News & Politics

The Morning Briefing: Redacted FISA Released, IRAN, and Much, Much More

CIA Director John Brennan listens at right as National Intelligence Director James Clapper testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, April 11, 2013. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

Good Monday morning.

Here is what’s on the president’s agenda today:

  • The president receives his intelligence briefing
  • President Trump participates in the Made in America Product Showcase
  • The president delivers remarks at the Made in America Product Showcase

Trump threatens Iran IN ALL CAPS

Oh boy.

Trump’s tweet appears to be in response to Rouhani’s remarks earlier in the day:

Addressing a gathering of Iranian diplomats, Rouhani said: “Mr Trump, don’t play with the lion’s tail, this would only lead to regret,” the state new agency IRNA reported.

“America should know that peace with Iran is the mother of all peace, and war with Iran is the mother of all wars,” Rouhani said, leaving open the possibility of peace between the two countries, at odds since the 1979 Islamic Revolution.

“You are not in a position to incite the Iranian nation against Iran’s security and interests,” Rouhani said, in an apparent reference to reported efforts by Washington to destabilize Iran’s Islamic government.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo addressed the Iran issue at the Reagan Forum in Simi Valley, California, on Sunday evening.

The U.S. is “undertaking a diplomatic and financial pressure campaign to cut off the funds that the regime uses to enrich itself and support death and destruction,” Pompeo said.

Despite some mixed messages from senior State Department officials in recent weeks, Pompeo made clear that pressure campaign includes dropping Iranian oil imports to “as close to zero as possible by Nov. 4” when U.S. sanctions snap back into place.

The U.S. is also launching a 24/7 Farsi-language channel across mediums to dispel the “fake news … that America is the Great Satan” and “so that ordinary Iranians in Iran and around the globe can know America stands with them.”

Things are going to get even worse for Iran.

Late last night: Gunman kills one, injures 13

A gunman killed one woman and injured 13 last night in Toronto’s Greektown neighborhood. One of the victims, a child, is in critical condition. The gunman is dead.

It’s not clear what motivated the shooter, police said. They’re investigating “every possible motive, including terrorism,” Saunders said.

Toronto Mayor John Tory urged people not to draw any conclusions and let police investigate the shooting.

A witness describes:

Local resident Andrew Van Eek told CNN partner CBC that he looked out his window after hearing gunshots.

“There was a lot of commotion in the street,” he said. “I saw somebody come just down the sidewalk and shoot into Demetres restaurant.”

Van Eek described the suspect as a white male aged in his early to late thirties and wearing black clothing.


Redacted FISA warrant released, Nunes vindicated

Over the weekend, the Department of Justice released a very redacted version of the FISA warrants used to spy on Carter Page and the Trump campaign. The warrant served not only to surveil Page, but also those with whom he communicated. The FISA includes not just the communications that occurred following the warrant’s approval, but also past communications of the subject and those with whom he communicated. You can see how this would be very valuable for an opposition campaign in a presidential election.

Here are some key takeaways:

  • Carter Page was asserted to be a RUSSIAN spy in the FISA. Not surmised, but asserted. Only months earlier, before the FISA, in March 2016, Page was cooperating with the FBI to prosecute real RUSSIAN spies but all of a sudden, we are expected to believe he’s a RUSSIAN spy too? And why is he walking free almost two years later if he is a RUSSIAN asset?
  • The “unverified and salacious” dossier made up a substantial amount of the FISA warrant, contrary to the Democrats promising that it was just one among many pieces of supporting evidence.
  • James Comey, Twitter personality and former director of the FBI, signed one of the FISA warrants comprised largely of the dossier attesting that the information in the FISA application was true, yet testified under oath that the dossier was “salacious and unverified.”
  • The FBI swore FOUR TIMES that the Steele dossier was not used as the source for Isikoff’s September 23 article that itself was used as evidence in the FISA warrant. The contents of the dossier were in fact used for the Isikoff article and yet the Isikoff article was used to “verify” the dossier in the FISA.
  • Harry Reid’s letter to the FBI that was generated when violent anti-Trumper and former CIA honcho James Brennan approached Reid with “documentation,” was used as evidence in the FISA. Brennan, being CIA, was limited by the agency’s ability to meddle in domestic affairs so he went to Reid to write a letter to urge the FBI to make some moves.
  • The FBI did not tell the FISA court that the dossier was paid for by the Hillary Clinton campaign and the DNC, despite identifying Trump as “candidate #1.” Why not say the dossier was funded by candidate #2 and her political party? And, as the Republicans have asserted, the misleading information they did supply was in a footnote. You decide whether the FBI obfuscated on the source of the dossier. Here is the footnote: “Source #1…was approached by an identified U.S. person [Simpson], who indicated to Source #1 that a U.S.-based law firm had hired the identified U.S. person to conduct research regarding Candidate #1’s ties to Russia…The identified U.S. person hired Source #1 [Steele] to conduct this research. The identified U.S. person never advised Source #1 as to the motivation behind the research into Candidate #1’s ties to Russia. The FBI speculates that the identified U.S. person was likely looking for information that could be used to discredit Candidate #1’s campaign.”

Fox News has obtained a letter from the House Republicans, asking President Trump to declassify further sections of the FISA.


—>Clapper: Obama Was Behind The Whole Thing

Excellent read: FISA warrant application supports Nunes memo

Fool. Rubio pushes back on Trump’s claims his campaign was spied on illegally: Investigators ‘didn’t do anything wrong’

Page: I’ve never been an agent of a foreign power

Carter Page was ‘more like Inspector Gadget than Jason Bourne,’ Gowdy says amid FISA release

Indeed. Rep. Bob Goodlatte: Page FISA documents show serious FBI problems

Graham: Carter Page wiretap ‘not at all’ justified

House Judiciary Chairman: We Want John Brennan To Testify

FBI told FISA court Steele wasn’t source of report used to justify surveilling Trump team, docs show

Why is Mueller handing off key cases?

Historical picture of the day:

Fred Thompson, minority counsel, laughs during a session of the Senate Watergate Committee in Capitol Hill, July 23, 1973. Gordon Strachan, a former White House aide, had just told the committee that his advice to persons thinking of working for the government was to “stay away.” Others are unidentified. (AP Photo)

Other morsels:

Alleged Russian agent Maria Butina met with US officials during the Obama administration: Report

#newrules Top New York Times reporter: Twitter ‘no longer works’ for me

Hillary Clinton uses NYC art festival platform as opportunity to analyze recent Trump-Putin summit

Michael Avenatti says there are other Trump-Cohen ‘tapes’ and he knows ‘substance of some’

Clown. Kerry calls Trump’s Helsinki performance ‘disgraceful’

James Comey warns Democrats against socialism: ‘Please, please don’t lose your minds’

Elizabeth Warren Supporter Shoves Warren Challenger At Rally, Is Promptly Apprehended

At least 1 dead after gunman opens fire at Mormon church

Clinton to help immigrant families reunite

Hillary Clinton bashes Trump on immigration, Helsinki summit at OZY Fest in New York City

2 homeless men set on fire at Berlin railway station

Axios: Macron told Trump he read ‘Art of the Deal’

NRA, Second Amendment Foundation file lawsuit over Seattle’s new safe storage requirement for guns

Poll: A Staggering Number Of Republicans Approve Of Trump’s Helsinki Performance

Police name murder suspect in Los Angeles store hostage standoff

New York using facial recognition software at bridges, toll roads

Chicago named ‘rat capital’ of the U.S.

Boo: Chuck Schumer warns of 3-D printed ‘ghost guns’

Sen. Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on their progressive push in deep-red states

Star Trek vodka contains alcohol ‘from space’

The NYPD has filed formal departmental charges against the officer who fatally choked Eric Garner in 2014

And that’s all I’ve got, now go beat back the angry mob!