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Monokultur » Mængden af manglende beviser tårner sig op


Mængden af manglende beviser tårner sig op

Diverse — Drokles on March 9, 2018 at 5:33 am

National Reviews Andrew C McCarthy har længe været den vigtigste skribent, hvis man vil forstå det komplicerede juridiske og efterforskningsarbejde i det politisk spil om efterforskningen af alting Trump og Rusland. Fordi efterretingsvæsnet kun havde en konkret mistanke om mulig kontakt til fremmede efterretningstjenester, til en lavere rangerende medarbejder i Trumps valgkampsmaskineri, Carter Page. Når jeg siger lavere rangerende, så var han ikke med i selv kampagne, men sammen med nogle venner havde han frivilligt fremstillet en rapport om sikkerhedspolitik, som han mente ville gavne Trumps udenrigspolitik.

For at kunne efterforske Page, en amerikansk statsborger, må efterretningstjenesterne indhente midlertidige dommerkendelser hos den såkaldte United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, en såkaldt FISA Warrent. Disse dommerkendelser blev indhentet bl.a på baggrund af den private efterforskning, som Demokraternes og Hillary Clintons valgkampsmaskine betalte den tidligere efterretningsagent Steele for. Steelerapporten var en kulørt samling påstande, bl.a om at Trump fik ludere til at tisse i en hotelseng i Moskva, hvor hr og fru Obama skulle have sovet under et præsidentielt besøg. FBI mistede også hurtigt tilliden til rapportens ubekræftede oplysninger og til dens ophavsmand Christopher Steele. Men det var ikke en viden, de syntes at ville belaste FISA dommerens dømmekraft med, som de ansøgte om genopretholdelse af deres overvågning af al Carter Pages korrespondence.

Det er i sig selv en lille skandale om magtmisbrug, som simrer for tiden. Men efterretningsvæsenets interesse for Carter Page syntes ikke at have så meget at gøre med hans ‘konspirative’ aktiviteter i forhold til udenlandske interesser, hvorfor ansøgningen om overvågning også måtte hviles på et dubiøst grundlag, som den stilling Page havde, nemlig en stilling på Trumps hold. Ved at overvåge hvem Page kontaktede overvågede man således også alle som Page havde kontakt med om de var under mistanke eller ej. Men ” they don’t stop there” skriver J E Dyer for Tablet Magazine og giver en mere pædagogisk forklaring af en af McCarthys fremragende analyser

A conspiratorial enterprise is bound to involve communications beyond Carter Page’s first circle of direct contact, so investigators need to look at the next circle as well. They may need to look further, depending on the communications patterns they find in the first two circles radiating from their named target. But under current rules, it’s the first two that government investigators can routinely gain access to in order to “uncover the full scope of a conspiratorial enterprise,” without needing to apply for further warrants.

This convention is referred to as the “two-hop” rule, and, like many provisions of surveillance law, has come in for criticism by civil libertarians. The original FISA was passed in 1978, before the internet age. After 9/11, information technology enabled surveillance operators under the Patriot Act, which complemented and in some ways overlapped FISA surveillance, to inaugurate a “three-hop” rule exploiting computer-networked communications to look well beyond the first-order contacts of a central subject (under Patriot Act surveillance, a terror suspect). This was done via presidential order and came as an unwelcome surprise to the public when the practice was revealed, and initially dubbed “warrantless wiretapping,” in 2005.

(…)

What this means in practice is that, under a single warrant, anyone Page had a text or phone call with in the Trump campaign during the brief months of his association with it in 2016, was fair game, as a direct connection, all the way through the end of the last warrant-extension period on Page in October 2017. The second-hop connections of those initial contacts—meaning everyone that those people had contact with—are also fair game. In other words, it’s likely that almost everyone on the Trump campaign staff was included in the universe of first- and second-order contacts of Carter Page. The entirety of their correspondence is therefore also covered by the initial warrant, regardless of whether or not they ever met or corresponded with Carter Page, or whether that correspondence referred to him in any way, directly or indirectly.

We got a glimpse of that reality from the recent report that Carter Page was in contact with Trump adviser Steve Bannon in January 2017, which could have allowed the FBI to look further into Bannon’s communications through October 2017. But it also allowed a probe of Bannon’s communications going back years before January 2017—as well as a probe of anyone Bannon was in contact with throughout that same period.

Dyer advarer om retssikkerheden for alle amerikanere, hvilket da også er væsentligt. Men mere prosaisk, når det handler om Trump, som er en besættelse hos medierne, så er det vanskeligt at se, hvorledes et russisk samarbejde med Trumps stab på nogen måde har kunnet skjules, så godt som efterretningstjenesten har kunnet belyse alle arbejdsgange og al kommunikation. Efterretningsvæsenet er altså gået langt over stregen for at understrege det bizarre i Den Russiske Fortælling.

Åh, man fandt intet af interesse hos Carter Page, der turnerede på de store medier med et underfundigt smil på læben mens nyhedsværter desperat forsøgte at fremstille ham som landsforræder.

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