009, Abedin sent to her unsecure email account classified informationprepared by Deputy U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan Francis Ricciardone concerning the Afghan elections.
  • On December 26, 2009, U.S. Ambassador to Mexico Carlos Pascual sent a memo to Clinton, which was found on Abedin’s unsecure email account. It contained extensive classified information involving U.S. and Mexican counter-drug operations in Mexico.
  • On March 22, 2010, Abedin forwarded to her unsecure email account classified informationabout a telephone conversation between President Obama and Mexican President Felipe Calderon.
  • On April 13, 2010, Abedin forwarded to her unsecure email account classified informationfrom Ambassador Jeffrey Feltman regarding diplomatic discussions with the foreign ministers of Algeria and Morocco.
  • On May 24, 2010, Abedin forwarded to her unsecure email account classified informationabout the minutes of a State Department senior staff meeting regarding State Department officials’ meetings in Uganda.
  • Among Abedin’s unsecure email records is a document that is simply titled “NOTE” with the date September 12, 2010. The contents are entirely redacted as classified.
  • On January 28, 2011, Abedin sent Clinton an unsecure email containing classified informationrelating to a briefing White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs gave.
  • On March 21, 2012, Clinton received a memo from State Department officials Joseph Yun and Derek Mitchell marked “Sensitive But Unclassified” and sent to Abedin’s unsecure email account. It contained classified informationabout elections in Burma.
  • Jake Sullivan emailed to Hillary’s unsecure email account classified informationin which Sullivan discussed the content of conversations with UK Prime Minister Gordon regarding “the situation” in Northern Ireland. The date of this email is not included on the document.
  • On April 8, 2012, Abedin sent classified informationto her unsecure email regarding a call sheet and an “Action Memo” for Clinton relating to a call with Malawi President Joyce Banda. On April 9, 2012, confidential assistant Monica Hanley again forwarded the classified information to Clinton’s unsecure email account.

Other emails contain sensitive information that was sent via Hillary Clinton’s unsecure email servers.

  • On August 18, 2009, Hanley provided Abedin with laptop and fob (a physical device that provides a login code) logins and passwordsto log onto a laptop, as well as a secure State Department website at https://one.state.gov. Included were a PIN number and instructions on how to access her email from the secure State Department website. Abedin forwarded this information to her unsecure account.

(The FBI interviewed Hanley in its probe of Clinton’s email practices, and State’s Diplomatic Security staff reprimanded her after she left classified material behind in a Moscow hotel room. Hanley was the staffer tasked with finding BlackBerry phones for Clinton to use.)

  • On August 19, 2009, Hanley asked Abedin to call her and provide Abedin’s computer passwordso that she could download a UN document for Cheryl Mills from Abedin’s computer. Instead of calling Hanley, Abedin apparently provided the computer password in her unsecure reply email, saying, “Its [redacted].”
  • On April 17, 2009, Clinton aide Lona Valmoro emailed Clinton’s sensitive daily schedulefor April 18 to various Clinton Foundation officials, including Doug Band, Terry Krinvic and Justin Cooper. She also forwarded Clinton’s daily schedule for July 16 to numerous Clinton Foundation officials. She did the same thing on September 8, 2009. She did so again on January 10, January 14 and April 11, 2010.
  • The details of Hillary’s arrivalon November 18, 2009, in war-torn Kabul, Afghanistan, for the inauguration of President Karzai, were found on Abedin’s unsecure email account. Included were precise times of landing at Kabul Airport, the occupants of her vehicle, arrival and departure times at the U.S. Embassy in Kabul, and meeting times with U.S. forces in Afghanistan.

The new documents show that Clinton donors frequently requested and received special favors from the State Department that were connected to the Clinton Foundation.

  • On July 14, 2009, Gordon Griffin, a XL Keystone lobbyist,sent an email to Clinton Foundation executive Doug Band, asking if Band could get him into a Council on Foreign Relations dinner at which Clinton was speaking. Band forwarded the email to Abedin, saying, “Can u get him in?” Abedin replied: “Yes will get him in.” Band was a top aide to President Bill Clinton and co-founder of Teneo. Griffin was a major donor to Hillary Clinton’s Senate and presidential
  • On July 16, 2009, Zachary Schwartz asked Band for help getting visas to travel to Cuba for a film production crew from Shangri La Entertainment. Band forwarded the requestto Abedin, telling her, “Please call zach asap on this. [Redacted.] Important.” Abedin responded, “I’ll call zach when we land in India.” Abedin concludes with “Enjoy. Cuba is complicated. Am sure you aren’t surprised to hear that.” Schwartz worked for Steve Bing, a mega-donor to the Clintons and owner of Shangri La Entertainment. Bing has reportedly donated $10-25 million to the Clinton Foundation and paid Bill Clinton personally $2.5 million a year to be an adviser to a green construction company Bing owned.
  • On September 11, 2009, Terrence Duffy, chairman of futures brokerage firm CME Group, a donor to the Clinton Foundation, asked Clinton to arrange “government appointments” for him in Singapore and Hong Kong. Clinton, using her HDR22@clintonmail.comaddress, forwarded the request to Abedin, “fyi.” Abedin responded to Duffy’s email, saying she would “follow up” with Duffy’s secretary, Joyce. Duffy gave $4,600 to Hillary’s 2008 presidential campaign; CME Group paid Hillary $225,000 for a speaking fee and has donated between $5,001 and 10,000 to the Clinton Foundation.Abedin, using her huma@clintonmail.com address, later told Joyce, “Would like to get some more information and details so we can try to help.” Further along in the exchange, Joyce responds “We would also like some help in arranging meetings with some key govt officials in both locations, such as the Prime Minister of Singapore, and would appreciate any help you may be able to provide.”

On September 29, 2009, Abedin followed up with Duffy, telling him that “we are happy to assist with any and all meetings” and that she had “discussed you and your trip with our assistant secretary of state for east asia and pacific affairs,” suggesting that Duffy write the assistant secretary, Kurt Campbell. Duffy replied, “Thank you very much. I did connect with Kurt Campbell today.”

  • On May 5, 2010, major Clinton Global Initiative member, Clinton Foundation donor and real estate developer Eddie Trump forwarded to “Dougie” Band a request for assistancefrom Russian American Foundation Vice President Rina Kirshner to get the Russian American Foundation involved in a State Department program. Band forwarded the request to Abedin, saying, “Can we get this done/mtg set.” As Judicial Watch previously reported, the State Department doled out more than $260,000 to the Russian American Foundation for “public diplomacy.”
  • Major Clinton donor Bal Das, a New York financier who reportedly raised $300,000for Hillary’s 2008 presidential campaign, asked Abedin on November 11, 2009 if Hillary Clinton could address the Japan Society at its annual conference in 2010. Clinton did speak to the Japan Society’s annual conference in 2011.

The emails also provide insight on the inner workings of the Clinton State Department, in particular her engagement with her staff.

  • In a May 19, 2009, “Global Press Conference” memo, Clinton was given in advance the “proposed questions” of four of the seven foreign reporters. Examples include: “What is the Obama administration’s view of Australian PM Rudd’s proposal to form an Asia-Pacific Community” and “Why can’t American drones not find, detect and destroy the insurgency supply line?”
  • In a document entitled “HRC Pakistan Notes” prepared for Clinton by her staff, Clinton apparently had to be reminded about all her trips to Pakistan and of “stories that you have told/remember.” Her reminder instructions include: “You loved Faisal mosque, and it was especially meaningful to have CVC [Chelsea] with you.” And: “Your first Pakistani friend was in College. She introduced you to Pakistani food and clothes.” And: “You have had lots of Pakistani and Pakistani American friends over the years. From Chicago to California to Washington, DC, you have friends all over the country. They know how much you love Pakistani food …”
  • On February 12, 2010, Case Button, a Clinton speechwriter, asked Abedin if her mother, a professor at Dar Al Hekma, a women’s university in Saudi Arabia where Clinton held a town hall meeting,would be willing to give him advice on talking points he was preparing for Clinton. Abedin responded, “Talk to my mom for sure. She will have good points for you.” After reviewing Hillary’s draft remarks, Huma’s mother, Saleha Abedin, (a controversial Islamist activist), offered some advice: “Do not use the political terms such as ‘democracy/elections/freedom.’ Do not use the term ‘empowerment of women’ instead say ‘enabling women’ Do not even mention driving for women! Don’t sound sympathetic to ‘women’s plight’ or be ‘patronizing’ as other visitors have done and made the students extremely annoyed. They rightly consider these as in-house issues …” No references to these issues appear in Clinton’s speech.

Abedin’s involvement in a major appointment at the State Department is controversial given that Abedin’s mother was an Islamist activist.

  • On July 24, 2009, Cheryl Mills forwarded to Abedin a CV for someone being considered for the position of Special Envoy to the Organization of Islamic Cooperation. It had been sent to Mills from State Department recruiter Margaret Carpenter. Rather than forwarding the resume on to Clinton for her approval, Abedin simply responds to Mills: “I’m a hundred percent fine with him.”

Abedin also offered her opinion to Clinton on administration leaders: On January 21, 2011, while on a trip to Mexico, Abedin emailed Hillary that, “Biden is a disaster here.”

  • On February 20, 2012, Clinton expresses outrage over an apparent wardrobe miscommunication for a meeting in Mexico and sent an emailto Abedin with the subject line “I’m venting.” Clinton admonished:

So, here I sit in the meeting surrounded by ever other person dressed in a white shirt provided by the Mexicans. Patricia is not wearing the exact style that all others are but her own white shirt. But, since no one ever told me about this, and instead assumed I didn’t need to know, I had no idea about any of this until I just walked into the large meeting in front of the entire press corps and I’m wearing a green top. So, what’s my answer when asked why I think I’m different than all my colleagues and why I’m dissing our hosts? I am sick of people deciding what I should know rather than giving me the info so I can make a decision. This really annoys me and I told Monica [Hanley] I just didn’t understand.

These emails show ‘what happened’ was that Hillary Clinton and Huma Abedin obviously violated laws about the handling of classified information and turned the State Department into a pay for play tool for the corrupt Clinton Foundation. The clear and mounting evidence of pay for play and mishandling of classified information warrant a serious criminal investigation by an independent Trump Justice Department.
To read more about Huma Abedin’s emails, click here.

 

 

The IRS Scandal Is Still a Scandal

In a baffling move, President Trump’s Justice Department has decided not to prosecute Lois Lerner, former director of the Exempt Organizations Unit of the IRS, whose own emails place her at the heart of the politicization of the IRS for the targeting of conservative groups:

When we learned of this, I issued this statement:

I have zero confidence that the Justice Department did an adequate review of the IRS scandal. In fact, we’re still fighting the Justice Department and the IRS for records about this very scandal. Today’s decision comes as no surprise considering that the FBI collaborated with the IRS and is unlikely to investigate or prosecute itself. President Trump should order a complete review of the whole issue. Meanwhile, we await accountability for IRS Commissioner Koskinen, who still serves and should be drummed out of office.

Let’s review the history.

Judicial Watch released 294 pages of FBI “302” documents revealing top Washington IRS officials, including Lois Lerner and Holly Paz, knew the agency was specifically targeting “Tea Party” and other conservative organizations two full years before disclosing it to Congress and the public. An FBI 302 document contains detailed narratives of FBI agent investigations. The Obama Justice Department and FBI investigations into the Obama IRS scandal resulted in no criminal charges.

The FBI 302 documents confirm the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) 2013 report, which said, “Senior IRS officials knew that agents were targeting conservative groups for special scrutiny as early as 2011.” Lerner did not reveal the targeting until May 2013, in response to a planted question at an American Bar Association conference. The documents revealed that then-acting IRS Commissioner Steven Miller actually wrote Lerner’s response: “They used names like Tea Party or Patriots and they selected cases simply because the applications had those names in the title. That was wrong, that was absolutely incorrect, insensitive, and inappropriate.”

Our litigation forced the IRS first to say that emails belonging to Lerner were supposedly missing and later declare to the court that the emails were on IRS back-up systems. Lerner was one of the top officials responsible for the IRS’ targeting of President Obama’s political opponents.  Judicial Watch exposed various IRS record keeping problems:

  • In June 2014the IRS claimed to have “lost” responsive emails belonging to Lerner and other IRS officials.
  • In July 2014Judge Emmett Sullivan ordered the IRS to submit to the court a written declaration under oath about what happened to Lerner’s “lost” emails. The sworn declarations proved to be less than forthcoming.
  • In August 2014, Department of Justice attorneys for the IRS finally admitted Judicial Watch that Lerner’s emails, indeed all government computer records, are backed up by the federal government in case of a government-wide catastrophe. The IRS’ attorneys also disclosed that Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) was looking at several of these backup tapes.
  • In November 2014, the IRS told the court it had failed to search any of the IRS standard computer systems for the “missing” emails of Lerner and other IRS officials.
  • On February 26, 2015, TIGTA officials testifiedto the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee that it had received 744 backup tapes containing emails sent and received by Lerner.  This testimony showed that the IRS had falsely represented to both Congress, Judge Sullivan, and Judicial Watch that Lerner’s emails were irretrievably lost. The testimony also revealed that IRS officials responsible for responding to the document requests never asked for the backup tapes and that 424 backup tapes containing Lerner’s emails had been destroyed during the pendency of Judicial Watch’s lawsuit and Congressional investigations.
  • In June 2015, Judicial Watch forced the IRS to admitin a court filing that it was in possession of 6,400 “newly discovered” Lerner emails. Judge Emmet Sullivan ordered the IRS to provide answers on the status of the Lerner emails the IRS had previously declared lost. Judicial Watch raised questions about the IRS’ handling of the missing emails issue in a court filing, demanding answers about Lerner’s emails that had been recovered from the backup tapes.
  • In July 2015, U.S District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan threatened to hold John Koskinen, the commissioner of the Internal Revenue Service, and Justice Department attorneys in contemptof court after the IRS failed to produce status reports and recovered Lerner emails, as he had ordered on July 1, 2015.

While Washington spins in circles trying to find election rigging on the part of Donald Trump, it closes its eyes to genuine election skullduggery.

Clinton Cash Revisited, National Security Edition

November 4, 2016

Clinton Cash Revisited, National Security Edition, PJ MediaRoger Kimball, November 4, 2016

shhh

And people worry that Donald Trump had a few nice things to say about Vladimir Putin.  The Clintons, to feather their own nest, have actually empowered him. Extraordinary. Despicable. Disqualifying.

***************************

Back in May, I had the opportunity to see a screening of Clinton Cash, the documentary based on Peter Schweizer’s  book of the same title. I wrote about it in this space here.  Now that the commentariat is finally beginning to catch up with reality — at last count, there were five, count ’em five, FBI investigations into the machinations of the money factory known as the Clinton Foundation — I thought it might be worth briefly revisiting the subject.

In May, I asked my readers: “Are you worried about ‘money in politics’?” If so, I suggested that they “Stop the car, get an extended-stay room, and take a long, hard look at the Clintons’ operation for the last sixteen years.”

 The Associated Press estimated that their net worth when they left the White House in 2000 was zero (really, minus $500K). Now they are worth about $200 million.

How did they do it? By “reading The Wall Street Journal” (classical reference)?

Not quite. The Clintons have perfected pay-to-play political influence peddling on a breathtaking scale. Reading Clinton Cash [which I recommend] is a nauseating experience.

At the center of the book is not just a tale of private greed and venality. That is just business as usual in Washington (and elsewhere). No, what is downright scary is way the Clintons have been willing to trade away legitimate environmental concerns and even our national security for the sake of filthy lucre.

It’s this last item that’s most worrisome.  That the Clintons are a greedy, money-hoovering machine has been clear since they left the White House with cartloads of swag in tow (the exact amount is disputable: that they did so is not). There are some who say her mishandling of classified material is no big deal — it’s  just a technicality, who really cares? Can’t we put this behind us? Can’t we move on? At this point what difference does it make?

Well, there used to be such people.  If they still exist, they are scarce on the ground now.  Thanks to Wikileaks and some recent FBI revelations, it is now clear that Hillary Clinton’s mishandling of classified material was no casual act of inadvertence. It was not, as she at first claimed with false naiveté, done simply as a matter of convenience by someone who was technically ill-informed and maladroit.

No, the whole process was a thoroughly calculated tactic. Given what we know now, there is something slightly nauseating about watching clips of Clinton lie when asked about her emails.  One classic is this clip, in which, when asked about whether she wiped her server she said coyly “Like with with a cloth or something?” She knew all about wiping servers, since her IT guys employed a sophisticated tool called Bleach Bit to do the job. (The company even uses an image of Hillary Clinton at their web page.)

Scrutinize Clinton’s performance in this clip. In a way it’s quite masterly.  Watch how she coolly modulates between impatience, naiveté, evasion, and outright lies.  We turned over the server, she says, what more can we do?  “We turned over everything that was work related, every single thing.”

We now know (well, we’ve always known, but now we really do know) that assertion is a lie — not just an untruth, but a deliberate lie.

It’s hard to know what is the most brazen thing about her behavior.  Turning over a server for investigation after having it professionally wiped is a candidate for the prize.  But for my money the most outrageous thing was responding to a Congressional subpoena by destroying 33,000 emails. (Andy McCarthy lays out the whole story with his customary clarity here.)

The revelation by the FBI last week that material that could be “relevant” to the Clinton email investigation had been found on a laptop shared by Clinton aide Huma Abedin and her estranged husband, amateur photographer and penpal to pubescent multitudes Anthony Weiner, propelled the story to a new and vertiginous stage. Apparently, we are talking about 650,000 emails. How many had to do with yoga routines? How many concerned State Department business?  How many did Anthony Weiner see or share?  These are just a few of the questions prompted  by this ever more bizarre story.

The really amazing thing about the Clintons’ greed is how cavalier it has made them about national security issues. “Oh, that’s just a despicable right-wing talking point,” I sometimes here. Well, here’s what that well known right-wing publication The New York Times had to say in a long and devastating story about the how the Clintons sold out some twenty percent of American uranium assets to a Russian company controlled by Vladimir Putin. “At the heart of the tale,” the Times reported:

… are several men, leaders of the Canadian mining industry, who have been major donors to the charitable endeavors of former President Bill Clinton and his family. Members of that group built, financed and eventually sold off to the Russians a company that would become known as Uranium One.Beyond mines in Kazakhstan that are among the most lucrative in the world, the sale gave the Russians control of one-fifth of all uranium production capacity in the United States. Since uranium is considered a strategic asset, with implications for national security, the deal had to be approved by a committee composed of representatives from a number of United States government agencies. Among the agencies that eventually signed off was the State Department, then headed by Mr. Clinton’s wife, Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Worried yet? It gets worse:

As the Russians gradually assumed control of Uranium One in three separate transactions from 2009 to 2013, Canadian records show, a flow of cash made its way to the Clinton Foundation. Uranium One’s chairman used his family foundation to make four donations totaling $2.35 million. Those contributions were not publicly disclosed by the Clintons, despite an agreement Mrs. Clinton had struck with the Obama White House to publicly identify all donors. Other people with ties to the company made donations as well.And shortly after the Russians announced their intention to acquire a majority stake in Uranium One, Mr. Clinton received $500,000 for a Moscow speech from a Russian investment bank with links to the Kremlin that was promoting Uranium One stock.

And people worry that Donald Trump had a few nice things to say about Vladimir Putin.  The Clintons, to feather their own nest, have actually empowered him. Extraordinary. Despicable. Disqualifying.

Weekly Update: Clinton Email Crimes?

October 29, 2016

Weekly Update: Clinton Email Crimes? Judicial Watch, October 28, 2016

Clinton State Department IT Official John Bentel Takes the Fifth
U.S. Spends Millions on “Green Bus Corridor” in Mexico, “Bicycle Highway” in Colombia
Judicial Watch Will Monitor Virginia Polls on Election Day
Special Report: Clinton’s Pay to Play Scheme

 

Clinton State Department IT Official John Bentel Takes the Fifth

The bureaucrats Hillary Clinton worked with at State still are withholding what they know about her illicit email practices.

You can see that in the deposition transcript of John Bentel, the State Department’s former Director of Information Resource Management of the Executive Secretariat, who was ordered by U.S. District Court Judge Emmet G. Sullivan to respond to our questions. We released the transcript this week.

Mr. Bentel, whose office handles information technology for the Office of the Secretary, answered 87 questions with: “On advice from my legal counsel, I decline to answer the question and I invoke my Fifth Amendment rights.”

We had the same experience with IT political appointee Bryan Pagliano, the Clinton State Department IT official who reportedly provided support for the Clinton email system.

Bentel asserted his Fifth Amendment right in answer to many key questions about issues raised directly by Judge Sullivan. On August 19, 2016, Judge Sullivan granted Judicial Watch’s request to depose Bentel, citing significant discrepancies in Bentel’s previous statements on the Clinton non-state.gov email system:

The Court is persuaded that Mr. Bentel should be deposed because the record in this case appears to contradict his sworn testimony before the [House Select] Benghazi Committee . . .. Specifically, Mr. Bentel testified that he was not aware that Secretary Clinton’s email account was housed on a private server until media reports in 2015 . . .. However, several emails indicate Mr. Bentel knew about the private server as early as 2009.

Bentel asserted his Fifth Amendment rights in response to all questions about what he knew about Hillary Clinton’s email system and its impact on the Freedom of Information Act.

In ordering Bentel’s deposition, Judge Sullivan also cited a May 2016 Inspector General’s report that found that Mr. Bentel told employees in his office that Secretary Clinton’s email arrangement had been approved by the State Department’s legal staff and also instructed his subordinates not to discuss the Secretary’s email again:

In one meeting, one staff member raised concerns that information sent and received on Secretary Clinton’s account could contain Federal records that needed to be preserved in order to satisfy Federal recordkeeping requirements. According to the staff member, the Director stated that the Secretary’s personal system had been reviewed and approved by Department legal staff and that the matter was not to be discussed any further . . . . According to the other S/ES-IRM staff member who raised concerns about the server, the Director stated that the mission of S/ES-IRM is to support the Secretary and instructed the staff never to speak of the Secretary’s personal email system again.

Bentel asserted his Fifth Amendment right when asked about this reference to the State Department Inspector General’s report and about his FBI interview.

Mr. Bentel, on advice of the Obama Justice Department and personal counsel, refused to answer any questions about whether Hillary Clinton was paying his legal fees or offered him employment or other financial incentives. Pagliano also declined to say who was paying for his legal representation.

We previously deposed seven former Clinton top aides and current State Department officials, including top Clinton aides Cheryl Mills and Huma Abedin. We also deposed IT official Bryan Pagliano, who asserted his Fifth Amendment right not to testify during the Judicial Watch deposition. And Clinton last week answered our questions under oath regarding her non-government email system.

The depositions come in connection with a Judicial Watch Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit that seeks records about the corrupt patronage job given to Clinton confidante Huma Abedin, who served as deputy chief of staff to former Secretary Clinton (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of State (No. 1:13-cv-01363)).

The fact that yet another State Department official took the Fifth highlights the disturbing implication that criminal acts took place related to the Clinton email system and our FOIA requests.

 

U.S. Spends Millions on “Green Bus Corridor” in Mexico, “Bicycle Highway” in Colombia

A recent survey revealed that Americans most fear government corruption and that the climate doesn’t even make the Top Ten list of worries.

Our Corruption Chronicles blog illustrates why Americans should worry about climate change – because of the government corruption involved in supposedly combatting it:

Surprise, surprise: The U.S. is the first to donate millions of dollars to yet another global warming experiment—run by the famously corrupt United Nations—that aims to forge “climate resilient infrastructure” in third-world countries.

The money will help build a bicycle highway in Colombia and bring electric buses and a “green bus corridor” to Mexico, issues that are unlikely to keep most American taxpayers up at night.

It’s part of an initiative called C40 Cities Finance Facility, launched at the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris last year. The global warming powwow in France has already cost American taxpayers a chunk of change, and Judicial Watch made the numbers public over the summer after obtaining records from the U.S. Secret Service and the Department of the Air Force.

The documents offer a detailed breakdown of the cost, but the total expenditure to have President Obama attend the ludicrous Paris shindig was an eye-popping $4,165,068. Judicial Watch had to file a lawsuit to get the information because the administration refused to provide it under the federal public-records law that was enacted to keep government in check.

During the Paris conference, the C40 Cities Finance Facility was launched to provide much-needed cash for a 10-year-old program called C40 that claims to be a “network of the world’s megacities committed to addressing climate change.” The conglomerate specializes in tackling climate change in developing countries by driving urban action that reduces greenhouse gas emissions and climate risks.

Evidently, it’s come up with some brilliant ideas in the last decade to accomplish its mission but not enough money to implement them. As is the case in many of these global, feel-good initiatives, Uncle Sam has generously opened his checkbook for this important cause. Germany is the other “funding partner” listed along with the U.S.

The first $2 million, doled out this month by the U.S., will fund two urban pilot projects in Latin America that are expected to bring “climate change adaptation and mitigation benefits.” The first project is a 25-kilometer bicycle highway in Bogota, Colombia, that will connect citizens from low, middle and high-income neighborhoods to work, education, and recreation opportunities.

An announcement published by the U.S. government calls the project a “first-of-its-kind” traversing the Colombian city from south to north. The rest of the money will buy a fleet of at least 100 electric buses for Mexico City and install a “green bus corridor” in one of its major thoroughfares. It’s expected to serve an estimated 133,400 Mexicans daily, providing connections to metro lines. This is an important investment for the U.S., a government official says in the announcement, because the impacts of climate change are impeding cities from delivering reliable services, “especially to the poorest.”

Years ago, the Obama administration determined that the poor will feel the brunt of climate change and it has cost American taxpayers monstrous sums. In the last few years the U.S. government has funded a number of programs, both domestic and international, to prepare those communities for the impact.

Back in 2012 the administration asked Congress for a whopping $770 million to help developing countries with climate change initiatives after it had already spent $323 million on a project called Global Climate Change Initiative that helps “meet the adaptation and mitigation needs of developing countries, including deploying clean energy technologies.”

Earlier this year, a federal audit revealed that a $25 million project to help Guatemala combat the ills of climate change is rife with problems that include data errors and discrepancies. The program is officially known as Climate Nature and Communities in Guatemala (CNCG).

Ideology wrapped in dubious science = taxpayer boondoggle. Is it any wonder that people are tired of corrupt politicians?

 

Judicial Watch Will Monitor Virginia Polls on Election Day

As part of our ongoing Election Integrity Project, we plan to have Judicial Watch volunteer poll observers will monitor polling sites in Virginia on Election Day. We have significant concerns about the integrity of the election process there:

  • 1,046 aliens, or residents who are not U.S. citizens, were on the voter rolls in 8 Virginia counties.  If that rate of non-citizen registration held in the rest of Virginia’s counties, that would mean that about 6,500 non-citizens are registered to vote in Virginia.
  • A September 2016report by the Public Interest Legal Foundation and the Virginia Voter’s Alliance shows: “In the 8 jurisdictions that provided us with lists of aliens recently removed from their voter rolls, we discovered that 31 non-citizens had cast a total of 186 votes between 2005 and 2015. The most alien votes were cast in 2012 followed by 2008, the year President Obama was elected to his first term.” There are 133 total Virginia voting jurisdictions, so the number in this report represents a mere fraction of the true total of illegal votes.
  • 19 deceasedindividuals recently re-registered to vote in Virginia.
  • In 2013, the Interstate Voter Registration Crosscheck Program (Crosscheck), which provides a lists of voters who are registered in more than one of the 26 states participating in the program, revealed that57,923 Virginia voters were registered to vote in at least one other state. Of course this number would be much higher if the Crosscheck program included every state – including New York, California, and Texas, the most populous states in the country.

Our Election Integrity Project leader, Robert Popper, will train Virginia’s poll watchers.  Bob is a former deputy chief of the Voting Section in the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice and a veteran poll observer for the Department of Justice.

The Election Integrity project began in February 2012. Since that time Judicial Watch has put several state and county officials on notice when they are in violation of federal laws requiring them to clean up their voter rolls.

We also took action in lawsuits defending photo ID and other commonsense election integrity measures.  And there are also our historic and  successful lawsuits in states like Ohio and Indiana that resulted in cleaner voter rolls and have achieved victories in the United States Supreme Court to stop race-based elections in Hawaii.

Our team also fought in court against the Left (i.e. the Obama administration) that wants to make it easier for non-citizens to register to vote, and harder to remove them once they are illegally registered. And Judicial Watch has conducted election monitoring before, for example in New Hampshire in 2014.

“Judicial Watch election monitors will be neutral and silent observers at select polling places in Virginia,” Popper noted. “We do not oppose or endorse candidates for public office. Our election monitoring in Virginia is wholly independent of any party or candidate.”

Recent polls show that voters are becoming “deeply skeptical” about election integrity. One poll found that 98 percent of people believe that voter fraud occurs: 74 percent believed that “some” or a “great deal” of voter fraud is going on, and 24 percent said hardly any. A poll in The Washington Post found that: “60% of Republicans believe illegal immigrants vote; 43% believe people vote using dead people’s names.”

Virginia residents interested in monitoring a local polling site on Election Day may respond by email to Eric Lee at elee@judicialwatch.org.

The integrity of our government begins with our ability to trust what happens in the voting booth. Incidents of voting fraud now flaring up around the country are an indication that our concern is not misplaced.

 

Special Report: Clinton’s Pay to Play Scheme

Let me encourage you to watch the “One America News Network Special Report: Clinton’s Pay-to-Play Scheme.”

This well-crafted report reveals how the Clintons went from being “broke” to being worth hundreds of millions. In it, you will hear the experts, including representatives from Judicial Watch, disclose how the Clinton Foundation traded government access in exchange for donations. You also will see the evidence of an FBI “cover-up” of the Hillary Clinton email investigation.

You can watch it here. It is worth your time.