Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Did Double-O Ask GCHQ Branch to Surveil .45?


hotair |  Via the Daily Wire, that’s quite a claim. The president of the United States using a foreign intelligence agency to spy on the other party’s presidential candidate, for the obviously illicit purpose of erasing any domestic paper trail of his actions? “Scandal of the decade” material. And yet it falls not to the Fox News investigative team to break the story but to legal commentator Andrew Napolitano — and not on one of Fox’s marquee shows like O’Reilly or Tucker but on Fox & Friends and Martha MacCallum’s program. You’d think a scoop like this would be in 50-point font on the Fox website, but as I write this at around 4:45 ET, they’re leading with a story about a probe of IT staffers who work for House Democrats. How come?

Sean Davis thinks this is a game of telephone gone bad inspired by the “Trump dossier,” which was compiled by a British ex-spy. Could be. It gains some plausibility from the fact that the U.S. and UK are part of the “Five Eyes” intelligence-sharing arrangement, which of course includes the NSA and GCHQ (Britain’s NSA). It’ll also seem a bit more credible than it might have in light of the surprise resignation in January of Robert Hannigan as head of the GCHQ. Hannigan stepped down three days after Trump’s inauguration, ostensibly for personal reasons, having served just two years on the job. With news swirling at the time about the Trump dossier, some Brits speculated that the real reason he resigned might have been “related to British concerns over shared intelligence with the US in the wake of Donald Trump becoming president.” On top of all that, the Times reported just two weeks ago that two foreign intelligence agencies, the British and the Dutch, had provided intelligence on meetings allegedly held last year between Trump “associates” and Russian officials in European cities.