Seth Rich Murder Update: FBI Claims They Didn’t Investigate but NSA Claims Can’t Disclose Files Due to Matter of National Security

By Joe Hoft – August 20, 2019

We first reported in late July that Texas businessman Ed Butowsky filed a lawsuit where he outed reporter Ellen Ratner as his source for information on Seth Rich. The DNC operative was murdered in the summer of 2016 in Washington DC. His murder was never solved. According to the lawsuit Seth Rich provided WikiLeaks the DNC emails before the 2016 election, not Russia.

This totally destroys the FBI and Mueller’s claims that Russians hacked the DNC to obtain these emails.

Butowsky claims in his lawsuit:

Ms. Rattner said Mr. Assange told her that Seth Rich and his brother, Aaron, were responsible for releasing the DNC emails to Wikileaks. Ms. Rattner said Mr. Assange wanted the information relayed to Seth’s parents, as it might explain the motive for Seth’s murder.

On November 9 2016 Ellen Ratner admitted publicly that she met with Julian Assange for three hours the Saturday before the 2016 election. According to Ratner, Julian Assange told her the leaks were not from the Russians, they were from an internal source from the Hillary Campaign.

We later reported that Butowsky and his attorney, Ty Clevenger, requested and obtained documents from the FBI related to their case which we were able to analyze.

According to the duo, they obtained the transcript from former FBI Chief of Staff James Rybicki where he states that the Obama White House was the entity that was pushing the Russia conspiracy as early as October 2016 –

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Rybicki was corrupt cop James Comey’s Chief of staff –

Clevenger stated in a post online that –

Newly released documents from the FBI suggest that the Obama White House pushed intelligence agencies to publicly blame the Russians for email leaks from the Democratic National Committee to Wikileaks.

This afternoon I received an undated (and heavily redacted) transcript of an interview of James Rybicki, former chief of staff to former FBI Director James Comey, that includes this excerpt: “So we understand that at some point in October of 2016, there was, I guess, a desire by the White House to make some kind of statement about Russia’s…” and then the next page is omitted.

The comment is made by an unidentified prosecutor from the U.S. Office of Special Counsel or “OSC,” not to be confused with the office of former Special Counsel Robert Mueller (the OSC is a permanent office that investigates Hatch Act violations, and Mr. Comey was under investigation for trying to influence the 2016 Presidential election).

Roger Stone’s Indictment

Trump friend Roger Stone is facing charges from the Mueller gang that are based on this key question – who provided the DNC the Podesta emails to WikiLeaks?

The corrupt FBI and Mueller team claim the emails were hacked but neither entity inspected the DNC server which was supposedly hacked. They have provided no proof of this.

The DNC instead hired a firm Crowdstrike, with connections to Mueller and former Obama Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, who provided a redacted report to the FBI and Mueller stating the emails were hacked by Russia.

Former NSA whistleblower Bill Binney claims he has evidence the DNC emails were not hacked but copied most likely on to a flashdrive or something similar.

Now This…

When Ty Clevenger requested documents from the FBI related to any investigation into the death of Seth Rich, they replied that they never investigated Seth Rich and they don’t even have any records on him –

But when documents were requested from the NSA, they replied that they won’t release their records regarding Seth Rich because it’s a matter of national security –

USC 552(b)(1) states:  This section does not apply to matters that are—

(A) specifically authorized under criteria established by an Executive order to be kept secret in the interest of national defense or foreign policy and (B) are in fact properly classified pursuant to such Executive order;

So the FBI never investigated the Seth Rich murder even though the NSA said the case was a matter of national security?

This too does not pass the smell test.

Hat tip D. Manny

Hell freezes over? New York Times wants closer relationship with Russia, congratulates Trump

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The New York Times’ editorial board, fresh from peddling anti-Russia conspiracies for two years, has made a remarkable about-turn. Now the paper wants closer relations with the Kremlin, all to thwart China’s ambitions.

‘Russiagate’ has maintained an iron grip on American political discourse for two years now, even after Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report cleared President Donald Trump of conspiring with the Kremlin to steal the 2016 US election. In the media, the public has been treated to nightly conspiracy theories and bizarre connect-the-dots articles claiming to prove collusion; and lawmakers have crafted ever more draconian sanctions bills against Russia and have slotted opposition to Russia into their campaign messages.

Meanwhile, Moscow and Beijing have looked to each other, holding joint military exercises and upping their trade volume to more than $100 billion in 2018. Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev recently announced plans to build a new, 2,000km-long highway linking Europe and China, while President Vladimir Putin has been mulling connecting Russia’s Northern Sea Route with China’s Maritime Silk Road, an ambitious global trade route linking China with ports in Southeast Asia, Africa, Europe, and the Middle East.

The idea of closer Moscow/Beijing cooperation clearly worries the New York Times’ editorial board. In an op-edpublished on Sunday, the board wrote that “President Trump is correct to try to establish a sounder relationship with Russia and peel it away from China” – itself a remarkable compliment from a paper that ran op-eds titled “Donald Trump Hates America,” and “Trump is Racist to the Bone” in the last five days.

The board then suggested that the US could strengthen its cooperation with Russia in space exploration and Arctic cleanup – areas untainted by ‘Russiagate’. In addition, new arms control treaties could be a step towards geopolitical cooperation between the two rival superpowers.

All valid and worthy points, but from the New York Times? Yes, we’re talking about the same newspaper that last year called Trump a “treasonous traitor” ahead of his meeting with Putin in Helsinki. Instead of seeking rapprochement then, the paper argued that Trump should “be directing all resources at his disposal to punish Russia.” 

We’re talking about the same New York Times that dubbed Trump “Putin’s Lackey” and released a mocking videodetailing a ‘love story’ between Trump and Putin, laden with homoerotic overtones and culminating in a tongue-locking kiss between the two leaders. It’s funny because they’re gay, see?

The piece surprised many, like pundit George Szamuely, who wrote that Washington has demonized Russia and blamed it for every problem besetting [the] US,” while the Times “has for years berated Trump for advocating this perfectly sensible policy, at times suggesting that he was doing so only because he was Putin’s agent and a traitor to the United States.”

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Bear in mind that the Times’ editorial board does not hold the same opinions as its revolving cast of op-ed writers. Still, for a newspaper whose writers almost unanimously despise the US president, Sunday’s op-ed represents a shocking repudiation of two years of anti-Russia, anti-Trump static.

Perhaps the outlet that often voiced the ideas of the American establishment has finally realized that the ‘Russiagate’ horse is too long dead for another flogging? Or maybe the Times saw it’s time for a new kind of politics: the politics of Detente. Either way, the change is a surprising one.

Soros and Koch funding new ‘anti-war’ think tank— and we should probably be a little bit suspicious

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By Danielle Ryan

There’s a new “anti-war” think tank coming to town. It will promote a new US foreign policy — one based on diplomacy instead of sanctions and war. Sounds great, until you hear it’s being funded by Soros and Koch.

The ‘Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft’ will oppose Washington’s “endless wars” and will “challenge the basis of American foreign policy in a way that has not been done in at least the last quarter-century,” according to co-founder Trita Parsi.

With financier George Soros coming from the left (though he’s hardly a real leftist) and industrialist Charles Koch coming from the right, everyone is supposed to applaud the bipartisan nature of the initiative. The Boston Globe called it “one of the most remarkable partnerships in modern American political history” as though the two billionaire businessmen come from alternate universes.

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The Globe notes that promoting an anti-war message is “radical notion,” given that nearly every major think tank in Washington currently promotes “some variant of neocon militarism or liberal interventionism.”

To give credit where it’s due, this really is a radical notion — and the more the anti-war narrative begins to trickle into the mainstream, the better. If the Quincy Institute does what it says on the tin, most genuine anti-war activists and readers won’t quibble too much about where the think tank got its start-up cash. Soros and Koch have thrown $500,000 each into the pot.

Who checks the fact-checkers? Facebook leaves verification to groups funded by Soros, US Congress

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Named after John Quincy Adams, who declared in 1821 that the US “goes not abroad in search of monsters to destroy” but is the “well-wisher to the freedom and independence of all” and the “champion and vindicator only of her own,” the think tank will offer a platform to both progressive voices and anti-interventionist conservatives.

The Globe writes that this will mean its writers will “likely” advocate for things like pulling US troops out of Afghanistan and Syria, putting an end to regime change wars and “less confrontational” policies toward China and Russia.

The problem here is not the concept. It’s just a question of whether or not the venture can actually be taken seriously when Soros and Koch’s fingerprints are already all over the world’s current endless wars, conflicts and regime changes.

Take some well-known Soros-funded think tanks; the Center for American Progress and the Atlantic Council, for example. They haven’t exactly been the biggest peace-pushers in the think tank world. The AC also received funding from a slew of arms manufacturers, so you’d be hard-pressed to find any anti-war sentiment there. Soros has also been linked to the “pro-democracy” European group Avaaz, which has advocated for no-fly zones in Libya and agitated for regime change in Venezuela and Iran.

In 2017, the Soros-funded ‘European Values’ think tank smeared 2,327 people as “useful idiots” for Russia for merely appearing on RT, in a McCarthyist-style attack on anyone deemed not to be sufficiently compliant with prevailing Western narratives.

Koch too has been linked to havoc-wreaking policies everywhere from Iraq to Venezuela. Despite supposedly opposing the Iraq war, independent journalist Caitlin Johnstone notes that Koch has been a major donor to the neoconservative American Enterprise Institute, whose members are considered leading architects of the invasion.

The Quincy Institute is slated to launch in September and until it gets off the ground, it will be impossible to declare a final judgement on its work — but given that organizations funded by Soros and Koch have spouted war-promoting propaganda to serve the US imperialist agenda for years, it’s a little difficult to see this sudden change of heart as entirely genuine.

Impeccable record, good with email: Why shouldn’t Hillary Clinton give speech on cyber security?

CAP

She’s only just learnt that you can use separate emails for work and home, but Hillary Clinton is to deliver a keynote address at the Cyber Defense Summit. RT looks at the expertise offered by the ex-presidential candidate.

CAP

She might make grandma jokes about “wiping” her server with a cloth, but as RT’s Igor Zhdanov notes, there are few people in the world so adept at deleting information, that is potentially of state importance, off a server that even the FBI had no clue about.

And she would have managed to keep multi-million-dollar-earning Wall Street speeches a secret from the world, if it were not for the dastardly Wikileaks. So, there is a cautionary tale she can tell there.

And for the encore Clinton could explain how she cracked the Kremlin’s plan to meddle in the 2016 election and swing the result to Donald Trump, and then infiltrated the media to present her as a somewhat sore loser.

https://www.rt.com/usa/460978-clinton-cyber-security-email/

‘Create a new category’: Fury after transgender runner claims US women’s college title

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US transgender runner Cece Telferm, who previously competed against men, has become embroiled in controversy after winning the women’s 400m hurdles title – with many fans accusing the athlete of having an unfair advantage.

Franklin Pierce University senior Telfer took the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) women’s 400m hurdles title in dominant fashion at the end of May, setting a new personal best of 57.53 and finishing more than a second ahead of rival runners.

READ MORE:Transgender powerlifter stripped of world records after drug tester rules she is ‘actually male’

However, the victory was met with mixed reaction on social media, with many users insisting that Telferm should not have been allowed to compete against women.

“Cheat. It’s a shame that cheats are also given awards and celebrated,” one user wrote.

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A number of fans fumed that the result of the race was highly predictable, as a mediocre male runner is stronger than even the best female athletes.

“This is getting beyond ridiculous. Natural born female sport is now in absolute crisis and if this is permitted to continue unchecked, XX chromosome World and Olympic records will shortly be consigned to history. XX female athletes cannot beat CeCe, it’s simply not a fair fight!” one person wrote.

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Some users suggested that there should be a new division introduced for transgender athletes to ensure fair competition in sport.

“There needs to be men’s, women’s and ‘others’ categories then. It has to be a level playing field or it’s just not fair,” one commentator suggested.

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“I am so thinking this is not fairness or sporting. Create a new category,” another user added.

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“Sports need another category—men , women, and transgender. The women are competing with a biological male, in this case. In other words, more muscle just by nature’s biology,” one more comment reads.

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Should HBO’s ‘Chernobyl’ have had more actors of color? Twitter suggestion met with ridicule

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HBO’s hit new series based on the Chernobyl tragedy has divided opinion online, but the oddest reaction yet has come from a budding UK actor wondering why the show’s creators had not chosen more people of color for the cast.

While the docudrama has come under criticism for various historical inaccuracies, until now, the lack of racial diversity among the actors was not one of those criticisms — for the simple reason that 1980s Ukraine was not exactly a thriving hub of modern-day multiculturalism.

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That should have been no reason to leave black and brown actors out though, according to actress Karla Marie Sweet, who tweeted that there are “so many great actors of colour” in the UK who “would’ve been amazing” in the series. Sweet felt “disappointed” to see “yet another hit show with a massive cast” that “makes it looks like PoC don’t exist.”

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Just to clear up any confusion, the show “makes it look” like that to reflect the reality of the time and place — and the producers seem to have been at least trying to create an authentic vibe.

Needless to say, Sweet’s tweet didn’t exactly go down well on Twitter, where she was promptly told to “learn history.”

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“You didn’t see PoC because they’re not there!”

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One user said perhaps the actors were chosen for the same reason that Martin Luther King should probably not be played by a white person — because he was black.

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Another said he was taking a screenshot of the thread because “nobody will believe” something so stupid could have been posted.

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To be fair, Sweet did at least acknowledge the lack of people of color in the USSR in another tweet, but suggested that since the actors spoke with British accents (it was a British production), the creators should have just thrown accuracy completely out the window and hired a more diverse-looking cast. Emotions like fear, panic and sadness can be “communicated just as effectively” by people of color, she added, missing the point entirely.

‘Chernobyl’ is a blast of a TV series – but don’t call it ‘authentic’

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Having actors of another race would “break immersion” for the viewers, another user tried to explain — but ultimately, Sweet didn’t seem open to criticism, later tweeting about the reactions she had received from “racist Twitter.”

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So Woke: Disney, Netflix Threaten Georgia Boycott But Continue Work in Countries Where Abortion Is Illegal

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By Dr. Susan Berry

Film industry giants Disney and Netflix are threatening to boycott the state of Georgia over its new “heartbeat” abortion law, but have continued and even stepped up filming in countries in which abortion is entirely illegal or highly restricted.

Variety reported Monday Netflix intends to increase production in Egypt – where abortion is illegal – with Paranormal, directed by Amr Salama and based on the horror books by late Egyptian author Ahmed Khaled Tawfik.

“We are excited to continue our investment in Middle Eastern productions by adapting the highly acclaimed Paranormal novels into a thrilling new series,” said Kelly Luegenbiehl, Netflix vice president of international originals.

Variety reported Paranormal is the third Middle Eastern Netflix original series. It follows Jinn, a teen drama with supernatural themes that was filmed in Jordan, where abortion is illegal, except to save the life of the woman or if her health is threatened. Women as well as abortionists can be penalized for defying the law in Jordan.

Despite filming in these nations, however, on Tuesday Ted Sarandos, Netflix’s chief content officer, told Variety the company has “many women working on productions in Georgia, whose rights … will be severely restricted” by the Georgia law that prohibits abortion once a fetal heartbeat is detected.

Sarandos said Netflix would be working with the ACLU to fight the new law.

“Given the legislation has not yet been implemented, we’ll continue to film there, while also supporting partners and artists who choose not to,” he added. “Should it ever come into effect, we’d rethink our entire investment in Georgia.”

While Disney Chairman Bob Iger commented that it would not be “practical” for his company to continue to shoot in Georgia, given its new abortion law, the Washington Free Beacon reported that Disney filmed part of its 2019 film Aladdin in Jordan as well.

The Free Beacon also noted that Disney owns the Star Wars franchise. In 2015, the company distributed Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which was filmed in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, where abortion is illegal except during the first 120 days of pregnancy and only when the mother’s life is threatened or the baby is diagnosed with a “lethal abnormality” that is “incompatible with life.”

Republican pollster Logan Dobson also observed on Twitter that Star Wars: The Last Jedi filmed scenes in Croatia, Ireland, and Bolivia – all nations in which abortion was highly restricted at the time of filming:

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The Wall Street Journal editorial board noted the inconsistency in Disney’s policies, and specifically pointed out that the company also touts its theme park and films in China, where Turkic Muslims are being held in internment camps:

More than a few Americans may also notice the contradiction that Disney is more worried about filming in a U.S. state that has passed a law democratically than it is operating its theme park and hawking its films in China, which uses facial-recognition software to monitor its population and has a million Uighurs in re-education camps.

For decades, China also attempted to force control of its population with its “one-child policy,” which restricted the number of children a couple could have to only one.

Georgia’s Living Infants Fairness and Equality (LIFE) Act (HB 481) prohibits abortions in the state after a heartbeat is detected, usually at about six or seven weeks of pregnancy. Cases of rape, incest, or if the life of the mother is in danger are exceptions to the law.

Georgia is the third largest production hub in the country, due to its generous tax incentives.

Actress and political activist Alyssa Milano called for a Hollywood boycott of Georgia if Republican Gov. Brian Kemp signed the bill into law. Milano then followed with a call for a sex strike – urging women to engage in abstinence from sex – to protest the end to “reproductive rights.”

‘Putin has a Mueller pee tape!’ Waiting for the most insane takes from Special Counsel’s statement

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After Special Counsel Robert Mueller delivered a public statement standing by the findings of his final report, liberal commentators began reading between the lines. How long before Putin is accused of getting to Mueller?

Mueller delivered his public statement on Wednesday, and offered very few surprises. His final report, which cleared President Donald Trump of colluding with Russia in 2016 and found insufficient evidence to bring obstruction charges against the president, “speaks for itself,” Mueller said. The Special Counsel also stated that Attorney General William Barr has already “made the report on our investigation largely public,” and that he would not testify on anything beyond the publicly available information.

Pulling a Comey: How Mueller dog-whistled Democrats into impeachment of Trump

So a bland statement of Justice Department policy? On the surface, yes. But that didn’t stop Democrats from clamoring for further investigations, or viewing Mueller’s declination to prosecute as a dog-whistle for impeachment.

Journalist Mark Ames joked that “Putin has a Mueller pee tape,” a reference to one particularly lurid tale presented in the ‘Steele Dossier.’ Ironically, the Steele Dossier – though completely uncorroborated – was used by the FBI to justify surveilling the Trump campaign and played a central role in kick-starting the investigation that Mueller eventually took over.

Ames added: “If Maddow doesn’t air a segment tonight claiming Putin has a Mueller pee tape, it can only mean one thing – Putin has a Maddow pee tape.”

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Actually, the idea that Maddow would air such a segment on Mueller is not a far-fetched one.

In the two years since Mueller took over the ‘Russiagate’ investigation, Maddow has flung dung-heaps of conspiratorial Russian nonsense at viewers every night. There was her warning that the Kremlin could “flip the off switch” on the US power grid and freeze Americans to death last winter, the suggestion that Trump personally paid for the services of “Russian hackers,” and the insistence that Vladimir Putin would use the (then debunked) ‘Pee Tape’ to force Trump to withdraw US troops from Eastern Europe (the exact opposite happened).

Fake news takedown: Journalist shreds Rachel Maddow’s Russiagate conspiracies

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Of course, Maddow is not the only peddler of Russian hysteria out there. Nor is MSNBC the only outlet to do a little mind-reading in its coverage of Mueller’s statement.

“He seems to think that the president committed a crime,” one talking head offered on Wednesday, adding that perhaps “future prosecutors” should re-examine the president’s conduct once he leaves office.

CNN correspondent Sara Murray weighed in with her own Mueller lip-reading: “Mueller was telling everybody ‘Look at what I’m saying, I couldn’t do it (prosecute), because the law would not allow me to, but, even if the law did not allow me to charge him, I still could not clear him and I am telling you that.”

No idea is too wild or unbelievable for Maddow or the CNN talking heads to entertain. Tune in, but bring the tinfoil hat and the rubber sheets.

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