The Morning Briefing: Celebrate Toxic Masculinity on 75th Anniversary of D-Day

Good Thursday morning.

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

  • The president and first lady participate in the 75th commemoration of D-Day
  • The president and first lady participate in a viewing of the Normandy American Cemetery
  • The president participates in a bilateral meeting with the president of the French Republic
  • The president participates in a working lunch with the president of the French Republic

Senate Intel Committee wants to talk to a mysterious British security consultant

Who dis? The Senate Intelligence Committee has summoned a British security consultant named Walter Soriano.

On April 5, just 2 weeks after Special Counsel Robert Mueller submitted his final report on Russia’s election interference, the Senate Intelligence Committee sent a letter to a British security consultant named Walter Soriano asking for a voluntary, closed-door interview and documents with various Russia probe figures dating back to June 2015.

The letter, obtained by Politico, offers yet another window into the panel’s secretive — but largely bipartisan — two-year-old investigation, and reveals the investigators’ interest in what, if any, role Israel may have played in attempts to manipulate the 2016 election.

A super secret source says the committee's interest is not just a "fishing expedition."

“They’re surprised by how connected he seems to several people of interest,” this person said, including the Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska — a former business associate of Trump’s campaign chairman Paul Manafort, who offered Deripaska private briefings about the campaign in 2016. Deripaska is believed to have worked with Soriano on corporate intelligence matters, this person said.

There certainly appears to be a relationship between dossier fabulist Christopher Steele and Deripaska. The committee has asked Soriano for any communications with a variety of RUSSIA hoax characters, as well as "three Israeli private intelligence firms: Psy Group, Wikistrat, and Black Cube, as well as any communications he may have had with Orbis Business Intelligence, a firm co-founded by the former British spy Christopher Steele."

It isn’t clear why the Senate committee believes Soriano may have a connection to the private Israeli firms — one of which, Psy Group, was enlisted by Trump’s deputy campaign chairman Rick Gates in 2016 to use social media manipulation to help Trump beat his Republican primary opponents and Hillary Clinton. Psy Group’s founder Joel Zamel also owns WikiStrat, which reportedly gamed out how to successfully interfere in an election as early as 2015. Black Cube is one of Zamel’s main rivals, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Interesting.

[A spokesman for Black Cube reached out to PJM after publication with the following statement: Neither Black Cube nor anyone acting on their behalf has ever had any communication or collaboration with Walter Soriano or anyone on his behalf. ]

Related:

WOMP WOMP House Democrat says support lacking for Trump impeachment inquiry

Good grief. House Democrats plan event to scrutinize Trump's mental health

Nadler: 'It may very well come to' opening a formal impeachment inquiry

For what? Nancy Pelosi told Dems she wants to see Trump 'in prison': report

Alan Dershowitz: Ex-UK spy Christopher Steele must be asked these key questions by US investigators

Must read: Lee Smith's "Spies Are the New Journalists"

This is such a terrific piece. Lee asks the question, "What's the difference between the Julian Assange and The New York Times, Washington Post or CNN?" It's a good question because all of those media outlets have published or broadcast highly classified material as Assange has been accused of doing. The media characters got Pulitzers, Assange got jail.

It’s useful comparing the nature of the leaks Assange published and those made public by the Post. Of the more than 250,000 diplomatic cables that WikiLeaks published, half were unclassified. The rest were mostly classified “Confidential,” with 11,000 classified “Secret.” None are classified “Top Secret.” The reports regarding Afghanistan, Iraq, and Guantanamo Bay were classified no higher than “Secret.”

By contrast, intercepts of foreign officials, like the one regarding the Russian ambassador, are so sensitive that they are available only to a very few senior U.S. officials. The fact that the substance of one such intercept appears to have been leaked and discussed, according to the Post, by nine U.S. officials, should have sparked an immediate investigation.

The Justice Department did not respond to Tablet’s email asking whether any of the nine officials who discussed the Flynn leak are currently under investigation.

Read the entire story.

D-Day 75th anniversary roundup

WWII veterans from the United States attend a ceremony at Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial situated above Omaha Beach, as France prepares to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the D-Day, in Colleville-sur-Mer, France. Alexey Vitvitsky / Sputnik via AP

D-Day By the Numbers, By the Men

Celebrate The 75-Year Anniversary Of D-Day With The Story Of Richard Winters And Band Of Brothers

Veterans mark exactly 75 years since D-Day in solemn observances

These Photos Capture the Poignancy of Past D-Day Commemorations

Learning What Vets Could Not Tell: What They Did in World War II

Other morsels:

Americans consider 'fake news' a bigger problem than terrorism, climate change, illegal immigration: new survey

U.S. records 1,000th case of measles, officials blame misinformation for outbreak

People are Canceling Netflix and Disney—and the Revenue Losses Are Growing by the Hour

Six undocumented migrants die after Texas police chase

Women in Pakistan face child marriage, domestic abuse, and ‘honor killings’

Ohio MD Charged with Murder for Deliberately Overdosing Patients

Anti-Trumper George Will: Democrats may simply be too weird to win next year

California Is The Future The Liberal Elite Wants For You

Buttigieg, O'Rourke to meet with Stacey Abrams in Atlanta

Wisconsin legislature passes abortion restrictions governor promised to veto

Idiots. Jewelry Store Turns Away Uniformed Deputy Over Service Weapon

Google Fires Republican Engineer Who Spoke Out Against ‘Outrage Mobs’

YouTube updates hate speech guidelines to prohibit videos

YouTube won't take down homophobic harassment videos, but it will demonetize them

Ben Sasse Mocks Democrats For Suspicions About The Knights Of Columbus

Fear of Self-Censorship Not ‘Well-Founded,’ Judge Rules Against UT Austin Students In Free Speech Case

AOC slams FBI over double standard for white supremacists

Mexico intercepts 1,000 migrants headed toward US amid tariff threats

Amazon Prime Air delivery drone to start dropping packages 'within months,' officials say

Biden faces backlash from 2020 Dems for stance on Hyde Amendment

Biden 'misheard' ACLU activist's question about Hyde Amendment: campaign

'Empire' star Jussie Smollett's 911 calls released: 'They put a noose around his neck'

Smokers, beware: Beverly Hills says it is the first US city to ban tobacco sales

Gillibrand unveils plan to legalize pot nationwide

Acting ICE director blasts AOC for wanting to abolish agency: 'I would like to talk to that young congresswoman'

State Department suspends funding of anti-Iran Group which targeted journalists and activists

Florida man arrested for allegedly placing bomb at veterans hospital

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