Where is Eric Braverman - Neil Brown KKR
Clinton Foundation CEO Declared 'Missing' By the Internet After Going Public Saying 'Follow the Money'
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 14:55
Twitter users have started the hashtag #WheresEric in reference to Eric Braverman, the former CEO of the Clinton Foundation, because some think he has been a possible missing person since before the November 2016 U.S. election. Braverman's last public activity, accessible via the internet, was an October 12 retweet.
A common understanding of the events surrounding Braverman's possible disappearance centers around his abrupt resignation from the Clinton Foundation in January 2015, which many thought was caused by his discovery of internal corruption at the non-profit organization. Braverman named was CEO in July 2013 during the immediate aftermath of Hillary Clinton's tenure as Secretary of State which ended February 2013.
A popular Youtube channel run by a man named George Webb has been tracking Braverman's story and features daily video updates. Webb thinks Braverman has been missing since October 24, which was two days after it became public knowledge that he was suspected of being a traitor to the Clinton Foundation.
Hillary Clinton's campaign chairman John Podesta thought Eric Braverman was the source of information leaks to the media, according to a leaked email sent March 8, 2015, which was published on October 22 of this year by WikiLeaks. This email was one week after a March 1 POLITICO article which detailed his struggle against the tenured Clinton staff, titled ''Eric Braverman Tried to Change the Clinton Foundation. Then He Quit.'' The article was described as ''Not a pretty read'' and forwarded to Podesta less than 24 hours after it was published.
While these events occurred in 2015, many believe that the ongoing FBI investigation of the Clinton Foundation may be a factor in Eric Braverman's lack of public activity. The Podesta email releases by WikiLeaks came at the height of campaign season in October, and featured proof of many theories related to Hillary Clinton's corruption that occurred during the tenure of Braverman at the Clinton Foundation.
The Benghazi scandal unraveled during that time, leading up to Clinton's testimony before Congress and the subsequent investigations. Near the end of 2014, the discovery of Clinton's private email server began to cause problems and eventually broke into public view in March 2015, right after Braverman's resignation.
One of the most damaging emails revealed what has been called a ''pay to play'' mechanism, where the Clintons sold influence with the U.S. government to wealthy foreign interests. In January 2015, top Clinton aide Huma Abedin and John Podesta discussed a problem related to the deal Hillary Clinton made with the King of Morocco for $12 million.
August 2014 emails revealed Clinton sent Podesta a memo that Saudi Arabia and Qatar were funding ISIS. While it is clear that Clinton would have known about the Saudi and Qatari links to Islamic State, it is not confirmed if Clinton wrote the memo herself.
The New York Times admitted in April 2015 that untold millions flowed to the Clinton Foundation after a series of deals allowed uranium mining rights to be transferred to Russian state-owned interests. The Russian takeover of the conglomerate Uranium One was approved during Clinton's tenure at the State Department despite national security concerns which should have prompted more scrutiny. The full scope of the scandal was being discovered late in Eric Braverman's tenure at the Clinton Foundation.
One independent media outlet claimed to have made attempts to contact Braverman by phone and email, both of which were unsuccessful. The same organization claimed to receive no response after contacting Yale University officials about Braverman, who has taught courses on government and policy in the law school and other departments.
Braverman is still listed on Yale's website for Spring 2017 classes in the School of Management and the law school. The Free Thought Project was not able to reach Yale University for comment before publishing this report due to the holiday season.
WikiLeaks - The Podesta Emails
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 18:49
WikiLeaks - The Podesta EmailsThis key's fingerprint is A04C 5E09 ED02 B328 03EB 6116 93ED 732E 9231 8DBA
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email@example.com Date: 2015-03-08 19:48 Subject: Re: Tweet from @JoeNBC
Holy Moses. Sent from my iPhone > On Mar 8, 2015, at 5:23 PM, John Podesta wrote: > > Eric Braverman > > JP > --Sent from my iPad-- > firstname.lastname@example.org > For scheduling: email@example.com > >> On Mar 8, 2015, at 4:49 PM, Neera Tanden wrote: >> >> @JoeNBC: A source close to the Clintons tell @ron_fournier to "follow the money" and find the real HRC scandal. http://t.co/lPTQY0L0o4 >> >> I'm hoping someone is keeping tabs on Doug Band. Quote in here is from someone who worked in Clinton Foundation.
Download raw source
Delivered-To: firstname.lastname@example.orgReceived: by 10.25.24.71 with SMTP id o68csp1016347lfi; Sun, 8 Mar 2015 14:48:45 -0700 (PDT)X-Received: by 10.70.135.106 with SMTP id pr10mr45574513pdb.144.1425851322927; Sun, 08 Mar 2015 14:48:42 -0700 (PDT)Return-Path: Received: from na01-bn1-obe.outbound.protection.outlook.com (mail-bn1on0068.outbound.protection.outlook.com. [188.8.131.52]) by mx.google.com with ESMTPS id t5si13125367pda.72.2015.03.08.14.48.41 for (version=TLSv1.2 cipher=ECDHE-RSA-AES128-SHA bits=128/128); Sun, 08 Mar 2015 14:48:42 -0700 (PDT)Received-SPF: pass (google.com: domain of email@example.com designates 184.108.40.206 as permitted sender) client-ip=220.127.116.11;Authentication-Results: mx.google.com; spf=pass (google.com: domain of firstname.lastname@example.org designates 18.104.22.168 as permitted sender) email@example.comReceived: from BN1PR05MB422.namprd05.prod.outlook.com (10.141.58.142) by BN1PR05MB423.namprd05.prod.outlook.com (10.141.58.146) with Microsoft SMTP Server (TLS) id 22.214.171.124; Sun, 8 Mar 2015 21:48:39 +0000Received: from BN1PR05MB422.namprd05.prod.outlook.com ([169.254.5.44]) by BN1PR05MB422.namprd05.prod.outlook.com ([169.254.5.44]) with mapi id 15.01.0099.004; Sun, 8 Mar 2015 21:48:39 +0000From: Neera Tanden To: John Podesta Subject: Re: Tweet from @JoeNBCThread-Topic: Tweet from @JoeNBCThread-Index: AQHQWeFW1d4aFrq/0Uizka61qBCj8p0TGHaAgAAHDZg=Date: Sun, 8 Mar 2015 21:48:39 +0000Message-ID: References: ,In-Reply-To: Accept-Language: en-USContent-Language: en-USX-MS-Has-Attach:X-MS-TNEF-Correlator:x-originating-ip: [126.96.36.199]authentication-results: gmail.com; dkim=none (message not signed) header.d=none;x-microsoft-antispam: UriScan:;BCL:0;PCL:0;RULEID:;SRVR:BN1PR05MB423;x-microsoft-antispam-prvs: x-forefront-antispam-report: BMV:0;SFV:NSPM;SFS:(10009020)(6009001)(377454003)(24454002)(40100003)(19580405001)(76176999)(99286002)(46102003)(110136001)(50986999)(19580395003)(122556002)(54356999)(82746002)(107886001)(66066001)(33656002)(83716003)(86362001)(575784001)(15395725005)(106116001)(2656002)(2900100001)(2950100001)(15198665003)(1720100001)(92566002)(77156002)(450100001)(102836002)(87936001)(62966003)(36756003)(15975445007)(104396002)(19631395001);DIR:OUT;SFP:1101;SCL:1;SRVR:BN1PR05MB423;H:BN1PR05MB422.namprd05.prod.outlook.com;FPR:;SPF:None;MLV:sfv;LANG:en;x-exchange-antispam-report-test: UriScan:;x-exchange-antispam-report-cfa-test: BCL:0;PCL:0;RULEID:(601004)(5005006)(5001009);SRVR:BN1PR05MB423;BCL:0;PCL:0;RULEID:;SRVR:BN1PR05MB423;x-forefront-prvs: 0509245D29Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printableMIME-Version: 1.0X-OriginatorOrg: americanprogress.orgX-MS-Exchange-CrossTenant-originalarrivaltime: 08 Mar 2015 21:48:39.2011 (UTC)X-MS-Exchange-CrossTenant-fromentityheader: HostedX-MS-Exchange-CrossTenant-id: 08d3764b-1fe7-4bfc-a551-4415fd4cfab2X-MS-Exchange-Transport-CrossTenantHeadersStamped: BN1PR05MB423Holy Moses.=20Sent from my iPhone> On Mar 8, 2015, at 5:23 PM, John Podesta wrote:>=20> Eric Braverman>=20> JP> --Sent from my iPad--> firstname.lastname@example.org> For scheduling: email@example.com>=20>> On Mar 8, 2015, at 4:49 PM, Neera Tanden =wrote:>>=20>> @JoeNBC: A source close to the Clintons tell @ron_fournier to "follow th=e money" and find the real HRC scandal. http://t.co/lPTQY0L0o4>>=20>> I'm hoping someone is keeping tabs on Doug Band. Quote in here is from =someone who worked in Clinton Foundation.=20
Did Eric Braverman Seek Asylum with Russia? | Heavy.com
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 18:51
Assistant Managing Editor of Fortune Leigh Gallagher, Carolyn Everson and Eric Braverman attend the Fortune 40 under 40 event in 2010. Now Braverman is the source of rumors about the Clinton Foundation and Russian asylum. (Getty)
Social media has been on fire with rumors that Eric Braverman, former Clinton Foundation CEO, sought asylum with Russia. However, the current rumors all stem from one source that doesn't have a reliable background. Neither Braverman nor his family have yet made a statement about the rumors.
Here's what we know so far.
A rumor recently started that Eric Braverman was seeking asylum with Russia. The source of the rumor, which has been copied and pasted by numerous sources, is a site called WhatDoesItMean.com, written by ''Sorcha Faal and as reported to her Western Subscribers.'' And the rumor has caught like wildfire on social media. According to this report, the Kremlin was presented with an urgent political asylum request from Braverman, who could ''expose the real Hillary Clinton scandal.'' However, ''Sorcha Faal'' has a history of posting articles that make outrageous or sensationalistic claims with little to back them up. Even back in 2007, the conspiracy-focused forum Above Top Secret approached Sorcha Faal stories with skepticism. One poster listed articles written by Faal, which included stories about the U.S. president ordering all civilian protesters to be thrown in jail, Putin ordering attacks on U.S. forces in Iran, and a U.S. ''shoot on site'' order for escaping Americans. Sorcha Faal is a pseudonym and some have suggested her real identity is David Booth. In 2004, WhatDoesItMean.com stated that it was owned by Booth, an ''internationally known psychic.''
In addition, many posts are saying that Braverman's ''asylum'' is related to Gavin MacFadyen's death or murder. However, MacFadyen was not murdered. He died of lung cancer.
Braverman hasn't surfaced on social media since the rumors began and neither he nor his family have made a public statement yet about the rumors. We will update this story as soon as a statement is made.
However, Braverman does have an interesting history of his own. He was once considered the possible source of an anonymous statement made to Ron Fournier ''to follow the money'' and find the real Hillary Clinton scandal, according to an email exchange leaked by WikiLeaks.
In the email exchange (pictured above), John Podesta suggested that Braverman might be that anonymous source. However, Neera Tanden questioned if that was really the case since the source was described as a ''long serving aide'' and Braverman was only with the Clinton Foundation for about 18 months. Podesta then suggested ''Doug or Ira'' as the source of the leaks.
Braverman was brought on as CEO of the Clinton Foundation, but he only lasted about 18 months. Politico wrote an in-depth story about his tenure with a story headlined: ''Eric Braverman Tried to Change the Clinton Foundation. Then He Quit.'' Politico reported that his exit was partially due to a power struggle inside the foundation. At the time that he joined, there were many concerns about the Foundation's fundraising efforts and the acceptance of contributions from foreign governments while Clinton was Secretary of State, Politico reported.
Some have suggested Braverman was the source of the Podesta leaks. However, Braverman resigned from the Foundation in January 2015. Many of the leaked emails are from long after that date.
We'll update this story as we have more information.
Kremlin In Turmoil After Clinton Foundation CEO Requests ''Urgent And Immediate'' Asylum
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 18:50
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October 24, 2016
Kremlin In Turmoil After Clinton Foundation CEO Requests ''Urgent And Immediate'' Asylum
By:Sorcha Faal, and as reported to her Western Subscribers
An extraordinary Security Council (SC) report circulating in the Kremlin today says this morning President Putin was ''officially presented'' with a Main Directorate for Migration Affairs (GUVM) of the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MVD) ''file for review'' relating to a request for ''urgent and immediate'' political asylum requested by an American citizen named Eric Braverman'--who was the former CEO of the Clinton Foundation, and is known as the man who can expose ''The Real Hillary Clinton Scandal''.[Note: Some words and/or phrases appearing in quotes in this report are English language approximations of Russian words/phrases having no exact counterpart.]
Requests for the granting of political asylum in the Federation, this report explains, is regulated by a separate government resolution rather than the Law on Refugees and is issued to those seeking ''asylum or protection from persecution or a real threat of becoming a victim of persecution'' in their home country for ''social-political activities or convictions that do not contradict the democratic principles recognized by the international community and norms of international law'''--and though Russia has the world's highest number of asylum applications, political asylum requests are very rarely granted.
In his apparent knowing of these facts, however, this report continues, Eric Braverman, yesterday (23 October), arrived at the Consulate of Russia in New York City and presented his ''urgent and immediate'' request for asylum on a visa application'--as is ''protocol/custom'' because the Federation does not accept mail or electronic visa applications from residents of the continental United States.
Former Clinton Foundation CEO, and ''Person Under Threat'', Eric Braverman
The Foreign Intelligence Service (FSI) ''highly classified'' Braverman's visa application requesting political asylum, this SC report says, but stunningly admits that his wanting the protection of the Federation was ''directly related'' to the sudden death of Wikileaks founder Gavin MacFadyen that occurred the previous day, 22 October.
Eric Braverman, this report notes, is a current lecturer in the practice of government at Yale University who previously served as a partner at the US-based global consulting firm McKinsey & Company'--and who, in 2013, became the CEO of the Clinton Foundation until his abrupt, and unexplained, leaving this known money laundering criminal organization this past December (2015) just prior to Hillary Clinton announcing her candidacy for president.
Eric Braverman was made the CEO of the Clinton Foundation in 2013, this report explains, after Hillary Clinton's daughter, Chelsea, ''declared war'' on this criminal enterprise after stunning details emerged showing her father, former President Bill Clinton, had raised over $1 billion though the foundation to rebuild 100 villages in India, but only spent $53 million with him and his wife, Hillary Clinton, pocketing the rest.
Fearing this massive scandal would derail her mother's chances of winning the US presidency, this report continues, Chelsea Clinton battled to clean up the Clinton Foundation'--and forced upon it the new CEO Eric Braverman.
By December, 2015, this report notes, Clinton Foundation CEO Braverman's efforts to ''establish normalcy'' within this criminal enterprise completely failed leading to what many believe was his ouster as his contract ran to 2017'--and a shocking campaign of hatred against Chelsea Clinton too as evidenced by a Wikileaks released secret email showing top Hillary and Bill Clinton operatives saying about her ''she is acting like a spoiled brat kid who has nothing else to do but create issues to justify what she's doing because she, as she has said, hasn't found her way and has a lack of focus in her life''.
Though Chelsea Clinton may have, indeed, ''not found her way'' in cleaning up the corrupt Clinton Foundation, this report continues, CEO Braverman was being confronted by an avalanche of it he was unable to stop, or even control'--and as Wikileaks released secret emails prove with the stunning revelation that Hillary Clinton accepted a $12 million ''bribe for favors'' from the King of Morocco, after which CEO Braverman left.
Most shocking of all in this SC report is its detailing through the Wikileaks release of secret Clinton emails that the mainstream US television news giant NBC had previously been warned to "follow the money and find the real HRC scandal'''--but with them being one of Hillary Clinton's ''media propaganda arms'', they have not told the American people about.
This report concludes with an interesting addendum attached by the FSI speculating that Braverman may not actually want asylum as his actions seem more ''reliable/credible'' of a person seeking to ''protect themselves by publicity'' as he did not request (as is common) anonymity from Russian consulate officials'--and has led to turmoil in the Kremlin as to what to do'--with some officials saying it's enough to just release this information without granting asylum, and that should it be granted, would create just another American accusation that Russia is trying to control the outcome of the US election while at the same time Hillary Clinton is using anti-Russia red-baiting at a level not seen since days of McCarthyism.
And though not mentioned in this report, it is, also, interesting to note that in the United States where one of Hillary Clinton's top aides secretly, and stunningly, admitted that the US economy is so bad that ''people are in despair about things are'', and yet another Bill Clinton mistress (nicknamed by the Secret Service as the ''Energizer Bunny'') has been revealed, and the shocking revelation that the Clinton's gave $675,000 to the wife of the FBI official investigating her, and Hillary Clinton being caught saying ''If that f - - - ing bastard wins, we all hang from nooses!'''--the corrupt propagandist American mainstream media continues to outrageously manipulate the polls to show she is winning'--and that we've proved were lies as Donald Trump is poised to win by a landslide, and, likewise, exposed for all to see how manipulating these media monsters really are.
Other reports in this series include:
Putin Issues US Election Theft Warning, Orders Military To Protect Trump ''At All Costs''
Hillary Clinton Destroys America's Free Energy Hopes'--Forever
Russia Names Hillary Clinton As ''Murder Suspect'' In Death Of Top UFO Researchers
Hillary Clinton's ''Sudden Move'' Of $1.8 Billion To Qatar Central Bank Stuns Financial World
LA Detective Suicided To Protect Top Hillary Clinton Donor NBA Superstar Derrick Rose
Video Showing Bill Clinton Rape Of 13-Year-Old Girl Plunges Presidential Race Into Chaos
Maryland Doctor Who Treated Hillary Clinton For Blood Clot On Brain Mysteriously Dies
Red Notice Terror Warning Issued After Hillary Clinton ISIS Spy Captured In Britain
Wikileaks Under ''Dire Threat'' Over Proof Hillary Clinton Destroyed Eye Doctor To Hide Brain Trauma
Russian ''Red Alert'' Issued After Hillary Clinton Labels All American Parents Sex Criminals
Hillary Clinton ''Disappearance'' Leaves Russian Intelligence Experts Puzzled
US Again Ignores Russian Warning As Islamic Terror Hits New York City, New Jersey And Minnesota
Hillary Clinton Makes Millions To Destroy Samsung So Apple Can Sell More iPhones
Putin Issues Global Alert: ''The American Establishment Is Merciless, Donald Trump Could Soon Die''
Hillary Clinton To Make Millions After Obama Orders All Wild Horses In American Killed
Hillary Clinton Placed In Hospital As ''Blackout Of Truth'' Descends Upon America
Concentration Camp Model Created By Hillary Clinton In Africa Warned Is Coming To America
Florida Earthquake Reported Caused By Obama-Clinton Attempt To Destroy Israeli Sub
Hillary Clinton ''Heart Failure Event'' Warned Just Months Away
Putin Asks Obama Why US Media Shutdown Donald Trump Speech At Black Church, Gets No Reply
US Congress To Begin Immediate Impeachment Of Hillary Clinton If She Wins Presidency
Hillary Clinton ''Secret Sexmail'' Destroys Top US Army Commander
Hillary Clinton Colostomy Bag Cover-up Consumes US Media Giants, Puts Debates In Doubt
White House Emails Reveal Largest Plot Ever Discovered To Destroy America
New York Times Hosts ''Top Secret'' Meet To Cover-up Hillary Clinton Health, Destroy Fox News
Putin ''Erupts'' Over Million Dollar ''Spy Payments'' To Hillary Clinton
US Secret Service ''Swarms'' Top Hospitals As Hillary Clinton Brain Surgery Fears Rise
Panic Grips America, Shuts Down NSA, After Russia ''Reveals'' It Has All Hillary Clinton Phone Calls
Hillary Clinton ''Total Terror'' Descends Upon Disabled Mother Who Discovered Her Link To ISIS
Russia Debates Response To Shocking Hillary Clinton Link To Crimea Terror Attack
Father Of Doctor Treating Hillary Clinton For Dementia Mysteriously Dies
Hillary Clinton ''Night Of The Long Knives'' Killing Spree Claims Life Of Attorney Shawn Lucas
Hillary Clinton Gains Millions From Plot Linked To Top US General Fueling War With Russia
Moscow Raid Proves Hillary Clinton Plot To Destroy Boeing, Ship 80,000 US Jobs Overseas
Hillary Clinton Orders ISIS Attack Cover-Up In Germany, American Press Stunningly Obeys
Clinton Threat To ''Destroy Everyone'' Throws Washington Into Chaos
Bush Family Rushes To Hillary Clinton Side After Top UN Official Set To Testify Against Her Found Dead
Husband Of Prosecutor Investigating Bill Clinton For Child Sex Charges Gunned Down
October 24, 2016 (C) EU and US all rights reserved. Permission to use this report in its entirety is granted under the condition it is linked back to its original source at WhatDoesItMean.Com. Freebase content licensed under CC-BY and GFDL.
[Note: Many governments and their intelligence services actively campaign against the information found in these reports so as not to alarm their citizens about the many catastrophic Earth changes and events to come, a stance that the Sisters of Sorcha Faal strongly disagree with in believing that it is every human beings right to know the truth. Due to our missions conflicts with that of those governments, the responses of their 'agents' has been a longstanding misinformation/misdirection campaign designed to discredit us, and others like us, that is exampled in numerous places, includingHERE.]
[Note:The WhatDoesItMean.com website was created for and donated to the Sisters of Sorcha Faal in 2003 by a small group of American computer experts led by the late global technology guru Wayne Green (1922-2013) to counter the propaganda being used by the West to promote their illegal 2003 invasion of Iraq.]
[Note:The word Kremlin (fortress inside a city) as used in this report refers to Russian citadels, including in Moscow, having cathedrals wherein female Schema monks (Orthodox nuns) reside, many of whom are devoted to the mission of the Sisters of Sorcha Faal.]
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They Are Going To Come For You'...Why Are You Helping Them?
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Former Clinton Foundation CEO Missing? : snopes.com
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 18:49
Origin:Since at least October 2016, some social media users have been echoing the belief that former Clinton Foundation CEO Eric Braverman is missing or in peril. Braverman, an attorney, headed the foundation from 2013 until he resigned that position in 2015.
Rumors regarding his whereabouts began swirling after a leaked document published via WikiLeaks showed his name mentioned in e-mails between Clinton staffers who believed he was furtively releasing information about the foundation's financial doings:
Eric Braverman, the Clinton Foundation CEO from 2013 until 2015, has apparently been missing since October. His absence has fueled speculations in the blogosphere but so far has been ignored by the media.
Some speculate, with good reason, that Braverman may have gone into hiding after an email mentioning his name was released by Wikileaks on October 22 of this year. In the March 2015 email exchange, Center for American Progress President Neera Tanden told Clinton campaign manager and confidant John Podesta there was a mole within the Clinton Foundation. Podesta in his reply told Tanden the mole was Braverman.
We found no evidence that Braverman is currently a missing person, nor that he has gone into hiding. The only evidence being proffered in support of this claim is the fact that Braverman has not used his Twitter account since October, but that's hardly compelling since Braver is an infrequent user of that social media platform:
The last evidence of Braverman's public activity was October 12, when he posted his last tweet on Twitter. (Usually he tweets about once a month. His ''husband,'' Neil Brown, hasn't tweeted since August, although he rarely tweets.) I left a voicemail on Braverman's personal phone and sent him an email, but received no response. He is still listed as a lecturer at Yale University and, contrary to some reports, there is a record of his lectures going back several years. I contacted the press office and Braverman's department at Yale and received no response.
The Yale campus has been closed for the holidays, which is likely why no response was received by the writer quoted above. However, Braverman is listed by the university as teaching his "Innovation in Government and Society" class in both the Fall 2016 semester and the upcoming Spring 2017 semester. He also has an active voicemail and e-mail address at the university (but didn't respond to our messages).
We were unable to reach a New Haven, Connecticut, police spokesman, but New York City and Washington D.C. police have no record of a missing person with his name, nor is Braverman listed on NamUs, a national database of missing persons maintained by the Justice Department.
The conspiracy theory that the Clintons have killed or disappeared numerous people they find politically inconvenient has been swirling for decades, but it reached a new fever pitch during the 2016 presidential election. On 24 October 2016, the conspiracy-mongering web site WhatDoesItMean.com started a false rumor claiming Braverman, an attorney and businessman, had applied for asylum in Russia after his name was revealed in a WikiLeaks dump.
sources:Alexander, Rachel. "The Mysterious Disappearance of Former Clinton Foundation CEO Eric Braverman." The Stream. 29 December 2016.
Vogel, Kenneth. "Eric Braverman Tried to Change the Clinton Foundation. Then He Quit." Politico. 1 March 2015.
KKR Rolls Out Petraeus in $4 Trillion Hunt for Family Wealth - Bloomberg
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 17:46
It was an invitation too good to resist.
Matthew McCarthy was asked by KKR & Co. to fly to New York from Ohio, where he manages money for the founders of a consumer-products company. First he had dinner with KKR's billionaire co-founder Henry Kravis. The next morning, he met David Petraeus, the former director of the Central Intelligence Agency and current chairman of the KKR Global Institute at the company's headquarters.
''They didn't really pitch products,'' said McCarthy, 43, whose firm Rockside Capital Partners intentionally stays under the radar. ''They brought out General Petraeus.''
McCarthy is the type of investor that KKR and its private equity competitors including Blackstone Group LP and Carlyle Group LP are increasingly courting. Family offices and their advisers manage an estimated $4 trillion, including for the newly rich in Silicon Valley and China, Midwestern entrepreneurs and old money in Europe.
The money managers are responding by adding staff, holding conferences and offering sweeteners, including reduced fees on investments.
Efforts are paying off. Blackstone, which last year started reaching out directly to family offices and hosting forums for them, has $43 billion of its $310 billion under management from private wealth, more than triple the amount five years ago. Across private equity, family offices account for about 6 percent of capital, up from 4 percent in 2010, according to research firm Preqin.
Industry executives say the percentage should be higher.
''The private wealth side is such an under-tapped segment, and way under-invested in alternatives,'' said Brendan Boyle, Blackstone's senior managing director of private wealth management.
Record ProfitsThe firms are seeking new pools of wealth to lessen their reliance on state and corporate pension plans. They're also reaching out at an opportune time. Globally private equity firms reaped a record $428 billion by selling holdings last year, a 30 percent increase from 2013, according to Preqin.
Cracking the network of rich families isn't easy because it requires uncovering people who don't necessarily want to be sold to, said Lawrence Calcano, a managing partner at iCapital Network, an online marketplace for private equity funds.
''They don't have to buy things, unlike pensions that may need to hit a specific return target each year to fund payouts to retirees,'' Calcano said.
Vetting DealsPrivate equity firms want wealthy families for more than just their money.
Family offices bring expertise in buying companies, usually have fewer regulatory restrictions and can take bigger risks than pensions or endowments, Michael Arpey, a managing director at Carlyle who oversees fundraising, said in an interview.
William Heitin, who works for families including the founders of fitness company Reebok International Ltd. and Stacy's Pita Chip Co., was invited by Blackstone last year to an event at the Waldorf Astoria hotel followed by time in the company's New York headquarters with senior executives.
Many of his clients are entrepreneurs who have built and sold their own businesses so they can help private equity managers vet deals, said Heitin, whose Waltham, Massachusetts-based Windrose Advisors manages more than $2 billion.
Investment Opportunity''We have a client that started and sold a major food company,'' said Heitin, Windrose's chief investment officer. ''If the private equity firm is looking at a deal with a food company, we put them in touch and then there may be a co-investment opportunity for the family.''
Private equity firms -- once they track down family offices -- face intense competition to woo them from both larger and smaller rivals.
BlackRock Inc., the world's largest asset manager, has amplified efforts to serve the group by hosting summits with speakers including its chief executive officer, Larry Fink. The company has more than 20 people dedicated to working with them in the U.S. and has added staff in London, Hong Kong and Australia, said Brian Feurtado, who leads the group for the New York-based firm in the U.S.
''There's been an explosion of family offices,'' Feurtado said. ''It's a very, very vibrant and growing industry.''
Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors this month said it raised more than $1 billion for its latest real estate fund, with half the money from family offices and high-net worth investors.
Many OpportunitiesThere are an estimated 4,000 family offices globally, according to London-based researcher Campden Wealth -- with the latest addition a familiar face. Doug Ostrover, co-founder of Blackstone's GSO Capital Partners unit, announced last week he's leaving to start one of his own.
Heitin's Windrose met with more than 400 investment managers last year and ultimately made just five investments, he said. McCarthy of Rockside passed on investing with KKR in part because the family he represents -- whom he declined to name -- can team with other wealthy investors to buy companies themselves.
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You will now receive the Game Plan newsletterSome private equity firms are enticing family offices to invest with the promise of co-investment opportunities. That's when families invest alongside the firms rather than through a pooled vehicle, and are charged reduced or no fees. While it sounds good to investors who are more sensitive to costs, the offerings may not result in better returns, according to a 2015 study by professors Josh Lerner and Victoria Ivashina of Harvard Business School and Lily Fang of INSEAD.Ramping UpFor Jim Burns, who leads KKR's individual investor business, outreach is just ramping up. KKR hired Burns four years ago from Morgan Stanley's private wealth management unit to build a team focused on sales to the wealthy. Burns hired two people in the past six months to reach more family offices in Europe and Latin America, he said.
''You really have to go door to door,'' he said. ''Most family offices don't necessarily want to be found.''
Timber Sycamore - Wikipedia
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 17:18
Timber Sycamore is a classified weapons supply and training program run by the United StatesCentral Intelligence Agency and supported by various Arab intelligence services, most notably Saudi Arabia's. Launched in 2012 or 2013, it supplies money, weaponry and training to rebel forces fighting in the Syrian civil war. According to US officials, the program has trained thousands of rebels. President Barack Obama secretly authorized the CIA to begin arming Syria's embattled rebels in 2013.
The program's existence was suspected after the US Federal Business Opportunities website publicly solicited contract bids to ship tons of weaponry from Eastern Europe to TaÅucu, Turkey and Aqaba, Jordan. One unintended consequence of the program has been to flood the Middle East's black market with weapons including assault rifles, mortars and rocket-propelled grenades.
US Marines and Jordanian Armed Forces collaborate in Amman, Jordan.Timber Sycamore began in late 2012 or early 2013, and is similar to other Pentagon or CIA-run weapons routing and training programs that were established in previous decades to support foreign rebel forces. The program's principal backers are the United States and Saudi Arabia, but it is also supported by other regional Arab governments, and by the United Kingdom. While Saudi Arabia provides more money and weaponry, the United States leads training in military equipment. The program is based in Jordan, due to that country's proximity to the battlefields in Syria.
According to The New York Times, the program initially allowed US forces to train Syrian rebels in use of military equipment, but not to directly provide the equipment itself. A few months after its creation, it was amended to allow the CIA to both train and equip rebel forces.Salon.com reports that Saudi Arabia has provided billions of dollars in military equipment, and covert financing of rebel forces has also been provided by Qatar, Turkey and Jordan.
Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Turkey and the CIA smuggled thousands of weapons and millions of ammunition rounds to Syrian rebels in 2012 before the program's launch. A classified US State Department cable signed by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton reported that Saudi donors were a major support for Sunni militant forces globally, and some American officials worried that rebels being supported had ties to Al Qaeda.
The existence of Timber Sycamore was revealed by The New York Times and Al Jazeera shortly after Jane's Defence Weekly reported, in late 2015, that the US Federal Business Opportunities website was soliciting contracts to ship thousands of tons of weapons from Eastern Europe to TaÅucu, Turkey and Aqaba, Jordan.
Syrian rebel forces in Aleppo (November 2012)Timber Sycamore is run by the Military Operations Command (MOC) in Amman and provides Kalashnikov assault rifles, mortars, rocket-propelled grenades, anti-tank guided missiles, night vision goggles, pickup trucks, and other weapons to prospective Syrian rebel forces. Many of the weapons are purchased in the Balkans or other locations in Eastern Europe, and then routed to Syrian rebel forces and training camps by Jordanian security services. CIA paramilitary operatives then train Syrian rebels in use of the weaponry. According to The Daily Beast there are approximately 50 vetted rebel groups fighting in Syria that have received weapons or training through the program since late 2012, though the exact number is not known.
According to American officials, the program has been highly effective, training and equipping thousands US-backed fighters to make substantial battlefield gains. American officials state that the program began to lose effectiveness after Russia intervened militarily in the civil war.
Timber Sycamore is distinct from another, discontinued Pentagon program established to train Syrian rebel forces to fight against ISIS.
The program remains classified, and many details about the program remain unknown, including the total amount of support, the range of weapons transferred, the depth of training provided, the types of US trainers involved, and the exact rebel groups being supported. However, The Canberra Times reported that two thousand tons of Soviet era weapons were delivered to rebels as recently as April 2016.
The port in Aqaba, Jordan is an important route for Timber Sycamore weaponry entering Syria.Jordanian intelligence arms salesEditAccording to American and Jordanian officials, weapons shipped into Jordan by the CIA and Saudi Arabia were routinely stolen by Jordanian intelligence officials in the General Intelligence Directorate (Jordan) and sold on the black market. The magnitude of the theft amounted to millions of dollars, and FBI officials state that some of the stolen weapons were later used to kill two American contractors, two Jordanians and one South African at a police training station in Jordan. Arms received via Timber Sycamore have flooded Middle Eastern black markets with heavy weaponry.
Jordanian officials state that Jordanian intelligence officers who stole the program's weapons used the profits to purchase luxury items, with knowledge of superior officers. The thefts were halted after months of complaints by the American and Saudi governments, the program's main backers. According to Jordanian officials, several intelligence officers were fired, but their profits were not confiscated. (In Jordan, the General Intelligence Directorate is second only to the monarchy in power and prestige.) Jordan's minister for state and media affairs Mohammad Al-Momani stated that the allegations were incorrect.
Regional trafficking and ISISEditPrior to the Syrian Civil War, southern Syria and northern Jordan were a conduit for other smuggling operations. The advent of the war transformed the region into a center for smuggling weapons, and the more formal support provided by Timber Sycamore only intensified the scale of smuggling operations on the border. Major smuggling centers include bazaars established at Ma'an in southern Jordan, Sabah near Amman, and in the Jordan River Valley.
An investigation by journalists Phil Sands and Suha Maayeh revealed that rebels supplied with weapons from the Amman MOC sold a portion of them to local arms dealers, often to raise cash to pay additional fighters. Some MOC-supplied weapons were sold to Bedouin traders referred to locally as "The Birds" in Lejat, a volcanic plain northeast of Daraa, Syria. According to rebel forces, the Bedouins would then trade the weapons to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, who would place orders using the encrypted WhatsApp messaging service. Two rebel commanders, and a UK weapons monitoring organization, maintain that MOC-supplied weapons have made their way to Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant forces.
PressEditAccording to Rachel Marsden writing for The Baltimore Sun, the CIA and Saudi intended for Timber Sycamore to allow independent military forces to drive out Syrian president Bashar al-Assad, install a Syrian leader friendly to US, Saudi and Qatari interests, and weaken Russia's influence in the Middle East.
Reporter Paul Malone wrote that weapons delivered by Timber Sycamore might be acquired by al-Qaeda in Syria, comparing the program to CIA support for the Afghan mujahideen, or American weaponry being seized by ISIS in 2014 in Mosul, Iraq.
The International Business Times of Italy has written that corrupt Jordanian intelligence officials facilitated weapons trafficking that supported the Iraqi insurgency after the 2003 US invasion of Iraq. For this reason, according to the paper, the Obama administration was reluctant to approve Timber Sycamore and debated a year before doing so.
Il Giornale has reported that despite the program's secrecy, US Vice President Joe Biden was photographed at the center of Zarqa in March 2015.
PoliticiansEditUS Senator Ron Wyden's office has questioned the program, releasing a statement that "the US is trying to build up the battlefield capabilities of the anti-Assad opposition, but they haven't provided the public with details about how this is being done, which US agencies are involved, or which foreign partners those agencies are working with."
AnalystsEditFormer CIA analyst and Brookings Institute fellow Bruce Riedel has stated that Saudi support for the program has given Saudi Arabia greater say over American policy in the Syrian Civil War.Zero Hedge has compared the smuggling scheme to the ATF gunwalking scandal, because stolen American weapons were later used to kill American contractors.
^ abcdefghiMazzetti, Mark; Younes, Ali (26 June 2016). "C.I.A. Arms for Syrian Rebels Supplied Black Market, Officials Say". New York Times. Retrieved 20 September 2016. ^ abcdBarrile, Andrea (28 June 2016). "Che fine fanno le armi USA ai ribelli siriani?". International Business Times Italy. ^ abcdeMazzetti, Mark; Apuzzo, Matt (23 January 2016). "U.S. Relies Heavily on Saudi Money to Support Syrian Rebels". The New York Times. Retrieved 20 September 2016. ^ abJeremy Binnie, Neil Gibson (8 April 2016). "US arms shipment to Syrian rebels detailed". Jane's Defence Weekly. IHS. Retrieved 3 December 2016. ^ abLister, Charles (7 June 2016). "Al Qaeda Reaps Rewards of U.S. Policy Failures on Syria". The Daily Beast. Retrieved 20 September 2016. ^ abcdefghSands, Phil; Maayeh, Suha (7 August 2016). "Death of a Syrian arms salesman". The National. Retrieved 21 September 2016. ^ abcNorton, Ben (28 June 2016). "CIA and Saudi weapons for Syrian rebels fueled black market arms trafficking, report says". Salon.com. Retrieved 20 September 2016. ^Chivers, C. J.; Schmitt, Eric (25 February 2013). "Saudis Step Up Help for Rebels in Syria With Croatian Arms". The New York Times. Retrieved 18 December 2016. ^ abcMalone, Paul (10 July 2016). "Save us from the Dr Strangeloves". Canberra Times. Retrieved 21 September 2016. ^ abMackler, Jeff (8 June 2016). "US Threatens Syrian War Escalation". Counterpunch.org. Retrieved 20 September 2016. ^ abCordesman, Anthony (1 February 2016). "Creeping Incrementalism: U.S. Forces and Strategy in Iraq and Syria from 2011 to 2016: An Update". Center for Strategic and International Studies. Retrieved 20 September 2016. ^ ab"Jordanian officials sold CIA-supplied weapons to arms dealers: report". Pakistan Today. 27 June 2016. ^Shear, Michael; Cooper, Helene; Schmitt, Eric (9 October 2015). "Obama Administration Ends Effort to Train Syrians to Combat ISIS". The New York Times. Retrieved 20 September 2016. ^ abcArutz Sheva Staff (28 June 2016). "Report: CIA weapons for Syrian rebels sold to arms dealers". Arutz Sheva. ^ abcdeZero Hedge (28 June 2016). "Jordanian Intelligence Has Been Stealing US Arms Intended For Syrian Rebels". Phil's Stock World. Retrieved 22 September 2016. ^ abcdBiloslavo, Fausto (28 March 2016). "Finite sul mercato nero le armi che la Cia ha dato ai ribelli siriani". Il Giornale. Retrieved 22 September 2016. ^Marsden, Rachel (18 April 2016). "Russia and America should unite against Saudi-China alliance". The Baltimore Sun. Retrieved 20 September 2016. ^Haas 1991, pp. 17, 28''29.
(Update Part III): ''Operation Zero Footprint'' '' What We Know About The Benghazi Mission and Subsequent Attack'... | The Last Refuge
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 17:16
As with all complex stories the valuable discoveries come with time.We now have a pretty good understanding of who, what, where, and why surrounding the 9/11/12 attack on the U.S. compound in Benghazi Libya. We are also better positioned to understand why, or perhaps more importantly why not, certain actions were taken before, during, and in the immediate aftermath of the attack itself.
We know from the Bret Baier interview with Hillary Clinton that she was physically located at her 7th floor office in Washington DC on the night of the attack. Unfortunately we also know during the November 2012 Thanksgiving holiday a mysterious fire took place in that building. Well, actually directly above her exact office '' cause undetermined.
A ''fire'' which preceded an unfortunate slip and fall for the Secretary, resulting in a concussion, which led to the discovery of a blood clot, that ultimately delayed her congressional testimony before a Senate Hearing into the events of the night in question.
We know the Libyan uprising began on February 10th of 2011, and we also know that sometime around the end of February 2011 President Obama signed a presidential directive authorizing the State Dept and CIA to begin a covert operation to arm the Libyan ''rebels''.
We know the ''rebels'' were positioned in two strategic places. Benghazi, and the port city of Darnah, both located in Eastern Libya.
We know this covert operation came to be known as ''Operation Zero Footprint'', and fell under the military command authority of NATO not (important to repeat), NOT, the U.S. Military.
We know by the time operation ''Zero Footprint'' began, AFRICOM commander General Carter Ham was removed from OPSEC oversight in the Libyan campaign and NATO commander AdmiralJames G. Stavridis was in charge.
Stavridis was the Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR) at the time of the Libyan uprising. He retired as SACEUR in 2013
In 2011, 57-year-old Stavridis was the perfect pick for NATO Libyan intervention considering he is the son of Turkish immigrants. Turkey played a key role in what might be the most politically dangerous aspect of the events to the White House once the goals changed to redirection of the weapons from Operation Zero Footprint.
We know Operation Zero Footprint was the covert transfer of weapons from the U.S to the Libyan ''rebels''. We also know the operation avoided the concerns with congressional funding, and potential for public scrutiny, through financing by the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
We also know that officials within the government of Qatar served as the intermediaries for the actual transfer of the weapons, thereby removing the footprint of the U.S. intervention.
We know the entire operation was coordinated and controlled by the State Department and CIA. We also know (from the Senate Foreign Relations Benghazi hearings) that ''Zero Footprint'' was unknown to the 2011 Pentagon and/or DoD commanders who would have been tasked with any military response to the 9/11/12 attack '' namely AFRICOM General Carter Ham.
However, it would be implausible to think that then Defense Secretary Bob Gates or Joint Chiefs Chair Admiral McMullen were completely unaware of the operation, this aspect remains murky.
Both Secretary Gates and Joint Chiefs Chair McMullen were in place when Operation Zero Footprint began but retired from their jobs in Sept of 2011, and were replaced by Bob Gates and Martin Dempsey respectively.
Leon Panetta was CIA Director at the beginning of Operation Zero Footprint (March 2011) and was replaced by CIA Director David Petraeus in the fall of 2011 as Panetta replaced Bob Gates and became Secretary of Defense.
However, Panetta (now as Def Sec) and JC Martin Dempsey were the two who initially briefed President Obama on the night of Sept 11th 2012. Leon Panetta definitely had knowledge of the intents of the joint State Dept/Cia mission in Benghazi, Dempsey may not have.
We know the White House appears to have followed ''The Intelligence Oversight Act of 1980'' in informing the congressional ''Gang of Eight'' of Zero Footprint.
The Gang of Eight in 2011 would have included: Speaker '' John Boehner, Minority Leader '' Nancy Pelosi; House Permanent Select Committee on Intel Chairman '' Mike Rogers, and his Democrat counterpart Charles Ruppersberger; Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid; along with Senate Intel Chair Diane Feinstein and her Republican counterpart, Saxby Chambliss.
From Hillary interviews we also know the White House liaison for Secretary Clinton and CIA Director Leon Panetta during Operation Zero Footprint was National Security Advisor To the President, Tom Donilon.
With this information we can assemble a cast of people ''IN THE KNOW'' of Operation Zero Footprint on two specific date blocks. March 2011 through Pre 9/11/12 attack '' and '' Post 9/11/12 attack forward.
March 2011 through Pre 9/11/12 attack: Who knew of Operation ''Zero Footprint''?:President Obama and Vice President Biden (both Dems)Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (Dem)CIA Director Leon Panetta (March 2011 '' June 2011)*CIA Director General David Petraeus (?) (Sept 2011 '' Nov 2012)NATO Commander, James G StavridisWhite House National Security Advisor Tom Donilon (Dem)Speaker of the House John Boehner (Rep)Minority Leader '' Nancy Pelosi (Dem)House Permanent Select Committee on Intel Chairman '' Mike Rogers (Rep)Minority House Intel Committee '' Charles Ruppersberger (Dem)Senate Minority Leader '' Mitch McConnell (Rep)Senate Majority Leader '' Harry Reid (Dem)Senate Intel Chair '' Diane Feinstein (Dem)Minority Senate Intel Committee '' Saxby Chambliss (Rep)[State Dept] U.S. Libyan Ambassador '' Chris Stevens[State Dept] U.S. Asst Secretary of State '' Andrew Shapiro[State Dept] Senior Head of U.S. Weapons Office '' Mark AdamsAlong with whomever inside each nation's state government that was involved in either the finance (UAE), or the logistics (Qatar).
Obviously the ''know'' crowd would include the ultimate end destination users, ''The Libyan Rebel Commanders'':
Rebel Leader (Islamic Fighting Group) Abu Sufian Ibriham Ahmed Hamuda Bin Qumu '' Darnah Brigade '' Ansar Al ShariaRebel Leader (Islamic Fighting Group) Abu Khattala '' Commander of an Islamist militia group called the Abu Obaida bin Jarrah Brigade (17th Feb Brigade) Benghazi '' Ansar Al Sharia*NOTE* Both of these individuals were labeled as officially recognized State Dept. terrorists in December of 2013. Khattala recently having been arrested.
In addition, the ''political face'' of the Libyan Transitional Government Justice Minister Mustafa Abdel Jalil, should also be included in this list of people who knew of operation Zero Footprint while it was underway.
Justice Abdel Jalil served as the international face of, and spokesperson for, ''the rebels'' in 2011/12. He worked closely with Chris Stevens and highly visibly with Secretary Hillary Clinton '' However, in my opinion '' after extensive research- Jalil was a total patsy. He was paid well to present a comfortable face of the movement, but once Gaddaffi was killed Jalil was quickly dispatched.
This Brings us to who knew about ''Operation Zero Footprint'' post Benghazi 9/11/12 attack:To wit you can easily add:
CIA Director General David PetraeusAdjunct, and Interim, CIA Director '' Mike MorrelU.S. Attorney General '' Eric HolderPresident Obama Advisor and now Chief of Staff '' Denis McDonoughPresident Obama Advisor and now Treasury Sec '' Jack LewPresident Obama Advisor and now National Security Advisor '' Tony BlinkinFormer UN Ambassador and now Senior Nat Sec Advisor '' Susan RiceChief White House Communications Director '' Ben RhodesFocusing on the post 9/11/12 team for a moment:
This photo was taken on 9/11/12 at 1:28am Benghazi time. [7:28pm DC] Following a one hour phone call between POTUS, V-Potus, and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Jack Lew (far right) was Obama's Chief of Staff. Donilon and McDonough had just left Tommy Vietor in the situation room to update POTUS in the Oval Office. POTUS and VPOTUS had just hung up the phone.
PART II '' We know McDonough and Donilon were in the immediate loop on the night of 9/11/12 because they were photographed updating President Obama at 7:30pm in the Oval Office along with a curious Jack Lew who was Chief of Staff at the time.In addition we know from former White House National Security spokesperson Tommy ''dude'' Vietor, that President Obama was not in the situation room where Vietor and his boss Tom Donilon were keeping up on events.
Here's where it gets interesting:
Leon Panetta was the CIA Director when Operation Zero Footprint was authorized and began, but he left the CIA about 4 months later (June 30th, 2011) and was replaced by General David Petraeus (August/Sept 2011).
Under this principle you can see that General Petraeus had ZERO liability for the origin of the Benghazi weapons deals '' it was a joint State Dept/CIA program already being conducted when Petraeus arrived. If it blew up, it was not his political problem.
We know that during the summer of 2012 ''a whistleblower'' popped up and gave House Republican Leader Eric Cantor a tip about CIA Director General Petraeus being in an extramarital affair with a reporter named Paula Broadwell; along with rumors Petraeus may have shared classified information with Broadwell during pillow talk etc.
We also know that Eric Cantor told AG Eric Holder and FBI director Robert Mueller about the claim and Mueller began an investigation of Petraeus in the Summer of 2012 before the Benghazi attack in September.
However, we also know that neither Holder nor Mueller (nor Cantor) informed anyone in congress this investigation of Petraeus was taking place. That investigation included Broadwell turning over her computer to the FBI in the same summer, and later a search of her home which did reveal confidential information supposedly leaked from Petraeus.
Sometime in October of 2012 Director of National Intelligence James Clapper had a conversation with Petraeus urging him to leave.
Immediately after the election of 2012 CIA Director David Petraeus resigned (Nov 9th) and interim CIA Director Mike Morrel took over. This is why Petraeus never testified to the Senate, and Morrel took his place.
We also know this timely switch was beneficial to both the Clinton and Obama camps because Morrel was more politically connected to them than Petraeus.
Given the risks of exposure to both ''Operation Zero Footprint'', and worse, the buy-back/redirection to Syria, it's understandable the risk to Clinton that Petraeus carried. However, Petraeus was not of any risk himself; maybe Leon Panetta would be, but not Petraeus '' who, it's important to add, came from the Defense Department to the office of CIA.
Petraeus's replacement, interim CIA Director Mike Morrel, and White House Communications Director Ben Rhodes, were the two men who constructed the infamous ''Susan Rice'' talking points.
After Morrel testified to congress about the CIA involvement around Benghazi, and the issues of terrorism vs. Islamic movie (happy squirrel chase) etc. Morrel was replaced at the CIA by John Brennan.
We know that both Hillary Clinton and CBS immediately hired Mike Morrel. CBS News President David Rhodes -who hired Morrel- is the brother of the White House's Ben Rhodes; who Morrel coordinated the Clinton friendly, albeit controversial, talking points with.
While it may seem suspect to jump to conclusions, the fact that Eric Holder did not inform either Intelligence Committee of the FBI Petraeus investigation -which is generally standard procedure- lends plausible suspicion to an outline that the events were used as leverage to remove Petraeus; and all of the subsequent risk he represented.
If you accept that Petraeus's knowledge of, but non-involvement in, ''Operation Zero Footprint'' represented a potential risk to Hillary and Obama; you'd have to admit that Mike Morrel was by far the more White House friendly person talking about the CIA involvement around the joint State Dept/CIA Benghazi objectives.
Also, it would be disingenuous to ignore the fact Morrel's loyalty therein was rewarded financially.
Lastly, one of the more slippery people to pin down on the Benghazi attack, and subsequent issues, has been Leon Panetta. If you think about Panetta's role in the origin of Operation Zero Footprint his comment avoidance makes perfect sense.
Trey Gowdy needs to subpoena Panetta for the Special Committee.
OK, sorry that was more than a moment '' but was needed.Now back to Libya 2011/2012 and the Rift Between State/CIA and DoD/Pentagon over the arming of the ''Rebels''. THIS IS REALLY QUITE IMPORTANT because it explains how far out Hillary Clinton had put herself in this covert op ''Zero Footprint''.
A few reminder articles will outline and refresh why the White House kept DoD and The Pentagon at arms length throughout their covert operation:
['...] defense leaders in Washington [March 2011] slammed the brakes on the extent of US help to the rebels. Top officials said that some country other than the US should perform any future training and equipping of the Libyan opposition groups. Under withering congressional probing and criticism of what was described as an ill-defined mission to aid a rebel force that officials know little about, Robert Gates, the US defense secretary, sketched out a largely limited role for the US military going forward.
Gates and Admiral Mike Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told members of the House Armed Services panel that many other countries have the ability to train and support the rebels. ''My view would be, if there is going to be that kind of assistance to the opposition, there are plenty of sources for it other than the United States,'' said Gates. ''Somebody else should do that.'' Gates and Mullen told Congress that future US participation will be limited and will not involve an active role in airstrikes as time goes on. (link)
From a New York Times article about the same hearing -AND- the discussion of the CIA involvement. Again, remember this is 2011 '' you have Secretary Gates, Joint Chiefs Mullen, and CIA Director Panetta:
2011 ['...] Gates and Mullen were testifying before the House and Senate Armed Services Committees in the wake of revelations that small teams of CIA operatives are working in Libya. Gates declined to comment on the CIA activities in Libya. US officials have acknowledged that the CIA has sent small teams of operatives into Libya and helped rescue a crew member of a US fighter jet that crashed.
The CIA's precise role in Libya is not clear. Intelligence experts said the CIA would have sent officials to make contact with the opposition and assess the strength and needs of the rebel forces in the event Barack Obama, the US president, decided to arm them. (link)
In hindsight we are now fully aware that unknown to both Mullen and Gates -at the time they were speaking- was President Obama having authorized Operation Zero Footprint several weeks earlier, and Panetta carrying it out.
The State Dept (Hillary) and CIA (Panetta) were now in the execution mode of the covert op.
We now know against the March/April 2011 backdrop of growing information about al-Qaeda's presence within the rebel units '' there was a genuine difference of opinion on whether even getting involved was a good idea.
The Defense Department (Gates, Mullen) was saying no, the State Department (Clinton, Rice), was saying yes.
Remember too, this covert operation was going to require NATO Admiral James Stavridis to allow the weapons into Libya. So lets look at what he was quoted saying around the same timeframe as Mullen and Gates, *knowing Stavridis was one of the actual key figures to make the weapons delivery possible*:
2011 '' ['...] Now, as the White House and NATO continue to debate the possible ramifications of arming the Libyan opposition, the Haqqani network-linked Afghan commander says Libyan al Qaeda affiliates seem to be more ''enthusiastic'' about the war against Gaddafi every day.
And from what the Afghan Taliban commander has seen, there appears to be more than ''flickers'' of al Qaeda's presence in Libya, the description given by NATO commander Admiral James Stavridis. (link)
There is Stavridis playing down the possibility of al-Qaeda ideology within the make-up of the Islamic Fighting Group '' which is important because by the time this quote was attributed Stavridis was already part of the team coordinating the shipments.
Also, remember R2P? This March/April 2011 timeframe is when ''Responsibility To Protect'' came up as a justification for our engagement. Samantha Power, Susan Rice, Hillary Clinton all wanting to fully support ''the rebels''.
Ultimately Obama/Jarrett (The White House) agreed with Hillary Inc (State Dept); hence ''Zero Footprint'' got the nod '' well, let's be really accurate: it ''sort of'' got the nod.
Think about it. President Obama authorized arming the Libyan rebels, but the covert nature of Zero Footprint actually reflects the political filter through which all Obama White House decisions are made. A White House team that always looks for an escape hatch in case any decision is ever publically wrong.
If the rebels were al-Qaeda, the covert op lends plausible deniability.
Isn't it strange how in 2014 hindsight you can clearly see exactly what we now know as the ''Benghazi narrative''; the use of their exact escape hatch because they were al-Qaeda, and it did go horribly and publically wrong.
PART III '' Operation Zero Footprint Becomes Political and Legal Risk
It should be noted, and actually emphasized, that Operation Zero Footprint, at least in 2011, was not illegal. Indeed, all indicators are that President Obama followed his constitutional responsibility as he carried out his executive authority.
We know in late February 2011 President Obama signed a Presidential Finding Memo authorizing the State Department and CIA to engage in actions within Libya to identify a course of action.
We know in March 2011 when Hillary Clinton (State Dept) and Leon Panetta (CIA) constructed ''Operation Zero Footprint'' that President Obama approved the covert action and then informed the Gang of Eight of the weapons transfer operation.
Both of those known facts speak well to the Executive Office following a legally outlined process. This does not, however, dismiss the concern, which became the reality, that the action itself was terribly flawed and horridly imprudent.
During March, April and May 2011 there was enough intelligence information flowing to the White House informing them of exactly who would be the beneficiaries of U.S. Libyan involvement and specifically providing weapons. It did not take long to identify the Benghazi and Darnah ''rebels'' were actually affiliates of al-Qaeda.
While no-one reporting in 2011 was aware of Operation Zero Footprint, there were literally hundreds of media reports showcasing the ideology of the Libyan ''rebel'' uprising. Indeed there were numerous reports in mainstream media outlets of al-Qaeda fighters (numerous factions) flowing to Libya to oust their life-long nemesis, Gaddaffi.
From a policy standpoint it will have to be left up to historians to pore over the facts and ultimately decide what was *this* White House goal in the entire region.
Ben Ali removal -Tunisia- seemed OK to the administration, Obama and Clinton.Hosni Mubarak removal -Egypt- seemed even more ok to Obama and Clinton.Both of the above were viewed as potential sources for favorable policy outcomes. Indeed the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt -and election of President Morsi- did not seem to be a concern for the White House.
However, when you get to Gaddaffi's removal -Libya- you see a serious split between ideologies within the U.S. political class as Obama/Clinton actually pushed the outcome. The U.S. defense department saying they were apprehensive about this outcome, and Obama/Clinton going ''all in'' for Gaddaffi ouster with French President Sarkozy.
The same interventionist Obama/Clinton motivation was evident with Syria's Assad as yet another uprising surfaced in yet another Mid-East nation '' again in March/April 2011.
We know on October 20th 2011 Libyan Leader Muammar Gaddaffi was finally captured, then killed by ''the rebels''.
From the standpoint of ''regime change'' operation Zero Footprint was a success.
The Libyan Transitional National Council was now in control. Well, maybe in charge, or, well, sort of.
The TNC (pictured below 4 days later) may have been the face of Libya the Obama/Clinton team wanted to portray. But they were merely just that, a face.
We know Eastern Libya was then (2011), and is now (2014), a hotbed of radical Islam controlled by the Libyan Islamic Fighting Groups, the very people who benefitted from the arms that were part of Zero Footprint.
We know by the Fall/Winter of 2011 the U.S. State Dept and CIA were joined and trying to re-secure the same weapons they provided in the Spring/Summer.
December 2011 '' New York Times:
''Assistant Secretary of State Andrew J. Shapiro raised the American desire to arrange a purchase program in a meeting this month with Libya's new defense minister, according to American officials familiar with the proposal.
The United States has committed $40 million to secure Libya's arms stockpiles, much of it to prevent the spread of Manpads. No budget has been designed for a purchase program, and the price to be paid for each missile and its components has not been determined, the official said. (link)
We know from a speech delivered by Asst. Secretary of State Shapiro in Feb of 2012 the actual program to recapture the Zero Footprint weapons began in August of 2011 about two months before Gaddaffi was killed:
''Once the stalemate broke and the fighting rapidly shifted in the TNC's [Libyan Transitional National Council] favor in August, we immediately deployed a State Department expert from the MANPADS Task Force to Benghazi.
Mark Adams, who you will hear from shortly on the panel, is the head of our MANPADS Task Force and spent considerable time on the ground in Libya.
['... ] The initial primary objective was to reach an agreement with the TNC to set up a MANPADS control and destruction program that would enable us to set up what we call our Phase I efforts.
Phase I entailed an effort to rapidly survey, secure, and disable loose MANPADS across the country. To accomplish this, we immediately deployed our Quick Reaction Force, which are teams made up of civilian technical specialists.''
We know those ''civilian technical specialists'', being talked about in August 2011, were contractors, CIA contractors, hired by the State Department to recapture the weapons '' some of which they provided as a specific consequence of Operation Zero Footprint.
If the story ended there it would be bad enough. A flawed policy, a secret mission arm the Libyan ''rebels'' without a great deal of thinking through the longer term consequences. A flawed policy with political consequences.
But when you think about the larger picture you understand why the details of the covert weapons operation Zero Footprint were so tightly guarded among select members of Congress (the Gang of Eight), the CIA (Panetta), the State Department (Clinton) and the White House (Donilon).
Each of them was trying to manage a covert operation that would expose a U.S. policy decision to arm al-Qaeda, the Muslim Brotherhood and other Islamist militias.
But that's only ''IF'' the story ended there, in Libya, at the end of 2011 into the beginning of 2012. It didn't, the decisions got worse '' much worse.
The uprising in Syria was only a few months behind the uprising in Libya. Arguably if the timing were reversed you could ponder that Assad would have met Gaddaffi's fate, and Gaddaffi would be as alive today as President Assad.
Whichever rebel group got the attention of the R2P crowd was sure to be the first to get assistance. The Obama R2P Doctrine is so tenuous, and so lacking in political principle, it's subject to change based on the political whims of capitol hill at any given moment.
The Libyan ''rebels'' got all the weaponry love '' the Syrian ''rebels'', not-so-much.
Enter Hillary Clinton. As she reiterated vehemently to Greta Van Sustern during a recent interview, it was Hillary who wanted to help the Syrian rebels when no-one else wanted to assist them. Secretary Hillary Clinton wanted early and direct interventionist action in Syria to topple Assad just like Gaddaffi.
Obviously consequences from the first covert weapons mission in Libya made a stark case for not repeating it in Syria. Another huge factor against helping the FSA was Israel. Ultimately Israel could not afford to be put into such a risky position if Syrian rebel forces were given arms that ultimately might be used against them.
There's no way congress, in an election year, would approve of funding Syrian rebels against the possibility of it hurting Israel; And the White House was not about to do a known and official covert operation which had a great potential to go sideways, and become far too politically dangerous. 2012 was an election year.
Unless of course, you're a Clinton.
Who wanted to aid Syria more? President Obama or Hillary Clinton? That is a question for later year historians. Regardless of how the idea came up, we know a decision was made to do it, and to do it covertly and illegally.
Arming the Benghazi Darnah rebels was, well, stupid. It was actually stupid, and politically stupid, but it was not illegal.
Arming jihadist fighters in Syria without congressional approval, and without official covert notification laws being followed, *WAS* illegal.
Everything Iran-Contra was -and was not- can be rolled up with a big exclamation point.
We know the basic set up to arm the Syrian rebellion was generally not too complex.
Turkey would be used as an intermediary, and the U.S. had Sunni friends in Saudi Arabia -who were more than willing to see Assad removed- and financially assist in arming the Syrians without too great a concern for what could happen to Israel.
For Obama/Clinton to get weapons to the Syrians, without going through congress, would involve buying back the weapons already floating around from Operation Zero Footprint and redirecting them to Syria through Turkey.
The Saudis would be a willing financier if the State Dept needed additional money to facilitate the transfers.
We know Ambassador Chris Stevens set up a formal U.S. Embassy consulate in Tripoli around May 26th of 2012. And we know the State Dept and CIA set up their joint operations in Benghazi around the same time.
The official U.S. State Dept presence was vacated on Feb 25th of 2011 when the embassy personell were evacuated. Stevens was re-establishing the diplomatic office and acting as Ambassador to Libya during the 2012 reconstruction phase.
What we did not know at the time was that Chris Stevens was also acting as the facilitator for U.S. arms shipments OUT OF LIBYA, through Turkish diplomatic couriers and into Syria.
A very strong argument can easily be made that Chris Stevens was a CIA operative inside the State Department. Many people within the State Department are CIA personnel using the State Dept as part of their visible cover.
In Eastern Libya June, July, August 2012 '' Obviously the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, Ansar Al Sharia, aka 17th Feb Brigade, and all of their commanders knew of the U.S. Benghazi weapons programs. Both the 2011 distribution, and the 2012 repurchase.
Considering the redeployment to Syria '' for the most part the Benghazi and Darnah brigades would have been in alignment with their Jihadist brethren in Syria being the beneficiaries of the shipments.
But there was in 2011/2012 '' an ideological rift between the newly emboldened Muslim Brotherhood and the 'more initially moderate' Free Syrian Army (FSA). As the Libyan conflict rolled on through the summer of 2011 more al-Qaeda elements flocked from other engagements into the Syrian fight. Moderates were replaced by extremists.
By the time Hillary and Chris Stevens were working on support for Syria, Summer 2012, the radical Syrian opposition was embedded inside the FSA. Arguably they were the majority element. The Syrian opposition had three al-Qaida arms operating within it. Including one that also operated in Libya:
Jund al-Sham, which is made up of al-Qaida militants who are Syrian, Palestinian and Lebanese;Jund al-Islam, which in recent years merged with Ansar al-Islam, an extremist group of Sunni Iraqis operating under the al-Qaida banner and operating in Yemen and Libya;Jund Ansar al-Allah, an al-Qaida group based in Gaza linked to Palestinian camps in Lebanon and Syria.It would be into this eclectic mix of Jihadist ideologues that any diverted U.S. arms would flow. It's no wonder that Senator John McCain was so confused when he was calling them ''moderates'' in 2012/2013. Almost no-one knew the severe elements in Syria would rise to the surface and become the modern ISIS now capturing all of the global attention.
And'.... If you just realized'.... Yes, ISIS or ISIL currently on the march in Iraq, came from Syria, fought in Syria and more than likely was armed by the U.S. inside Syria; and trained by the same CIA operatives used by the State Dept to send Syria weapons from Benghazi and Darnah back in Libya.
If Operation Zero Footprint in Libya was stupid, arming the Syrian branches of al-Qaeda two years after the FSA was thoroughly corrupted by al-Qaeda, is infinite degrees beyond stupid.
But that's hindsight for ya'..... or as Secretary Clinton would say ''Whether they were, '... at this point, what difference does it make?''
By June of 2012 the New York Times was reporting that the CIA is operating a secret arms transfer program to Syria that sounded exactly like the re-diversion plan Clinton developed with Panetta/Petraeus. According to the Times suddenly, there is: '''...an influx of weapons and ammunition to the rebels.''
We know on September 5th 2012 '' A Libyan flagged ship called Al Entisar (''The Victory'') docks in the Turkish port of Iskenderun. It is carrying 400 tons of cargo including many weapons such as rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs) and shoulder-launched surface-to-air missiles (MANPADS) destined for Syrian rebels 35 miles away from Iskenderun.
The ship's captain told the Times of London that the Muslim Brotherhood and the Free Syrian Army broke into a fight over the arms.
This ongoing research outline is going to extend well beyond several thousand words. In the interests of absorption I will cut it off here and begin again below with the next update in approximately 12 to 24 hour increments.
Readers have shared their preference for this staggered process as the best for being able to read, understand and analyze the complexity within rather challenging research discussions.
TRANS ANATOLIAN NATURAL GAS PIPELINE PROJECT | TANAP
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 17:07
TANAP will run from the Turkish border with Georgia, beginning in the Turkish village of T¼rkg¶z¼ in the Posof district of Ardahan, will run through 20 provinces including Kars, Erzurum, Erzincan, Bayburt, G¼m¼Åhane, Giresun, Sivas, Yozgat, KÄ±rÅehir, KÄ±rÄ±kkale, Ankara, EskiÅehir, Bilecik, K¼tahya, Bursa, BalÄ±kesir, anakkale, TekirdaÄ and Edirne until it ends at the Greek border in the Ä°psala district of Edirne. From this point, the TAP Pipeline will connect to convey natural gas to European nations. Two off-take stations are located within Turkey for national natural gas transmission, one located in EskiÅehir and the other in Thrace. With 19km running under the Sea of Marmara, the main pipeline within Turkey reach a total of 1850km, along with off-take stations and aboveground installations, with their numbers and properties detailed below:
7 compressor stations,4 measuring stations,11 pigging stations,49 block valve stations and2 off-take stations to supply Turkey's national natural gas network
Serena Shim - Wikipedia
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 16:59
Serena ShimBornOctober 10, 1985Detroit, MichiganDiedOctober 19, 2014(aged 29)Suru§, ÅanlÄ±urfa Province, TurkeyCause of deathAssassinatedResting placeBourj el-Barajneh, LebanonNationalityUnited StatesOther namesSerena Ali SuhaimEducationAmerican University of Science and TechnologyAlma materClarenceville High SchoolOccupationTelevision journalistYears active2006''14EmployerPress TVReligionIslamChildren2Serena Shim (Arabic: Ø"ÙØ±ÙÙØ§ Ø¹ÙÙ Ø"ØÙÙ
'',Serena Ali Suhaim; October 10, 1985 '' October 19, 2014) was an American journalist for Press TV. While covering the Siege of Kobanª as a war correspondent, she was allegedly killed in a car crash. Her employer called the accident "suspicious" as she was killed two days after Turkey allegedly accused her of spying.
After her education, she worked for a media company in Beirut. Shim covered reports for Press TV in Lebanon, Iraq, Ukraine and Turkey.
Her death took place only days after she published a story detailing the said Turkish government use of humanitarian aid marked trucks to transport weapons and ammunition to ISIL-ISIS factions that opposed the Assad administration's government in Syria. It should be noted the there are other news sources detailing ISIL-ISIS exporting oil through Turkey as well. Turkey is also said to have accused Serena Shim of spying. There is some question as to if she was transported directly to the hospital on the day of the "accident." It has been said the reason given for not investigating her death is because the US government does not investigate the death of citizens in other countries, true or not.
Covering the siege of KobanªEdit
Suru§, ÅanlÄ±urfa Province, Turkey is shown relative to Istanbul, DiyarbakÄ±r, and the capital city Ankara.In October 2014, Shim was assigned by Press TV to Turkey on a mission to cover the ISIL conflict. She was based in Suru§, ÅanlÄ±urfa Province, Turkey, which is a rural area near the Syrian border.
Accusation of spying by TurkeyEditOn October 17, Shim told Press TV that the Turkish National Intelligence Organization (MÄ°T) had accused her of "spying". She stated that it is "probably due to some of the stories she had covered about Turkey's stance on the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant militants in Kobanª". She had reported that ISIL militants being smuggled over the Turkish border into Syria on trucks bearing the symbols of NGOs like the "World Food Organisation". Shim, said on air she's "a bit frightened" by what MÄ°T "might use against me."
She died on 19 October 2014 in a car crash on her way back to her hotel. She was returning to Suru§ with her driver and camera operator Judy Irish in a rental car when the car collided with a cement mixer. Shim survived the crash, but died of a heart attack after being taken to an undisclosed location. Her co-worker Irish was injured and taken to Suru§ State Hospital.
The vehicle driver was subsequently arrested.Press TV disputed this, alleging that both driver and vehicle "have disappeared" and her death is "suspicious".
ÅanlÄ±urfa Governor Ä°zzettin K¼§¼k denied Press TV's claims and called them "completely baseless" and "attempts to put Turkey in a difficult situation". K¼§¼k said a detailed statement would be made after the investigations.
Evidence backs claim that Hillary armed ISIS
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 16:58
NEW YORK '' Documents made public by the Washington watchdog group Judicial Watch and separately by Wikileaks Julian Assange back up Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan's assertion on Tuesday that U.S.-led coalition forces have given support to terror groups, including ISIS in Syria.
In an interview with Democracy Now's Juan Gonzlez on July 25, Assange said the thousands of documents released by Wikileaks through its ''Hillary Clinton Email Archive'' contain some 1,700 emails that connect Clinton to al-Qaida and ISIS in both Libya and Syria, demonstrating Clinton supplied weapons to ISIS via Syria.
''So, those Hillary Clinton emails, they connect together with the cables that we have published of Hillary Clinton, creating a rich picture of how Hillary Clinton performs in office, but, more broadly, how the U.S. Department of State operates,'' Assange said in the interview.
''So, for example, the disastrous, absolutely disastrous intervention in Libya, the destruction of the Gadhafi government, which led to the occupation of ISIS of large segments of that country, weapons flows going over to Syria, being pushed by Hillary Clinton, into jihadists within Syria, including ISIS, that's there in those emails.''
The Obama administration's betrayal is exposed in ''See Something, Say Nothing: A Homeland Security Officer Exposes the Government's Submission to Jihad,'' by former DHS officer Philip Haney and WND Editor Art Moore!
Erdogan said that rather than supporting Turkey, the West was backing ISIS and groups Turkey classifies as terrorist organizations, the Kurdish Peoples' Protection Units and Democratic Union Party, who work with the U.S. on the ground in Syria.
''They are supporting all the terror groups,'' Erdogan said.''It's quite clear, perfectly obvious,'' he said, offering to provide proof in pictures and video.
See the Assange interview on Hillary's emails:
In response to the Assange interview, Snopes.com, a left-leaning ''fact checking'' website, argued that Assange released no emails that proved she ''deliberately and knowingly'' arranged for the United States to sell weapons to ISIS.
Snopes.com, however, did agree Clinton ''in her role in shaping the United States' actions regarding the Libyan intervention and the ongoing Syrian civil war'' may have negligently allowed arms to fall into the hands of ''jihadists.''
As a consequence, Snopes judged Assange's claim a ''mixture of true and false,'' insisting Clinton's negligence in allowing U.S. weapons to fall into the hands of ISIS terrorists in Syria was not the same thing as ''selling weapons to ISIS.''
However, since 2011 WND has reported that documents released by Judicial Watch and Wikileaks showed Clinton's State Department engineering the clandestine transfer of weapons from Libya to Syria that ended up in the hands of terrorist groups aligned with ISIS and al-Qaida.
Ambassador Stevens involved in weapons shipping
In May 2015, WND reported Judicial Watch made public more than 100 pages of previously classified Department of Defense and Department of State documents implicating the Obama administration in a cover-up to obscure the role Clinton and the State Department played in the rise of ISIS.
Why today's terrorism is never-ending by Lt. Col. James Zumwalt
The documents, obtained by Judicial Watch in a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit, provide evidence that U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens was involved in shipping weapons from Benghazi to support the al-Qaida-affiliated militias fighting the Bashar al-Assad regime in Syria, effectively arming the Sunni jihadists who morphed into ISIS.
Judicial Watch also noted the DOD documents contain the first official documentation that the Obama administration knew that weapons were being shipped from the Port of Benghazi to rebel troops in Syria.
An October 2012 DOD report confirmed:
Weapons from the former Libya military stockpiles were shipped from the port of Benghazi, Libya to the Port of Banias and the Port of Borj Islam, Syria. The weapons shipped during late-August 2012 were Sniper rifles, RPGs, and 125 mm and 155mm howitzers missiles.
During the immediate aftermath of, and following the uncertainty caused by, the downfall of the (Qaddafi) regime in October 2011 and up until early September of 2012, weapons from the former Libya military stockpiles located in Benghazi, Libya were shipped from the port of Benghazi, Libya to the ports of Banias and the Port of Borj Islam, Syria. The Syrian ports were chosen due to the small amount of cargo traffic transiting these two ports. The ships used to transport the weapons were medium-sized and able to hold 10 or less shipping containers of cargo.
A DIA document made public by Wikileaks included an inventory of weapons that closely matches the inventory listed in the Department of Justice criminal case against arms dealer Marc Turi:
The weapons shipped from Syria during late-August 2012 were Sniper rifles, RPG's and 125mm and 155mm howitzers missiles. The numbers for each weapon were estimated to be: 500 Sniper rifles, 100 RPG launchers with 300 total rounds, and approximately 400 howitzers missiles [200ea '' 125mm and 200ea '' 155 mm.]
The heavily redacted document does not disclose who was shipping the weapons.
Judicial Watch noted an August 2012 Defense Intelligence Agency report, written at time the U.S. was monitoring weapons flows from Libya to Syria, said ''the Salafist, the Muslim Brotherhood, and AQI are the major forces driving the insurgency in Syria.''
Judicial Watch commented that the sectarian direction of the war in Syria was predicted to have dire consequences for Iraq, which included the ''grave danger'' of the rise of ISIS.
The DIA document noted:
This creates the ideal atmosphere for AQI [al Qaeda Iraq] to return to its old pockets in Mosul and Ramadi, and will provide a renewed momentum under the presumption of unifying the jihad among Sunni Iraq and Syria, and the rest of the Sunnis in the Arab world against what it considers one enemy, the dissenters. ISI could also declare an Islamic state through its union with other terrorist organizations in Iraq and Syria, which will create grave danger in regards to unifying Iraq and the protection of its territory.
Judicial Watch said some of the ''dire consequences'' are blacked out, but the DIA presciently warned one such consequence would be the ''renewing facilitation of terrorist elements from all over the Arab world entering into Iraqi Arena.''
Clinton sought to arm Free Syria Army
In an Aug. 17, 2014, email released by Wikileaks, Clinton, after her service as secretary of state, suggested to John Podesta: ''At the same time, we should return to plans to provide the FSA [Free Syria Army], with some group of moderate forces, with equipment that twill allow them to deal with a weakened ISIL, and stepped up operations against the Syrian regime.''
Andrew C. McCarthy, a senior policy fellow at the National Review Institute, tied the statement to the Obama administration's plan to equip Syrian fighters, either the Free Syrian Army or ''other moderate forces,'' to a U.S.-led operation in coordination with Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey to steer weapons to Syria, ''ostensibly to fight both Assad and ISIS.''
McCarthy noted, however, that Clinton's 2014 memo to Podesta asserted the Saudi and Qatari governments both supported ISIS and other ''radical Sunni groups.''
In September 2013, WND reported Secretary of State John F. Kerry and Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., had relied on the work of Elizabeth O'Bagy, a 26-year-old graduate student, to argue in testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that the Obama administration should send weapons to arm the ''moderate'' Free Syria Army to oppose the Assad government in Syria.
WND detailed the extensive lobbying efforts conducted in Washington to advance the FSA as a ''moderate group,'' despite clear evidence the al-Nusra Front '' operating under the FSA umbrella '' had been declared a terrorist organization by the State Department; has pledged allegiance to al Qaida's top leader, Ayman al-Zawahiri; and was the group of choice for foreign jihadis pouring into Syria.
in September 2014, WND reported O'Bagy, who had been fired from her job with a Washington think-tank after her exposure by WND as a source for Kerry's argument that the FSA is a ''moderate'' rebel force in Syria, had also arranged for McCain a trip to Syria in May 2013, during which senator met with Abdul Hakim Belhaj, who was then represented as a leader of the FSA.
In November 2013, WND reported trusted Libyan expatriates had claimed Belhaj was at large in Libya. The expatriates identified Belhaj as an al-Qaida operative, noting he was at the top of a list of Libyan terrorists banned by the European Union from obtaining entrance visas and was the principal organizer of the terrorist attack in Benghazi on Sept. 11, 2011, in which Ambassador Stevens was murdered.
Clinton arms deals tied to Turi prosecution
McCarthy tied Clinton's 2014 comment to Podesta regarding the FSA to a weapons shipment from Benghazi to Turkey for eventual transit to Syria that occurred just days before the Benghazi attack. McCarthy noted the September 2012 weapons shipment was coordinated by Belhaj, ''an al-Qaeda-affiliated jihadist with whom Stevens had consulted during the uprising against Qadhafi.''
McCarthy further noted the September 2012 shipment of weapons had been arranged by Marc Turi, a professional arms dealer who had been indicted by federal prosecutors in Phoenix for supplying arms to Libyan ''rebels'' during the 2010-2011 war.
McCarthy commented the Obama administration dropped the criminal case one day before a court-ordered deadline to disclose information about its efforts to arm Muslim rebels.
''Turi's lawyers had explained his defense to the court: His arms shipments, destined for the Libyan rebels and channeled through Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, were part of a U.S.-authorized effort,'' McCarthy wrote. ''Turi further asserts that the Obama administration was subsequently complicit in the shipment of weapons from Libya to 'rebels' in Syria, who are fighting the Assad regime.''
Fox News senior judicial analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano, in an interview with WND, insisted the DOJ was forced to drop the Turi prosecution because federal prosecutors were convinced his defense would expose Clinton's secret arms running to the radical al-Qaida-affiliated militia in Libya in 2011.
Video proof of arms transfer
WND published visual evidence Clinton's State Department secretly provided weapons to Islamic jihadists in Libya to support the U.S.-backed NATO bombing in 2011.
In one of the videos published by WND, Moussa Ibrahim, Gadhafi's information minister and official spokesman, displayed to reporters in 2011 a cache of weapons and ammunition seized from a ship from Qatar intercepted by the Libyan Coast Guard off Libya's coast.
The video matched a report of Qatari military equipment seized in mid-April 2011. Anthony Bell and David Witter of the Institute for the Study of War, in their October 2011 publication ''The Libyan Revolution: Stalemate & Siege, Part 3,'' said the shipments ''consisting of bulletproof vests, helmets and ammunition were bound for the rebels besieged in Misrata.''
''Though his shipment was unannounced, Qatari Prime Minister al-Thani alluded to arming the rebels just days before the crates appeared,'' they wrote.
Turi caught in Clinton's secret war
WND reported in July 2015 Napolitano's concerns that Turi was being set up for prosecution to continue a cover-up of the secret war on Libya.
The background of the Turi prosecution, while complicated, is at the heart of an allegation made by Napolitano in a syndicated column published July 1, 2015.
Napolitano charged Clinton, while secretary of state, lied when Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., asked her in a Senate committee hearing if the State Department had run guns illegally to Libyan rebels.
An interview of Turi by Fox News intelligence correspondent Catherine Herridge and Fox News senior executive producer Pamela Browne led Napolitano to review emails to and from State Department and congressional officials during the years when Clinton was secretary of state.
Napolitano concluded it's ''beyond a reasonable doubt and to a moral certainty'' that Hillary had conducted a ''secret war'' shipping arms to Libya illegally in 2011.
Turi used as a pawn
Napolitano detailed for WND his understanding of the events behind the Obama administration's decision to run a clandestine war against Gadhafi.
''Secretary Clinton decided she had to get rid of Gadhafi because she wanted to take credit when she ran for president for being the government official responsible for liberating Libya,'' Napolitano said.
Clinton knew she would never get a declaration of war from Congress or authorization under the war powers resolution enacted over President Nixon's veto in 1973, he asserted.
''So, Secretary Clinton persuaded Obama to use CIA intelligence assets who would be exempted from the war powers resolution even if they wore military fatigues in Libya.''
Napolitano explained that to use intelligence assets under the war powers resolution, Clinton needed the cooperation and informal consent of the ''Congress within the Congress,'' referring to the House Committee on Intelligence and the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, which are sworn to secrecy.
''The result is the president of the United States, the secretary of state and about two dozen people in the House and Senate, including the leadership of both parties in both houses, can authorize a clandestine war using CIA assets,'' he said.
''And this is exactly what President Obama and Secretary Clinton did.''Having obtained the authorization of the House and Senate intelligence committees, Clinton began a secret gun-running operation to Libya, using a provision in the United Nations-imposed arms embargo on Libya that allowed the foreign minister of participating countries to grant an exception to the embargo, Napolitano said.
The irony of Turi's prosecution is that he never actually shipped any weapons to Libya. But in prosecuting Turi for planning to ship weapons, Turi's attorneys argued in his defense that the Obama administration was planning to blame Turi for the arms shipment should Secretary Clinton's clandestine arms dealings ever become public.
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Jeremy Bash - Wikipedia
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 16:35
A native of Arlington, Virginia, Bash graduated from the Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School before attending Georgetown University, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, served as the Editor-in-Chief of the student newspaper, The Hoya, and graduated magna cum laude. In 1998, Bash graduated with honors from Harvard Law School, where he served as an editor of the Harvard Law Review. Following his graduation, he clerked for the Honorable Leonie Brinkema, U.S. District Judge in the Eastern District of Virginia. Bash was admitted to the bars of Virginia, Maryland, DC, the Eastern District of Virginia, and the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals.
In 2000, Bash served as the National Security Issues Director for the Presidential campaign of Al Gore and Joe Lieberman. In that role, he advised the candidates, their surrogates, and staff on national security policy matters, including the Middle East peace process, counter-terrorism, non-proliferation, missile defense, and trade. From 2001 to 2004, Bash was in private law practice with the firm O'Melveny & Myers in their Washington, D.C. office. His practice focused on congressional investigations, regulatory matters, and litigation. He then served as chief minority counsel on the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence of the U.S. House of Representatives and as an aide to California Representative Jane Harman, the committee's top Democrat.
He is a former term member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He has spoken at conferences or as part of courses for Harvard Law School, Georgetown Law School, American University, and the National War College.
He was interviewed by The New York Times in regard to an October 5, 2013 U.S. Special Operations Forces raid in Tripoli, Libya that resulted in the capture of Abu Anas al-Libi, a terrorist target who was indicted in the 1998 United States embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania. Bash also appeared as a commentator on PBS NewsHour and was interviewed on ABC World News regarding both the Tripoli raid and an aborted raid in Somalia to capture an al-Shabab commander known as Ikrimah.
In 1998, he married Dana Bash, formerly Dana Schwartz, who has become a prominent journalist. They divorced in 2007. On October 7, 2014 he requested permission, via email, to make a phone call to John Podesta. John Said "No".
King of Morocco 2$8mm bribe, he's next
To resolve the crises of Nigeria as a nation state '-- Opinion '-- The Guardian Nigeria
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 19:46
Nigeria's Post-Colonial Crises and the Civil War of 1967-1970 taught the Nation State of Nigeria the following, namely:
. That progress in socio-economic growth, progress, security and prosperity of nations are driven not necessarily by natural resources endowment but more importantly by the developments in modern science and technology (S&T);
. That a Nation State needs real unity and real peace to develop its economy and to make real economic progress; and
. To actualise the foregoing, a nation must have (a) Political Stability (b) Selfless Leadership Elite with vision for modern economic development (c) National Political cohesion and (d) Nationalism, Patriotism, Pride and Love of the Citizens for the Nation.Most of the above attributes seem to be in short supply in the nation-state of Nigeria, particularly, since the end of the Civil War of 1967-1970.
What conclusions can we as a nation draw from the Civil War and the current endemic political travails of Nigeria to enable us (Nigerians) build a united nation state? :These, I believe include the following, namely:. Understanding that in 1914, Nigeria became a nation state, albeit, by forced amalgamation or cobbling together of various independent and disparate ethnic nationalities and entities (Hausa, Igbo, Yoruba, Fulani, Kanuri, Ibibio, Tiv, Edo, Nupe, Ijaw, Uhrobo, etc.) numbering well over 200 (some with large, some with small populations) but with different cultures, religions, languages, and in specific geographical areas around the River Niger, by the virtue of British Imperial Power and Colonial diplomacy,
. The Colonial Authorities obviously and deliberately did not develop S&T as domestic instrument for modern economic growth and development, prosperity and security of the Nigerian State, possibly to avoid hurting the British home industry and economy or making Nigeria a prosperous modern competitive industrial and politically united nation, which would have compromised the British main objectives of Nigeria's colonization;
. From 1914-1960, therefore, Nigeria was sustained as a nation state by virtue of British imperial power and colonial diplomacy but remained in fact a poorly structured and an unstable nation state ''on paper, a geographical expression and or an artificial creation'' whose political unity and economy was sustained by imported foreign developed (mostly British) industrial, scientific, engineering and technological infrastructure and security apparatus;
. In 1914 ''1960 Nigeria existed and was led and administered as a conflicting nation state by three majority (population and size of territory) ethnic nationality political power blocks of Northern Region of Nigeria, Eastern Region of Nigeria and Western Region of Nigeria respectively, led by Hausa-Fulani, Igbo, and Yoruba ethnic nationalities respectively in which other various different minority ethnic nationality political power blocks such as Kanuri, Ibibio, Tiv, Edo, Ijaw, Nupe etc. were subsumed and ignored, Each of the three majority population power blocks is also plagued internally by diverse cultural, religious and differing ethnic nationalities;; Nigeria's political leadership elite also entered into political independence and took over from British Colonial Authorities without first fashioning out a vision of how to run a multi-ethnic nationality nation state of Nigeria in unity, equity, harmony, prosperity and welfare of all its citizens and the absence of a true Federal State Structure required for a multi-national nation state has remained till date, the Nigeria's albatross for true unity, peace and economic progress in the new nation state;
. From 1960-1966, in the absence of political ideology and a clear vision of national political development, the most powerful political power block namely Northern Nigeria Political Power Block (Northern Nigeria People's Congress (NPC) in alliance with the Eastern Nigeria Political Power Block, (National Council of Nigeria and Cameroun (NCNC) as junior partner kept Nigeria together as a nation and administered it, albeit, as a factionalised nation state with a very powerful Western Nigeria (Yoruba) Political Power Block (Action Group) in opposition to the government in power;
. The purposeful thoughts, vision and foresight of Nigeria's icons of anti-colonial struggle for the liberation of Nigeria and for a united Nigeria completely eluded the emerging Nigeria's political leadership elite at the dawn of political independence in 1960 which saw power and self-enrichment as the essence of governance;. The apparent manipulation of the Northern Nigeria Political Power Block with the apparent support initially of its junior partner in government, namely the Eastern Nigeria Political Power Block, to break and reduce the power and influence of the opposing Western Nigeria Political Power Block in 1963 led to a major political crisis in Western Region of Nigeria and the emergence of Military Rule in Nigeria in 1966 and a near disintegration of Nigeria as a nation state. This is the beginning of the current endemic and complex political crisis.
. On January, 15, 1966, the Federal Government of Nigeria was overthrown by a military insurrection in which a majority of Igbo officers were seriously implicated. The Northern Nigeria-led government was replaced by an Igbo ethnic National Military Officer who took over the control of the new Federal Military Government (FMG) and who followed up by abolishing the existing relatively True Federal Structure of Government and introduced a quasi Unitary Government that rendered the semi-autonomous Federating Regions into mere Administrative Units of the Igbo led FMG, from January, 15 to July 29, 1966;.
The above military action was interpreted as a move by the Eastern Nigeria (Igbo-led) Political Power Block to take over political power from Northern Nigeria (Hausa-Fulani-led) Political Power Block. This again is the main cause of the conflict between the former allies in government against the former Yoruba Political Power Block formerly in opposition to the Federal Central Government.
On July 29, 1966, the Military Officers of Northern Region of Nigeria undertook a revenge counter-coup d'etat against the Igbo-led Federal Government and replaced the latter with a Northern Nigeria Military government, which retained the quasi Unitary Administration of Nigeria inherited from the Igbo-led FMG till date.
So from January 15, 1966 till May 30, 1967 Nigeria was kept together as a nation, this time, not by the virtue of British Imperial Power, nor by the factionalised civilian constitutional democratic administration but by the military rule and military dictatorship now led by Northern Nigeria military officers,By May 30, 1967, the Eastern Nigeria Political Power Block seceded from Nigerian Federation to form its own nation state.
From 1967-1970, the two Political Power Blocks of Northern and Western Nigeria, this time working together, engaged in a ferocious military campaign and intense war against the seceding Eastern Nigeria Power Block, conquered the latter and forced it by military conquest back into Nigeria in January 1970.
Oragwu, was Head of Research /Coordinator of Technological Services in the now defunct State of Biafra, 1967-1970
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Nigeria, Morocco wealth funds sign pipeline deal to bring natural gas to Europe - Natural Gas | Platts News Article & Story
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 19:41
* Latest initiative to 'strengthen exports to Europe'* New project comes amid stalled Trans-Saharan Pipeline* Nigeria has 5.1 Tcm of gas reserves: BP
A new pipeline project to bring Nigerian gas through Africa to Europe has been launched by the sovereign wealth funds of Nigeria and Morocco, the latest attempt to link Nigeria's vast gas resources with the lucrative European gas market.
The Trans-African Pipeline will be developed jointly by the Moroccan sovereign wealth fund Ithmar Capital and the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority, the partners said Monday.
Nigeria has huge gas reserves totaling some 5.1 Tcm, according to the latest BP Statistical Review of World Energy, but few options for monetizing the gas other than its LNG export facility.
Article continues below...
A previous pipeline project -- the Trans-Saharan Gas Pipeline -- was agreed on between Nigeria's NNPC and Algeria's Sonatrach in 2002, and an intergovernmental accord signed in 2009.But there has been little progress on the project since, given the huge distances involved and the high cost of developing such a vast pipeline project.
EUROPEAN NATGAS EXPORTSOn Monday, the governments of Nigeria and Morocco announced they would jointly develop a new regional gas pipeline "connecting the two countries, bringing the resources of Nigeria to Morocco, its neighbors and Europe."It is unclear exactly the route the pipeline would take, though the developers foresee it following the coast.
"The pipeline will run an estimated 4,000 km along the west coast of Africa and the countries through which it runs and the exact route will be determined as the project moves forward, based on further research," a spokesman for Ithmar told S&P Global Platts.
"Morocco and Nigeria are eager to work with all countries in West Africa to ensure their economies and people benefit from the project," he said.
Following the coast, however, would mean a route that would need the participation of up to 13 other countries.
The shortest route to Europe would be via Niger and Algeria to Morocco for further pipeline supply to Spain.
The spokesman said the routing had yet to be finalized, but that talks were expected with countries in the region.
The two state wealth funds announced the signing of a strategic partnership agreement and a memorandum of understanding that will see the two countries cooperate on bilateral investment for the first time in recent history.
"The project will strengthen energy exports to Europe, linking Nigerian gas to the European energy market through Morocco," Ithmar said.
It is also designed to support the creation of industrial hubs to attract foreign investment into West Africa.
The previously planned 30 Bcm/year Trans-Sahara link was designed to run for 1,037 km from Nigeria to the border with Niger, before running 841 km from Niger to Algeria and then another 2,303 km across Algeria to Spain.
--Stuart Elliott, firstname.lastname@example.org--Edited by Jonathan Loades-Carter, email@example.com
Is the Nigeria-Morocco direct gas pipeline project just another "pipe dream"? - Ventures Africa
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 19:40
On Saturday, the Nigeria's minister of foreign affairs announced a partnership with the Moroccan government to construct a gas pipeline that will connect Nigeria, Morocco and other African countries to Europe. The agreement was reached during Morocco's King Mohammed VI visit to Nigeria.
The cost and duration of the project, though unknown, still pose great challenges as the project seems to be unviable considering the current predicaments prevailing in the continent.
A similar project''Trans-Saharan Gas Project (TSGP)''was proposed by Algeria in 2002. The Algerian government entered into an agreement with the Nigerian authorities to construct a gas pipeline worth $30 billion that would cross the Sahel through Niger and Algeria to reach the gates of Europe on a route of 4,300 km.
Abandoned Trans-Saharan Gas Project which was supposed to be from Nigeria to Algeria.The project was, however, unsuccessful. There were speculations that the project had been cancelled as a result of financing constraints but that is the fa§ade. Russia and the European Union were competing against each other to finance the project and, in the end, both parties backed out.
In 2009, Russian gas group, Gazprom signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to invest at least $2.5 billion in a joint venture with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC). The European Union, through its European Investment Bank, was interested in financing the project.
What, then, caused the failure of the project?
There had been security concerns in both countries. Nigeria's gas production has experienced a massive decline over the years as a result of incessant attacks on the gas pipeline by militants in the Niger Delta region. The gas shortages have led to a reduction in electricity generation within the country. The shortages have also led some multinational companies to explore alternative sources to generate electricity such as coal.
The rise of insurgency attacks in some regions within Nigeria and Algeria increased the fears concerning the project. The terror the Boko Haram group and Islamic State created increased the fears as to whether the pipelines would be secure in those regions.
The Nigerian government's credibility seems wobbly reviewing their history in executing other regional pipeline projects. The West African Gas Pipeline (WAGP), which connects Nigeria's gas reserves to Togo, Benin, and Ghana, was initially proposed in 1982 but took over 25 years before it could commence its operations. WAGP has since its commencement remained inconsistent in its gas supply to its clients.
West African Gas PipelineMorocco's plan
The Nigerian-Morocco gas pipeline is expected to connect with the West Africa Gas Pipeline (WAGP) through five to six countries. WAGP already connects Nigeria's large reserves to three West African countries. Estimating the length, the pipeline is expected to be longer and more expensive than the TSGP as it is to go through a longer route. Also, including five to six countries in this project compared to just two in TSGP portrays the slimmer chance of seeing this project accomplished.
The demand of the gas pipeline is highly required as some European countries have created a feud against Russia's proposed Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline construction. The European Union is increasingly looking for alternative ways to reduce their dependency on Russia, which supplies up to half of the European's Union gas demands.
The Nigeria-Morocco pipeline project could be achievable if the partner countries get the full cooperation of all states in which the gas pipeline would be conveyed. From the outlook, the pipeline would be based offshore, making the project prone to less vandalisation but full approval of these countries would aid the smooth implementation of the project.
Nigeria and Morocco would require a high level of investor confidence to execute the pipeline project. Morocco has gained investor confidence over the years with its rapid growth in infrastructure. The recently launched Ashish J. Thakkar Global Entrepreneurship Index ranked Morroco as the African country with the best infrastructure. From their end, seeking finance might not be a problem. Nigeria, on the other hand, has seen a decline in investor confidence level as massive divestments have been made in 2016 by foreign investors from the country. The country has also seen a decline in economic growth with its third quarter Gross Domestic Product (GDP) contracting by 2.24 percent.
The stakes of the project are high but exigent. The odds have to play in the favour of Nigeria and Morocco. With the two partners at the opposite ends of the pipe, a flow has to be created to ensure this partnership is effective and achievable.
Nigeria and Morocco sign gas pipeline deal to link Africa to Europe | Article [AMP] | Reuters
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 19:38
ABUJA Dec 3 Nigeria and Morocco have signed a joint venture to construct a gas pipeline that will connect the two nations as well as some other African countries to Europe, Nigeria's minister of foreign affairs said on Saturday.
The agreement was reached during a visit by the Morocco's King Mohammed to the Nigerian capital Abuja, Geoffrey Onyema, the minister, said, adding that the pipeline project would be designed with the participation of all stakeholders.
"In this agreement both countries agreed to study and take concrete steps toward the promotion of a regional gas pipeline project that will connect Nigeria's gas resources, those of several West African countries and Morocco," Onyema told reporters in Abuja.
Onyema said the project aimed to create a competitive regional electricity market with the potential to be connected to the European energy markets.
No timeline was given for when the pipeline construction work will start and how much it will cost.
Nigeria is rich in hydrocarbons but produces little electricity, making its industries uncompetitive. Its economy now faces a recession caused by a plunge in crude prices.
Militants in its oil producing heartland of the Niger Delta have also blown up pipelines in a quest for a bigger share of Nigeria's oil wealth, which has cut crude output this year.
"Nigeria and the Kingdom of Morocco also agreed to develop integrated industrial clusters in the sub-region in sectors such as manufacturing, Agro-business and fertilizers to attract foreign capital and improve export competitiveness" the foreign minister added. (Reporting by Felix Onuah; Writing by Chijioke Ohuocha; Editing by Toby Chopra)
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Morocco and Nigeria announce Trans-African Gas Pipeline | Rigfinder Oil Equipment | UAE
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 19:35
Morocco and Nigeria will jointly develop a new regional gas pipeline connecting the two countries, bringing gas resources of Nigeria to Morocco, its neighbours and Europe.
Morocco and Nigeria will jointly develop a new regional gas pipeline connecting the two countries, bringing gas resources of Nigeria to Morocco, its neighbours and Europe.
The Trans-African Pipeline project was announced during a Royal visit to Nigeria by His Majesty, King Mohammed VI, of Morocco.
The project will be supported through a new collaboration between Ithmar Capital, the Moroccan sovereign wealth fund, and the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA). The two funds announced the signing of a Strategic Partnership Agreement (SPA) and a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), which will see their countries cooperate on bilateral investment
Under the SPA, Ithmar Capital and NSIA have committed to jointly pursue investment in strategic sectors including food security, renewable energy and infrastructure. The SPA also commits the two institutions to share knowledge and expertise relating to the extractives sector, collaborate on research and best practices, and provide policy guidance in order to strengthen both countries' capacity to manage natural resources.
The project will strengthen energy exports to Europe, linking Nigerian gas to the European energy market through Morocco.
The Nigerian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr Geoffrey Onyema, stated, ''This South-South open platform will accelerate the structural transformation of the national economies of the region, thereby putting the entire region on a higher growth path. The two Heads of State agreed to set up a Bilateral Coordination Body to monitor this important project and commended such a strategic cooperation in Africa.''
The new collaboration between Morocco and Nigeria is intended to set a model for South-South cooperation and act as a catalyst for African economic opportunities. It aligns with the King of Morocco's regional strategy, in which he has declared that Africa is the top priority in Morocco's foreign policy and that the Kingdom will contribute to economic projects that directly improve the lives of people in the region. This includes on projects related to the energy sector.
Source: Pipeline ME
Greek government and economy must fall for the TAP pipeline
Emails Expose Hillary & Insider Trading on Greek Bailouts? | Armstrong Economics
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 20:17
The Clinton scandals will provide endless TV entertainment, which may be more like a reality TV show with the Kardashians. Most people think it will be Donald Trump. Trump may give us some frank insults that are badly needed now and then to keep people focused, but the Clintons will provide never-ending intrigue and scandals.
Now we have a new scandal involving Hillary's hedge fund manager and son-in-law, Marc Mezvinsky, who is the husband of Chelsea Clinton. In 2012, he set up a Greek bond fund with a special arrangement with none other than Goldman Sachs expecting a bailout to boost Greek debt values. Yep! Now hedge fund manager Marc Mezvinsky placed a huge bet on a Greek economic recovery based upon the political expectation of a bailout for Greece going through. His Secretary of State mother-in-law allegedly seems to have been sharing classified information to help her son-in-law.
In 2012, Mezvinski's $325 million basket of offshore funds under the Eaglevale Partners lost tens of millions of dollars after predicting that bailouts of the Greek banking system would pump up the value of the country's distressed bonds. His exclusive Greek debt fund suffered near-total losses with inside political info. Newly released emails from 2012 show that Hillary and a Clinton Foundation consultant, Sidney Blumenthal, shared classified information about how German leadership viewed the prospects for a Greek bailout. Clinton also shared ''protected'' State Department information about Greek bonds with her husband who allegedly passed it on to their son-in-law who set up none other than a Greek bond hedge fund.
Sharing such sensitive information with friends and family, once again, shows how the Clintons work. Of course, that is illegal and the SEC would normally throw such a hedge fund manager in prison and strip him of his license for none other than Insider Trading. You can bet he too will get a pass by the SEC as will Goldman Sachs if there is any connection with the Blumenthal emails. This just never ends.
Well Chelsea is a director of the Clinton Foundation. Hillary says she is the only one with a plan to deal with Wall Street, which we must assume is to give them inside information to trade with to offset any pretend fines while making the fines tax deductible (nobody else gets that privilege). On the upside, if they keep betting that government deals and manipulations will win, well they may go broke because the free markets are not always acting as the insiders expect. Oops! Sorry about those Greek bonds.
Just maybe, Bill meeting with Lynch was not about the Hillary indictment, which is already fixed and makes no sense. The Justice Department is ALSO investigating the Clinton Foundation. The Sidney Blumenthal emails are revealing a different layer. Bill may have been trying to head off that investigation into the foundation, which could taint New York Bankers and other family members. The assumption it was all about the Hillary indictment is probably nonsense for there is no way they would have allowed Hillary to run for president if there would have been an indictment. That has all been fixed by Obama.
There is the Blue Code where cops do not rat on cops; well, Democrats have the same code in this case that has become notorious. If there was any possibility of an indictment, she would have to be on bail. Come on. There is no possible way Hillary will get indicted. That has been fixed to allow her to run. Obama will not torpedo his own party.
From the outset, Hillary was not well liked. Biden was under pressure to jump in, but as Hillary gained support, she was also creating her own get-out-of-jail free card. If she could muster enough popular support, it would become impossible for a Democrat to indict her. She could have sent a missile to kill the Pope and claimed it went off course as it was meant for IS, and it would be acceptable. All you have to do is listen to people like Cory Booker defend Hillary to see through the total BS.
This Bill Clinton meeting with Lynch was about something else. My bet is that the meeting was about the foundation and what is emerging from the Blumenthal emails.
Philippe Reines - Wikipedia
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 21:27
2000-2003EditReines was a member of the 2000 Gore-Lieberman presidential campaign's rapid response operation. Reines remained involved in former Vice President Gore's public activities after Gore left office in 2001, going on to serve as Gore's teaching assistant and de facto spokesperson at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, when Gore taught the course "Covering National Affairs in the Information Age," in spring 2001. In December 2002 he contributed material for Gore's appearance on Saturday Night Live.
After the 2000 Presidential election was decided, Reines returned to New York and spent a year as Deputy Communications Director for the New York City Council before joining Speaker Peter Vallone's mayoral bid. He later worked briefly as Communications Director for U.S. Representative Jane Harman (D-CA).
Beginning in July 2002 Reines served as press secretary for Hillary Rodham Clinton, during her term as New York senator. Over the next several years he became an increasingly trusted adviser to Clinton, and a key adviser on Iraq issues.
In 2003, Reines helped orchestrate the media campaign and seven-month book tour that accompanied the release of Living History, Senator Clinton's bestselling memoir of her time in the White House. As the primary point of contact between Senator Clinton's official office and the national press corps, Reines served as one of Senator Clinton's primary spokesmen, and was responsible for many of her interviews and media appearances.
2008-2012EditDuring the 2008 Presidential Campaign, in addition to his role as press secretary and senior advisor to Hillary Clinton, he served as a spokesman for Chelsea Clinton, traveling with her throughout the primaries.
When Clinton took up her post as Secretary of State, in January 2009, Reines was appointed as her senior advisor. By 2010 he had been named Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Strategic Communications.
A scathing piece by Politico in March 2009 highlighted Reines's responsibility for one of Clinton's early gaffes as Secretary of State '' an erroneous Russian translation of the word "Reset" on a gag button presented to Clinton's Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov.
In July 2009, Reines struck a deal with journalist Marc Ambinder to provide an advance copy of a Hillary Clinton speech to Ambinder in exchange for positive reporting on Clinton.
In its December 2009 profile of Hillary Clinton, Vogue magazine described him as Clinton's "Michael Clayton-esque image man and fixer." In March 2010, The Washington Post'sWhoRunsGov, a site offering user-contributed political profiles, moderated by an editorial team, included a profile of Reines as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State, in its "Power 25: Press" series; and in July 2010, Politico included Reines in their "50 Politicos to Watch" list, categorizing him as a "fixer".
In September 2012, Reines vigorously took issue with CNN over its use of Ambassador to Libya J. Christopher Stevens's diary, which CNN found at the site of an attack on the US consulate in Benghazi which killed the ambassador. CNN fired back by suggesting that the State Department was "attacking the messenger" because of "questions about why the State Department didn't do more to protect Ambassador Stevens." Some media critics sided with CNN and questioned whether Reines' real grievance was indeed with CNN's disrespect for the privacy wishes of Stevens' family; BuzzFeed published an email exchange between Reines and Michael Hastings where the Deputy Assistant Secretary of State told Hastings to "Fuck off." Reines also took issue with a reporter's questions in December 2012, calling a Fox News correspondent's question about his boss "absolutely asinine."
2016EditIn the debate preparations for Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election, Reines has been standing in for Donald Trump. CBS commented that Reines is "known for his bullish, combative personality--traits that often mirror Trump's personal debate style".
^ ab"Decision Makers". National Journal. Archived from the original on 2010-08-06. Retrieved 2016-10-30. ^ ab"Reines, Philippe I. (2016). Who's Who in America. New Providence, NJ: Marquis Who's Who LLC. Retrieved via Credo Reference database, 2016-10-30.^ ab"Bureau of Public Affairs Front Office Changes" [press release] (May 26, 2011). U.S. Department of State. "Cheryl Benton remains as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Outreach and Philippe Reines as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Strategic Communications." Retrieved 2016-10-30.^Zach Fryer-Biggs. "Clinton Allies Join Bush Alum To Form New Consulting Group". Defense News. Retrieved 2013-09-04. [dead link]^Juliet Eilperin (2013-09-03). "Former Hillary Clinton aides form bipartisan consulting firm". The Washington Post. ^ abcdParnes, Amie (April 16, 2008). "Top Clinton hand shields Chelsea". Politico.com. Retrieved 2012-09-25. ^Gerth, Jeff; Van Natta, Don (2007). Her Way: The Hopes and Ambitions of Hillary Rodham Clinton. New York: Little, Brown. ISBN 978-0-316-00784-9. Chapter 19, "The Club". "Working on the Gore-Lieberman 2000 presidential campaign, [Reines] honed his skills in reconnaissance, communications, and 'digging up the dirt' on the opposition."^Horowitz, Jason (June 12, 2011). "Longtime keeper of Hillary Clinton's image has forged a loyal badge of his own". Washington Post. "When Gore lost and took a teaching gig at Columbia University, Reines followed, acting as his teaching assistant and de facto spokesman." Concerning the title and date of Gore's course: "Former Vice President Al Gore to Teach at Columbia's School of Journalism" (January 25, 2001; updated September 18, 2002). Columbia News. Columbia University. Retrieved 2016-10-30.^ abcFinn, Robin (July 15, 2005). "Speaking, and Sweating, for the Senator". New York Times. Retrieved 2016-10-30.^"Philippe Reines, Founder & Managing Director". Beacon Global Strategies. Retrieved 2016-10-30.^Smith, Ben (March 23, 2009). "Reines storm: Clinton conflict brews". Politico. politico.com. Retrieved 2016-10-30. ^Trotter, J. K. (February 9, 2016). "This Is How Hillary Clinton Gets the Coverage She Wants". Gawker. gawker.com. Retrieved 2016-10-31.^Fredericks, Bob (February 10, 2016). "How a Clinton staffer 'blackmailed' reporters". New York Post. Retrieved 2016-10-31.^"Editor's note" (February 2016). In: Ambinder, Marc (July 15, 2009), "Hillary Clinton's 'Smart Power' Breaks Through". The Atlantic. Retrieved 2016-10-31.^"Magazine". Vogue. Retrieved 2012-09-25. ^"Philippe Reines [user-contributed profile; moderated by Rachel Van Dongen]". whorunsgov.com. The Washington Post Company. Archived from the original on 2010-03-25. Retrieved 2016-10-31. ^"The Fixers". Politico. July 23, 2010. Archived from the original on 2012-02-27. Retrieved 2016-10-31. ^"State Department: CNN 'indefensible' on late ambassador Christopher Stevens's diary - Mike Allen". Politico.Com. Retrieved 2012-09-25. ^Hillary Clinton Aide Tells Reporter To "Fuck Off" And "Have A Good Life"BuzzFeed 24 September 2012^Erik Wemple (2 January 2013), Fox News producer was scolded by State DepartmentThe Washington Post^Haberman, Maggie; Healy, Patrick (24 September 2016). "Hillary Clinton Aide Playing Donald Trump in Mock Debates". The New York Times. ^Flores, Reena (24 September 2016). "Top Hillary Clinton aide playing Donald Trump in debate prep". CBS News. Retrieved 26 September 2016.
Operation Odyssey Dawn - Wikipedia
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 21:26
Operation Odyssey Dawn was the U.S. code name[Note 1] for the American role in the international military operation in Libya to enforce United Nations Security Council Resolution 1973 during the initial period of 19''31 March 2011, which continued afterwards under NATO command as Operation Unified Protector. The initial operation implemented a no-fly zone that was proposed during the Libyan Civil War to prevent government forces loyal to Muammar Gaddafi from carrying out air attacks on Anti-Gaddafi forces. On 19 March 2011, several countries prepared to take immediate military action at a summit in Paris. Operations commenced on the same day with a strike by French fighter jets, then U.S. and UK forces conducting strikes from ships and submarines via 110 Tomahawkcruise missiles and air assets bombing Gaddafi forces near Benghazi. The goal of coalition forces has been to impose a no-fly zone and to destroy forces that threaten civilians '' in effect this has meant forces loyal to Gaddafi.
The U.S. initially had strategic command of the military intervention, coordinated missions between coalition members and set up Joint Task Force Odyssey Dawn on the USS Mount Whitney for the tactical command and control in the area of operations. but passed complete military command of the operation to NATO and took up a support role on 31 March 2011. Prior to that, an agreement to pass command of the arms embargo to NATO was reached on 23 March, and a handover of enforcement of the no-fly zone to NATO was agreed to on 24 March and became effective the following day. With the handover of coalition command to NATO, Operation Odyssey Dawn became the name for only the activities of U.S. forces, and the coalition's objectives continued to be carried out under Operation Unified Protector. However, NATO's objectives do not include aiding the rebel forces' efforts to take control of territory currently held by Gaddafi.
The British name for its military support of Resolution 1973 is Operation Ellamy, the Canadian participation is Operation Mobile, and the French participation is Op(C)ration Harmattan. NATO's military activity is Operation Unified Protector.
The strategic command of Operation Odyssey Dawn was under the authority of General Carter Ham, the Combatant Commander of the United States Africa Command (AFRICOM), a Unified Combatant Command of the Department of Defense. Tactical command in the theater of operations was under command of Admiral Sam Locklear, the Commander of United States Naval Forces Africa on board the command ship USS Mount Whitney in the Mediterranean Sea. Vice Admiral Harry B. Harris, Commander, U.S. Sixth Fleet, assumed responsibilities as the Joint Forces Maritime Component Commander, also stationed aboard USS Mount Whitney. Major General Margaret H. Woodward was commander of US Air Force aircraft involved in the operation. On 21 March 2011, President Obama stated the U.S. military action would be scaled back soon and was considering handing over command of the operation to either France, the UK or NATO. On 24 March 2011, NATO took command of enforcing the no-fly zone in Libya and was considering taking control of the rest of the mission. On 24 March 2011, the coalition agreed to have NATO command the no-fly zone, and the U.S. Department of Defense stated that the U.S. would relinquish command of Operation Odyssey Dawn as early as 28 March.
21h: The first main strike involved the launch of 112 Tomahawk cruise missiles from U.S. and UK ships against shoreline air defenses of the Gaddafi regime. The U.S. Department of Defense reports that the dismantling of Libya's ability to hinder the enforcement of the UN no-fly zone was only the first of multiple stages in the operation. USMC Harriers participated in an air strike against a large military convoy outside Benghazi.
Sustained anti-aircraft fire erupted in Tripoli at around 02:33 EET. Three B-2 Spirit bombers targeted 45 hardened aircraft shelters at a Libyan airfield near Sirte. At the same time, U.S. Air Force fighter jets conducted missions searching for Libyan ground forces to attack. U.S. Navy EA-18G Growlers jammed Libyan radar and communications. No U.S. aircraft were lost during the missions. The warplanes included Marine Corps AV-8B Harrier IIs (attacking pro-Gaddafi's ground forces), Air Force B-2 Spirit stealth bombers, and F-15E Strike Eagle and F-16C Fighting Falcon fighter jets.AdmiralMike Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, states that there would be continuous allied air cover over Benghazi, and that the no-fly zone "is effectively in place". An EC-130J was recorded warning Libyan shipping "If you attempt to leave port, you will be attacked and destroyed immediately" in Arabic, French and English. Four Royal Danish Air Force F-16 flew their first mission over Libya
All fixed SA-2 Guideline, SA-3 Goa and SA-5 Gammon sites were taken out. Only SA-6 Gainful, hand held SA-7 Grail and SA-8 Gecko mobile SAMs are still a possible threat to aircraft. In the early hours of the day a building from Moammar Gadhafi's compound in Tripoli was completely destroyed by a cruise missile. Twelve more cruise missiles were fired at command and air defense sites.
At approximately 22:30 CET (evening of 21 March), a USAFE F-15E 91-0304 operating out of Aviano Air Base crashed about 25 miles (40 km) southwest of Benghazi. Both crew members ejected at high altitude and were subsequently separated. A MV-22 Osprey, supported by two AV-8Bs, two CH-53E Super Stallions, and a KC-130J Hercules from the 26th MEU initially recovered the pilot, while the weapons officer was recovered later after being rescued by rebel forces in the area. Two Marine Harriers accompanying the rescue force dropped two 500 lb bombs at the request of the ejected pilot, prior to the MV-22 landing in an attempt to deter an unidentified group of people heading towards the area. The UK had a "peripheral involvement" in the rescue of the U.S. pilots.
Six local villagers, including a young boy, were reported to have been injured by gunfire from the rescuing U.S. forces, Although a Marine spokesperson aboard USS Kearsarge denied that shots were fired: "The Osprey is not armed, and the Marines barely got off the aircraft. I was in the landing center the whole time, where we were monitoring what was going on, and firing was never reported", Pentagon sources were later reported to have confirmed that shots were fired.
The source of the civilian casualties is still being investigated. Overnight, the U.S. bombed the wreckage of the downed F-15E "to prevent materials from getting into the wrong hands."
In a 24-hours period; 175 air sorties were conducted (113 US, 62 coalition). Around this time, the U.S. changed its target priorities from air defenses to Libyan ground forces.
Royal Norwegian Air Force F-16s were assigned to the U.S. African Command and Operation Odyssey Dawn. A number of Norwegian F-16s took off from the Souda Bay Air Base on the island of Crete, Greece for their first mission over Libya.
Three laser-guided bombs were launched from 2 F-16s of the Royal Norwegian Airforce against Libyan tanks. F-16s from the Royal Norwegian Airforce bombed an airfield in Libya during the night. Coalition planes flew 164 sorties and coalition leaders reported damage to Gadhafi's ground forces.
Days 8 and 9 26 and 27 March 2011Lockheed AC-130 gunships and Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II ground attack aircraft began operations, attacking ground forces. These were the first aircraft used against troops; previous strikes had targeted command and anti-aircraft infrastructure. Two B-1 bombers from Ellsworth Air Force Base attacked undisclosed targets in Libya.
Attack submarine USS Providence (SSN-719) completed all assigned strike missions and has left the area for previous duties. The U.S. is responsible for 80% of air refueling, 75% of aerial surveillance hours and 100% of electronic warfare missions.
Days 10 and 11 28 and 29 March 2011On 28 March, a USAF A-10 and a USN P-3 attack one Libyan Coast Guard vessel and two smaller craft. The P-3 fired AGM-65F Maverick missiles at a Vittoria-class[clarification needed] patrol boat, forcing the crew to beach her. The A-10 strafed the other two smaller boats with its 30mmGAU-8 Avenger cannon rounds, sinking one and forcing the crew to abandon the other. The Libyan vessels were attacked after U.S forces observed them firing into Misurata and at merchant vessels. The USS Barry provided situational awareness for the aircraft by managing the airspace and maintaining the maritime picture.
From 08:00 EET, NATO took sole command of air operations over Libya under Operation Unified Protector, taking over from U.S. Africa Command. The four Danish F-16 fighters flew a total of 43 missions and dropped 107 precision munitions in operation Odyssey Dawn before transiting to NATO command.
There has been criticism over the handling of the operation and the belief that the Obama administration failed to adequately consult the U.S. Congress. The Obama administration defended its handling of the Libyan crisis, drawing a clear line between military and political objectives. On 24 March White House Press Secretary Jay Carney told reporters "We are not engaged in militarily-driven regime change." Instead, the administration is engaged in "time-limited, scope-limited" action with other countries to protect civilians from forces loyal to Muammar Gaddafi. However, this conflicts with multiple statements seeming to imply regime change as at least one objective of the Operation, including a report made to Congress as required by House Resolution 292:
"Establishing these conditions would pave the way for a genuine political transition '' of which Qadhafi's departure is a critical component. To bring about this objective, along with the international community, the United States responded to this crisis by developing, implementing, and monitoring sanctions and freezing billions in Government of Libya assets, building a broad international coalition focused on escalating diplomatic pressure on Qadhafi and increasing his isolation, and initiating and sustaining political support for military operations. ... Politically, U.S. leadership continues to play an important role in maintaining and expanding this international consensus that Qadhafi must step down, sending an unambiguous message to the regime. We continue working with the international community to enhance the capabilities of the Libyan opposition and increase the ability to achieve political transition. After many meetings with senior opposition members in Washington and abroad, combined with daily interactions with the U.S. mission in Benghazi, we have stated that the TNC has demonstrated itself to be the legitimate interlocutor of the Libyan people, in contrast to the Qadhafi regime that has lost all legitimacy to rule."
Odyssey | Definition of Odyssey by Merriam-Webster
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 21:26
Odysseus, the hero of Homer's Odyssey, spends 20 years traveling home from the Trojan War. He has astonishing adventures and learns a great deal about himself and the world; he even descends to the underworld to talk to the dead. Thus, an odyssey is any long, complicated journey, often a quest for a goal, and may be a spiritual or psychological journey as well as an actual voyage.
Lab tests underway to determine if sarin was used in Syria chemical attack '-- RT News
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 21:24
An analysis is underway to determine if sarin was used in Syria's chemical attack last month. The lab tests, which will take about two weeks, are being conducted with UN support. The analysis complies with scientific standards, Russia's FM stated.
TrendsSyria unrestTagsArms, Crime, Health, UK, SciTech, Politics, Terrorism, USA, War, Syria, Security, Syriagate, Medicine''As Lakhdar Brahimi said, there are scientific standards the [UN] experts are guided by,'' Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told journalists Friday after a working breakfast with the UN-Arab League envoy for Syria.
Chemists from the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons are using samples taken from the site of the chemical attack staged outside the Syrian capital of Damascus on August 21.
At the G20 summit in St. Petersburg, leaders of Britain, France, and the US attempted to pressure Russian President Vladimir Putin regarding Moscow's position on the attack.
NATO allies have produced evidence of their own that the lethal agent used in Syria was sarin nerve gas. British Prime Minister David Cameron has stated that clothing and soil samples taken from Syria tested positive for sarin gas. The UK conclusion is based on results obtained by scientists at Porton Down in Wiltshire, England.
''We were confident and remain confident that Assad was responsible,'' Cameron said on Thursday. British intelligence has concluded that rebel forces have no capacity to stage a chemical attack.
US Secretary of State John Kerry told US media last Sunday that samples collected by first responders after the chemical attack in the Damascus suburb tested positive for the sarin nerve agent. Kerry made nine TV appearances in an attempt to gain public support for military intervention in Syria.
Last Saturday, US President Barack Obama announced that he will seek approval in Congress for the use of force against the Syrian government.
As the US seeks approval for a possible military strike against Syria, Russia argues that it was the opposition '' not Assad's government '' that launched the August 21 attack.
At a press conference after the G20 summit, Putin told journalists that the alleged chemical attack in Syria was a ''provocation staged by the rebel militants expecting to get foreign support.''
''We believe that at the very least we should wait for the results of the UN inspection commission in Syria,'' Putin said in an interview to AP and Russia's Channel 1 TV earlier this week.
Obtaining the results from the lab tests will take up to a fortnight, due to the complexity of sample probing. To determine which agent was used in the attack, chemists must turn solid dirt and tissue into liquid and then into gas. To do that, they dissolve the samples in a solvent, such as methanol, before analyzing its composition with the help of the gas chromatograph.
Sarin's chemical signature is classified in digital code as 99-125-81. If the sarin nerve agent is present in the samples, the chromatograph gas will show exactly this code, said Carlos Fraga, a chemist who specializes in nerve agent forensics at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland, Washington. "You're always going to see that," he said.
But one test is far from being enough. Chemists will conduct 20 additional tests for every sample that comes back with a 99-125-81 code. Among those will be liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry tests, gas chromatography-mass spectrometry tests, infrared spectroscopy, and high resolution spectroscopy tests. Each test will take around two weeks.
Sarin gas blocks human nerve signals, causing a number of specific health disorders like respiratory distress, blurred vision, convulsions, and paralysis, along with diarrhea, vomiting, and headaches.
Experts must also determine exactly which symptoms preceded the deaths of the victims of the chemical attack.
Other nerve agents such as soman and VX cause death in a similar way, so chemists must verify the ''chemical signature'' of the weapon in order to determine how the agent was produced. Such information is expected to give clues as to who launched the deadly attack on August 21 '' the opposition or the Syrian government.
All of the tests will be performed in several laboratories to prevent possible inaccuracies of the chemical analyses.
WikiLeaks - Hillary Clinton Email Archive
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 20:53
From: Hillary Clinton To: Sidney Blumenthal Date: 2011-07-13 12:37 Subject: H: PLS CALL BEFORE YOU LEAVE FOR TURKEY. IMPORTANT RE YOUR TRIP. SIDUNCLASSIFIED U.S. Department of State Case No. F-2014-20439 Doc No. C05786890 Date: 01/07/2016RELEASE IN PART B6From: H Sent: ' Thursday, July 14, 2011 7:37 PM To: 'sbwhoeopSubject: Re: H: Pls call before you leave for Turkey. Important re your trip. Sid Got it. Will followup tomorrow. Anything else to convey? From: sbwhoeop [mailto:sbwhoeop Sent: Thursday, July 14, 2011 07:03 PM To: HSubject: Re: H: PIs call before you leave for Turkey. Important re your trip. Sid Read the memo I sent you. Here it is again: CONFIDENTIAL July 14, 2011 For: Hillary From: Sid Re: TNC You should be aware that there is a good chance at the contact meeting in Turkey the TNC ambassador to the UAE, a man you have not yet met, whose name is Dr. Neydah, may tell you the TNC has reached an agreement with a US company. The company is a new one, Osprey, headed by former General David Grange, former head of Delta Force. Osprey will provide field medical help, military training, organize supplies, and logistics to the TNC. They are trainers and organizers, not fighters. Grange can train their forces and he has drawn up a plan for taking Tripoli similar to the plan he helped develop that was used by the first wave of Special Forces in the capture of Baghdad. This is a private contract. It does not involve NATO. It puts Americans in a central role without being direct battle combatants. The TNC wants to demonstrate that they are pro-US. They see this as a significant way to do that. They are enthusiastic about this arrangement. They have held meetings with Grange in Geneva and Dubai this week, Tuesday and Wednesday, that concluded late last night (Wednesday). They have developed a good relationship. This is the group the TNC wants to work with. As I understand it, they are still working out funding, which is related to the overall TNC funding problems. Grange is very low key, wishes to avoid publicity and work quietly, unlike other publicity hungry firms. Grange is under the radar. Tyler, Cody and I acted as honest brokers, putting this arrangement together through a series of connections, linking the Libyans to Osprey and keeping it moving. The strategic imperative: Expecting Qaddafi to fall on his own or through a deus ex machina devolves the entire equation to wishful thinking. The TNC has been unable to train and organize its forces. The NATO air campaign cannot take ground. The TNC, whose leaders have been given to flights of fancy that Qaddafi will fall tomorrow or the day after, have come to the conclusion that they must organize their forces and that they must score a military victory of their own over Qaddafi that is not dependent solely on NATO in order to give them legitimacy. UNCLASSIFIED U.S. Department of State Case No. F-2014-20439 Doc No. C05786890 Date: 01/07/2016Original MessageFrom: H To: 'sbwhoeop
Top Clinton Bundlers Were Major Donors to Wife of FBI's Andrew McCabe
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 20:07
Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe and Hillary Clinton / AP
BY:Joe SchoffstallNovember 7, 2016 4:55 pm
Bundlers for Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign joined Clinton ally and Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe in donating to the state senate campaign of Jill McCabe.
The Wall Street Journal first reported on donations from Common Good VA, McAuliffe's political action committee, to McCabe's Virginia state senate campaign in 2015. McCabe is the wife of Andrew McCabe, the FBI deputy director who helped in the investigation into Clinton's email practices.
McAuliffe contributed $467,500 to McCabe's campaign through his PAC, making her the third-largest recipient of contributions from McAuliffe in 2015. The Virginia Democratic Party provided an additional $207,788 to McCabe in the form of mailers, the Wall Street Journal noted.
However, McAuliffe was not the only Clinton backer to contribute to McCabe's campaign. Four top bundlers for Clinton-related efforts combined to give McCabe more than $130,000.
Fredrick D. Schaufeld, an investment banker and venture capitalist, sits on Hillary Clinton's National Finance Committee along with his wife, Karen. Individuals who raise or contribute at least $100,000 for Hillary for America, the Hillary Victory Fund, the Hillary Action Fund, or a combination of those three entities earn a spot on the committee.
Schaufeld contributed $65,332 to McCabe's campaign, public records shows. A total of $55,000 went to McCabe between June and late October 2015'--the same time that Common Good VA flooded McCabe's campaign with nearly a half million in contributions.
Schaufeld was the fourth largest donor to McCabe's campaign behind only McAuliffe's PAC, the Democratic Party of Virginia, and Planned Parenthood's Virginia affiliate. McCabe was the top recipient of campaign cash from Schaufeld last year.
Karen Schaufeld, Fredrick's wife, contributed $10,849 to McCabe in October.
Sonjia Smith, who sits on Hillary Clinton's National Finance Committee alongside her husband Michael Bills, donated $45,000 to McCabe's campaign. Smith was the fifth largest donor to McCabe, right behind Fredrick Shaufeld.
Smith's husband, Bills, donated $15,000 to McCabe in August 2015.
In all, McCabe raised $1.6 million for her unsuccessful Virginia state senate race.
McAuliffe's PAC, the Virginia Democratic Party, and donors who have bundled at least six figures for Clinton combined to provide $881,469 in funding to McCabe last year, or half of the amount she raised during her race.
A spokesman for McAuliffe told the Wall Street Journal the governor supported McCabe's campaign because he thought she would make a good state senator and that the assumption he donated in order to influence her husband's behavior at the FBI was ''ridiculous.''
''Any insinuation that his support was tied to anything other than his desire to elect candidates who would help pass his agenda is ridiculous,'' the spokesman said.
None of the Clinton bundlers immediately responded to requests for comment.
Private Emails Reveal Ex-Clinton Aide's Secret Spy Network - ProPublica
Mon, 02 Jan 2017 20:29
TwitterFacebookEmailEmails disclosed by a hacker show a close family friend was funneling intelligence about the crisis in Libya directly to the Secretary of State's private account starting before the Benghazi attack.
Emails disclosed by a hacker show a close family friend was funneling intelligence about the crisis in Libya directly to the Secretary of State's private account starting before the Benghazi attack.
by Jeff Gerth, ProPublica, and Sam Biddle, Gawker, March 27, 2015, 2:45 p.m.
Print Print This is part of an ongoing investigation How politics and government really work, and why they don't.
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Twitter TwitterFacebook Facebookvolumelow PodcastRSS RSS Then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton testifies before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in January 2013. Lawmakers questioned Clinton about the security failures during the attack on the U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, that left four dead and 10 people injured. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)This story was co-published with Gawker.
Update, March 27, 6:48 p.m.: This story has been updated to include responses from the FBI and the State Department.
Starting weeks before Islamic militants attacked the U.S. diplomatic outpost in Benghazi, Libya, longtime Clinton family confidante Sidney Blumenthal supplied intelligence to then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton gathered by a secret network that included a former CIA clandestine service officer, according to hacked emails from Blumenthal's account.
The emails, which were posted on the internet in 2013, also show that Blumenthal and another close Clinton associate discussed contracting with a retired Army special operations commander to put operatives on the ground near the Libya-Tunisia border while Libya's civil war raged in 2011.
Blumenthal's emails to Clinton, which were directed to her private email account, include at least a dozen detailed reports on events on the deteriorating political and security climate in Libya as well as events in other nations. They came to light after a hacker broke into Blumenthal's account and have taken on new significance in light of the disclosure that she conducted State Department and personal business exclusively over an email server that she controlled and kept secret from State Department officials and which only recently was discovered by congressional investigators.
The contents of that account are now being sought by a congressional inquiry into the Benghazi attacks. Clinton has handed over more than 30,000 pages of her emails to the State Department, after unilaterally deciding which ones involved government business; the State Department has so far handed almost 900 pages of those over to the committee. A Clinton spokesman told Gawker and ProPublica (which are collaborating on this story) that she has turned over all the emails Blumenthal sent to Clinton.
The dispatches from Blumenthal to Clinton's private email address were posted online after Blumenthal's account was hacked in 2013 by Romanian hacker Marcel-Lehel Lazar, who went by the name Guccifer. Lazar also broke into accounts belonging to George W. Bush's sister, Colin Powell, and others. He's now serving a seven-year sentence in his home country and was charged in a U.S. indictment last year.
The contents of the memos, which have recently become the subject of speculation in the right-wing media, raise new questions about how Clinton used her private email account and whether she tapped into an undisclosed back channel for information on Libya's crisis and other foreign policy matters.
Blumenthal, a New Yorker staff writer in the 1990s, became a top aide to President Bill Clinton and worked closely with Hillary Clinton during the fallout from the Whitewater investigation into the Clinton family. She tried to hire him when she joined President Obama's cabinet in 2009, but White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel reportedly nixed the idea on the grounds Blumenthal was a divisive figure whose attacks on Obama during the Democratic primary had poisoned his relationship with the new administration.
It's unclear who tasked Blumenthal, known for his fierce loyalty to the Clintons, with preparing detailed intelligence briefs. It's also not known who was paying him, or where the operation got its money. The memos were marked ''confidential'' and relied in many cases on ''sensitive'' sources in the Libyan opposition and Western intelligence and security services. Other reports focused on Egypt, Germany, and Turkey.
Indeed, though they were sent under Blumenthal's name, the reports appear to have been gathered and prepared by Tyler Drumheller, a former chief of the CIA's clandestine service in Europe who left the agency in 2005. Since then, he has established a consulting firm called Tyler Drumheller, LLC. He has also been affiliated with a firm called DMC Worldwide, which he co-founded with Washington, D.C., attorney Danny Murray and former general counsel to the U.S. Capitol Police John Caulfield. DMC Worldwide's now-defunct website describes it at as offering ''innovative security and intelligence solutions to global risks in a changing world.''
In one exchange in March 2013, Blumenthal emailed Drumheller, ''Thanks. Can you send Libya report.'' Drumheller replied, ''Here it is, pls do not share it with Cody. I don't want moin speculating on sources. It is on the Maghreb and Libya.'' Cody is Cody Shearer, a longtime Clinton family operative'--his brother was an ambassador under Bill Clinton and his now-deceased sister was married to Clinton State Department official Strobe Talbott'--who was in close contact with Blumenthal. While it's not entirely clear from the documents, ''Moin'' may refer to the nickname of Mohamed Mansour El Kikhia, a member of the Kikhia family, a prominent Libyan clan with ties to the Libyan National Transition Council. (An email address in Blumenthal's address book, which was also leaked, was associated with his Facebook page.)
There's no indication in Blumenthal's emails whether Clinton read or replied to them before she left State on February 1, 2013, but he was clearly part of a select group with knowledge of the private clintonemail.com address, which was unknown to the public until
Gawker published it this year. They do suggest that she interacted with Blumenthal using the account after she stepped down. ''H: got your message a few days ago,'' reads the subject line of one email from Blumenthal to Clinton on February 8, 2013; ''H: fyi, will continue to send relevant intel,'' reads another.
The memos cover a wide array of subjects in extreme detail, from German Prime Minister Angela Merkel's conversations with her finance minister about French president Francois Hollande''marked ''THIS INFORMATION COMES FROM AN EXTREMELY SENSITIVE SOURCE'''--to the composition of the newly elected South Korean president's transition team. At least 10 of the memos deal in whole or in part with internal Libyan politics and the government's fight against militants, including the status of the Libyan oil industry and the prospects for Western companies to participate.
One memo was sent on August 23, 2012, less than three weeks before Islamic militants stormed the diplomatic outpost in Benghazi. It cites ''an extremely sensitive source'' who highlighted a string of bombings and kidnappings of foreign diplomats and aid workers in Tripoli, Benghazi and Misrata, suggesting they were the work of people loyal to late Libyan Prime Minister Muammar Gaddafi.
While the memo doesn't rise to the level of a warning about the safety of U.S. diplomats, it portrays a deteriorating security climate. Clinton noted a few days after the Benghazi attack, which left four dead and 10 people injured, that U.S. intelligence officials didn't have advance knowledge of the threat.
On September 12, 2012, the day after the Benghazi attack, Blumenthal sent a memo that cited a ''sensitive source'' saying that the interim Libyan president, Mohammed Yussef el Magariaf, was told by a senior security officer that the assault was inspired by an anti-Muslim video made in the U.S., as well as by allegations from Magariaf's political opponents that he had CIA ties.
Blumenthal followed up the next day with an email titled ''Re: More Magariaf private reax.'' It said Libyan security officials believed an Islamist radical group called the Ansa al Sharia brigade had prepared the attack a month in advance and ''took advantage of the cover'' provided by the demonstrations against the video.
An October 25, 2012 memo says that Magariaf and the Libyan army chief of staff agree that the ''situation in the country is becoming increasingly dangerous and unmanageable'' and ''far worse'' than Western leaders realize.
Blumenthal's email warnings, of course, followed a year of Libyan hawkishness on the part of Clinton. In February of 2011, she told the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva that "it is time for Gaddafi to go.'' The next month, after having described Russian reluctance over military intervention as ''despicable,'' Clinton met with rebel leaders in Paris and drummed up support for a no-fly zone while in Cairo. On March 17, 2011, the UN Security Council voted to back Libyan rebels against Gaddafi.
It's this buildup, which Clinton still proudly recalled in her 2014 memoir, that Blumenthal appears to join in on 2011. In addition to the intel memos, his emails also disclose that he and his associates worked to help the Libyan opposition, and even plotted to insert operatives on the ground using a private contractor.
A May 14, 2011 email exchange between Blumenthal and Shearer shows that they were negotiating with Drumheller to contract with someone referred to as ''Grange'' and ''the general'' to place send four operatives on a week-long mission to Tunis, Tunisia, and ''to the border and back.'' Tunisia borders Libya and Algeria.
''Sid, you are doing great work on this,'' Drumheller wrote to Blumenthal. ''It is going to be around $60,000, coverting r/t business class airfare to Tunis, travel in country to the border and back, and other expenses for 7''10 days for 4 guys.''
After Blumenthal forwarded that note to Shearer, he wrote back questioning the cost of the operation. ''Sid, do you think the general has to send four guys. He told us three guys yesterday, a translator and two other guys. I understand the difficulty of the mission and realize that K will be repaid but I am going to need an itemized budget for these guys.''
''The general'' and ''Grange'' appear to refer to David L. Grange, a major general in the Army who ran a secret Pentagon special operations unit before retiring in 1999. Grange subsequently founded Osprey Global Solutions, a consulting firm and government contractor that offers logistics, intelligence, security training, armament sales, and other services. The Osprey Foundation, which is a nonprofit arm of Osprey Global Solutions, is listed as one of the State Department's ''global partners'' in a 2014 report from the Office of Global Partnerships.'
Among the documents in the cache released by Lazar is an August 24, 2011, memorandum of understanding between Osprey Global Solutions and the Libyan National Transition Council'--the entity that took control in the wake of Qadaffi's execution'--agreeing that Osprey will contract with the NTC to ''assist in the resumption of access to its assets and operations in country'' and train Libyan forces in intelligence, weaponry, and ''rule-of-land warfare.'' The document refers to meetings held in Amman, Jordan between representatives of Osprey and a Mohammad Kikhia, who represented the National Transition Council.
Five months later, according to a document in the leak, Grange wrote on Osprey Global letterhead to Assistant Secretary of State Andrew Shapiro, introducing Osprey as a contractor eager to provide humanitarian and other assistance in Libya. ''We are keen to support the people of Libya under the sponsorship of the Ministry of Finance and the Libyan Stock Exchange,'' Grange wrote. Shapiro is a longtime Clinton loyalist; he served on her Senate staff as foreign policy advisor.
Another document in the cache, titled ''Letter_for_Moin,'' is an appeal from Drumheller to then-Libyan Prime Minister Ali Zeidan offering the services of Tyler Drumheller LLC, ''to develop a program that will provide discreet confidential information allowing the appropriate entities in Libya to address any regional and international challenges.''
The ''K'' who was, according to Shearer's email, to be ''repaid'' for his role in the Tunisia operation appears to be someone named Khalifa al Sherif, who sent Blumenthal several emails containing up-to-the-minute information on the civil war in Libya, and appears to have been cited as a source in several of the reports.
Contacted by ProPublica and Gawker, Drumheller's attorney and business partner Danny Murray confirmed that Drumheller ''worked'' with Blumenthal and was aware of the hacked emails, but declined to comment further.
Shearer said only that "the FBI is involved and told me not to talk. There is a massive investigation of the hack and all the resulting information.'' The FBI declined to comment.
Blumenthal, Grange, and Kikhia all did not respond to repeated attempts to reach them. Nick Merrill, a spokesman for Clinton had no comment on Blumenthal's activities with Drumheller.
Whatever Blumenthal, Shearer, Drumheller, and Grange were up to in 2011, 2012, and 2013 on Clinton's behalf, it appears that she could have used the help: According to State Department personnel directories, in 2011 and 2012'--the height of the Libya crisis'--State didn't have a Libyan desk officer, and the entire Near Eastern Magreb Bureau, which which covers Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco and Libya, had just two staffers. Today, State has three Libyan desk officers and 11 people in the Near Eastern Magreb Bureau. A State Department official wouldn't say how many officers were on the desk in 2011, but said there was always "at least one" officer and "sometimes many more, working on Libya."
Reached for comment, a State Department public affairs official who would only speak on background declined to address questions about Blumenthal's relationship to Clinton, whether she was aware of the intelligence network, and who if anyone was paying Blumenthal. Asked about the Tunisia-Libya mission, the official replied, ''There was a trip with the secretary in October of 2011, but there was also a congressional delegation in April, 2011. There were media reports about both of these at the time." Neither trip involved travelling via Tunis.
Like this story? Sign up for our daily newsletter to get more of our best work. Jeff Gerth is a senior reporter at ProPublica. Previously, Gerth worked as an investigative reporter at The New York Times. He has twice been awarded the Pulitzer Prize.
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