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sábado, 3 de febrero de 2018

The FISA memo reveals how James Comey corrupted the FBI

The so-called “FISA memo” House Republicans released on Friday illustrates the Justice Department’s use of a salacious, unverified report to obtain judicial permission to surveil a Donald Trump campaign adviser. But it also shows much more.

The four-page memo, prepared by Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) also indicates a total lack of leadership at the FBI under its former director, James Comey, according to former FBI Assistant Director Chris Swecker in a recent editorial for Fox News.

“Comey’s short tenure at the FBI has proven to be the worst thing to happen to the agency since Director L. Patrick Gray was fired during the Watergate scandal,” Swecker wrote. “But the memo does not in any way reflect on the outstanding work of the more than 35,000 dedicated men and women of the FBI.”

Even trainees know better

Swecker acknowledged that the memo was subject to the partisan nature of congressional politics. Nonetheless, if true, he wrote, it illustrated “either incompetent or deliberate manipulation of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) Court to get approval of the surveillance.”

Simply put, what went on runs afoul of FBI protocol.

Swecker continued:

Even new agent trainees at the FBI Academy know better than to use paid opposition research and newspaper articles to support use of one of the most sensitive and intrusive surveillance techniques in the investigative toolbox. If they do use such information, the FISA judge should have been apprised of the origins of the research.

“FBI agents are also taught to never mislead any court of law,” Swecker added. “It’s unlikely the surveillance warrant would have been issued if the FISA judge was aware that political opponents (the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee) had financed the information used to obtain approval of the surveillance.”

“Something went terribly wrong”

Swecker didn’t just write about his qualms, either. The former official also appeared on Fox Business on Friday to give his assessment of the memo.

“Something went terribly wrong on the seventh floor at the FBI under former Director Jim Comey and his inner circle,” he told host Neil Cavuto. Swecker continued:

The American public should realize this is not the FBI. This is a very small group of individuals — their names are on these FISA applications. This is a leadership breakdown under Jim Comey.

Swecker appeared with former Justice Department official Robert Driscoll, who was “surprised” by the detail and disturbing nature of the memo’s allegations.

Watch Swecker and Driscoll’s full interview:

FISA memo: Something went wrong in Comey’s inner circle, Chris Swecker says

Former FBI Assistant Director Chris Swecker and former Justice Department official Robert Driscoll weigh in on Sen. John McCain’s (R-Ariz.) comments on the release of the FISA memo and how the memo impacts the FBI.

Comey oblivious

Despite denunciations from officials like Swecker, Comey appeared oblivious to his own role in the scandal in tweets on Friday. Rather than admitting his own dishonesty in misleading the FISA Court, he called the memo itself “dishonest and misleading.”

He tweeted:

But journalists like The Federalist co-founder Sean Davis and The Wall Street Journal‘s Kimberley Strassel weren’t having it.

Additionally, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was short and sweet in his reply: “James Comey, master of logic: FISA memo is nothing — and also the destroyer of worlds.”

Ironically, Comey still seems to appreciate honesty, though he doesn’t exude it himself.

“All should appreciate the FBI speaking up,” Comey tweeted on Friday. “I wish more of our leaders would. But take heart: American history shows that, in the long run, weasels and liars never hold the field, so long as good people stand up.”

Perhaps Comey should follow his own advice.