News & Politics

More Trouble for Hillary: Now NSA Gets Into the Act

(Kevin Lamarque/Pool Photo via AP, File)

As if Hillary Clinton isn’t in enough trouble over her “homebrew” email server and other examples of her deliberate flouting of American security policies, she’s now facing the wrath of the National Security Agency:

What DoJ decides to do with EmailGate is ultimately a question of politics as much as justice. Ms. Clinton’s recent statement on her potential prosecution, “it’s not going to happen,” then refusing to address the question at all in a recent debate, led to speculation about a backroom deal with the White House to shield Hillary from prosecution as long as Mr. Obama is in the Oval Office. After mid-January, however, all bets would be off. In that case, winning the White House herself could be an urgent matter of avoiding prosecution for Ms. Clinton.

That said, if DoJ declines to prosecute after the Bureau recommends doing so, a leak-fest of a kind not seen in Washington, D.C., since Watergate should be anticipated. The FBI would be angry that its exhaustive investigation was thwarted by dirty deals between Democrats. In that case, a great deal of Clintonian dirty laundry could wind up in the hands of the press, habitual mainstream media covering for the Clintons notwithstanding, perhaps having a major impact on the presidential race this year.

Neither is the FBI the only powerful Federal agency that Hillary Clinton needs to worry about as she plots her path to the White House between scandals and leaks. For years, she has been on the bad side of the National Security Agency, America’s most important intelligence agency, as revealed by just-released State Department documents obtained by Judicial Watch under the Freedom of Information Act.

Oh-oh. Getting crossways with the NSA/CSS (the latter is the Central Security Service) is never a good idea, and an especially terrible one when you’re a) the former secretary of state and b) running for president. And no Clinton scandal would be complete without an appearance by Sidney Blumenthal, Mrs. Clinton’s all-purpose factotum and hatchet man. If the following is true, “Sid Vicious” is n a heap o’ trouble:

Now, over two months later, I can confirm that the contents of Sid Blumenthal’s June 8, 2011 email to Hillary Clinton, sent to her personal, unclassified account, were indeed based on highly sensitive NSA information. The Agency investigated this compromise and determined that Mr. Blumenthal’s highly detailed account of Sudanese goings-on, including the retelling of high-level conversations in that country, was indeed derived from NSA intelligence.

Specifically, this information was illegally lifted from four different NSA reports, all of them classified Top Secret / Special Intelligence. Worse, at least one of those reports was issued under the GAMMA compartment, which is an NSA handling caveat that is applied to extraordinarily sensitive information (for instance, decrypted conversations between top foreign leadership, as this was). GAMMA is properly viewed as a SIGINT Special Access Program or SAP, several of which from CIA Ms. Clinton compromised in another series of her “unclassified” emails.

Currently serving NSA officials have told me they have no doubt that Mr. Blumenthal’s information came from their reports. “It’s word-for-word, verbatim copying,” one of them explained. “In one case, an entire paragraph was lifted from an NSA report” that was classified Top Secret / Special Intelligence.

One final note: author John Schindler’s caveat about how the intelligence community would (and should) react to allowing Hillary skate on these actions — which have damaged American national security very badly — is really to the point here. There are very few Obama or Clinton fans among the members of the IC. And they know not only where all the bodies are buried, but how to bury fresh ones as well.