Durham Report: FBI Agents in Russia Probe Say Leaders Hid Intel About Possible Clinton Role

AP Photo/Richard Drew, File

When the Durham Report dropped, one of the most concerning things in it that we’ve reported on before was the question of the role Hillary Clinton and Trump’s political opponents played in all of this. As we noted, Durham said that the FBI’s Crossfire Hurricane investigation was “triggered and sustained” and significantly reliant on such politically related “leads.”


Among the things the report delved into was the intelligence that Hillary Clinton may have hatched the plan to smear Donald Trump by tying him to Russia and distracting everyone from her email scandal.

The Durham Report noted:

In late July 2016, U.S. intelligence agencies obtained insight into Russian intelligence analysis alleging that U.S Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton had approved a campaign plan to stir up a scandal against U.S. Presidential candidate Donald Trump by tying him to Putin and the Russians’ hacking of the Democratic National Committee.

It was significant enough for CIA Director John Brennan to subsequently brief President Barack Obama and other senior officials including Vice President Joe Biden and FBI Director James Comey. So those folks knew about the intel that “Russia collusion” was a smear.

As it rolled out you could see Clinton and/or her people doing things, like pushing the Alfa Bank smear, spreading that both to the FBI and to the media.

But after the CIA got this information they also wrote a “referral memo” to James Comey, as well as to the attention of Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok to follow up on the intel.

Yet what Durham found out when he began delving was more than a little shocking. Even though the leaders like Strzok and Comey knew about this intelligence about Clinton, FBI employees who were interviewed by Durham could recall seeing it or pursuing the information. They’re supposed to be investigating these claims but they weren’t told one of the most important things they should know. When told about the memo, some “expressed surprise and dismay” that this had been kept from them, including the Supervisory Special Agent on Crossfire Hurricane.


For example, the original Supervisory Special Agent on the Crossfire Hurricane investigation, Supervisory Special Agent-1, reviewed the intelligence during one of his interviews with the Office. After reading it, Supervisory Special Agent-I became visibly upset and emotional, left the interview room with his counsel, and subsequently returned to state emphatically that he had never been apprised of the Clinton Plan intelligence and had never seen the aforementioned Referral Memo. Supervisory Special Agent-1 expressed a sense of betrayal that no one had informed him of the intelligence.

Had they known it might have explained why they were continually running up against dead ends.

The idea that Steele was working on a plot for Clinton — rather than being simply a retired British intelligence agent — would have answered nagging questions the investigators had, such as one’s reservation that “what was strange was that [British Intelligence Services] don’t seem to want to deal with the guy.” Another agent assigned to handle Steele said his initial reaction was “disbelief.”

Crossfire Hurricane agents regularly found themselves flummoxed by why they were being pushed aggressively by leadership brass to investigate something that seemed so weak. The agent who became “visibly upset” also said he had “felt like a fool” while investigating “dry holes,” but assumed that “somebody above them” knew of some solid evidence that he did not that guided their decision-making.

He said a colleague felt similarly and would regularly ask, “what are we even doing here?” That colleague told Deputy Assistant Director Jennifer Boone that he did not think there was justification for surveilling Trump aide Carter Page, but “he was largely ignored and directed to continue.”


They were also told not to put down things in writing, which seems completely apart from how the FBI normally operates, which is to take notes and write down everything.

Two weeks later, the Deputy Assistant Director for Counterintelligence, Dina Corsi, met with the review team and directed them not to document any recommendations, context, or analysis in the memorandum they were preparing. The instructions, which Headquarters Analyst-3 described as ‘highly unusual,’ concerned the team because analysis is what analysts do [….]

OGC Attorney-I advised the Office that what Corsi said was not right in any circumstance, and it was the most inappropriate operational or professional statement he had ever heard at the FBI. OGC Attorney-I stated that the directive from Corsi was ‘really, really shocking’ to him and that he was ‘appalled’ by it.

But of course, they couldn’t be writing down things that would indicate there was nothing to it.

Yet, they never interviewed the people concerned that they were looking into like Carter Page or George Papadopoulos.

So not only were they not vetting that it was a smear they were also running their own agents around in circles, without telling them.

It’s probably hard to get more despicable than what was done to Donald Trump and the American people with all this, but this adds yet another layer.



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