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Former acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell accused presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden of “manipulating intelligence” during the waning days of the Obama administration.
In an interview with Newsmax TV, Grenell also said that the administration of former President Barack Obama “weaponized intelligence” between Election Day in November 2016 and Inauguration Day the following January.
Grenell, who declassified troves of documents related to the ‘Russian collusion’ counterintelligence probe during his months-long tenure as spy chief, also said Biden was a leader in the effort to undermine President-elect Donald Trump
“We now know that the vice president of the United States, Joe Biden at the time, was in January … looking for information, manipulating intelligence,” Grenell said Thursday.
Grenell served as DNI from Feb. 20 through May 26 during a tenure marred with criticism from, and attacks by, Democrats as he moved to declassify several key documents exposing the Obama-era corruption of the Intelligence Community and Justice Department.
He also served as the U.S. ambassador to Germany and he remains President Trump’s special envoy for Serbia and Kosovo peace negotiations.
“I agree with President Trump, because when you look at (Obama administration National Security Adviser) Susan Rice’s own words, again she emailed herself on inauguration day, the inauguration day of President Trump, she emailed herself after the 12 o’clock time period when President Trump was now the president, she was still at the White House, and sent an email to herself under the Trump presidency,” Grenell told “Spicer & Co.” guest host David Brody.
“And she used words, again emailing herself, to almost redo history, to try to come up with a justification for why they just spent three or four months unmasking names, why we had these charges where they were talking about Russian collusion,” he added.
The former acting DNI was referring to an odd email that Rice wrote to herself regarding a White House meeting in early January she attended with Obama, Biden, then-FBI Director James Comey, then-Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates and other officials in which she claimed that Comey was “proceeding ‘by the book’” in the bureau’s probe of the incoming administration.
In reality, according to notes by fired FBI counterintelligence official Peter Strzok that were later posted on social media, Obama wanted “the right people” on the investigation, which at the time was primarily centered on incoming National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.
🚨Peter Strzok notes from 1/4/17 released in Flynn case:
Discussion among Obama, Comey, Yates, Biden, and Susan Rice.
Biden: "Logan Act"
Obama: "Have the right people on" Flynn case.
Comey: The Flynn/Kislyak calls "appear legit." pic.twitter.com/20a3z46Z9Z
— Techno Fog (@Techno_Fog) June 24, 2020
This is very troubling. The Susan Rice email to herself clearly didn’t give an accurate portrayal of the meeting.
The “right people” is fundamentally different than “by the book”. https://t.co/AYs3oZ7qaX
— Richard Grenell (@RichardGrenell) June 24, 2020
For his part, Grenell told Newsmax TV that raw intelligence reports, which contain estimates and unverified information, were selectively leaked to the media by the previous White House.
“I don’t think that you can come to any other conclusion other than this past administration, the Obama administration, weaponized intelligence,” he said.
Some of the documents that Grenell declassified included a list of Obama officials, including Biden, who made “unmasking” requests for Flynn after the incoming national security adviser had a conversation with Russia’s ambassador to the U.S. in December 2016.
At the time, details of that conversation were leaked to the media, which led to a controversy that culminated in his resignation from the administration just a few short months after Trump was inaugurated.
Flynn was eventually charged with one count of lying to the FBI and pleaded guilty, though in January he recanted, saying in court filings he was set up.
In June, a federal appeals court in the District of Columbia ordered a lower court judge, Emmet Sullivan, to dismiss Flynn’s case after the Justice Department dropped its charge following the discovery of evidence indicating Flynn was the victim of a perjury trap.
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