On Thursday, March 30, Clint Watts, a former FBI agent turned think tank ‘expert’ on counter-terrorism at the George Washington University and the Foreign Policy Research Institute (FPRI) testified to the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee on alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 American election. Mr. Watts testimony was heavily promoted on various YouTube channels as well as the legacy media of CNN and MSNBC.
Clint Watts Co-Author Andrew Weisburd Already Says Russia Has Taken the White House
First term United States Senator James Lankford (R-OK), reflecting his inexperience and perhaps his desire to get re-elected with the help of abundant military intelligence complex campaign contributions, did not challenge Watts most ridiculous claim made Thursday -- that the Russian security services were able to manipulate Trump directly, simply by having Twitter bots tweet at him. Nor did Lankford or any other questioner of Watts seem aware of the conspiracy theorizing of Watts War on the Rocks co-author Andrew Weisburd, who on his @Webradius Twitter feed presents a John Wayne image proclaiming that the Rooskies have taken the White House [again, proving the Russia Analyst’s rule that the elite and wannabe elites who serve the Swamp believe in the ‘conspiracy theory for me but not for thee’ rule].
In one of the few specific examples Watts cited of alleged Russian active measures influencing events in the real world, concerning an alleged terrorist attack on Incirlik Air Base, RogueMoney previously reported Watts and Weisburd omitted in their WoTR article published last year that the Turks cut the electricity to the U.S. portion of the base after the botched July 2016 coup against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. This is a serious oversight if not an outright lie of omission, which suggests Watts’ agenda is to blame Russia if not Donald Trump for a serious rift between Washington and NATO’s lone frontline state in the Middle East which developed during the Obama Administration. A serious rift that the Russians, in playing the ‘frenemy’ game with Turkey, have undoubtedly exploited over the past few months, but did not create.
Let’s take a moment and look at the stories Watts is referring to. Manafort referred to an attack on the NATO airbase at Incirlik, Turkey, that didn’t happen. What did happen there were large scale demonstrations and Turkey was reeling in the aftermath of a coup attempt [plus the Turks cut the electricity off to the American portion of Incirlik, but since Clint Watts and Andrew Weisburd didn't want to hear about US airmen sweating in the Anatolian summer heat and their relatives concerns expressed for them on Facebook last July, it must have been #FakeNews right? - JWS]. What was the significance of Manafort citing this? What Russian propaganda objective was he pushing? That Erdogan’s Turkey was not a reliable NATO partner? That isn’t Russian propaganda, that is a fact...
[Watts] real objection is to democracy and to debate. And, amazingly, that puts him firmly on the side of the Obama administration and the media. That isn’t the way our society works. The idea Watts is flogging of some absolute standard of truth and fiction, besides being utter offensive to trannies and gay marriage proponents, is nonsense in terms of public policy. I think the EU is a horrible idea. I happen to think Trump is right about major NATO players, like Germany, stepping up their game rather than lazing about under American protection. You can disagree but that doesn’t make either of us wrong or misguided. We simply are weighing the pluses and minuses in a different way. It certainly doesn’t mean either of us is an unwitting agent of a foreign power.
Clint Watts' Distortions of What Donald Trump Actually Said and Did During Senate Testimony
However, it is Watts’ claims about Trump which seek to tap dance around the complete absence of any evidence that the Russians altered U.S. vote tallies, and in his faith rather than fact based belief that the Russians had the power to convince millions of Americans to reject Hillary Clinton as a sick and corrupt politician, that the man becomes a quasi-official mouthpiece for the desperado deep state. In fact, Watts cannot point to a single voter who has come forward to testify to the U.S. Senate panels or anyone else that they were tricked into voting for Trump by fake news they saw on Facebook or Twitter -- disinfo that turned out to have originated with the Russian media or even just plain garden variety pro-Russian accounts on these sites (which do exist, and were read by this Russian Analyst long before the election).
Even Watts probably wouldn’t dispute that the most alarming aspect of what he views as amazingly successful ‘Russian active measures’ is the lack of confidence outside fiercely partisan Democrat and media bubbles in the supposedly ironclad conclusions of the Senators citing the ‘Intelligence Community’ consensus that Russia ‘attacked our democracy’. Democrats have been whipped into a social media fueled frenzy of hysterics, while most Republicans, particularly younger and better informed Trump supporters, are distinctly unimpressed with the quality of the U.S. intelligence 'assessments' (half of which consisted of complaints about RT originally drafted in 2012) released on Russian influence over the 2016 election.
The emotionalism Watts engaged in during his supposedly fact based testimony included bitter rants against Trump, accusing the Commander in Chief of consciously or unconsciously repeating Russian agitprop and questioning the citizenship of Barack Hussein Obama and Sen. Ted Cruz. The fact that candidate Trump ultimately confirmed Obama’s citizenship, albeit grudgingly, and never actually said (contrary to mainstream media distortions) that the Canada-born U.S. citizen Cruz was Constitutionally ineligible to run for office was omitted from Watts presentation. To be fair, at least Watts didn’t repeat the blatant MSM lie that Trump claimed that Rafael Cruz killed JFK by merely associating with alleged Kennedy assassin Lee Harvey Oswald in New Orleans. Instead, Watts mentioned five alleged Russian objectives to destroy democracy, all of which his and the deep state’s increasingly desperate campaign to smear Trump ironically promotes:
If Trump is Under Russian Influence, Is Clint Watts Also Succumbing to Moscow’s Reflexive Control? Clint Watts' Five Points, Examined and All Exacerbated by the Attempt to Soft Coup Trump
1) Undermine citizen confidence in democratic governance
If Russia a country we’re told has the same GDP as Spain and is a weak kleptocracy can put Trump in the WH, what’s that say about the strength of ‘our democracy’, Clint?
2) Foment and exacerbate divisive political fractures
What better way to do this and make the United States the laughingstock of the world than to engage in increasingly desperate and fanatical efforts to undermine the institution of the presidency and not just the occupant of the White House, and indirectly or directly insult as Russia’s useful idiots some 63 MILLION plus Americans who voted for Donald Trump? Does Watts really think that if he and his fellow deep staters upset over Trump’s election and calls for better relations with Russia during the campaign prevail and somehow The Donald gets impeached, millions of former Trump voters are going to trust the U.S. government and its three letter agencies more rather than less? If Trump is removed from office JFK style or through the extremely unlikely scenario of impeachment, will the present holiday from one of the greatest gun buying binges in American history that began in 2008 with Obama's election last? And would Msrs. Watts and Weisburd claim that Americans bought those millions of firearms because they trust their government and that the Congressional oversight process for the federal bureaucracy including the weaponized under Obama IRS was adequate?
3) Erode trust between citizens and elected officials of democratic institutions (see above, or see the excellent video/s by journalists Michael Tracey about the Establishment's embrace of batcrap crazy conspiracy theorist Louise Mensch)
4) Popularize Russian policy agendas with foreign populations
The vast majority of Americans, like the vast majority of Europeans, Japanese or Koreans, do not spend much time thinking about Russia one way or the other -- and haven’t since the end of the first Cold War in 1988-91. Ironically, by insisting Russia has vast powers of psychological manipulation over the entire Western world, with the goal of terrifying the public into submission to deep state prerogatives, the campaign Watts is a part of may have the opposite effect as intended, in convincing some going to war with a power as potent as the Russians is an insane prospect.
In other words, heads you lose, tails the Kremlin wins, at least in the sense of being seen by its own people if not due to Anglo-American propagandists as extremely powerful in the area of psychological/media warfare -- alk about falling into the Russian ‘reflexive control’ trap, Clint! Or did Clint miss the Russian TV broadcasts since the Democrats, McCainiac Republicans and the Deep State started pushing their ludicrous ‘Russia hacked the election’ Narrative saying, ‘See even the Americans and their security organs admit how powerful we are! You’d better not doubt that the West if it doesn’t respect Vladimir Putin at least fears him and a revived, powerful Russia!’ My friend Andre Raevsky aka The Saker has joked about this backfiring effect of heightening the reputation of Russia's security services in his post-election interviews with the Solari Report's Catherine Austin Fitts.
5) Create general distrust or confusion over information sources by blurring the lines between fact and fiction [insisting #NeverHillary 'Bernie Bros' attacking the DNC on Twitter or Facebook were actually...Russians pretending to be disgruntled American Democrats? - JWS]
While Clint can dodge any responsibility for the crazy ‘Putin killed Andrew Breitbart’ ravings of ex-British MP Louise Mensch, he can’t easily disavow the similar ‘Russians already occupied the White House’ rhetoric of his co-author Andrew Weisburd, who has come to these dark conspiracy conclusions from the bat cave that is Weisburd’s attic in Carbondale, Illinois. From which, according to American journalist George Eliason, Weisburd has engaged in campaigns of harassment against pro-Palestinian activists online who had nothing to do with violence or terrorist groups:
“Weisburd doesn’t get paid to follow people. After stalking and collecting information his method hasn’t changed since the beginning. “Weisburd has not merely“dismantled” websites. He has harassed individuals engaged in perfectly legal online dissent, threatened their family members, harassed their employers, and harassed their web hosts. He regularly uses lies, disinformation and threats to accomplish these goals. Weisburd decides what is “threatening.”
Derp of Expertise: Clint Watts and Andrew Weisburd as ‘Russia Experts’
Much like Watts eagerly tweeted endorsement of Bellingcat and its founder Eliot Higgins of Thursday, under globalist influence geostrategic, intelligence or technical expertise is expended and dumbed down down to the level of ‘hating and fearing the Russians as much as I do’. Gone are the days when you needed Master’s degree or even a PhD and/or some military and intelligence background to sound credible talking about the Big Red Machine on Capitol Hill, as during the Evil Empire era of the 1980s.
Like the legacy media and Atlantic Council puffed up ‘expertise’ of the former British piece of office plankton turned Youtube certified ‘Syria war expert’ Eliot Higgins, there is no evidence that either Mr. Watts or Mr. Weisburd speaks Russian, or have ever been to Russia. But the U.S. Senate still treats Watts and by association the paranoid former Palestinian activist cyber-stalking proprietor of Internet Haganah Weisburd as an expert. In Watts case, at least there was some plausible background related to Russia as a former U.S. Army officer trained in the late 1980s to fight the Red Army in Europe.
There is no such thread of expertise for Weisburd except his own self-proclaimed ‘Russian troll hunting’ and Glenn Beck on acid org charts of alleged Russian troll connectors on Twitter. According to the Clinton News Network, Watts didn’t even regularly write or tweet about Russia until in 2014 he was supposedly attacked by pro-Assad Internet trolls after writing an article advocating the U.S. help topple his Russian-backed government in Syria:
Watts came to studying Russian cyber meddling almost by chance, when he noticed a pattern of social media trolls attacking him online for a 2014 article he wrote about Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. He and two social media analyst colleagues began studying the patterns and suspicious pro-Russia WhiteHouse.gov petitions, leading them to study the Russian social media propaganda machine.Watts has been a fellow on national security and the Middle East at the Foreign Policy Research Institute since 2011, and is a senior fellow at the Center For Cyber and Homeland Security at The George Washington University. He published research in November with Andrew Weisburd and JM Berger titled: "Trolling for Trump: How Russia Is Trying to Destroy Our Democracy."
The Deep State Needs Perpetual Enemies: And Its Holy Grail is Tying Them All Together In One Big Ball of Badness Between Trump, Putin, the Alt-Right and Maybe ISIS All in Cahoots
The connection between Watts and Berger is interesting, as prior to the start of Cold War 2.0 Berger touted himself as an expert on domestic ‘right wing extremists’, another bugbear of Watts’ former colleagues at the FBI. The fact that many domestic and jihadi ‘terror plots’ broken up over the last twenty years involved the Federal Bureau of Instigation egging on either informants or room temperature IQ criminals into planting fake bombs or otherwise engaging in criminal activity provides some clue as to one impetus behind the Watts/Berger nexus at the George Washington University (GWU): it’s all about having threats to analyze and thereby profit by. As President Eisenhower tried to warn us, beware of a military industrial [now big data Silicon Valley mass surveillance] complex.
The other common thread between the two men is trying to tie together all of the Establishment/Deep State’s alleged enemies foreign and domestic into one giant ball of conspiracy, surrounding the figure of Donald J. Trump. After Hillary Clinton gave her infamous speech in Reno, Nevada proclaiming Vladmir Putin the global godfather of the allegedly Trump embraced Alt Right, Berger penned a piece for Politico titled, “How White Nationalists Learned to Love Donald Trump”. For a supposed ‘expert’ and bright thinker, Berger’s piece is a rambling exercise in explaining contradictions between the ‘Trump = racist = Alt Right = muh Putin’s global right wing conspiracy” Hillary Narrative and reality, such as how Pepe the Nazi frog s--tposting members of the ‘Alt-Reich’ ‘woke on the JQ’ embraced the former grand marshal of New York City’s Israel Day Parade and grandfather to the Jewish children of Ivanka and Jared Kushner. But even Berger’s piece is mostly an exercise in Democrat Party hackery, dwelling on the ludicrous controversy over the ‘anti-Semitic’ ad Trump ran against Hillary over her corrupt foreign governments’ cash hoovering Clinton Foundation, and the outright lie that Trump and his campaign ‘refused to disavow David Duke and the KKK’.
Games Without Frontiers, Botnets Trolling Without Tears
While one cannot make Clinton Watts or Andrew Weisburd or J.M. Berger all responsible for each other’s words, what seems to have brought them together is as much animus against Trump and desire to prove a grand unified Trump-Russians-Global Le Pen Nationalist conspiracy theory than actual facts. Watts’ embrace of Sen. ‘little’ Marco Rubio’s proclamation of being victimized by hacking attempts from Russia and absurd claim that Trump used Russian generated memes against Rubio in the primaries is another demonstration of the FPRI/GWU academic contorting politics to fit his Mensch-ian conspiracy theorizing.
If the mere observation of bots and various individuals having an affinity for each other on Twitter is sufficient to prove a theory, then what would Watts say to our observations that as far back as 2013, neocon trolls like @StopAgitprop were desperately seeking to ‘tie’ Alex Jones, Ron Paul and the Kremlin together by way of appearances on RT TV? How if Americans are to suspect that Russians are posing as God fearing, gun rights loving tea party patriots from Alabama who show cleavage like sexy Instagram models, can we also be sure hordes of Ukrainian or EU/NATO paid trolls from abroad aren’t posing as ‘woke #TrumpRussia’ Democrats from Florida? Certainly Democratic bots demanding for example that House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R-CA) step down or Trump's impeachment are easy enough to spot on Twitter. Who's to say there's no foreign connection to these bot operations, including via commercially available Russian botnets which can just as easily be hired by Democratic as Republican operatives?
Though Mr. Weisburd may proclaim me an anti-Semite for saying so, the first country to introduce trolls into American chat rooms and boards way back in the stone age of the late 1990s/early 2000s second Intifada era wasn’t Russia, but a small U.S. ally in the southeastern Mediterranean that paid its young people to engage in online ‘Hasbarah’. And it’s also a fact documented here at RogueMoney that the European Union’s Stratcom East Task Force is led by an anti-Trump neocon who endorses ‘Siberian candidate’ conspiracy theories, the former Czech journalist Jakub Kalensky. With the chief EUrocrat Jean Claude Juncker jokingly vowing to advocate the secession of Ohio or ‘mess with Texas’, how can we be sure Msrs. Watts, Weisburd and Berger that many of those foreign anti-Trump tweeters like Mr. Kalensky aren’t being paid courtesy of the French and German taxpayer to meddle in American politics (if tweeting counts as serious meddling, which it clearly does taking on black magic-al powers when Russians do it)?
Clint Watts Whines That Nobody in the Trump White House ‘Has My Back’ from Online ‘Trolls’:
Since When Is Defending Clint’s Reputation from Justified Critics the Administration’s Job?
We could go on cataloguing the absurdities of Watts’ conspiracy theories (how do you like that term applied to you Clint?) presented as self-evident axioms to the Deep State/US IC deferring to the point of sycophancy members of the U.S. Senate committee co-chaired by Sens. Richard Burr (R-NC) and Mark Warner (D-VA). But one excerpt from Mr. Watts testimony stood out to us as an example of former deep state-rs imagining themselves under siege, even as they besiege the Trump White House with illegal ‘intelligence official’ leaks and seek to overturn a democratic outcome they bitterly resent in the name of defending democracy:
“I’ll tell you right now I’m gonna walk out of here today, I’m going to be cyberattacked, I’m going to be discredited by trolls. My biggest fear being on Putin’s hit list for psychological warfare targeting...I’ve been doing that for two years...my biggest concern right now is I don’t know what the American stance is on Russia and who’s going to take care of me.”
The Vast #NeverTrump er Conspiracy:
Is Clint Watts Connected to Comey's Amigo Benjamin Wittes of Lawfare, or Are They Just ‘Tweeps’?
Since when is it the job of the Trump Administration or any Administration to personally take care of Mr. Watts cyber security on his PC, tablet or mobile device? Why should he receive such federal IT support and/or protection and neither I nor other writers for RogueMoney who are also American taxpayers can expect it?
If Watts Derp State pity party is typical of his former colleagues still working at the FBI and in particular, the agents working the investigation that’s produced zero-evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin, then Trump voters ought to adopt a 'trust, but verify' skepticism towards the Bureau. The fact that Comey’s recently unearthed Twitter account was known to Benjamin Wittes, the Lawfare-editing, fiercely anti-Trump defender of mass NSA surveillance as the two are friends (and Wittes has been one of Comey's outspoken defenders), ought to give many in Congress doubts as to Comey’s impartiality. So should the connections between the Democratic party’s donations to the wife of Comey’s deputy, Deputy Director Andrew McCabe and longtime Clintons fundraiser Terry McAuliffe.
The Crowdstrike Cookie Crumbles Alongside the ‘Rock Solid’‘Russia Hacked the DNC’ Narrative
How the Legacy Media Lies Like Bat-crap Crazy Ex-Rock Groupie and UK MP Louise Mensch
The Russia Analyst first questioned the credibility of Crowdstrike a Democratic Party/Deep State ‘stab in the back myth’ or dolstosslegende on Election Day. The new media’s mistrust of Crowdstrike and James Comey has been vindicated by the FBI taking Crowdstrike CEO Dmitry Alperovitch’s findings on faith without auditing the allegedly Russian hacked DNC servers, akin to the FBI accepting the word of a private investigator in a mafia murder investigation without performing any autopsy on the victim! Especially when Crowdstrike’s debunked claim that the same Russian GRU hackers who got into the DNC hacked Ukrainian Army artillerists’ personal devices, despite being reported by the reliably anti-Kremlin Voice of America, is brushed aside as having no bearing on the company and its CEO’s overall credibility.
This aversion to any facts damaging to the anti-Trump Narrative is of course, part of the same globalist m.o. that prior to Trump’s tweeted accusations that his predecessor Barack Hussein Obama spied on him at Trump Tower, had The New York Times using words that mean things in its headlines like ‘wiretap’ and ‘wiretapped data’ which we're later told didn't mean those things. Later in an Orwellian, flush it down the memory hole maneuver those headlines became neither an acknowledgement of a FISA warrant (first reported in an election day ‘scoop’ by Bradley Moss’s client Louise Mensch before she qualified her story under legal coaching) nor a wiretap of any sort targeting Trump. Everything that picked up Trump or his campaign members communications done by FBI or NSA was totally incidental!
Thankfully, such doublethink and Deep State lying can only succeed so long as there aren’t any patriotic Congressmen and women willing to challenge the spooks and their legacy media sock puppets’ at the Carlos Slim de MexicoTimes/JeffBezosLangleyPost/CNN’s word games. At the very least, Republicans must demand in both open and classified hearings that Comey’s agents audit the DNC servers, rather than simply taking Mr. Alperovitch’s word for it with so much ‘Russian malware’ ‘in the wild’ (as the Wikileaks Vault7 documents demonstrated), available to Ukrainian and other Eastern European nationality if not necessarily state sponsored hackers. Remember the KyivStar IP of the guy who phished John Podesta’s Gmail account? Of course you don’t because that’s another data point that doesn’t suit the Narrative.
“I mean after years of being in the Army and the FBI, working in the intel communities today, I’m gonna walk out of here and ain’t nobody gonna be covering my back. I’m going to be on my own...that’s very disconcerting”. Not as disconcerting as the arrogance of viewing yourself as above your fellow citizens, and having an oligopoly together with your other ‘conspiracy theory for me but not for thee because Russians!’ derp staters on the facts -- which you remain happy to ignore if they contradict the credibility of your sources in any way, shape or form.
Thank you for your US Army service Clint, now go watch Seven Days in May --- you might learn something. But speaking for ourselves, we don't know who's the bigger whackjob -- Louise Mensch, or your 'colleague' and co-writer Andrew Weisburd, who writes of the formerly anti-Trump website, "Red State, Red Square, what's the difference?" and seems to really think Eric Erickson's writers work for the Kremlin. So in honor of Watts, Weisburd and Berger, here's a flashback to a 1963 live performance of "John Birch Society Blues". Except the actual Birchers, some of whom were our friends, were never as paranoid as you all!