VIEWPOINTS

How Obama Officials Spied on Trump

April 11, 2019 15:47, Last Updated: April 12, 2019 10:05
By Jasper Fakkert

Commentary

Attorney General William Barr told congressional lawmakers on April 10 that he is investigating both the “genesis” and “the conduct of intelligence activities directed at the Trump campaign” during the 2016 elections.

Barr said he plans to “pull together all the information from the various investigations that have gone on,” such as investigations conducted by Congress, and by Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz.

Longtime critics of President Donald Trump were quick to dismiss Barr’s comments. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) went as far as to claim that Barr was “perpetuating conspiracy theories,” and CNN tried to write Barr’s statements off by saying he didn’t “provide evidence.”

These are the same people who have lied to the American public for more than two years by claiming that Trump colluded with Russia to win the 2016 elections.

Even in the public domain, there has been an extensive body of information—such as court documents, media reports, text messages, emails, and congressional testimonies—that provide documentary evidence that the Trump campaign was spied on.

At this point in time, at least six different methods that the Obama administration used to spy on the Trump campaign have been made public:

1. FISA Warrant: Former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page was targeted with a FISA warrant by the FBI in October 2016. The warrant was subsequently renewed three times for 90-day periods. Other members of the Trump campaign might have had FISA warrants on them, as well.

2. Unmasking: Hundreds of so-called unmasking requests were made for the identities of members of the Trump campaign in intelligence reports. The House Intelligence Committee has so far identified Obama’s national security adviser Susan Rice, Ambassador to the U.N. Samantha Power, and former CIA Director John Brennan, as having filed such requests.

3. Undercover Informant: The FBI used Stefan Halper, an undercover agent, to infiltrate the Trump campaign. He contacted Trump campaign associates Carter Page and George Papadopoulos. Halper has ties to the CIA, as well as MI6.

4. National Security Letters: The use of national security letters to target the Trump campaign was first revealed by officials to The New York Times in a May 16, 2018, article. National security letters allow the FBI to secretly subpoena customer records from banks, phone companies, internet service providers, and others.

5. Foreign Intelligence: British intelligence agency GCHQ provided officials within the CIA with information on the Trump campaign as early as late 2015, The Guardian reported in April 2017. Then-head of GCHQ Robert Hannigan also provided Brennan with sensitive information on the Trump campaign on a “director level” in the summer of 2016.

6. Reverse Targeting: Brennan admitted in an Aug. 17, 2018, interview with MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow that the CIA had obtained the communications of Americans associated with the Trump campaign through what appears to have been the use of reverse targeting. “We call it incidental collection in terms of CIA’s foreign intelligence collection authorities,” Brennan said.

We know from the nearly two-year-long, exhaustive investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller that there was never any evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.

“The investigation did not establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities,” the Mueller report reads, as quoted in a summary letter to Congress by Barr.

This raises the question, why did the CIA, FBI, and foreign governments engage in spying on the political campaign of a presidential candidate if there never was any evidence?

And why was Hillary Clinton’s campaign, alongside the Democratic National Committee, funding the creation and spread of the so-called Steele dossier—which contained the false allegations that Trump colluded with Russia—into the FBI, DOJ, State Department, Congress, and U.S. media organizations?

Barr was right when he said: “I think spying on a political campaign is a big deal.”

It poses a threat to the very integrity of our election system and our freedoms. This scandal deserves to be thoroughly investigated to make sure it never happens again.

Jasper Fakkert is the Editor-in-Chief of the U.S. editions of The Epoch Times.

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