The left continues to search for a way to connect Russian collusion with President Trump while conveniently ignoring who was in office while the scandal unfolded.
In a new opinion piece published by The Hill, Sharyl Attkisson takes on the “most persistent scandal of the Obama era,” analyzing ten reasons why top intelligence officials missed the forest for the trees in their pursuit of anti-Trump political maneuvering.
Attkisson contends that Obama officials were “so distracted by political motivations that they lost sight of the very danger they now claim threatens our democracy,” as recent reactions have unfolded in a “Keystone Cops-type” of response to special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation which determined no Trump official conspired with Russia to interfere in the 2016 U.S. election.
Despite the FBI discovering that Democratic National Committee computers were hacked in the fall of 2015, nothing was done to prevent further breaches of the systems, Attkisson wrote, noting the “missed opportunity” to intervene when the DNC would not allow the FBI access to its servers and data and the federal agency, under James Comey’s leadership, would not confiscate them.
Further, Obama’s simplistic “denial” of the problem while mocking those who brought up the vulnerability set the stage for more Russian interference that the former president seemed to just ignore.
“There’s no evidence that that has happened in the past or that there are instances in which that will happen this time,” Obama said at the time, which Attkisson noted was “smack dab in the middle of the supposed Russia targeting of our election process.”
“Actions that President Obama and his top intel officials did take to mitigate Russian interference proved woefully inadequate,” she added, pointing to the “inadequate response” by the administration as another reason for the scandal.
Intelligence officials also failed to disclose to the Trump campaign that it was being targeted by Russian spying while secretly passing the information on to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court in order to secure a warrant against the then-candidate’s team.
“Recall the FBI had notified the DNC earlier, after determining it had been targeted by Russians,” Attkisson wrote. “The decision not to likewise loop in the Trump campaign regarding the supposed targeting suggests intel officials were not focused on protecting national security but hoping to entrap Trump campaign officials.”
Not only did the Obama officials target Trump and his campaign instead of the Russians who were doing the spying, but the “suspicious timing” of the former president’s actions also raise eyebrows.
“Russia’s election interference certainly was not new on election day. Yet only after Trump was elected (instead of Hillary Clinton) did President Obama assign his intel officials to issue a public report about Russia’s scheme. And only then did he pursue punishment, including sanctions and expulsion of some Russian diplomats from the United States,” Attkisson noted.
Those same officials who did nothing to block and prevent Russian meddling, including Comey, CIA Director Brennan, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, national security adviser Susan Rice and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power, then “began a campaign of media leaks and deflection” in a “blame game” aimed at Trump, the piece continued.
Another factor that played out in the scandal was the “ignorance” of Obama intel officials in investigating sources other than the Russians in the meddling. As well as the connection between Russia, the FBI and Democrats.
According to Attkisson:
The FBI overlooked the apparent, admitted “collusion” between Steele and Kremlin-connected Russians who provided opposition research against Trump — some of it false — for the dossier. Then, the FBI used the Kremlin-connected Russian research, in part, to obtain wiretaps against Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.
Attkisson concluded that Obama’s intelligence officials were “inarguably ineffective” in their efforts – or lack of effort – in dealing with the Russian meddling.
“A great deal of money and effort has been spent to dismiss other scandals along partisan lines. In this case, people in both political parties agree the interference happened — and that it happened on Obama’s watch,” she wrote. “His intel officials appear to have been either distracted, conflicted or asleep at the switch.”
Fox News senior political analyst Brit Hume fired off a scathing rebuke of the Washington Post for publishing an op-ed that not only blamed Trump for looking the other way while Moscow interfered with the U.S. election, but for ignoring the obvious fact that all of the meddling occurred under Obama’s watch.
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) April 23, 2019
“The man who was actually President when the attack occurred is never mentioned in this amazing article,” Hume tweeted, referring to Obama who infamously told Russian President Vladimir Putin to “cut it out” in a warning against interfering with the U.S. presidential election.