spies

Alleged Trump Campaign Spy Paid $282,295 By Obama Administration
Steven Ahle, David Harris Jr (Blog), May 16 2018

The alleged spy placed in the Trump campaign may have been revealed, although there is no confirmation yet. The suspected spy, Stefan Halper, was paid nearly $300k by the Obama administration and is believed (Again, no confirmation yet) to have been placed there by Obama, Clapper and Brennan. If this is true and there is either proof or a long string of coincidences (I don’t believe in a long string of coincidences) that Halper is the man. If not, what was he paid so much money for? If that isn’t enough of a coincidence, consider this. Halper appeared on BBC radio on May 17 2017,where he trashed Trump and said he was not worthy to be president. May 17 2017 is the very day that Robert Mueller was appointed special counsel. Perhaps they though the timing was right for some good old fashioned propaganda.

From The Gateway Pundit:

Jeff Carlson at theMarketswork on Thursday put together a piece where he places an individual by the name of Stefan Halper as a potential FBI spy into the Trump campaign. some believe that Obama may have had more than one spy on the Trump campaign. Carlson concluded his post with the following:

My guess is Papadopoulos never knew what hit him. A young man, suddenly thrust into a position beyond his experience, Papadopoulos made for an easy intelligence target.

Carter Page almost certainly discussed the just completed Moscow trip with his host, Stefan Halper, during the London symposium. It’s now being reported that Devin Nunes has learned the identity of a “top secret intelligence source” that was part of the FBI’s Counter-Intelligence Investigation. I think there’s a decent chance that source is Stefan Halper. Halper had contact with both Papadopulos and Carter Page. Halper has connections to British Intelligence and Pindosi Intelligence. Halper met with Carter Page just days after Page’s Moscow trip. This is more that Watergate. This is a sitting government trying to rig an election with outright lies and innuendos. Russian interference?Liberal interference. Know what the really sad thing is? With all the criminal activity to prevent Trump from winning the presidency, he still won handily.

Dearlove Connections: British Intel Firm Hakluyt, Alexander Downer, Stefan Halper & Papadopoulos
Jeff Carlson, themarketswork (Blog), May 9 2018

This post owes a debt to three sources:

We’ve been postulating that foreign intelligence, primarily from Britain, was used by then-DCI Brennan to initiate the FBI’s Jul 2016 Counter-Intelligence Investigation and push the Russia Narrative. Thanks to the work cited above, some details regarding a very private British Intelligence firm have surfaced. Hakluyt is a British strategic intelligence and advisory firm founded by former MI6 members which retains close ties to British Intelligence. In the small circular world of professional spooks, Hakluyt has ties with three unexpected individuals:

Alexander Downer famously met with George Papadopoulos at a London Bar in May 2016. This meeting would be used by the FBI as their excuse behind opening the Jul 2016 Counter-Intelligence Investigation. The FBI didn’t bother to interview Papadopoulos until Jan 27 2017. The conversation in question took place in May 2016. The FBI knew of this conversation no later than Jul 2016. Per the NYT:

During a night of heavy drinking at an upscale London bar in May 2016, George Papadopoulos, a young foreign policy adviser to the Trump campaign, made a startling revelation to Australia’s top diplomat in Britain: Russia had political dirt on Hillary Clinton. About three weeks earlier, Mr Papadopoulos had been told that Moscow had thousands of emails that would embarrass Mrs Clinton, apparently stolen in an effort to try to damage her campaign.

The diplomat, Alexander Downer, informed the Australian government of the conversation.

Two months later, when leaked Demagog emails began appearing online, Australian officials passed the information about Mr Papadopoulos to their Pindo counterparts. The hacking and the revelation that a member of the Trump campaign may have had inside information about it were driving factors that led the FBI to open an investigation in Jul 2016.

Buried at the bottom of the NYT article was the following:

It is unclear whether Mr Downer was fishing for that information that night in May 2016. The meeting at the bar came about because of a series of connections, beginning with an Israeli Embassy official who introduced Mr Papadopoulos to another Australian diplomat in London.

An Israeli official who Papadopoulos knew introduced him to another Australian diplomat who introduced Papadopoulos to Downer. There’s more to this story. As previously noted, Alexander Downer has long-standing ties to the Clinton Foundation. Downer personally arranged one of the largest foreign donations to the Clinton Foundation, $25m from the Australian government. Less known is that Downer was on the Advisory Board of Hakluyt from 2008-2014. He reportedly still maintains contact with Hakluyt officials. From a News Corp Australia article:

British foreign officials have privately expressed disquiet about Australia’s diplomatic post link to a shadowy security firm that sells intelligence to corporate clients. Created by former MI6 British Secret Service agents, Hakluyt is an ultra secretive firm whose client list reads like a who’s who of the business world with corporations retaining their services for strategic intelligence and advice as they look to expand operations. Australian High Commissioner to Britain Alexander Downer had been on the advisory board of the London-headquartered firm since 2008 when he was a UN special envoy but was forced to give up the position when he was appointed to head the Australian diplomatic post in London in 2014. But it can be revealed Mr Downer has still been attending client conferences and gatherings of the group, including a client cocktail soiree at the Orangery at Kensington Palace a few months ago.

Downer stock divestitures listed on Jan 23 2015. Actual transfer date Aug 7 2014. The firm’s top officials come from MI6. Several Board Members come from GCHQHakluyt’s parent holding company is Holdingham, whose Advisory Board & Directors lists yield one Board member who stands out: Ambassador Louis Susman (bio here). Susman received his Ambassadorship through fundraising abilities & Chicago connections with Obama. Per Chicago Magazine:

The retired Chicago businessman Louis Susman recently became the Pindo ambassador to Britain, an appointment widely regarded as the prize for his ferocious fundraising on behalf of the Obama campaign. Derided by the British press as the “vacuum cleaner,” Susman is only the most prominent example of a continuing and questionable Pindo tradition.

Per the Guardian:

Nicknamed the Vacuum Cleaner for his ability to hoover up cash for Demagog politicians, Louis Susman is a low-key veteran Chicago investment banker known for possessing one of the fattest contact books in the mid-west. Before rattling the tin for Barack Obama, Susman generated $244m as national finance director of John Kerry’s presidential bid and he played a key fund-raising role for previous White House hopefuls including Bill Bradley, Dick Gephart and Edward Kennedy.

Susman is close to Hillary Clinton. He would feature in several Wikileaks emails: here, here & here. Things get stranger still. Papadopoulos didn’t only meet with Downer. He also met with several other unusual contacts. One was Joseph Mifsud, a London-based Maltese professor “whose academic credentials appear mysteriously thin.” Mifsud introduced Papadopoulos to the Russian ambassador in London and Olga Polonskaya, whom he told Papadopoulos was the niece of Pres Putin. The Mifsud meetings took place in Mar 2016. It was reportedly Mifsud who told Papadopoulos the Kremlin had “dirt” on Hillary Clinton. It was this information that Papadopoulos supposedly relayed to Alexander Downer. There has been speculation that Mifsud was working with British Intelligence. Julian Assange put out a Twitter Thread noting the connection between Mifsud and British Intelligence. More on Mifsud will probably be revealed. Another odd meeting occurred between Papadopoulos and Dr Stefan Halper. The Daily Caller reported on the meeting:

Two months before the 2016 election, George Papadopoulos received a strange request for a meeting in London, one of several the young Trump adviser would be offered and  would accept during the presidential campaign. The meeting request, which has not been reported until now, came from Stefan Halper, a foreign policy expert and Cambridge professor with connections to the CIA and MI6.

The Halper meeting occurred on Sep 13 2016. The Downer meeting took place in May 2016. The Mifsud meeting took place in Mar 2016.

Papadopoulos questioned Halper’s motivation for contacting him, according to a source familiar with Papadopoulos’ thinking. That’s not just because of the randomness of the initial inquiry but because of questions Halper is said to have asked during their face-to-face meetings in London. According to a source with knowledge of the meeting, Halper asked Papadopoulos: “George, you know about hacking the emails from Russia, right?”

Halper is a Cambridge Fellow. He was a Senior Policy Advisor to Presidents Nixon, Ford & Reagan (bio here). Halper had previously invited Carter Page to attend a Jul 2016 symposium held at Cambridge regarding the upcoming election. The speaker list was notable:

  • Madeleine Albright (former Pindo Sec State)
  • Vin Weber (Thug Party maven & former Congress crittur)
  • Ambassador Peter Ammon (German Ambassador to British)
  • Sir Richard Dearlove (former head of MI6)
  • Bridget Kendall (BBC dipl corr & Master of Peterhouse)
  • Sir Malcolm Rifkind (former Defence Sec & Foreign Sec)

Page attended the symposium just four days after his Jul 2016 Moscow trip. Page met with Halper during the London visit. Page’s Moscow trip would figure prominently in the Steele Dossier. Halper also requested and obtained a meeting with another unknown Trump Campaign member on Sep 11 2016, two days before the Papadopoulos meeting. Halper “offered to help the campaign,” but did not mention the Papadopoulos meeting to the second staffer, nor the staffer meeting to Papadopoulos. Curiously, despite the offers of campaign help, on Nov 3 2016, Halper publicly stated that Clinton would be the best option for Pindo-British relations. One other particularly interesting note: Halper has connections to Hakluyt through Jonathan Clarke, with whom he has co-authored two books. You can find a Jun 2004 video of the pair discussing their first book here. Jonathan Clarke is the Pindo Rep & Director of Pindo Ops for Hakluyt. Clarke is a fairly public figure, but it was quite difficult to locate references to his association with Hakluyt. Given the lengthy association between Halper and Clarke, I expect we will find additional ties between Halper, other members of Hakluyt and members of British Intelligence. Halper’s association with former MI6 Head Richard Dearlove, via their previous positions at Cambridge Intelligence Seminar, is already known. Halper has an impressive background, but as the Daily Caller pointed out, Halper is still remembered for one other event. From a 1983 UPI article:

The NYT reported the Reagan campaign headquarters conducted a data-gathering operation to collect inside information on Carter foreign policy and used a number of former CIA officials in the effort. It said Stefan Halper, a campaign aide who handled communications for Bush and provided news updates and policy ideas to the traveling Reagan party, was in charge of the operation.

Papadopoulos speculated to the Daily Caller that the Downer/Halper meetings may have been a spy operation. Connections with former MI6 head Richard Dearlove keep turning up. He appears to be the one constant in the overseas connections. As far as I can tell, he knows every single player. Here is a video of the only televised interview Dearlove has done in Britain. He makes some interesting comments:

Trump is President. And that is a large element of unpredictability. Trump is only going to be there, probably, for another three years. We need to think more broadly. … He’s done some unpredictable things, but I don’t think you should necessarily judge the Intelligence relationship in terms of Trump’s tweets.

Regarding the Steele Dossier and Christopher Steele:

I won’t confirm or deny that I knew Christopher. I think there is probably some credibility to the content. I wouldn’t put it any more forcibly than that.

I’ve maintained that John Brennan held a central role in establishing the FBI’s Trump-Russia Investigation and pushing the Trump-Russia Narrative. Clapper provided assists. I’m growing ever more curious as to the true role of Richard Dearlove. Hakluyt’s Parent Holding Company is Holdingham. Pelorus Research, which provides intel to Investment Managers. Here is what I’ve added to A Listing of Participants on Hakluyt:

  • British strategic intelligence and advisory firm.
  • Fitzroy MacLean – Founder (deceased).
  • Christopher James – Founder. Managing Director. Formerly in charge of MI6’s business relations.
  • Mike Reynolds – Founder. Director. Former station head of MI6 in Germany. Reportedly close friends with former MI6 Head Richard Dearlove.
  • Lord Paul Deighton – Chairman. British Conservative Politician. Former Investment Banker.
  • Paul Schreier – Managing Director.
  • Keith Craig – Former CEO. Remains on Advisory Board.
  • Andy France> – Hakluyt Cyber (role unclear). Former Darktrace CEO. Former Deputy Director for Cyber Defense Operations at GCHQ.
  • Jonathan Clarke – Director – Pindo Operations.
  • Jonathan Selib – Employed by Hakluyt – Made donations to Clinton Campaign.
  • Holly Evans – Employed by Hakluyt – Made donations to Clinton Campaign.
  • Andrew Exum – Employed by Hakluyt – Made donations to Clinton Campaign.
  • Sir Iain Lobben – Advisory Board Member. Former Director, GCHQ.
  • Ambassador Louis Susman – Advisory Board Member. Former Pindo Ambassador to Britain.
  • Alexander Downer – Former Advisory Board Member. Australia’s High Commissioner in Britain. Previously UN Envoy to Cyprus. Met with George Papadopoulos in London. Downer was an Advisory Board Member from 2008-2014. He reportedly still maintains contact with Hakluyt officials.

Hakluyt’s Parent Holdco is Holdingham. Holdingham’s Advisory Board & Directors. Hakluyt’s role is not yet fully understood. May have involvement in Papadopoulos meeting.

  • Dr Stefan Halper – Cambridge Fellow. Senior Policy Advisor to Presidents Nixon, Ford & Reagan. Halper met with Papadopoulos on 9-13-16 and senior Trump Campaign official on 9-11-16. Invited Carter Page to 7-16-16 Cambridge symposium. Halper reportedly brought up subject of Russian hacking of Clinton emails. In Nov 2016, Halper stated that Clinton would be best for Pindo-British relations.

Halper has a close association with former MI6 Head Richard Dearlove. While not known to be directly employed by Hakluyt, Halper has connections through Jonathan Clarke (co-authored two books). May know Alexander Downer as well. Hakluyt/Holdingham is a secretive firm. It is difficult to obtain much information. Hakluyt historically maintained ties w/Kissinger’s firm. Connected to MI6 through long-standing relationships.

Ties That Bind: Stefan Halper, Joseph Mifsud, Alexander Downer & George Papadopoulos
Jeff Carlson, themarketswork (Blog), May 10 2018

George Papadopoulos appears to have been targeted by three individuals with ties to British and/or Pindosi Intelligence.

  • Joseph Mifsud
  • Alexander Downer
  • Stefan Halper

George Papadopoulos and Joseph Mifsud reportedly both worked at the London Centre of International Law Practice. Joseph Mifsud appears to have joined LCILP around Nov 2015. Papadopoulos appears to have joined LCILP sometime in late Feb or early Mar 2016 after leaving Ben Carson’s campaign. Per reports, Papadopoulos and Mifsud first met on Mar 14 2016. The London Centre of International Law and Practice Limited (LCILP) is an odd institution. From their website:

LCILP training emphasises the practical application of international law as a field inseparable from its geopolitical and global economic context.

On Mar 22 2016, the WaPo noted the following:

Papadopoulos, a 2009 graduate of DePaul University, directs an international energy center at the London Center of International Law Practice.

The WaPo did not seem to be aware that Papadopoulos had only held that position for a matter of weeks. How Papadopoulos got the position remains unknown. An article by Medium notes the following:

The Centre for International Energy and Natural Resources Law & Security existed, at least in name, before Papadopoulos’s arrival and it’s unclear why he was chosen to head it. A list on the website of a dozen people associated with it suggests others were better qualified.

Was Papadopoulos attempting to bulk up his resume? Who offered the young analyst the prestigious sounding position? Indications seem to be that the position was primarily in name only. In a Nov 4 2017 article, the WaPo noted the following regarding LCILP:

When a WaPo reporter buzzed the door on several occasions during business hours last week, no one answered. Until recently, the staff Web page had 33 people listed on it, including Joseph Mifsud. But the page was deleted on Oct 23, a week before the Papadopoulos plea agreement was unsealed. Several of those listed as being part of the “team” were only loosely affiliated, if at all.

The link to LCILP’s staffing is no longer functional. Quartz Media had slightly more success:

When a Quartz reporter visited LCILP’s headquarters inside a handsome Georgian building, he found that the office amounted to four people working in an undecorated backroom, all of whom declined to comment.

Mifsud vanished in early Nov 2017, shortly after the Papadopoulos story broke. To my knowledge, his whereabouts remain unknown. I’ve found four different meetings between Papadopoulos and Mifsud:

  • Mar 14 2016 – First known meeting. Papadopoulos met Mifsud in Italy approximately one week after officially joining the Trump team.
  • Mar 24 2016 – Papadopoulos, Mifsud, Olga Polonskaya and unknown fourth party met in a London cafe.
  • Apr 18 2016 – Mifsud introduced Papadopoulos to Ivan Timofeev, an official at a state-sponsored think tank called Russian International Affairs Council.
  • Apr 26 2016  – Mifsud claims to have met with high-level Russian government officials who have “dirt” on Clinton. Papadopoulos told the FBI that Mifsud said “the Russians had emails of Clinton” and “they have thousands of emails.”

Although the common story is that Mifsud is a Russian Agent, many ties seem to lead back to British Intelligence. Julian Assange put out a Twitter Thread noting the connection between Mifsud and British Intelligence. Disobedient Media has done a series of articles on Mifsud’s strange background or lack thereof:

Chris Blackburn had this to say:

If Mifsud is a genuine Russian asset, he has been enabled by Pindostan’s most trusted allies. His relationship with senior intelligence and political leaders in Europe should constitute one of the greatest security breaches in decades.

I don’t have enough information to make a determination on Mifsud at this point, but I suspect ties with British Intelligence will prove accurate. Mifsud was just the opening salvo directed at young Papadopoulos. Let’s move forward to Papadopoulos and his May 10 2016 meeting with Alexander Downer. The Papadopoulos/Downer meeting has been portrayed as a chance encounter in a bar. That does not appear to be the case. Papadopoulos was introduced to Downer through a chain of two intermediaries. Papadopoulos knew an Israeli embassy official in London named Christian Cantor who introduced Papadopoulos to Erika Thompson, who was a counselor to Downer and served in Australia’s London embassy. On May 4 2016, Papadopoulos gave an interview to the London Times in which he stated that PM Cameron should apologize to Pres Trump for negative comments. According to the Daily Caller, Thompson reached out to Papadopoulos two days after the story appeared and said Downer wanted to meet with Papadopoulos. The meeting between Papadopoulos and Downer took place on May 10 2016:

During the meeting, which The Daily Caller is told Thompson attended, Downer ordered Papadopoulos to “leave David Cameron alone.”

Downer has direct ties to Hakluyt where he served on the Advisory Board from 2008-2014.

In late Jul 2016, Australia’s ambassador to Pindostan, Joe Hockey, told his Pindo counterparts about Downer’s claims about the Papadopoulos conversation. The Aussies sat on the information for two months but revisited the Papadopoulos information after WikiLeaks released emails stolen from the DNC. That leak occurred on Jul 22 2016. The FBI opened its counter-intelligence investigation on Jul 31 2016. Peter Strzok, the FBI’s deputy chief of counter-intelligence at the time, oversaw the investigation.

Strzok texts suggest he was in London on Aug 3 2016:

The redacted individual talked about the Embassy. It’s the longest continuously staffed establishment in London. That would be the Australian Embassy. There was one more significant meeting yet to come. On Sep 13 2016, Papadopoulos accepted a meeting with Stefan Halper. Halper approached Papadopoulos unbidden. Papadopoulos had no prior contact with Halper. Halper, who has connections to CIA & MI6, asked Papadopoulos:

George, you know about hacking the emails from Russia, right?

Stefan Halper is a Cambridge Fellow. He was a Senior Policy Advisor to Presidents Nixon, Ford & Reagan (bio here). Halper has a close association with former MI6 Head Richard Dearlove. Halper had previously invited Carter Page to attend a Jul 2016 symposium held at Cambridge regarding the upcoming election. The speaker list was notable:

  • Madeleine Albright (former Sec State)
  • Vin Weber (Thug Party maven and former Congresscrittur)
  • Ambassador Peter Ammon (German Ambassador to Britain)
  • Sir Richard Dearlove (former head of MI6)
  • Bridget Kendall (BBC dipl corr, Master of Peterhouse)
  • Sir Malcolm Rifkind (former Defence Sec & Foreign Sec)

Page attended the symposium just four days after his Jul 2016 Moscow trip. Page met with Halper during the London visit. Page’s Moscow trip would figure prominently in the Steele Dossier. Halper also requested and obtained a meeting with another unknown Trump Campaign member on Sep 11 2016, two days before the Papadopoulos meeting. Halper “offered to help the campaign,” but did not mention the Papadopoulos meeting to the second staffer, nor the staffer meeting to Papadopoulos. Curiously, despite the offers of campaign help, on Nov 3 2016, Halper publicly stated that Clinton would be the best option for Pindo-British relations. One other particularly interesting note. Halper has connections to Hakluyt through Jonathan Clarke, with whom he has co-authored two books. You can find a Jun 2004 video of the pair discussing their first book here. Jonathan Clarke is the Pindo Representative and Director of Pindo Operations for Hakluyt. Clarke is a fairly public figure, but it was quite difficult to locate references to his association with Hakluyt. Given the lengthy association between Halper and Clarke, I expect we will find additional ties between Halper, other members of Hakluyt and members of British Intelligence. Halper’s association with former MI6 Head Richard Dearlove, via their previous positions at Cambridge Intelligence Seminar, is already known. Halper is still remembered for one other event. From a 1983 UPI article:

The NYT reported the Reagan campaign headquarters conducted a data-gathering operation to collect inside information on Carter foreign policy and used a number of former CIA officials in the effort. It said Stefan Halper, a campaign aide who handled communications for Bush and provided news updates and policy ideas to the traveling Reagan party, was in charge of the operation.

Papadopoulos speculated to the Daily Caller that the Downer/Halper meetings may have been a spy operation. As to questions about Papadopoulos’ complicity in all this, the FBI didn’t bother to interview Papadopoulos until Jan 27 2017. Consider the timeline:

  • Late Feb-early Mar 2016 – Papadopoulos lands a prestigious sounding job that immediately pads his resume.
  • Early Mar 2016 – Papadopoulos learns he will become a foreign policy adviser to the Trump campaign.
  • Mar 14 2016 – Papadopoulos first meets Mifsud in Italy, approximately one week after officially joining the Trump team.
  • Mar 24 2016 – Papadopoulos, Mifsud, Olga Polonskaya and unknown fourth party met in a London cafe.
  • Apr 18 2016 – Mifsud introduced Papadopoulos to Ivan Timofeev, an official at a state-sponsored think tank called Russian International Affairs Council.
  • Apr 26 2016  – Mifsud claims to have met with high-level Russian government officials who have “dirt” on Clinton. Papadopoulos told the FBI that Mifsud said “the Russians had emails of Clinton” and “they have thousands of emails.”
  • May 4 2016 – Papadopoulos gives his interview to the London Times. It is not well-received in London.
  • May 10 2016 – Papadopoulos meets with Australian Diplomat Alexander Downer. It is Downer who seeks out the meeting.
  • May/Jun 2016 – Halper invites Carter Page to Jul 2016 Cambridge symposium regarding the upcoming election.
  • Jul 11 2016 – Carter Page attends symposium with Halper just four days after his July 2016 Moscow trip.
  • Jul 31 2016 – FBI opens Counter-Intelligence Investigation into Trump-Russia connections.
  • Aug 2-3 2016 – Strzok travels to London to meet unknown party at Australian Embassy.
  • Sep 13 2016 – Papadopoulos accepts a meeting with Stefan Halper. Halper, who has connections to CIA & MI6, asked Papadopoulos: “George, you know about hacking the emails from Russia, right?”

My guess is Papadopoulos never knew what hit him. A young man suddenly thrust into a position beyond his experience, Papadopoulos made for an easy intelligence target. Carter Page almost certainly discussed the just completed Moscow trip with his host, Stefan Halper, during the London symposium. It’s now being reported that Devin Nunes has learned the identity of a “top secret intelligence source” that was part of the FBI’s Counter-Intelligence Investigation. I think there’s a decent chance that source is Stefan Halper. Halper had contact with both Papadopulos and Carter Page. Halper has connections to British Intelligence and Pindo Intelligence. Halper met with Carter Page just days after Page’s Moscow trip. Stefan Halper would seem a good fit as the “FBI source.”

The FBI Informant Who Monitored the Trump Campaign, Stefan Halper, Oversaw a CIA Spying Operation in the 1980 Presidential Election
Glenn Greenwald, Intercept, May 19 2018

An extremely strange episode that has engulfed official Faschingstein over the last two weeks came to a truly bizarre conclusion on Friday night. And it revolves around a long-time, highly sketchy CIA operative, Stefan Halper. Four decades ago, Halper was responsible for a long-forgotten spying scandal involving the 1980 election, in which the Reagan campaign, using CIA officials managed by Halper, reportedly under the direction of former DCI Bush 41, got caught running a spying operation from inside the Carter administration. The plot involved CIA operatives passing classified information about Carter’s foreign policy to Reagan campaign officials in order to ensure the Reagan campaign knew of any foreign policy decisions that Carter was considering. Over the past several weeks, House Thugs have been claiming that the FBI during the 2016 election used an operative to spy on the Trump campaign, and they triggered outrage within the FBI by trying to learn his identity. The controversy escalated when Pres Trump joined the fray on Friday morning. Pres Trump tweeted:

In response, the DOJ and the FBI’s various media spoxes did not deny the core accusation, but quibbled with the language, for instance by saying that the FBI used an “informant,” not a “spy,” and then began using increasingly strident language to warn that exposing his name would jeopardize his life and those of others, and also put Pindo natsec at grave risk. On May 8, the WaPo described the informant as “a top-secret intelligence source” and cited DoJ boxtops as arguing that disclosure of his name “could risk lives by potentially exposing the source, a Pindo citizen who has provided intelligence to the CIA and FBI.” The top Demagog on SSCI, Mark Warner, who spent much of last week working to ensure confirmation of Trump’s choice for DCI, Gina Haspel, actually threatened his own colleagues in Congress with criminal prosecution if they tried to obtain the identity of the informant. Warner said:

Anyone who is entrusted with our nation’s highest secrets should act with the gravity and seriousness of purpose that knowledge deserves.

But now, as a result of some very odd choices by the nation’s largest media outlets, everyone knows the name of the FBI’s informant: Stefan Halper. Halper’s history is quite troubling, particularly his central role in the scandal in the 1980 election. Equally troubling are the DoJ and FBI’s highly inflammatory and, at best, misleading claims that they made to try to prevent Halper’s identity from being reported. To begin with, it’s obviously notable that the person the FBI used to monitor the Trump campaign is the same person who worked as a CIA operative running that 1980 Presidential election spying campaign. It was not until several years after Reagan’s victory over Carter did this scandal emerge. It was leaked by right-wing officials inside the Reagan administration who wanted to undermine officials they regarded as too moderate, including then White House Chief of Staff James Baker, who was a Bush 41 loyalist. The NYT in 1983 said the Reagan campaign spying operation “involved a number of retired CIA boxtops and was highly secretive.” (The article by Leslie Gelb is below – RB). Halper, now 73, had also worked with Donald Rumsfeld, Dick Cheney, and Alexander Haig as part of the Nixon administration. When the scandal first broke in 1983, UPI suggested that Halper’s handler for this operation was Reagan’s Vice Presidential candidate George H W Bush, who had been the DCI and worked there with Halper’s father-in-law, former Deputy DCI Ray Cline, who worked on Bush’s 1980 presidential campaign before Bush ultimately became Reagan’s Vice President. It quoted a former Reagan campaign boxtop on the leak:

Conservatives are trying to manipulate the Jimmy Carter papers controversy to force the ouster of White House Chief of Staff James Baker.

Through his CIA work, Halper has extensive ties to the Bush family. Few remember that the CIA’s perceived meddling in the 1980 election, and its open support for former DCI Bush to become president, was a somewhat serious political controversy and Halper was in that middle of that too. In 1980, the WaPo published an article reporting on the extremely unusual and quite aggressive involvement of the CIA in the 1980 presidential campaign. It said:

Simply put, no presidential campaign in recent memory, perhaps ever, has attracted as much support from the intelligence community as the campaign of former DCI Bush.

Though there was nothing illegal about ex-CIA boxtops uniting to put a former DCI in the Oval Office, the paper said:

There are some rumblings of uneasiness in the intelligence network.

It specifically identified Cline as one of the most prominent CIA boxtops working openly for Bush, noting:

Cline recommended his son-in-law, Stefan A Halper, a former Nixon White House aide, be hired as Bush’s director of policy development and research.

In 2016, top intel boxtops similarly rallied around Hillary Clinton. As The Intercept has previously documented:

Former acting DCI Michael Morell not only endorsed Clinton in the NYT but claimed that “Mr Putin had recruited Mr Trump as an unwitting agent of the Russian Federation.” Bush 43’s DCI and DNS, Gen Michael Hayden, pronounced Trump a “clear and present danger” to Pindo NatSec and then, less than a week before the election, went to the WaPo to warn: “Donald Trump really does sound a lot like Vladimir Putin! He is the useful fool, some naif manipulated by Moscow, secretly held in contempt but whose blind support is happily accepted and exploited.”

So as it turns out, the informant used by the FBI in 2016 to gather information on the Trump campaign was not some previously unknown, top-secret asset whose exposure as an operative could jeopardize lives. Quite the contrary: his decades of work for the CIA, including his role in an obviously unethical if not criminal spying operation during the 1980 presidential campaign, is quite publicly known. And now, as a result of some baffling choices by the nation’s largest news organizations as well as their anonymous sources inside the government, Stefan Halper’s work for the FBI during the 2016 is also publicly known. Last night, both the WaPo and NYT, whose reporters like pretty much everyone in Faschingstein knew exactly who the FBI informant is, published articles that while deferring to the FBI’s demands by not naming him, provided so many details about him that it made it extremely easy to know exactly who it is. The NYT described the FBI informant as “a Pindo academic who teaches in Britain” who “made contact late that summer with” George Papadopoulos and “also met repeatedly in the ensuing months with the other aide, Carter Page.” The WaPo similarly called him “a retired Pindo professor” who met with Page “at a symposium about the White House race held at a British university.” In contrast to the picture purposely painted by the DoJ and its allies that this informant was some of sort super-secret high-level covert-intel asset, the NYT described him as what he actually is:

The informant is well known in Faschingstein circles, having served in previous Thug administrations and as a source of information for the CIA in past years.

Despite how “well known” he is in Faschingstein, and despite publishing so many details about him that anyone with Google would be able to instantly know his name, the WaPo and the NYT nonetheless bizarrely refused to identity him, with the WaPo justifying its decision:

The WaPo is not reporting his name following warnings from Pindo intel boxtops that exposing him could endanger him or his contacts.

The NYT was less melodramatic about it, citing a general policy:

The NYT has learned the source’s identity but typically does not name informants to preserve their safety.

In other words, both the NYT and the WaPo chose to provide so many details about the FBI informant that everyone would know exactly who it was, while coyly pretending that they were obeying FBI demands not to name him. How does that make sense? Either these newspapers believe the FBI’s grave warnings that natsec and lives would be endangered if it were known who they used as their informant, in which case those papers should not publish any details that would make his exposure likely, or they believe that as usual, the FBI was just invoking false national security justifications to hide information it unjustly wants to keep from the public, in which case the newspapers should name him. In any event, publication of those articles by the NYT and WaPo last night made it completely obvious who the FBI informant was, because the Daily Caller’s investigative reporter Chuck Ross on Thursday had published an article reporting that a long-time CIA operative who is now a professor at Cambridge repeatedly met with Papadopoulos and Page. In its opening paragraph, the article named the professor, Stefan Halper, and described him as “a University of Cambridge professor with CIA and MI6 contacts.”

Ross’ article, using public information, recounted at length Halper’s long-standing ties to the CIA, including the fact that his father-in-law, Ray Cline, was a top CIA official during the Cold War, and that Halper himself had long worked with both the CIA and its British counterpart, the MI6. As Ross wrote:

At Cambridge, Halper has worked closely with Dearlove, the former chief of MI6. In recent years they have directed the Cambridge Security Initiative, a non-profit intelligence consulting group that lists ‘British & Pindo government agencies’ among its clients.

Both the NYT and WaPo reporters boasted with seeming pride about the fact that they did not name the informant, even as they published all the details which made it simple to identify him. But citing Ross’ report and other public information, NBC News decided to name him, while stressing that it has not confirmed that he actually worked as an FBI informant:

The professor who met with both Page and Papadopoulos is Stefan Halper, a former official in the Nixon, Ford and Reagan administrations who has been a paid consultant to an internal Pentagon think tank known as the Office of Net Assessment, consulting on Russia and China issues, according to public records.

There is nothing inherently untoward, or even unusual, about the FBI using informants in an investigation. One would expect them to do so. But the use of Halper in this case, and the bizarre claims made to conceal his identity, do raise some questions that merit further inquiry. To begin with, the NYT reported in Dec 2017 that the FBI investigation into possible ties between the Trump campaign and Russia began when George Papadopoulos drunkenly boasted to an Australian diplomat about Russian dirt on Hillary Clinton. The NYT claimed:

It was this that led the FBI to open an investigation in Jul 2016 into Russia’s attempts to disrupt the election and whether any of President Trump’s associates conspired.

But it now seems clear that Halper’s attempts to gather information for the FBI began before that. The WaPo reported:

The professor’s interactions with Trump advisers began a few weeks before the opening of the investigation, when Page met the professor at the British symposium.

While it’s not rare for the FBI to gather information before formally opening an investigation, Halper’s earlier snooping does call into question the accuracy of the NYT’s claim that it was the drunken Papadopoulos ramblings that first prompted the FBI’s interest in these possible connections. And it suggests that CIA operatives, apparently working with at least some factions within the FBI, were trying to gather information about the Trump campaign earlier than had been previously reported. Then there are questions about what appear to be some fairly substantial government payments to Halper throughout 2016. Halper continues to be listed as a “vendor” by websites that track payments by the federal government to private contractors.

halper-1526736544

Earlier this week, records of payments were found that were made during 2016 to Halper by the DoD’s Office of Net Assessment, though it not possible from these records to know the exact work for which these payments were made. The Pentagon office that paid Halper in 2016, according to a 2015 WaPo story on its new duties, “reports directly to the Sec Def and focuses heavily on future threats, has a $10m budget.”

It is difficult to understand how identifying someone whose connections to the CIA is a matter of such public record, and who has a long and well-known history of working on spying programs involving presidential elections on behalf of the intelligence community, could possibly endanger lives or lead to grave national security harm. It isn’t as though Halper has been some sort of covert, stealth undercover asset for the CIA who just got exposed. Quite the contrary: that he’s a spy embedded in the intelligence community intel crime subculture would be known to anyone with internet access. Equally strange are the semantic games which journalists are playing in order to claim that this revelation disproves, rather than proves, Trump’s allegation that the FBI “spied” on his campaign. This bizarre exchange between CNN’s Andrew Kaczynski and the New York Times’ Trip Gabriel vividly illustrates the strange machinations used by journalists to justify how all of this is being characterized:

Despite what Halper actually is, the FBI and its dutiful mouthpieces have spent weeks using the most desperate language to try to hide Halper’s identity and the work he performed as part of the 2016 election. Here was the deeply emotional reaction to last night’s story from Brookings’ Benjamin Wittes, who has become a social media star by parlaying his status as Jim Comey’s best friend and long-time loyalist to security state agencies into a leading role in pushing the Trump/Russia story:

Wittes’ claim that all of this resulted in the “outing” of some sort of sensitive “intelligence source” is preposterous given how publicly known Halper’s role as a CIA operative has been for decades. But this is the scam that the FBI and people like Mark Warner have been running for two weeks: deceiving people into believing that exposing Halper’s identity would create grave natsec harm by revealing some previously unknown intelligence asset. Wittes also implies that it was Trump and Devin Nunes who are responsible for Halper’s exposure but he almost certainly has no idea of who the sources are for the NYT or the WaPo. And note that Wittes is too cowardly to blame the institutions that actually made it easy to identify Halper, the NYT and WaPo, preferring instead to exploit the opportunity to depict the enemies of his friend Jim Comey as traitors. Whatever else is true, the CIA operative and FBI informant used to gather information on the Trump campaign in the 2016 campaign has, for weeks, been falsely depicted as a sensitive intelligence asset rather than what he actually is, namely a long-time CIA operative with extensive links to the Bush family who was responsible for a dirty and likely illegal spying operation in the 1980 presidential election. For that reason, it’s easy to understand why many people in Faschingstein were so desperate to conceal his identity, but that desperation had nothing to do with the lofty and noble concerns for natsec they claimed were motivating them.

Reagan Aides Describe Operation To Gather Inside Data On Carter
Leslie H Gelb, NYT, Jul 7 1983

An operation to collect inside information on Carter admin foreign policy was run in Reagan’s campaign HQ in the 1980 presidential campaign, according to present and former Reagan admin boxtops. Those sources said they did not know exactly what information the operation produced or whether it was anything beyond the usual grab-bag of rumors and published news reports, but they said it involved a number of retired CIA boxtops and was highly secretive. The sources identified Stefan A Halper, a campaign aide involved in providing 24-hour news updates and policy ideas to the traveling Reagan party, as the person in charge. Mr Halper, until recently deputy director of the State Dept’s Bureau of Politico-Military Affairs and now chairman of the Palmer National Bank in Faschingstein, was out of town today and could not be reached, but Ray S Cline, his father-in-law and a former senior CIA boxtop, rejected the account as a “romantic fallacy.” The disclosure of the information-gathering operation added to the furor over revelations that Reagan campaign officials came into possession of Carter debate strategy papers before the candidates’ televised debate. The matter is being investigated by the FBI and a Congressional committee. Tonight, the WaPo said it had obtained documents that had been passed to officials in the Reagan campaign by a campaign volunteer, Daniel Jones, who said he had got them from a secret agent inside the Carter Administration. Notes by Mr Jones on the documents described their source as a “reliable mole.” The WaPo said the memos were addressed to Bill Casey, Bob Gray and Edwin Meese, all prominent in the Reagan election effort. Mr Meese, now the President’s Counselor, and Mr Gray indicated they did not remember seeing the memos. Mr Jones told the WaPo and AP that he had written the memos and said he had met the “mole” but did not know his identity. Mr Halper, the former campaign aide said to have headed the information-gathering operation, nominally worked for Robert Garrick, the director of campaign operations. Mr Garrick said in a telephone interview recently:

He was supposed to help with communications, but I kind of thought he had another agenda going. He was always on the phone with the door closed, and he never called me in and discussed it with me.

Speaking of Mr Halper, David Prosperi, a Reagan campaign aide now with the Superior Oil Company said:

He provided us with wire stories and Carter speeches, but people talked about his having a network that was keeping track of things inside the Government, mostly in relation to the October surprise.

The Reagan campaign team used the term “October surprise” to refer to the possibility that Pres Carter might take some dramatic action with regard to the hostage situation in Iran or some other action to try to turn the tide of the election. DCI Casey, who was Mr Reagan’s campaign director, said in an interview Tuesday that such a surpise was of special concern to Reagan strategists. He said Mr Garrick had spoken of using retired military officers to watch military airfields for the dispatching of hospital aircraft for the hostages. A source from the Reagan campaign who asked not to be named said:

There was some CIA stuff coming from Halper, and some agency guys were hired.

He added that he was never aware that this information was particularly useful and that he and others had their own sources within the Administration who provided unsolicited information. The same source said Richard V Allen, Mr Reagan’s chief foreign policy adviser in the campaign and his first natsec adviser, received classified NSC documents from a Carter admin boxtop. Mr Allen has previously acknowledged receiving material, which he described as being “innocuous,” that dealt with morale on the NSC staff. According to the sources, Mr Halper worked closely with David R Gergen on the staff of Bush when he was seeking the Thug presidential nomination. The sources said that Mr Gergen, now director of White House communications, and James Baker, another top Bush campaign aide now an assistant to Mr Reagan, brought Mr Halper onto the Reagan campaign staff after the RNC. Bush was DCI under Pres Ford, and former Bush aides said today that many former CIA boxtops had offered their help in the Bush campaign. The former aides said Mr Bush himself was against anything that might smack of CIA support. Mr Gergen declined to return several telephone calls. Instead, he telephoned Mr Cline, Mr Halper’s father-in-law, and Mr Cline got in touch with the NYT. Later, a source close to Mr Gergen telephoned to say:

He was unaware of any organized intelligence operation of the kind described, but that he was aware that Mr Halper was working on issues and the development of information for the campaign…. There was definitely no reporting relationship to either Gergen or Baker during the campaign effort.

Mr Cline said:

He was on a special staff to analyze campaign issues, just as he did in the Bush campaign. He was responsible for looking for booby traps, and studying what Carter people were saying, to look for vulnerabilities. I think this is all a romantic fallacy about an old CIA network. I believe I have been close enough to the intelligence community for the last 40 years that I would have discovered it. Such an effort would not have been worthwhile and I believe it was not executed. That does not mean that some individual or individuals didn’t do something, but there was not a deliberate effort to penetrate the campaign.

Mr Halper’s personal secretary, who now works at the White House, was reached at her home through the White House switchboard, and when asked about an information-gathering network run by Mr Halper in the campaign, she hung up. White House operators then said she was “unavailable.” None of the sources said they knew of any relationship between Mr Halper and Mr Casey in the campaign. On Tuesday, Mr Casey denied that there was a campaign “intelligence organization as such.” Mr Halper served for almost two years as deputy director of the State Dept’s Bureau of Politico-Military Affairs. State Dept boxtops said the White House, and Mr Gergen in particular, had applied a great deal of pressure to create this position for Mr Halper, 37 years old, who also served in various capacities in the White House under Presidents Nixon and Ford. In an interview two weeks ago, Mr Halper recalled:

There was this material, the existence was widely known or at least generally known in the campaign. I may have seen a few pages of it, but I can’t confirm any particular subject or format. If pages of material had come my way, I would have routed them over to the debate group.

Mr Baker and Mr Gergen were in charge of the debate group. Mr Halper said:

My recollection is that the whole thing was not significant, and that it was pretty tightly held at some other level above me.

Daniel Jones, a Reagan volunteer, says he sent memorandums to top 1980 campaign officials attributing attached information to a “mole” in the Carter White House. The WaPo said in its Thursday issue said it had obtained the memos from a collector of campaign memorabilia who found them in the trash at Reagan campaign headquarters shortly after the election. When shown some of the memos  by the newspaper, Mr Jones said:

I can’t deny it. You’ve got the documents. I met the source only once. I literally never knew his name.

The memos were addressed to Edwin Meese, Bill Casey and the campaign’s deputy director for communications, Bob Gray, now a Faschingstein PR executive, who told AP:

I don’t remember them at all, though I do remember Mr Jones. If I tossed them in the trash can, then it’s pretty obvious I did not think much of them.

A call to the home of Mr Casey’s spox went unanswered. Assistant White House spox read a statement from Mr Meese that said:

I recall that there was a volunteer on the campaign named Dan Jones. So far as I can recall, he would never have had any reason to write any memo to me. Certainly I do not have any recollection of any memo from him or anyone else which mentioned a mole in the White House.

One Jones memo to the three campaign officials said:

According to latest information from a reliable White House mole 6:30 on Oct 27, the following is Pres Carter’s itinerary for the remainder of the campaign.

The itinerary had been given to reporters by the White House two days earlier, the newspaper said. At the bottom, the memo said:

Attached is recent White House memo re certain economic information.

A check mark was beside Gray’s name. The White House memo, dated Oct 24, was from two Presidential assistants, Anne Wexler and Alonzo McDonald, to members of the Cabinet outlining possible comments on the latest movements in the Consumer Price Index. Another White House memo from the two, dated Oct 10 and also on economics, bore the handwritten notation at the top:

Bob – Report from White House mole.

On the second page was the notation:

Bob – expect this line of attack next week, Dan.

Typed across the top of the first page was:

To: William Casey (for transmittal to Martin Anderson.)

The collector who made the memos available did not want to be identified, the newspaper said. According to the collector’s account, he visited the Reagan campaign headquarters in suburban Arlington, Virginia, a few days after the election, seeking bumber stickers and campaign buttons. He was told they had just been thrown out and he was welcome to help himself to the trash behind the building. There he found advertising layouts, which he took, and the documents, of which he took a carton-load. The newspaper quoted Mr Gray as saying:

Jones was the kind of fellow who’d love to elevate his importance. He liked to use the term ‘White House mole’ to build his sense of drama and show he had contacts.

But Mr Gray told AP:

I did not tell them that. He’s the kind of guy who might say that to feel important. That’s the way I assess his personality.

Mr Gray also said of the material he was shown by the newspaper:

There’s no indication on the memo that it was received by any of us. I would bet money that Casey and Meese never saw them.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.