On May 13, it was announced that Attorney General William Barr had assigned U.S. Attorney John Durham to investigate the origins of the counterintelligence investigation into the Trump campaign during the 2016 presidential election.
Durham was the guy very publicly tapped to conduct the probe into how the Trump–Russia collusion hoax began not just because of his qualifications, but also because he already had been read into the “Spygate” plot.
Although many media commentators dismissed it when then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions talked about it, there really were dozens of classified leak investigations going on at the Department of Justice (DOJ) during his tenure there. And Durham was leading at least one of them, and potentially more.
Durham has a history of going after government corruption. He was personally selected by then-Attorney General Janet Reno to lead the investigation that exposed how FBI agents in Boston covered up serious crimes—including murder—committed by mob boss Whitey Bulger.
Not only did two FBI agents end up covering for Bulger’s crimes, but they also helped him flee from authorities in 1994. Bulger stayed on the run as a wanted fugitive until he was captured in California in 2011. In 2018, Bulger was beaten to death by fellow inmates in a federal prison in West Virginia.
Ask yourself this: If a crack U.S. attorney such as Durham was assigned to investigate the strategic leaking of those involved in the FBI’s investigation into the Trump campaign, what would that U.S. attorney end up learning?
Durham would have ended up looking very carefully at who the leaks targeted, why they were being targeted, what specific classified information was being used to make targets out of them, and how the leakers made use of the media stories they planted to drive the hoax investigations they were running.
I expect that the release of DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s report into potential Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) abuses will blow the lid off the whole thing. The report will cover how strategic leaks—in several cases, based on fake evidence—were used to target certain people, and, in at least one case, were used to obtain a FISA warrant, namely against Carter Page.
The “Spygate leaks,” as I call them, were foundational to the launching of the massive Trump–Russia collusion hoax. Without the leaks laying the groundwork, nothing would have happened.
And we’ve known for some time now that it wasn’t just Page who was subjected to a FISA investigation. As I discussed in this previous column, “Just How Many Other Trump Campaign Members Were Targets of FISA Court Investigations?“, at least three other people appear to have been the focus of FISA investigations: Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, Paul Manafort, and George Papadopoulos.
When Trump came into office, serious leaks were happening at a pace of about one a day. By the time Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and the crack FBI leak-hunting unit they created were done with their work, all the leaks had been plugged.
Nothing at the DOJ leaks anymore, which is a sea change from when Trump came into office. And it’s kind of amazing to me how many people never wonder exactly why that is.
I’ll admit Sessions wasn’t doing a whole lot in the open, where we could all see it, but several times he did talk about what was going on underneath the surface. But of course, “smart people” didn’t believe him and told everyone he was lying.
So, a lot of things that Sessions was doing were kept under wraps, out of sight, underneath the surface, even as he and Trump were publicly “feuding” over there being no investigations done at the DOJ.
But, of course, we know there were investigations going on. They just didn’t advertise them. That’s how the DOJ is supposed to do its work, often not announcing that an investigation is happening until it’s over, and then only if an indictment is issued.
So people who think Trump’s hand-picked people running the DOJ, FBI, State Department, and CIA shouldn’t do their important work in secret, and should roll all their investigative work into the open for the whole world to watch, have no clue what they’re saying.
DOJ investigations have to be done in secret.
More than 2 1/2 years of careful preparation by serious, dedicated professionals paved the way for that public rolling-out of the Durham appointment in May.
These investigations were done by the book; nothing was skipped or rushed or a sloppy job. Far from a massive cover-up being underway, Trump and his team have been preparing for an epic smackdown of those who corrupted and weaponized our federal government for their own partisan political purposes.
Have a little faith. We’re almost there.
Brian Cates is a writer based in South Texas and the author of “Nobody Asked For My Opinion … But Here It Is Anyway!” He can be reached on Twitter @drawandstrike.
Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.