Monday, December 16, 2019

Glenn Greenwald on the IG Report

Among the important side-notes to the Trump-Russia collusion narrative is this: several important members of American liberalism have manifested unexampled integrity. They have resisted the party line and have defended the truth. Even as the mainstream media and the Democratic Party establishment have gone all-in on a phony narrative about Russian collusion, these voices have fought for the truth.

Among them is Glenn Greenwald, a man who is certainly not a part of the vast right wing conspiracy. Today, in his publication, the Intercept, he does a deep dive into the Horowitz report and draws the only reasonable conclusions.

He begins with the Obama era FBI’s abuse of power:

… the FBI’s gross abuse of its power – its serial deceit – is so grave and manifest that it requires little effort to demonstrate it. In sum, the IG Report documents multiple instances in which the FBI – in order to convince a FISA court to allow it spy on former Trump campaign operative Carter Page during the 2016 election – manipulated documents, concealed crucial exonerating evidence, and touted what it knew were unreliable if not outright false claims.

He makes the case against the FBI clearly:

The IG Report leaves no doubt about it. It’s brimming with proof of FBI subterfuge and deceit, all in service of persuading a FISA court of something that was not true: that U.S. citizen and former Trump campaign official Carter Page was an agent of the Russian government and therefore needed to have his communications surveilled….

To spy on a U.S. citizen in the middle of an election, one who had just been working with one of the two major presidential campaigns, the FBI touted a gossipy, unverified, unreliable rag that it had no reason to believe and every reason to distrust, but it hid all of that from the FISA court, which it knew needed to believe that the Steele Dossier was something it was not if it were to give the FBI the spying authorization it wanted.

As for the FBI willingness to deceive a FISA court, Greenwald is unflinching:

If it does not bother you to learn that the FBI repeatedly and deliberately deceived the FISA court into granting it permission to spy on a U.S. citizen in the middle of a presidential campaign, then it is virtually certain that you are either someone with no principles, someone who cares only about partisan advantage and nothing about basic civil liberties and the rule of law, or both. There is simply no way for anyone of good faith to read this IG Report and reach any conclusion other than that this is yet another instance of the FBI abusing its power in severe ways to subvert and undermine U.S. democracy. If you don’t care about that, what do you care about?

When it comes to the media, Greenwald emphasizes the simple fact that the left wing media is filled with expert commentary from former deep state operatives, from people who are trained to lie:

It’s virtually impossible to turn on MSNBC or CNN without being bombarded with former Generals, CIA operatives, FBI agents and NSA officials who now work for those networks as commentators and, increasingly, as reporters.

These former intelligence and law enforcement operatives have been promoting a narrative that, unsurprisingly, exonerates them:

For years, we were told by the nation’s leading national security reporters something that was blatantly false: that the FBI’s warrants to spy on Carter Page were not based on the Steele Dossier. GOP Congressman Devin Nunes was widely vilified and mocked by the super-smart DC national security reporters for issuing a report claiming that this was the case. The Nunes memo in essence claimed what the IG Report has corroborated: that embedded within the FBI’s efforts to obtain FISA court authorization to spy on Carter Page was a series of misrepresentations, falsehoods and concealment of key evidence:

He continues:

Just compare the pompous denials from so many U.S. national security reporters at the nation’s leading news outlets – that the Page warrant was not based on the Steele Dossier – to the actual truth that we now know: “in support of the fourth element in the FISA application-Carter Page’s alleged coordination with the Russian government on 2016 U.S. presidential election activities, the application relied entirely on the following information from Steele Reports 80, 94, 95, and 102″ (emphasis added).

And also:

The narrative manufactured by the security state agencies and laundered by their reliable media servants about these critical matters was a sham, a fraud, a lie. Yet again, U.S. discourse was subsumed by propaganda because the U.S. media and key parts of the security state have decided that subverting the Trump presidency is of such a high priority – that their political judgment outweighs the results of the election – that everything, including outright lying even to courts let alone the public, is justified because the ends are so noble.

Greenwald concludes:

Perhaps these revelations will finally lead to a realization about how rogue, and dangerous, these police state agencies have become, and how urgently needed is serious reform. But if nothing else, it must serve as a tonic to the three years of unrelenting media propaganda that has deceived and misled millions of Americans into believing things that are simply untrue.

None of these journalists have acknowledged an iota of error in the wake of this report because they know that lying is not just permitted but encouraged as long as it pleases and vindicates the political beliefs of their audiences. Until that stops, credibility and faith in journalism will never be restored, and – despite how toxic it is to have a media that has no claim on credibility – that despised status will be fully deserved.


Ignatius Acton Chesterton OCD said...

Greenwald captures my sentiments exactly.

I want a press that distrusts everyone in power. Greenwald fits the bill. I don't have to like everything he believes, but when he writes an article like this, I respect him as a professional. He speaks truth to power.

That is not what we have in D.C. and NYC. We have Leftist activists and ideologues hiding behind their interpretation of the First Amendment, whereby they can criticize anyone they want but, if challenged, act as though they're being intimidated Maduro-style.

Cowards, whiners and charlatans. Fox News is moving in this direction for "respectability," after years and years of not being invited to the right D.C. cocktail parties.

Oh, and in other news, you get this BBC Obama puff piece:

UbuMaccabee said...

When my apathetic, lazy, disinterested friends and coworkers challenge my claim that we have an ongoing coup by an administrative deep state and a vicious, dishonest media against a democratically elected president and all the members of his administration including their friends and family, I direct them to the the excellent work of a gay, socialist Brit living in Brazil. Greenwald is superb and he explains the gravity, breadth and depth of the crime. And he does not appear to be slowing down; he’s rearming.

Now I am going back to reassess my understanding of Edward Snowden in light of Greenwald’s credibility.