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SECRECY & THE SECURITY STATE

Obama CIA Head And Trump Agree: Disclosing Presidential Activity is the Real Problem

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Barack Obama’s CIA head found common ground with the Trump administration, decrying media reports of the President sharing state secrets with the Russian government. Testifying before the House Intelligence Committee on Tuesday, John Brennan told lawmakers that American officials have shared classified information with the Russian government, and that Trump probably violated protocols for information-sharing, if press reports about the May 12 meeting are true. “What I was very concerned about, though, is the subsequent releases of what appears to be classified information purporting to point…

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Comey Memo Turns Up Volume on Impeachment Calls

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Rep. Al Green (D-Texas) stepped to the House floor on Wednesday and made a direct appeal to impeach President Donald Trump for his firing of FBI Director James Comey. Green’s demand comes one day after it was revealed that Trump asked Comey to drop the bureau’s probe into former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn before the President fired Comey. “I rise today, Mr. Speaker, to call for the impeachment of the President of the United States for obstruction of justice,” Green boomed from the House chamber. “This…

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Chelsea Manning, Mass Educator, Freed from Prison

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The source for some of the most explosive revelations in a generation walked free from a military prison on Wednesday morning. Army Private Chelsea Manning was released from a detention facility in Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas on Wednesday, after being imprisoned since 2010. She was freed ahead of schedule after President Obama commuted her 35-year sentence in January. Manning was convicted by a military court in 2013 under the Espionage Act, for passing state secrets to Wikileaks. “After another anxious four months of waiting, the day…

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Trump Claims Cops are “Obstructed,” Subject to “Unfair Vilification”

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The President of the United States issued a proclamation on Monday, dedicating the week to law enforcement officers. Although communities across the nation are agitating for police reforms in response to an endemic of lethal force use—more than 960 people were killed by officers in 2016—President Trump alleged cops deserve better treatment from society. “I will make it the personal priority of my administration to ensure that our police are finally treated fairly with honor and respect that they deserve,” Trump told a crowd assembled…

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Acting FBI Chief Shoots Down Admin’s Comey Firing Justification

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The man temporarily leading the FBI told senators that one of the White House’s reasons for firing James Comey was “not accurate.” Andrew McCabe, the interim FBI head, testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Thursday, occupying a chair that was supposed to be filled by Comey, until the former Bureau director was abruptly canned by the President on Tuesday. McCabe disputed the administration’s characterization the previous day by Deputy Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, that “the rank-and-file of the FBI had lost confidence in their…

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Senate Dems Now Call on Rosenstein to Stand Down from Russia Probe

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UPDATE: Rosenstein met with Senate Intelligence Committee leaders, and declined to recuse himself. Top Senate Democrats are turning up the heat on a high-ranking political appointee at the center of the James Comey firestorm. Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Judiciary Committee ranking member Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) lashed out at Rod Rosenstein on Thursday morning. The pair called on the Deputy Attorney General to recuse himself from the investigation into both alleged Russian meddling in last year’s election and any involvement by members of the Trump…

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Feinstein: Comey Firing Very Sketchy After March Classified Briefing

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The top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee protested the firing of James Comey by bringing up a classified briefing that the now-former FBI Director conducted almost two months ago. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) said Wednesday that Comey presented “substantial information” on the bureau probe into alleged election meddling by the Russian government. The briefing, which took place on March 15, was also attended by Judiciary Committee Chair Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa). “I can’t go into the specifics, but you and I know that it was…

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Sen. Cotton: Give the Military Free Rein to Use Whatever Weapons it Wishes

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Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) mocked the concept of civilian control of the military, and defended the recent dropping of the “Mother of all Bombs” in Afghanistan—a weapon that had never before been used in combat. During a Senate Armed Services Committee oversight hearing of US Special Operations Command (SOCOM) on Thursday, Cotton made the case for giving military operators free rein to use whatever weapons they deem necessary—regardless of what elected officials’ concerns might be. He went on to describe the fallout from the dropping…

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FBI Suggests Assange’s Asylum Only Thing Keeping Him Out of U.S. Handcuffs

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In testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday, FBI Director James Comey confirmed that the US is interested in arresting WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. The online publishing outfit–known for disclosing secret US government documents, and most recently, the internal emails of the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta–is “an important focus” of the FBI, Comey told the Committee. Asked why Assange has yet to be arrested, Comey said bluntly: “He hasn’t been apprehended because he’s inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London.” The…

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Pentagon Watchdog Accused of “Doctoring” Whistleblower Retaliation Investigation Findings

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A United States Senator has said that “a culture of corruption is thriving” at the office of the Pentagon’s internal watchdog. Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) blasted the Defense Department Office of Inspector General on Thursday, relaying allegations of higher-ups “doctoring” the findings of whistleblower retaliation investigations. Grassley brought up the accusations on the Senate floor by discussing the case of Rear Adm. Brian Losey. The Pentagon inspector general had found Losey guilty of retaliating against numerous perceived whistleblowers. Revelations about these cases, brought to light…

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Dem Lawmaker Grills Fed Prison Chief Over “Occupancy Guarantees” Contracts

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During an oversight hearing with the head of federal prisons, Rep. Cedric Richmond (D-La.) called on the agency to review arrangements with private jailers that require beds to be full. Testifying before a House Judiciary subcommittee on Wednesday, Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) Acting Director Dr. Thomas Kane stated that the government still includes occupancy guarantees in its contracts with for-profit prisons. Also known as “lockup quotas,” the provisions require state and federal authorities to keep a certain minimum of prison beds full—generally between 70 and…

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