Obama was caught red-handed spying on the Trump campaign.
But the media, blinded by their hatred for Trump, are splitting hairs over Trump’s tweets describing Obama “wiretapping” Trump Tower.
And now one investigative reporter is taking them to task for willfully ignoring a major threat to our system of government.
Sharyl Attkisson was an investigative reporter for CBS during the Obama administration.
It was during that time she believes her CBS computer was repeatedly hacked into by a U.S. intelligence agency.
Writing about the reports this week that “the FBI did indeed ‘wiretap’ the former head of Trump’s campaign, Paul Manafort, both before and after Trump was elected,” she pointedly accuses the media of “missing the bigger story.”
If these reports are accurate, it means U.S. intelligence agencies secretly surveilled at least a half dozen Trump associates. And those are just the ones we know about.
She goes on to speculate the intelligence agencies are being weaponized and the media is ignoring it.
Nobody wants our intel agencies to be used like the Stasi in East Germany; the secret police spying on its own citizens for political purposes. The prospect of our own NSA, CIA and FBI becoming politically weaponized has been shrouded by untruths, accusations and justifications.
You’ll recall DNI Clapper falsely assured Congress in 2013 that the NSA was not collecting “any type of data at all on millions or hundreds of millions of Americans.”
Yet she points out the CIA was caught spying on Senate Intelligence Committee staffers in 2014, there were wiretaps on Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) in 2011, and Rep. Jane Harman (D-CA) under Bush.
The Obama administration was caught spying on Fox News, the AP, and as Attkisson alleges in a lawsuit, her computers while she worked at CBS:
Forensics have revealed dates, times and methods of some of the illegal activities. The software used was proprietary to a federal intel agency. The intruders deployed a keystroke monitoring program, accessed the CBS News corporate computer system, listened in on my conversations by activating the computer’s microphone and used Skype to exfiltrate files.
Then she skewers the media who ignore what’s happening:
It’s difficult not to see patterns in the government’s behavior, unless you’re wearing blinders.
- The intelligence community secretly expanded its authority in 2011 so it can monitor innocent U.S. citizens like you and me for doing nothing more than mentioning a target’s name a single time.
- In January 2016, a top secret inspector general report found the NSA violated the very laws designed to prevent abuse.
- In 2016, Obama officials searched through intelligence on U.S. citizens a record 30,000 times, up from 9,500 in 2013.
- Two weeks before the election, at a secret hearing before the FISA court overseeing government surveillance, NSA officials confessed they’d violated privacy safeguards “with much greater frequency” than they’d admitted. The judge accused them of “institutional lack of candor” and said, “this is a very serious Fourth Amendment issue.”
It seems that government monitoring of journalists, members of Congress and political enemies — under multiple administrations — has become more common than anyone would have imagined two decades ago. So has the unmasking of sensitive and highly protected names by political officials.
Those deflecting with minutiae are missing the point. To me, they sound like the ones who aren’t thinking.
We live in a brave new world.
The question is, are Americans willing to do anything about it?
A key surveillance power, Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act, is coming up for reauthorization later this year.
Concerned Americans should demand this provision be allowed to expire given how clearly the government has abused it.
The fate of our republic may rest on it.
Let us know your thoughts about all of this in the comments below!