John R. Houk
© April 5, 2016
It appears that FBI Director James Comey is the first lynchpin hurdle on whether or not Hillary Clinton is indicted for using a private home server to receive and send classified information. (The second lynchpin would be Attorney General Loretta Lynch and the third lynchpin President Barack Hussein Obama.)
Director Comey is providing at least the appearance of a vigorous FBI investigation into Hillary with unverified reports that over a hundred FBI Agents are involved in combing server data.
Also apparently Director Comey seems to have earned the respect of both Dems and Republicans as a non-political civil servant serving in both the Bush Administration and the Obama Administration. Based on that journalist evaluation I have read about I thought it might be interesting to provide an excerpt from one of today’s Salon.com articles. Salon should be evaluated as a committed Leftwing Internet rag:
This is how the FBI destroys Hillary: The 10 questions that could end her White House dreams
These questions, if answered honestly, would most likely hand the Democratic nomination to Bernie Sanders
The FBI’s upcoming interview of Hillary Clinton will be a turning point in the race for Democratic nominee, especially since Clinton won’t be able to speak to James Comey and his FBI agents in the same manner her campaign has communicated with the public. Unlike loyal Hillary supporters who view the marathon Benghazi hearings to be a badge of courage and countless prior scandals to be examples of exoneration, the FBI didn’t spend one year (investigating this email controversy) to give Clinton or her top aides parking tickets. …
Imagine if you had 22 Top Secret emails on your computer?
Would you be able to claim negligence?
Also, the issue of negligence is a canard. Clinton and her top aides were smart enough to understand protocol. For every legal scholar saying that indictment isn’t likely (because it’s difficult to prove Clinton “knowingly” sent or received classified intelligence), there’s a former attorney general and former intelligence officials saying that indictment is justified.
I explain three possible scenarios in my latest YouTube segment regarding how the Clinton campaign would react to the reality of indictment. No doubt, certain supporters would still vote for Clinton, even with the possibility of criminal behavior.
Therefore, below are ten questions the FBI should ask Clinton and her top aides. These questions, if answered honestly, will most likely hand the Democratic nomination to Bernie Sanders. Remember, the issue of convenience or negligence won’t be enough to circumvent repercussions from owning a private server as Secretary of State. FBI director James Comey and his agents aren’t Democratic superdelegates or beholden in any way to a political machine. They’ll demand answers to tough questions and below could be some of the topics discussed in Clinton’s FBI interview.
1. What was the political utility in owning a private server and never using a State.gov email address?
An editorial from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel titled “Clinton’s abysmal record on open government” explains the possible political motive …
In addition, regardless of Clinton’s excuses, the only believable reason for the private server in her basement was to keep her emails out of the public eye by willfully avoiding freedom of information laws. No president, no secretary of state, no public official at any level is above the law. She chose to ignore it, and must face the consequences…
And donations to the foundation from foreign governments have raised conflict of interest questions for Clinton as secretary of state, an office with power over foreign affairs and favors second only to the president’s.
2. Were all 31,830 deleted private emails about yoga?
… ABC News …
… “This review did not involve opening and reading each email. Instead, Clinton’s lawyers created a list of names and keywords related to her work and searched for those. Slightly more than half the total cache — 31,830 emails — did not contain any of the search terms, according to Clinton’s staff, so they were deemed to be ‘private, personal records.’”
There was no government oversight, therefore the FBI has every right to ask why Clinton’s staff was allowed to pick and choose (through keyword searches) private emails from others that could have contained classified intelligence.
3. Why didn’t you know that intelligence could be retroactively classified?
This leads to the issue of negligence; a zero-sum proposition. Either Clinton wasn’t smart enough to know protocol, or breached protocol. Both scenarios aren’t good for a future presidency. Both scenarios won’t prevent legal repercussions, given the 22 Top Secret emails.
4. Why did you use a Blackberry that wasn’t approved by the NSA?
An article in Madison.com titled “Emails: Clinton sought secure smartphone, rebuffed by NSA” explains the issue of Clinton’s Blackberry:
WASHINGTON (AP) — Newly released emails show a 2009 request to issue a secure government smartphone to then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was denied by the National Security Agency.
A month later, she began using private email accounts accessed through her BlackBerry to exchange messages with her top aides.
Clinton used a Blackberry that wasn’t approved by the NSA. Along with the issue of political motive, and why she deleted tens of thousands of emails, the unsecured Blackberry use could easily lead to an indictment.
5. What did you say to Bryan Pagliano?
Mr. Pagliano recently received immunity. He’s told the FBI, most likely, about his conversations with Hillary Clinton. Any discrepancy in stories could lead to a felony charge for Hillary Clinton or Pagliano’s immunity to be revoked. Both have every incentive to tell the truth.
6. Why were 22 Top Secret emails on a private server?
This is a simple question with no logical answer circumventing political repercussions. If Clinton and her staff are able to evade this issue, future government officials will also be able to have Top Secret intelligence on unguarded private servers.
7. Was any information about the Clinton Foundation mingled with State Department documents?
The answer to this question could lead to hundreds of other questions.
8. Did President Obama or his staff express any reservations about your private server?
President Obama’s White House communicated with Clinton via her private server. If anyone in the White House said anything about Clinton’s server, this could lead to new controversy.
9. Did Bill Clinton send or receive any emails on your private network?
The server was located in their home, so it’s a valid question.
10. How was your private server guarded against hacking attempts?
These questions could easily give Bernie Sanders the nomination. I explain that Clinton faces possible DOJ indictment in the following appearance on CNN International. Although Bernie can win without Clinton’s indictment, the email controversy will most likely become a giant story very soon. With … READ ENTIRETY (This is how the FBI destroys Hillary: The 10 questions that could end her White House dreams; By H. A. GOODMAN; Salon.com; 4/5/16 10:12 AM CDT)
Did I mention that Salon was a Leftist rag? AND Salon is throwing Hillary under the bus in favor of Bernie Sanders. Did you notice the author Goodman mentioned “22 Top Secret emails” – as in classified - more than a few times?
Regardless of this refreshing bluster from Salon.com, I have noticed that pundits on the Left and the Right do not think Hillary will ever be indicted although not really for agreeing reasons. Most Leftist pundits toe the line that this is all a Right Wing conspiracy of the usual smoke and mirrors with no proof of a fire. Right Wing pundits tend to believe that neither Loretta Lynch nor President Barack Hussein Obama will allow Hillary to be indicted on their watch.
Lloyd Billingsley of FrontPageMag.com offers a scenario that doesn’t really fit the usual Left-Right talking points about Hillary Clinton. Billingsley throws the ball in Director Comey’s court and some interesting facts connected to history between Comey and Hillary in the view Hillary received some interesting passes in some questionable legal issues. Below is the article in entirety.
COMEY, CLINTONS AND CLEMENCY
April 5, 2016
Hillary Clinton’s email problems, going back to her time as Secretary of State, have not drawn heavy coverage from the old-line establishment media. As the investigation nears its final stages, FBI director James Comey’s past dealings with the Clintons may prove of interest.
Detail on those dealings emerged in American Evita: Hillary Clinton’s Path to Power, a 2004 book by Christopher Andersen, a former contributing editor to Time magazine who has written for Life, the New York Times, and Vanity Fair. None could be described as conservative but Andersen is candid about Hillary’s political past.
Hillary’s friends Robert Treuhaft and wife Jessica Mitford were “avowed Stalinists” who opposed the Hungarian uprising of 1956 and remained committed to the Communist cause. American Evita charts Hillary’s admiration for Marxist theoretician Carl Oglesby and Rules for Radicals author Saul Alinsky, from whom Hillary learned that “the only way to make a real difference is to acquire power.”
After Bill Clinton left the White House, one staffer told Andersen, the entire focus was on “getting Hillary back in.” The road led through New York, where Hillary took aim at the Senate seat vacated by Daniel Patrick Moynihan. Hillary was not from New York and had never spent more than a few days there, so she needed creative ways to attract votes.
New Square, a Hasidic enclave 30 miles northwest of Manhattan, had voted as a bloc in previous elections and campaign workers urged Hillary urged to stop there. In New Square, four members of the Skver sect had been convicted in 1999 of bilking government aid programs for some $30 million. During her visit, Hillary denied that any pardon was discussed.
The day before the election, in a letter to New Square’s main synagogue, president Bill Clinton said he looked forward to visiting the village. As Andersen noted, New Square delivered Hillary’s biggest victory margin of any community in New York state, 1,359 votes to only 10 for her opponent Rick Lazio.
During the final days of his presidency, Bill Clinton opted to reduce the prison terms of the New Square offenders, and after 9/11 that sparked an investigation. As Anderson notes, “Hillary received an unexpected gift in late June when, without explanation, U.S. Attorney James B. Comey closed the New Square clemency case.”
Clinton’s pardon of fugitive Marc Rich also drew an investigation and Andersen finds it odd that the Bush administration would “help the Clinton’s out” by refusing to release documents related to the pardons. And “in accordance with his boss’s wishes, U.S Attorney James Comey gave Bill and Hillary a pass.”
On September 4, 2013, James Comey became director of the FBI. In that role, Comey oversees the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s handling of classified material on her private email and server. Whether she gets a pass this time is uncertain, but Comey’s history with the Clintons is worth media attention. So is Hillary’s history on the subject of terrorism.
“At Hillary’s urging,” Andersen writes, “the President granted clemency to 16 Puerto Rican terrorists who have been sentenced to prison following a wave of bombings from 1974 to 1983 that took the lives of six Americans and wounded scores of others. Incredibly, the terrorists had not even asked for clemency.” The worst attack was the January 24, 1975 bombing of Fraunces Tavern in Manhattan. The Puerto Rican FALN exploded a bomb during the lunch hour, “hurling body parts into the street and killing four people.”
The terrorists accepted President Clinton’s offer of clemency but expressed no regret for their actions. Former U.S. Attorney Joseph Di Genova went on record that “the Puerto Rican terrorists were pardoned because they were a political benefit to the president’s wife. Make no mistake about it.” As Anderson notes, FBI director Louis Freeh opposed the pardons, as did New York major Rudy Giuliani, senator Charles Schumer and former Puerto Rico governor Carlos Romero Barcelo who, says Andersen, “pleaded with the president not to release the bombers.”
Stories on the Clinton pardons have not been a staple of the current campaign, in which Republicans have been the targets of choice on the terrorism issue. Perhaps a bit more balance is in order. Reporters, meanwhile, will find American Evita: Hillary Clinton’s Path to Power a worthy refresher course on the Democratic frontrunner.
Hillary Indictment Trouble?
John R. Houk
© April 5, 2016
COMEY, CLINTONS AND CLEMENCY
Lloyd Billingsley is the author of Bill of Writes: Dispatches from the Political Correctness Battlefield and Hollywood Party: Stalinist Adventures in the American Film Industry.
© COPYRIGHT 2016, FRONTPAGEMAG.COM
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