Welcome to the seventh issue of The Outsider Perspective, brought to you by The Beltway Outsiders.
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My piece on Trump’s meeting with Evangelical leaders ended up getting delayed for a piece on FBI Director Comey’s statement on the Clinton Email investigation. The FBI recommended no charges be filed against Clinton. I dissent, pointing out that all the points Comey gives on Clinton fit gross negligence in protecting American classified information. Clinton’s prosecution should have begun with Comey’s statement, not ended.
This week I’m covering some more problems with Clinton walking free from an FBI investigation, the ongoing war with radical jihadism, the problems I see with how conservatism handle police brutality, and finally a note on Elie Wiesel’s death. As always, the quick links follow the analysis for those who enjoy reading pieces driving conversation across the web, or should be in my estimate.
Clinton’s email server harmed American interests and she goes unpunished for it
The top reason for why Clinton should have been prosecuted for her conduct has nothing to do with fealty to statutes. It has everything to do with the fact that Hilary Clinton endangered American spies and assets domestic and abroad with her server. I touched on this briefly in my column, but I’m expanding up on it here. One of the points I’ve seen brought up is that Clinton’s mishandling of classified information is a victimless crime. “It appears no harm occurred, so even though it’s bad, it’s not harmful for American classified intelligence to be leaked.”
This is utter nonsense.
Clinton’s server harmed American interests and inhibited our ability to negotiate with leverage and have an upper hand in geo-political affairs:
The reality is that the secretary of state is always among the top four American officials whose communications are targeted by literally dozens of spy services worldwide, along with the secretary of defense and the director of national intelligence. Only the president’s phone calls and emails are accorded higher priority by our adversaries in the SpyWar. Anything sent unencrypted (or even lightly encrypted) is automatically assumed to have been intercepted, with good cause.
The reason for this is simple. If you can read the secretary of state’s emails, you will get an excellent look at the topmost inner workings of our government. You will witness how America’s foreign policy sausage gets made. Even if the secretary of state is discreet, restricting classified and sensitive communications to proper channels which are much more secure—as Clinton’s predecessors did but she did not—any foreign spy agency that accesses them will know a fair amount about how the secretary of state feels and thinks about a wide range of important topics.
In other words: Clinton’s server gave other governments, notably the Russians and Chinese, easy access to see American secrets. In his statement, FBI Director James Comey said Clinton’s server was unsecured and had nowhere near the security of any other official form of communication. While no direct hacks are noted, you’ll find all of Clinton’s emails floating among various government agencies. Clinton is basically standing around saying she was never robbed while Russia holds her wallet. Sure, you’ll never have direct evidence of Russia putting their hand in her purse to grab it. But how do you think the Russians got that information? No one expects to find direct evidence. Leaving direct evidence is a sign of bad hackers. The Russians are not bad.
Further, and more disturbing, Clinton’s server revealed the highly sensitive details about US agents in the field:
Discussions with Intelligence Community officials have revealed that Ms. Clinton’s “unclassified” emails included Holy Grail items of American espionage such as the true names of Central Intelligence Agency intelligence officers serving overseas under cover. Worse, some of those exposed are serving under non-official cover. NOCs (see this for an explanation of their important role in espionage) are the pointy end of the CIA spear and they are always at risk of exposure – which is what Ms. Clinton’s emails have done.
Not only have these spies had their lives put in serious risk by this, it’s a clear violation of Federal law. The Intelligence Identities Protection Act of 1982, enacted due to the murder of the CIA’s station chief in Athens after his cover was blown by the left-wing media, makes it a Federal crime to divulge the true identity of any covert operative serving U.S. intelligence if that person has not previous been publicly acknowledged to be working for our spy agencies.
Not only is this not a victim-less crime, Clinton’s paranoia over right-wing conspiracies and FOIA requests have endangered American interests and people. She is going to walk away from this without an indictment. People like to say this is just about records retention. It’s not. It’s about protecting American security, our forces abroad, and not handing secrets to our enemies. Clinton’s blasé attitude towards cyber-security in an ever growing world threatened by cyber-terrorism should disqualify her from office. At a minimum she should be prosecuted and forced to answer why she endangered American security.
ISIS attacks continue to show how our foreign policy decisions our endangering the world
ISIS has stepped up attacks across the world during the month of Ramadan for Muslims. Aside from the attacks in America and Europe, we’ve seen a lethal car bombing in Iraq killing more than 200 people, a bombing in the Muslim holy city of Medina, and a hostage situation in Bangladesh where ISIS militants killed multiple people. The attacks underscore the breadth of ISIS and pretending that US can sit back and bomb them in Syria and Iraq is just plugging one finger in a leaking dam. We’ve seen progress in Iraq with the battle over Fallujah and in drone strikes against ISIS leadership. But the fact remains that Western powers still have not come to grips on how to handle domestic radicalization or the spread of ISIS.
In the US, Democrats are poised to continue their protests for more gun control. Even though that narrative died over the holiday weekend with Clinton’s email server taking over the news. And Republicans are likely to jump into that fray proposing their own gun control measures. Which ignores what I’ve been hammering for several weeks now: This is not a gun control issue. Radicalized jihadists will use whatever weapons they can find. We’ve seen improvised bomb attacks, knife attacks, guns, and other means. The tools are not the issue. ISIS is broadening its attacks to the point where potential allies in Turkey and Bangladesh are being killed now. The US should be using this to our advantage to drive ISIS back in those territories. But other than simple press release statements, the administration is disengaged from foreign policy.
Conservatives should be engaging the issue of police brutality, not shying away
I’m working on a more in-depth piece on the problem of police brutality and blacks in America. There are a few key ideas I want to tackle in it. I expect it to go up in a couple of weeks. But a point that can be answered easily is how the conservative movement is not dealing with an overbearing form of government.
Police power is, in essence, no different than any other form of government. If you can understand why the IRS targeting conservative groups, Hillary Clinton walking free, and “Too big to fail” are moral wrongs within our system, it should also be easy to empathize with blacks in American who deal with an overbearing police state. It should be readily apparent than neither Democrats nor progressives can cohesively answer this question. At their core, Democrats believe more government control is needed. If progressives had their way, they would make gun ownership illegal in the United States. Current House Democrats wants to erode Due Process Rights to remove gun rights. More government and more centralization or power is their only answer.
The solution to an overbearing state is note a progressive or liberal solution. It’s conservative. Shrink the size of government, make it more accountable and transparent, and give power back to the people. Checking police power should be a natural step for conservatives concerned about the size and scope of government. Ending stop and frisk, placing body cameras on police officers (and remove their ability to turn cameras off), moving investigations out of local municipalities and up to county or state levels, and protecting the gun rights of inner city minorities are fundamental conservative ideas. They shrink the size of government, make it accountable, and help restore integrity in our justice system.
We will never end racism. But we can make government more accountable and transparent to communities who are mourning the deaths of men and women. Conservatives have the solutions. We should offer them, not retreat to petty narratives. Meet people where they are and help them solve their problems. Don’t tell people their liars and the pain they feel is fake.
The death of Elie Wiesel is tragic and brought out the anti-semitics
Elie Wiesel’s death brought about many remembrances of his impact on the world. For those who don’t know his biography and impact on the world, his foundation is a great start. He was a Jew who survived Hitler’s Auschwitz extermination camp and went on to receive the Nobel Peace Price. His death brought a large outpouring of love and support for him and his work.
The darker side of his death was the anti-semitic attacks from the left. A number of those attacks can be found here, but I’m going to focus on two in particular that deserve mention: Max Blumenthal and Reza Aslan. Blumenthal is the son of senior Clinton aide Sydney Blumenthal. Max attacked Wiesel as a racist and liar. One wonders whether he learned his anti-semitism from his father. His attacks were so vile the Clinton campaign was forced to disavow him (even though Clinton has praised him in the past).
Finally, Reza Aslan is the Iranian-American media pundit who peddles lies on Christianity and Islam in the media. He attacked Wiesel on the same grounds as Blumenthal. The moronic attacks by Aslan and Blumenthal should follow them for the rest of their lives. But eventually, the media will put them back in the spotlight. But for now, these two peddlers of idiocy should be known for what they are: ignorant racists using the death of a great man to peddle their vile thoughts. Wiesel’s legacy will stand the test of time.
Quick slants and Must Reads
Racial justice and police brutality
(Note: At the time this newsletter is going to press, an active shooter situation has developed in Dallas, TX during a Black Lives Matter protest. Early reports indicate police officers have been shot.)
Trump: “I can win without unity.” (so why does #NeverTrump matter?)
(Most of my Clinton-centric must read links are contained in my piece “Clinton Walks.”)
Misc must reads
The Soul of America – Ravi Zacharias (Highly recommend)
What I’m reading
Over the last 5 years, Syrian President Assad has set out a strategy to purpose kill or drive out all medical personnel in the Syrian country in order to gain a military advantage over rebels and ISIS fighters. Over 700 doctors and other medical professionals have been killed as a result, driving out 95% of the medical profession out of Syria. Leaving innocent civilians and wounded warriors without medical care. This New Yorker piece delves into the underground medical profession that has sprung up as doctors and outside groups attempt to deliver care to Syrians left behind.
What I’m listening to
The Commentary Magazine Podcast – “The Un-Indictables.”
Commentary Magazine is one of the oldest conservative publications in the country. It provides a rather unique conservative Jewish perspective to US events. I count it among the podcasts I listen to each week. This week they cover the Clinton email scandal and Comey’s statements regarding Clinton. You can find any of the podcasts I feature here in the Apple Podcast station or usually through alternative means.
What I’m watching
A perfect parody of how the modern internet would react to President Whitmore’s famous speech in the film “Independence Day.” Widely considered to be one of the greatest speeches in film history. The parody’s of all the main websites featured are dead on accurate.