Two former high-ranking intelligence officers teamed in an op-ed for the Baltimore Sun that ripped apart the Obama administration’s unproven claim that The Russians interfered with the U.S. election by way of hacking systems of the Democratic establishment to lock in Donald Trump’s win.
Much of the evidence thus far that supports the Obama administration’s claim seems plausible, but every claim is proceeded with words like: “possibly,” “appears,” “connects,” and “indicates,” as The Intercept points out. Suggestion alone is not enough. But what if it’s all just one big lie?
William Binney, former NSA official turned whistleblower, and Ray McGovern, veteran award-winning CIA officer turned political activist, said that this incredible lack of evidence current intelligence officials are offering up is just exposing the reality that none of it even exists. They wrote:
The long anticipated Joint Analysis Report issued by the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI on Dec. 29 met widespread criticism in the technical community. Worse still, some of the advice it offered led to a very alarmist false alarm about supposed Russian hacking into a Vermont electric power station.
Binney and McGovern went on to point out the overwhelming absence of comment from the NSA, CIA, and Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper. Clapper is known for
Notorious for propagating disinformation, Clapper defended the Russian interference theory before the House Armed Services Committee on Thursday. But trusting someone’s words who is known for misinforming the public seems to only back the claim that the Obama administration was searching for reasons, and pointing fingers aimlessly.
Binney and McGovern said:
When Pentagon favorites like Iraqi émigré Ahmed Chalabi plied U.S. intelligence with spurious ‘evidence’ on WMD in Iraq, Mr. Clapper was in position to suppress the findings of any imagery analyst who might have the temerity to report, for example, that the Iraqi ‘chemical weapons facility’ for which Mr. Chalabi provided the geographic coordinates was nothing of the kind. Mr. Clapper preferred to go by the Rumsfeldian dictum: ‘The absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.’ (It will be interesting to see if he tries that out on the president-elect Friday.)
A year after the war began, Mr. Chalabi told the media, ‘We are heroes in error. As far as we’re concerned we’ve been entirely successful.’ By that time it was clear there were no WMD in Iraq. When Mr. Clapper was asked to explain, he opined, without adducing any evidence, that they probably were moved into Syria.
With a long list of boasting false statements, anything Clapper says seem to be its own form of fake news worth calling out, and then paying no mind to. In fact, he’s even admitted to it. For instance, in March of 2013, he falsified information regarding the NSA’s domestic surveillance programs. When Edward Snowden blew the whistle on the ordeal a mere four months later, Clapper apologized to the Santa for his “clearly erroneous” false testimony.
Binney and McGovern reveal the unavoidable inconsistencies in officials’ unprofessional desire to jump the gun and rely solely on ‘circumstantial’ evidence. And so, until there is hard evidence to support the theory that Russians hacked the election, it can only be seen as another narrative formed by way of steadfast falsehood.
Binney and McGovern also point out the holes in Clapper’s claim that Democratic systems were hacked and information was given to WikiLeaks:
“Hack: When someone in a remote location electronically penetrates operating systems, firewalls or other cyber-protection systems and then extracts data. Our own considerable experience, plus the rich detail revealed by Edward Snowden, persuades us that, with NSA’s formidable trace capability, it can identify both sender and recipient of any and all data crossing the network.
“Leak: When someone physically takes data out of an organization — on a thumb drive, for example — and gives it to someone else, as Edward Snowden and Chelsea Manning did. Leaking is the only way such data can be copied and removed with no electronic trace.“Because NSA can trace exactly where and how any ‘hacked’ emails from the Democratic National Committee or other servers were routed through the network, it is puzzling why NSA cannot produce hard evidence implicating the Russian government and WikiLeaks. Unless we are dealing with a leak from an insider, not a hack, as other reporting suggests. From a technical perspective alone, we are convinced that this is what happened.”
It’s not enough to claim something without the hard facts, nor is it okay to so obviously urge them, like Clapper does. He, along with many other officials, merely point out through their ongoing lies and lack of evidence the corruption and greed of the political system.