American Elephants


A Real Live October Surprise! by The Elephant's Child

WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 06: Former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton delivers remarks after being presented the 2013 Tom Lantos Human Rights Prize December 6, 2013 in Washington, DC. Clinton received the award for her work in the areas of women's rights and internet freedom. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Well, well—a real October Surprise. This very weird campaign has just become even more strange. Only days until the election, and FBI Director James Comey has said that they are re-opening their investigation. It appears that in the FBI investigation of Anthony Wiener’s case about sexting to an underage girl, Hillary emails have popped up on the home computer that Huma Abedin, Hillary’s top aide, shared with her (now estranged) husband. And even that may be speculation. Nobody knows anything, but there is lots of reporting.  I don’t know anything either, so I am simply speculating as well. But this is earthquake-size speculation because it deals with the election itself.

This has been an enormously difficult situation from the beginning. The Democrats’ bench of accomplished, likeable candidates is notably thin. There was Hillary whose burning desire the become the first woman president was well known. Her record as a senator and as the Secretary of State left a great deal to be desired. People kept making jokes about trying to get observers to name an accomplishment. Bill is a natural politician, and his good-old-boy, aw-shucks persona got him through all sorts of  difficulties. Hillary is not a natural politician, and she is not particularly likeable (that’s the reported reaction to her from Democrats). Democrats were anxious to find someone else but they couldn’t.

Her emails as Secretary of State have caused her major problems. It seems likely that she wanted a private server to keep from having to reveal any of her emails, and keep them away from prying eyes, undoubtedly the “vast right-wing conspiracy.” When the emails began to become public, FBI Director James Comey was put in a dreadful position. If he went after her directly because of the emails, he would be the person who decided the election in advance. In such a case, he needed a flawless, extremely strong case. It was becoming clear that new Attorney General Loretta Lynch was more an appointee of the Obama administration than she was the upstanding Attorney General of all the people. I know nothing about the pressures put on our appointed officials, let alone the elected ones. Director Comey apparently didn’t feel that he had a solid gold case for charging one of the candidates in a presidential race with a crime.

It appears that the FBI investigation into Anthony Wiener’s sexting messages to an underage girl, revealed that there were emails sent by Hillary to her top aide on the home computer that Huma Abedin shared with her (now estranged) husband.

Retired 4-star general James Cartwright, former vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has just pleaded guilty to making a false statement in an investigation into a leak of classified information about a covert cyber-attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities. The offense carries a maximum of five years in prison. but the defense counsel and the government had agreed on a recommended sentence of no more than 6 months. Sentence will be decided in January.

So there’s the big question. Are our “elites” somehow above being prosecuted? Do we have different standards for “important people?” It has been reported that there has been major dissension among senior FBI agents who see the whole thing as a reflection on the integrity and honor of the agency. So, for the moment, that’s where we are.



Hillary’s Troubles Grow, Her Poll Numbers Decline. by The Elephant's Child

140611-hillary_clinton_cantor-1246_b389bd4261f2ead53ddd871648b90ba8The speculation about Joe Biden’s entering the race has been heightened by his meeting at the Naval Observatory, with Senator Elizabeth Warren. It has undoubtedly caused some consternation in the Clinton campaign. Hillary has been doing her best to laugh off the notion that her email scandal is harming her chances of getting elected president. Bill could carry off that kind of good-ol’ -boy, lovable rogue kind of thing, but Hillary can’t.  She is not a good campaigner. Her speeches come across as lectures from Nurse Ratchet. Her jokes are lame — the one about Snapchat messages deleting themselves, and wiping her home server with a cloth — just fall flat.

Declining poll numbers, and even her disastrous press conference last week in which she arrogantly dismissed questions about her email problems haven’t disrupted the fact that she remains, so far, the odds-on favorite to win the Democratic nomination. She’s reached back to blame it all once again on “the vast right-wing conspiracy.” but that really won’t work this time.

The emails and the private server, the tiny operation in Colorado she hired to manage the server or servers — are serious threats to national security. “Our ridiculous classification rules” are the real problem.”

Hillary Clinton
@HillaryClinton

………..
From a former @TheJusticeDept official: “Our ridiculous classification rules” are the real problem: http://hrc.io/1UXaWd7
5:13 AM – 21 Aug 2015

 Former intelligence and military officials were quick to reply Friday to Hillary’s contention the government over-classification of materials are “the real problem.”

It’s not up to her to decide what level it’s classified at. It’s up to her to obey the law, and clearly she did not,” Lt. Col. Col James Williamson told The Daily Caller News Foundation. Williamson entered Special Forces in 1988 and retired in 2012.

Brig. Gen. Kenneth Berquist said “she jeopardized every piece of information that went across her private server line. This is a very good example of how her ‘inconvenience’ put us at risk in the United States.”

Berquist added that “this is hubris. This is an example where people say, ‘I don’t play by the rules.’”

Berquist is a former CIA intelligence officer who was hand-picked by the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff as the first president of the Joint Special Operations University, which trains intermediate and senior commanders in special operations. He also served as special operations staff director for the U.S. Central Command during Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.

Jennifer Palmeri, Clinton campaign communications director, said that at the end of summer, Clinton will provide the public with more information about how federal records are classified, and she will turn her focus to more important issues like the Iran nuclear deal, the economy and women’s issues, and she will “go on offense” on her record as secretary of state.

Good luck with that. Clearly, Hillary really doesn’t get the seriousness of the problem, or she has assumed that the rules don’t apply to her.

[Petraeus] was tarred, feathered and ridden out of the CIA on a rail for sharing some information (his own notebook) with his biographer who was both in the military and had a top secret clearance. Yet, Petraeus did not have a secret server set up to house his classified and top secret information or digital satellite imagery; he destroyed nothing; and, there was no “leak.”

Over 300 emails from a small sampling of the Clinton emails have been judged classified. The tech firm she hired to deal with her server has no security clearance, her lawyer has a security clearance, but allowed staff to handle her correspondence and copy secure matters. The government permitted Clinton to use a private server, ignored the matter for months, allowed her attorney’s office staff to handle sensitive emails. People have lost jobs, paid enormous fines, been disgraced and gone to jail for lesser matters. The investigation would not be continuing without Obama’s approval.




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