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'DEEP STATE'

Federal Agencies Tapped Phones of Portland’s Racial Justice Protestors to Prove They’re Terrorists

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Two current officials from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) have confirmed that the DHS and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) teamed up with the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) during this summer’s racial justice protests in Portland, Oregon for a covert operation focused on “extracting information from protester’s phones.”

The officials told The Nation that a DHS colleague with expertise in electronic surveillance was sent to Portland as part of “an interagency task force” using a classified cell phone cloning attack to “intercept protesters’ phone communications.”

“Cell phone cloning involves stealing a phone’s unique identifiers and copying them to another device in order to intercept the communications received by the original device,” The Nation explains. It’s a tactic conducted to better understand your target, their network and their planning. The DEA is believed to have had a “special key” to help carry out the surveillance.

While it’s unclear who specifically was targeted by the surveillance, “They were abusing people’s rights,” one official said. The DHS hasn’t responded to congressional calls to explain the program either.

The officials quoted in The Nation’s article say that colleagues from the DHS were asked to “volunteer” to participate in the program, something departments do to conduct operations outside of the department’s official and legal capacity.

The overall goal, the officials state, was to substantiate thin claims by Attorney General William Barr that Antifa (anti-fascist) activists are receiving foreign sponsorship, something that is a necessary criterion to formally designate the group as a terrorist organization, something Trump vowed to do as recently as yesterday.

Considering that the U.S. has a long history of surveilling, harassing and possibly even killing racial justice activists since before the Civil Rights era, this newest program is hardly surprising, albeit still frightening.

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'DEEP STATE'

Trump’s New Personnel Chief Orders ‘Purge’ of All Never-Trumpers From Federal Agencies: Report

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Ordered  to “Purge the ‘Bad People’ and ‘Deep State'”

President Donald Trump has re-hired Johnny McEntee into a new role. His former body man, who reportedly “was forced from his job in 2018 over gambling debts that threatened his security clearance” but went to work for the Trump re-election campaign, is now the head of the White House personnel office.

McEntee’s first order of business is targeting and purging “Never-Trumpers” – any government employee not loyal to President Trump.

“McEntee called in White House liaisons from cabinet agencies for an introductory meeting Thursday, in which he asked them to identify political appointees across the U.S. government who are believed to be anti-Trump,” Axios reports.

But this is just the first step.

“McEntee suggested the most dramatic changes may have to wait until after the November election.”

“Trump has empowered McEntee — whom he considers an absolute loyalist — to purge the ‘bad people’ and ‘Deep State.'”

 

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'DEEP STATE'

Congress Releases 22 Pages of Top Trump Officials’ Text Messages Discussing Ukraine Scandal

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The chairs of three congressional committees investigating President Donald Trump released 22-pages of text message between senior administration officials discussing Ukraine.

The document was released by House Foreign Affairs Chairman Eliot Engel (D-NY), House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) and House Oversight Chairman Elijah Cummings.

Politico reporter and MSNBC contributor Natasha Bertrand flagged some key passages.

Read the full document.

 

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'DEEP STATE'

Career WH Officials Tried to Reject Kushner’s Top Secret Clearance — Trump-Nominated Supervisor Overruled Them

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‘Number of Rejections That Were Overruled by Trump Nominee Was Unprecedented’

White House security officials wanted to reject presidential son-in-law Jared Kushner’s top-secret security clearance application — but were overruled by their superior.

NBC News reported that according to two sources familiar with the matter, the aides who moved to reject Kushner’s clearance had been career officials.

The supervisor that overruled them, the report noted, was former Pentagon employee Carl Kline, who had been appointed four months into the Trump administration.

“Kushner’s was one of at least 30 cases in which Kline overruled career security experts and approved a top secret clearance for incoming Trump officials despite unfavorable information,” NBC’s sources told the website.

Those sources added that “the Trump White House attracted many people with untraditional backgrounds who had complicated financial and personal histories, some of which raised red flags.”

Image by The White House via Flickr 

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