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 21 
 on: August 20, 2017, 08:16:42 PM 
Started by Crafty_Dog - Last post by G M
http://www.nationalreview.com/article/450626/charlottesville-donald-trump-alt-right-blame-both-sides-wrong?utm_source=Sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=NR%20Daily%20Saturday%202017-08-19&utm_term=NR5PM%20Actives

On Charlottesville, Trump, and Anti-Americanism

 by ANDREW C. MCCARTHY   August 19, 2017 4:00 AM @ANDREWCMCCARTHY


The president made some idiotic remarks, but he knows something the elites overlook. Susan Rosenberg was a terrorist in the early 1980s. Like her Weathermen comrades, she would have killed many people had she been a more competent terrorist. She was a fugitive plotting more bombings when she and a co-conspirator were captured in New Jersey, armed to the gills and toting over 700 pounds of dynamite. At her sentencing, she proclaimed, “Long live the armed struggle” against “U.S. imperialism.” Her only regret was that she hadn’t shot it out with the police who arrested her. A federal judge sentenced her to 58 years’ imprisonment. I know her story well because, when she claimed she was being denied parole unlawfully, I spent over a year as the prosecutor arguing that the court should keep her in the slammer. Finally, the court ruled against her. So . . . Bill Clinton sprang her. Her commutation may have outraged most Americans, but it was celebrated by the nation’s “progressive” opinion elites, the same ones who were cool with President Clinton’s release of the FALN terrorists. Granted, Rosenberg didn’t get the hero’s welcome at New York City’s Puerto Rican Day parade received by Oscar Lopez Rivera — the FALN terrorist released by President Obama. The teaching gig the Left arranged for her wasn’t quite as prestigious and long-lived as the ones her fellow Weathermen — and Obama pals — Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn fell into. She’ll never be a t-shirt icon, like Che Guevara or Tupac Shakur. The campaign to pretend she was innocent won’t rival the Alger Hiss fairy tale. There will probably be no statue of her, much less a performing-arts center like the one in Princeton named for Paul Robeson. In Political Skirmishes, Where are the Police? 00:06 00:54 Powered by But she hates America, so she’ll be remembered fondly in the places where the cultural tune is called. Her books — such as An American Radical: A Political Prisoner in My Own Country — will continue to be taken oh so seriously. Her Wikipedia entry does not describe her as a terrorist; it says Susan Rosenberg is a “radical political activist, author and advocate for social justice.”

That’s why you got Trump. It has nothing to do with statues of the dead. It is about the status of the living. You’re upset over President Trump’s idiotic remarks this week? Oh, right, I need to specify. Not the crackpot bit about General Pershing mass-murdering Muslim prisoners in the Philippines (well explained by David French, here). I mean the one about the “very fine people” in Charlottesville — the supposed “many” who joined neo-Nazis, KKK die-hards, and other white supremacists in a demonstration that could not have been more overtly racist and despicable. Yeah, I’m upset about that, too. That doesn’t mean I didn’t notice the anti-fa thugs were out there. It doesn’t mean I don’t see the hard Left’s seditionist shock troops, at war with the country, much like the Weathermen, the Panthers, and the Black Liberation Army back in the day. As we’ve seen many times now (and will, alas, see many times more), the radical Left doesn’t need tiki-torch twits to spur them to arson and mayhem.

This time, though, in Charlottesville, the white supremacists were the instigators. They caused it. They orchestrated this disgusting event, they came ready for the violence they knew they were provoking, and one of them committed a murder. If the roles were reversed, we wouldn’t want to hear a bunch of imbecilic “there’s blame on both sides” moral equivalence. We’d want the most culpable bunch called out and condemned, by name — and without any irrational hedging about phantom “very fine people” who confederate with sociopaths on the latter’s terms. Making that distinction does not mean you can’t or shouldn’t call out anti-fa, too. But a young woman died here. And she didn’t die because, fully aware she was courting danger, she got herself into a scrap. She was standing where she had a right to be standing, expressing what she had a right to express, when she was murdered by a depraved racist who plowed a car into her and other human beings. Anyone commenting on this ghastly event ought to be able to prioritize his righteous rage. Especially if that anyone happens to be the president of the United States. Anyone commenting on this ghastly event ought to be able to prioritize his righteous rage. Especially if that anyone happens to be the president of the United States. You have good reason to be upset that this president couldn’t meet that modest standard.

If you’re on the political right, moreover, you may be even more upset by a poll that says two-thirds of Republicans actually approve of Trump’s response. They believe he ascribed blame accurately. Well, he didn’t. Does that make the poll result irrational? I don’t think so. It is not that two-thirds of the Right really think “very fine people” make common cause with the KKK. And it’s not that they really see two sides equally at fault. It is that, regardless of comparative fault, they know there were two sides out there. And they know the media has tried to obscure that fact. The poll is less indicative of settled belief than of gut reaction. People are fed up. If you dare notice the radical Left, you are not an observer of objective fact, you are a neo-Nazi sympathizer. If you dare notice that many of the “peaceful protesters” were swinging batons and spraying chemicals, you need a re-education course in “unconscious racism.” News about a radical leftist’s attempted mass murder of Republican House members that left Representative Steve Scalise on the brink of death faded quickly away — just a few days’ Kumbaya coverage along the lines of “Shaken Democrats joined Republicans in expressing outrage, etc., etc.”

But on Thursday in Barcelona, when Muslim terrorists reverted to the car jihad they have been using quite notoriously for years, the media speculated that the terrorist killing of 13 people by careening a van along a crowded street might just be a Charlottesville “copycat” attack. You get it: Islamic terrorists are just like the Klan, are just like bourgeois Americans in the Age of Trump. Or, as they say in Virginia, “Allahu akbar, y’all.” Don’t be sidetracked by the trendy debate over statues. Statuary is complicated. It is erected as much to signal the sentiments of the commissioners as to honor noteworthy lives. And it is built to last, so it stands even when sentiments change. A great deal of Confederate iconography was not commissioned in remembrance of soldierly valor or mawkish depiction of genteel Dixie. It was crafted in defiant 20th-century resistance to the extension of equal rights, dignity, and opportunity to black people. Trump’s ill-informed meanderings about “culture” aside, many people taking offense at the statues have every reason to feel offended because, taken all in all, the reasons why they stand are at least as offensive as the images they convey. Maybe if we grasp that, instead of getting hysterical over it, we can see why the loss of Robert E. Lee shouldn’t threaten Thomas Jefferson.

The disappearance of an honorable soldier in a dishonorable cause is not a slippery-slope rationale for casting out the founder who grafted onto America’s soul the conceit that we are all created equal — a solemn declaration of far more enduring consequence than its author’s flaws. Pegging it at 4,500 probably exaggerates the number of Saxon pagans beheaded by Charles the Great at Verden, but to call the episode an atrocity is no exaggeration. Nor, however, has Charlemagne’s ruthlessness in battle been adjudged reason to remove his famous statue from the cathedral entrance at Notre Dame de Paris. Without him, there might have been no Europe, no Western culture as we know it, no development of the university, no magnificent cathedrals still standing. It is a matter of perspective, of understanding changing times and our flawed nature. We can demand that our history not be erased and still realize that some of it is better recounted in book form than in stone or alloy. It should be left to the people most affected by evocative statuary to make that call. What bothers many ordinary Americans is that there is far more uproar over a statue of Robert E. Lee in Charlottesville than over one of Vladimir Lenin in Seattle. What bothers us is that elite opinion’s determination to conceal the presence of anti-fa at last weekend’s bloody debacle — the better to smear the American Right with the alt-right — is just phase one. Inevitably, phases two and three will follow: The presence of leftist radicals is grudgingly admitted but rationalized as a necessary defense against monstrous evil; then, in time, their presence is venerated as exemplary courage against a monstrously evil society.

Donald Trump’s buffoonery is self-defeating, but there is shrewdness beneath it. He grasps, in a way the people who cover him don’t seem to, that much of the country is sick of being told the country sucks. There are racists and they should be condemned without equivocation. But their existence in ever smaller numbers does not mean we are living in AmeriKKKa, or that there is high virtue in anti-Americanism. — Andrew C. McCarthy is a senior fellow at National Review Institute and a contributing editor of National Review.

Read more at: http://www.nationalreview.com/article/450626/charlottesville-donald-trump-alt-right-blame-both-sides-wrong?utm_source=Sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=NR%20Daily%20Saturday%202017-08-19&utm_term=NR5PM%20Actives

 22 
 on: August 20, 2017, 07:38:24 PM 
Started by DougMacG - Last post by G M
Doug? Now that I have volunteered you...   grin


Well, Doug has published things on a blog with national viewership.

That would be great, thanks!

 23 
 on: August 20, 2017, 07:34:46 PM 
Started by DougMacG - Last post by captainccs
Well, Doug has published things on a blog with national viewership.

That would be great, thanks!

 24 
 on: August 20, 2017, 07:31:46 PM 
Started by ccp - Last post by G M
From a post on facehuggerbook:

A brilliant friend who wishes to remain nameless reminds us why incidents like Charlottesville are all too inevitable in a nation with a hard left high command, an army of portable paid thugs, and a vast population of sentimental liberals who believe they stand only for truth and 'social justice.'
""The left could care less about this issue (Confederate statuary), as they could care less about any of their issues. "The issue is never the issue, the issue is always revolution". This is why they got gay marriage, then just moved on to Trans rights while shrugging off 50 gays getting killed in Orlando. When the transgender fight is over it'll be pedo rights or whatever.
... Very soon there will be a push to get rid of the entire American Revolution and all of the founding fathers. Jefferson will be first, but Washington won't be far behind.
Overriding all of this is the push to declare all of conservatism illegal. All religions not part of the cult of leftism are hate speech. Any support of the USA as a country is hateful, bigoted and evil. You supporting your own existence or political power is racism, nationalism and white supremacy.

The left has no limits. It's vital to understand that. No battle they pick is over the stated issue. Each is merely a step towards the goal of eradicating Western Civilization. They've set up a self reinforcing system of rewards, whereby SJWs out bid each other to come up with new ways to be offended. Thus it's become an ever more radical movement. It's not about the monuments. Of course glorifying slavery is bad. But should we not then tear down the Pyramids? Trust me, there is NO vestige of Western Civilization that could not be destroyed on the same premise. Every Castle in Europe occupied by a despot, every Church, every document, every classic of literature, etc. In world where a few degrees of separation join all things, guilt by association can be used to criticize anything, because its all a degree or two away from something that can be demonized. Look what's happening to Football; to the definition of family and gender, to every holiday. Anything can be destroyed if the standard is that it's related to something bad. Guess what that includes? Everything. SJWs in South Africa are going after Isaac Newton and Gravity as "western colonial science". Get it? Nothing is off limits. No. Single. Thing.

This is about enshrining the left as The One True Religion. They will replace everything with their own cultish iconography. They will likewise replace all ideas with their own. The fight over the Google memo is identical to this fight. It's about declaring all things non-leftist outside the scope of even debate. This is not about the confederacy. That's yet another in a long, long, long, long, long, long, long, long list of fronts. It's about the existence of anything outside of leftism. It's about eliminating debate and installing a global Religion of Leftism. And make no mistake, that religion plans on replacing monuments, books, science and facts, liberty, the white population, the concept of natural rights, the rule of law, free speech, Christianity, the USA, Europe and all of Western Civilization. In fact, if you defend any of those things, you are a Nationalist, a white supremacist and a bigot. You must go. You must be replaced.

Many many a totalitarian ideology goes under the banner, "Join or Die". This is no different. And the left has done this before, many times. Pol Pot, The French Revolution, Mao, Lenin. The push to erase history and start over as a means of revolution is not new by any means. And if you think they have some limit, look to these past revolutions to see that they just don't. The ideology is self-reinforcing towards runaway radicalism. The only thing that stops it is pushback prior to their take over or burnout after it takes over and fails. It has no internal limits.
So while I agree with the Rabbi and have zero interest in defending Nazis or the Confederacy, I know that this has almost nothing to do with those things to the left. Those just create convenient foils. The left is filled with strawmen - they paint all of us as Nazi, bigoted, white male oppressors. Finding the occasional real life one is great for the left and they will use it to pretend all their other strawmen are likewise real. Understand that Marxism does not study policy and governance the way that conservatives and libertarians do. They study propaganda, power and revolutions. They are masters of it. Which is why repeated failure at governance never deters the next revolution.
Leftism. The One True Religion. Join or Die. That's their goal."

 25 
 on: August 20, 2017, 07:30:25 PM 
Started by captainccs - Last post by captainccs
Necesito su ayuda. Por favor reporte la lista de prohibiciones a blogs y a la prensa para que el mundo conozca lo cruel y absurdo que es el régimen de Nicolas Maduro

ARTÍCULOS PROHIBIDOS

Con Maduro ahora tenemos una nueva prohibición, importar cualquier cosa que pueda defendernos de la policía anti-motín y de las fuerzas armadas, por ejemplo mascaras de gas, chalecos antibalas, bolas de metal y metras (canicas), cuchillos, protectores deportivos, cascos, etc.

Pero lo absurdo va mas allá, primeros auxilios prohibidos:

Antiácidos, gasas, cremas para quemaduras, vendas, colirios, bicarbonato, etc

Le pedí a un importador médico que me trajera leche de magnesia ya que no lo hay locamente. "Lo lamentamos, antiácido, ARTÍCULO PROHIBIDO! Mi problema no es con la policia antimotín, estoy ESTREÑIDO. Jódete, come ciruelas pasas.

A continuación la lista de los artículos prohibidos suministrada por mi courier. Le agradecería que lo notifique a blogs y a servicios de noticias para exponer aun mas la crueldad del régimen del dictador Nicolas Maduro.



Los transportistas están a cargo de hacer cumplir estas prohibiciones SIN EXCEPCIÓN. Las inspecciones requeridas por este reglamento están demorando considerablemente las importaciones y aumentado su costo ademas.

Es un abuso de los derechos humanos.

Denny Schlesinger
 

 26 
 on: August 20, 2017, 07:25:29 PM 
Started by buzwardo - Last post by G M
http://rhetoric.byu.edu/

The Forest of Rhetoric
silva rhetoricae
Thank you for your patience as Silva Rhetoricae undergoes upgrades during 2016.
If you have trouble finding anything, please email rhetoric@byu.edu


How to Use This Site
FAQ
Citations & Awards
Scholarly Disciplines Served

This online rhetoric, provided by Dr. Gideon Burton of Brigham Young University, is a guide to the terms of classical and renaissance rhetoric. Sometimes it is difficult to see the forest (the big picture) of rhetoric because of the trees (the hundreds of Greek and Latin terms naming figures of speech, etc.) within rhetoric.

This site is intended to help beginners, as well as experts, make sense of rhetoric, both on the small scale (definitions and examples of specific terms) and on the large scale (the purposes of rhetoric, the patterns into which it has fallen historically as it has been taught and practiced for 2000+ years).

A forest is the metaphor for this site. Like a forest, rhetoric provides tremendous resources for many purposes. However, one can easily become lost in a large, complex habitat (whether it be one of wood or of wit). The organization of this central page and the hyperlinks within individual pages should provide a map, a discernible trail, to lay hold of the utility and beauty of this language discipline.

Don't be scared of the intimidating detail suggested by the odd Greek and Latin terms. After all, you can enjoy the simple beauty of a birch tree without knowing it is Betula alba and make use of the shade of a weeping willow without knowing it is in fact Salix babylonica. The same is possible with rhetoric. The names aid categorization and are more or less conventional, but I encourage you to get past the sesquipedalian labels and observe the examples and the sample criticism (rhetoric in practice). It is beyond the definitions that the power of rhetoric is made apparent.

Your input (contributions of examples, explanations, links, and bibliography, or your clarifications and corrections) is heartily welcomed.

 

How to Use this Site

If you'd like an overview of the entire "forest" (the subject) of rhetoric, consult the "trees" (major categories) in the left frame.

If you'd like to look up specific terms of rhetoric, either scroll through the list of figures of speech (or "flowers" of rhetoric) on the right, or Search the Forest (above or here).

Cross-references throughout the website will help you see the relationship between, for example, a topic of invention, such as "comparison" and its related figures of speech, "metaphor," etc.

For students of rhetoric, literature, or communication, don't forget to look at the examples of Rhetorical Analysis (at the bottom of each of the "trees").

 27 
 on: August 20, 2017, 07:21:40 PM 
Started by buzwardo - Last post by G M
http://zombietime.com/

Well worth reading.

 28 
 on: August 20, 2017, 07:19:04 PM 
Started by DougMacG - Last post by G M
Well, Doug has published things on a blog with national viewership.



I need your help. Please report the list below to blogs and the news outlets to let the world know how cruel and absurd the Maduro regime really is:

Prohibited Imports

Now under Maduro we have a new prohibition, importing anything that protects against riot police such as gas masks, bullet proof wests, metal balls and marbles (could be used as projetiles), knives, sports padding gear, helmets, etc.

But it goes even further: Banned first aid stuff:

Antacids, gauze, cream to treat burns, bandages, eye drops, bicarbonate, etc.

I asked a drug importer to bring me milk of magnesia. Sorry, antacid, banned article! I don't have an issue with the riot police, I'm CONSTIPATED. Tough! Eat prunes.

Here is the list from my courier service. It would be wonderful if you made it available to blogs and the American press.



Carriers have to make sure these items are not shipped in, NO EXCEPTIONS.

This is an abuse of human rights!

Denny Schlesinger
 


 29 
 on: August 20, 2017, 06:56:52 PM 
Started by DougMacG - Last post by captainccs
I need your help. Please report the list below to blogs and the news outlets to let the world know how cruel and absurd the Maduro regime really is:

Prohibited Imports

Now under Maduro we have a new prohibition, importing anything that protects against riot police such as gas masks, bullet proof wests, metal balls and marbles (could be used as projetiles), knives, sports padding gear, helmets, etc.

But it goes even further: Banned first aid stuff:

Antacids, gauze, cream to treat burns, bandages, eye drops, bicarbonate, etc.

I asked a drug importer to bring me milk of magnesia. Sorry, antacid, banned article! I don't have an issue with the riot police, I'm CONSTIPATED. Tough! Eat prunes.

Here is the list from my courier service. It would be wonderful if you made it available to blogs and the American press.



Carriers have to make sure these items are not shipped in, NO EXCEPTIONS.

This is an abuse of human rights!

Denny Schlesinger
 

 30 
 on: August 20, 2017, 06:03:24 PM 
Started by Crafty_Dog - Last post by G M
As the "Russia, Russia, Russia" narrative falls apart, it's getting memory-holed and replaced with "Teh Trump is a nazi!!!!"


https://www.thenation.com/article/a-new-report-raises-big-questions-about-last-years-dnc-hack/

A New Report Raises Big Questions About Last Year’s DNC Hack
Former NSA experts say it wasn’t a hack at all, but a leak—an inside job by someone with access to the DNC’s system.
By Patrick LawrenceTwitter AUGUST 9, 2017



It is now a year since the Democratic National Committee’s mail system was compromised—a year since events in the spring and early summer of 2016 were identified as remote hacks and, in short order, attributed to Russians acting in behalf of Donald Trump. A great edifice has been erected during this time. President Trump, members of his family, and numerous people around him stand accused of various corruptions and extensive collusion with Russians. Half a dozen simultaneous investigations proceed into these matters. Last week news broke that Special Counsel Robert Mueller had convened a grand jury, which issued its first subpoenas on August 3. Allegations of treason are common; prominent political figures and many media cultivate a case for impeachment.

The president’s ability to conduct foreign policy, notably but not only with regard to Russia, is now crippled. Forced into a corner and having no choice, Trump just signed legislation imposing severe new sanctions on Russia and European companies working with it on pipeline projects vital to Russia’s energy sector. Striking this close to the core of another nation’s economy is customarily considered an act of war, we must not forget. In retaliation, Moscow has announced that the United States must cut its embassy staff by roughly two-thirds. All sides agree that relations between the United States and Russia are now as fragile as they were during some of the Cold War’s worst moments. To suggest that military conflict between two nuclear powers inches ever closer can no longer be dismissed as hyperbole.

All this was set in motion when the DNC’s mail server was first violated in the spring of 2016 and by subsequent assertions that Russians were behind that “hack” and another such operation, also described as a Russian hack, on July 5. These are the foundation stones of the edifice just outlined. The evolution of public discourse in the year since is worthy of scholarly study: Possibilities became allegations, and these became probabilities. Then the probabilities turned into certainties, and these evolved into what are now taken to be established truths. By my reckoning, it required a few days to a few weeks to advance from each of these stages to the next. This was accomplished via the indefensibly corrupt manipulations of language repeated incessantly in our leading media.



We are urged to accept the word of institutions and senior officials with long records of deception.
Lost in a year that often appeared to veer into our peculiarly American kind of hysteria is the absence of any credible evidence of what happened last year and who was responsible for it. It is tiresome to note, but none has been made available. Instead, we are urged to accept the word of institutions and senior officials with long records of deception. These officials profess “high confidence” in their “assessment” as to what happened in the spring and summer of last year—this standing as their authoritative judgment. Few have noticed since these evasive terms first appeared that an assessment is an opinion, nothing more, and to express high confidence is an upside-down way of admitting the absence of certain knowledge. This is how officials avoid putting their names on the assertions we are so strongly urged to accept—as the record shows many of them have done.

We come now to a moment of great gravity.

There has been a long effort to counter the official narrative we now call “Russiagate.” This effort has so far focused on the key events noted above, leaving numerous others still to be addressed. Until recently, researchers undertaking this work faced critical shortcomings, and these are to be explained. But they have achieved significant new momentum in the past several weeks, and what they have done now yields very consequential fruit. Forensic investigators, intelligence analysts, system designers, program architects, and computer scientists of long experience and strongly credentialed are now producing evidence disproving the official version of key events last year. Their work is intricate and continues at a kinetic pace as we speak. But its certain results so far are two, simply stated, and freighted with implications:

There was no hack of the Democratic National Committee’s system on July 5 last year—not by the Russians, not by anyone else. Hard science now demonstrates it was a leak—a download executed locally with a memory key or a similarly portable data-storage device. In short, it was an inside job by someone with access to the DNC’s system. This casts serious doubt on the initial “hack,” as alleged, that led to the very consequential publication of a large store of documents on WikiLeaks last summer.
Forensic investigations of documents made public two weeks prior to the July 5 leak by the person or entity known as Guccifer 2.0 show that they were fraudulent: Before Guccifer posted them they were adulterated by cutting and pasting them into a blank template that had Russian as its default language. Guccifer took responsibility on June 15 for an intrusion the DNC reported on June 14 and professed to be a WikiLeaks source—claims essential to the official narrative implicating Russia in what was soon cast as an extensive hacking operation. To put the point simply, forensic science now devastates this narrative.
This article is based on an examination of the documents these forensic experts and intelligence analysts have produced, notably the key papers written over the past several weeks, as well as detailed interviews with many of those conducting investigations and now drawing conclusions from them. Before proceeding into this material, several points bear noting.


One, there are many other allegations implicating Russians in the 2016 political process. The work I will now report upon does not purport to prove or disprove any of them. Who delivered documents to WikiLeaks? Who was responsible for the “phishing” operation penetrating John Podesta’s e-mail in March 2016? We do not know the answers to such questions. It is entirely possible, indeed, that the answers we deserve and must demand could turn out to be multiple: One thing happened in one case, another thing in another. The new work done on the mid-June and July 5 events bears upon all else in only one respect. We are now on notice: Given that we now stand face to face with very considerable cases of duplicity, it is imperative that all official accounts of these many events be subject to rigorously skeptical questioning. Do we even know that John Podesta’s e-mail address was in fact “phished”? What evidence of this has been produced? Such rock-bottom questions as these must now be posed in all other cases.

Two, houses built on sand and made of cards are bound to collapse, and there can be no surprise that the one resting atop the “hack theory,” as we can call the prevailing wisdom on the DNC events, appears to be in the process of doing so. Neither is there anything far-fetched in a reversal of the truth of this magnitude. American history is replete with similar cases. The Spanish sank the Maine in Havana harbor in February 1898. Iran’s Mossadegh was a Communist. Guatemala’s Árbenz represented a Communist threat to the United States. Vietnam’s Ho Chi Minh was a Soviet puppet. The Sandinistas were Communists. The truth of the Maine, a war and a revolution in between, took a century to find the light of day, whereupon the official story disintegrated. We can do better now. It is an odd sensation to live through one of these episodes, especially one as big as Russiagate. But its place atop a long line of precedents can no longer be disputed.

Forensic investigators, prominent among them people with decades’ experience at high levels in our national-security institutions, have put a body of evidence on a table previously left empty.
Three, regardless of what one may think about the investigations and conclusions I will now outline—and, as noted, these investigations continue—there is a bottom line attaching to them. We can even call it a red line. Under no circumstance can it be acceptable that the relevant authorities—the National Security Agency, the Justice Department (via the Federal Bureau of Investigation), and the Central Intelligence Agency—leave these new findings without reply. Not credibly, in any case. Forensic investigators, prominent among them people with decades’ experience at high levels in these very institutions, have put a body of evidence on a table previously left empty. Silence now, should it ensue, cannot be written down as an admission of duplicity, but it will come very close to one.

It requires no elaboration to apply the above point to the corporate media, which have been flaccidly satisfied with official explanations of the DNC matter from the start.

Qualified experts working independently of one another began to examine the DNC case immediately after the July 2016 events. Prominent among these is a group comprising former intelligence officers, almost all of whom previously occupied senior positions. Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS), founded in 2003, now has 30 members, including a few associates with backgrounds in national-security fields other than intelligence. The chief researchers active on the DNC case are four: William Binney, formerly the NSA’s technical director for world geopolitical and military analysis and designer of many agency programs now in use; Kirk Wiebe, formerly a senior analyst at the NSA’s SIGINT Automation Research Center; Edward Loomis, formerly technical director in the NSA’s Office of Signal Processing; and Ray McGovern, an intelligence analyst for nearly three decades and formerly chief of the CIA’s Soviet Foreign Policy Branch. Most of these men have decades of experience in matters concerning Russian intelligence and the related technologies. This article reflects numerous interviews with all of them conducted in person, via Skype, or by telephone.

The customary VIPS format is an open letter, typically addressed to the president. The group has written three such letters on the DNC incident, all of which were first published by Robert Parry at www.consortiumnews.com. Here is the latest, dated July 24; it blueprints the forensic work this article explores in detail. They have all argued that the hack theory is wrong and that a locally executed leak is the far more likely explanation. In a letter to Barack Obama dated January 17, three days before he left office, the group explained that the NSA’s known programs are fully capable of capturing all electronic transfers of data. “We strongly suggest that you ask NSA for any evidence it may have indicating that the results of Russian hacking were given to WikiLeaks,” the letter said. “If NSA cannot produce such evidence—and quickly—this would probably mean it does not have any.”


The day after Parry published this letter, Obama gave his last press conference as president, at which he delivered one of the great gems among the official statements on the DNC e-mail question. “The conclusions of the intelligence community with respect to the Russian hacking,” the legacy-minded Obama said, “were not conclusive.” There is little to suggest the VIPS letter prompted this remark, but it is typical of the linguistic tap-dancing many officials connected to the case have indulged so as to avoid putting their names on the hack theory and all that derives from it.

Until recently there was a serious hindrance to the VIPS’s work, and I have just suggested it. The group lacked access to positive data. It had no lump of cyber-material to place on its lab table and analyze, because no official agency had provided any.

Donald Rumsfeld famously argued with regard to the WMD question in Iraq, “The absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.” In essence, Binney and others at VIPS say this logic turns upside down in the DNC case: Based on the knowledge of former officials such as Binney, the group knew that (1) if there was a hack and (2) if Russia was responsible for it, the NSA would have to have evidence of both. Binney and others surmised that the agency and associated institutions were hiding the absence of evidence behind the claim that they had to maintain secrecy to protect NSA programs. “Everything that they say must remain classified is already well-known,” Binney said in an interview. “They’re playing the Wizard of Oz game.”

New findings indicate this is perfectly true, but until recently the VIPS experts could produce only “negative evidence,” as they put it: The absence of evidence supporting the hack theory demonstrates that it cannot be so. That is all VIPS had. They could allege and assert, but they could not conclude: They were stuck demanding evidence they did not have—if only to prove there was none.

Research into the DNC case took a fateful turn in early July, when forensic investigators who had been working independently began to share findings and form loose collaborations.
Research into the DNC case took a fateful turn in early July, when forensic investigators who had been working independently began to share findings and form loose collaborations wherein each could build on the work of others. In this a small, new website called www.disobedientmedia.com proved an important catalyst. Two independent researchers selected it, Snowden-like, as the medium through which to disclose their findings. One of these is known as Forensicator and the other as Adam Carter. On July 9, Adam Carter sent Elizabeth Vos, a co-founder of Disobedient Media, a paper by the Forensicator that split the DNC case open like a coconut.

By this time Binney and the other technical-side people at VIPS had begun working with a man named Skip Folden. Folden was an IT executive at IBM for 33 years, serving 25 years as the IT program manager in the United States. He has also consulted for Pentagon officials, the FBI, and the Justice Department. Folden is effectively the VIPS group’s liaison to Forensicator, Adam Carter, and other investigators, but neither Folden nor anyone else knows the identity of either Forensicator or Adam Carter. This bears brief explanation.

The Forensicator’s July 9 document indicates he lives in the Pacific Time Zone, which puts him on the West Coast. His notes describing his investigative procedures support this. But little else is known of him. Adam Carter, in turn, is located in England, but the name is a coy pseudonym: It derives from a character in a BBC espionage series called Spooks. It is protocol in this community, Elizabeth Vos told me in a telephone conversation this week, to respect this degree of anonymity. Kirk Wiebe, the former SIGINT analyst at the NSA, thinks Forensicator could be “someone very good with the FBI,” but there is no certainty. Unanimously, however, all the analysts and forensics investigators interviewed for this column say Forensicator’s advanced expertise, evident in the work he has done, is unassailable. They hold a similarly high opinion of Adam Carter’s work.


Forensicator is working with the documents published by Guccifer 2.0, focusing for now on the July 5 intrusion into the DNC server. The contents of Guccifer’s files are known—they were published last September—and are not Forensicator’s concern. His work is with the metadata on those files. These data did not come to him via any clandestine means. Forensicator simply has access to them that others did not have. It is this access that prompts Kirk Wiebe and others to suggest that Forensicator may be someone with exceptional talent and training inside an agency such as the FBI. “Forensicator unlocked and then analyzed what had been the locked files Guccifer supposedly took from the DNC server,” Skip Folden explained in an interview. “To do this he would have to have ‘access privilege,’ meaning a key.”

What has Forensicator proven since he turned his key? How? What has work done atop Forensicator’s findings proven? How?

Forensicator’s first decisive findings, made public on July 9, concerned the volume of the supposedly hacked material and what is called the transfer rate.
Forensicator’s first decisive findings, made public in the paper dated July 9, concerned the volume of the supposedly hacked material and what is called the transfer rate—the time a remote hack would require. The metadata established several facts in this regard with granular precision: On the evening of July 5, 2016, 1,976 megabytes of data were downloaded from the DNC’s server. The operation took 87 seconds. This yields a transfer rate of 22.7 megabytes per second.

These statistics are matters of record and essential to disproving the hack theory. No Internet service provider, such as a hacker would have had to use in mid-2016, was capable of downloading data at this speed. Compounding this contradiction, Guccifer claimed to have run his hack from Romania, which, for numerous reasons technically called delivery overheads, would slow down the speed of a hack even further from maximum achievable speeds.

Time stamps in the metadata indicate the download occurred somewhere on the East Coast of the United States—not Russia, Romania, or anywhere else outside the EDT zone.
What is the maximum achievable speed? Forensicator recently ran a test download of a comparable data volume (and using a server speed not available in 2016) 40 miles from his computer via a server 20 miles away and came up with a speed of 11.8 megabytes per second—half what the DNC operation would need were it a hack. Other investigators have built on this finding. Folden and Edward Loomis say a survey published August 3, 2016, by www.speedtest.net/reports is highly reliable and use it as their thumbnail index. It indicated that the highest average ISP speeds of first-half 2016 were achieved by Xfinity and Cox Communications. These speeds averaged 15.6 megabytes per second and 14.7 megabytes per second, respectively. Peak speeds at higher rates were recorded intermittently but still did not reach the required 22.7 megabytes per second.

“A speed of 22.7 megabytes is simply unobtainable, especially if we are talking about a transoceanic data transfer,” Folden said. “Based on the data we now have, what we’ve been calling a hack is impossible.” Last week Forensicator reported on a speed test he conducted more recently. It tightens the case considerably. “Transfer rates of 23 MB/s (Mega Bytes per second) are not just highly unlikely, but effectively impossible to accomplish when communicating over the Internet at any significant distance,” he wrote. “Further, local copy speeds are measured, demonstrating that 23 MB/s is a typical transfer rate when using a USB–2 flash device (thumb drive).”

Time stamps in the metadata provide further evidence of what happened on July 5. The stamps recording the download indicate that it occurred in the Eastern Daylight Time Zone at approximately 6:45 pm. This confirms that the person entering the DNC system was working somewhere on the East Coast of the United States. In theory the operation could have been conducted from Bangor or Miami or anywhere in between—but not Russia, Romania, or anywhere else outside the EDT zone. Combined with Forensicator’s findings on the transfer rate, the time stamps constitute more evidence that the download was conducted locally, since delivery overheads—conversion of data into packets, addressing, sequencing times, error checks, and the like—degrade all data transfers conducted via the Internet, more or less according to the distance involved.

“It’s clear,” another forensics investigator wrote, “that metadata was deliberately altered and documents were deliberately pasted into a Russianified [W]ord document with Russian language settings and style headings.”
In addition, there is the adulteration of the documents Guccifer 2.0 posted on June 15, when he made his first appearance. This came to light when researchers penetrated what Folden calls Guccifer’s top layer of metadata and analyzed what was in the layers beneath. They found that the first five files Guccifer made public had each been run, via ordinary cut-and-paste, through a single template that effectively immersed them in what could plausibly be cast as Russian fingerprints. They were not: The Russian markings were artificially inserted prior to posting. “It’s clear,” another forensics investigator self-identified as HET, wrote in a report on this question, “that metadata was deliberately altered and documents were deliberately pasted into a Russianified [W]ord document with Russian language settings and style headings.”

To be noted in this connection: The list of the CIA’s cyber-tools WikiLeaks began to release in March and labeled Vault 7 includes one called Marble that is capable of obfuscating the origin of documents in false-flag operations and leaving markings that point to whatever the CIA wants to point to. (The tool can also “de-obfuscate” what it has obfuscated.) It is not known whether this tool was deployed in the Guccifer case, but it is there for such a use.

It is not yet clear whether documents now shown to have been leaked locally on July 5 were tainted to suggest Russian hacking in the same way the June 15 Guccifer release was. This is among several outstanding questions awaiting answers, and the forensic scientists active on the DNC case are now investigating it. In a note Adam Carter sent to Folden and McGovern last week and copied to me, he reconfirmed the corruption of the June 15 documents, while indicating that his initial work on the July 5 documents—of which much more is to be done—had not yet turned up evidence of doctoring.

In the meantime, VIPS has assembled a chronology that imposes a persuasive logic on the complex succession of events just reviewed. It is this:

On June 12 last year, Julian Assange announced that WikiLeaks had and would publish documents pertinent to Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.
On June 14, CrowdStrike, a cyber-security firm hired by the DNC, announced, without providing evidence, that it had found malware on DNC servers and had evidence that Russians were responsible for planting it.
On June 15, Guccifer 2.0 first appeared, took responsibility for the “hack” reported on June 14 and claimed to be a WikiLeaks source. It then posted the adulterated documents just described.
On July 5, Guccifer again claimed he had remotely hacked DNC servers, and the operation was instantly described as another intrusion attributable to Russia. Virtually no media questioned this account.
It does not require too much thought to read into this sequence. With his June 12 announcement, Assange effectively put the DNC on notice that it had a little time, probably not much, to act preemptively against the imminent publication of damaging documents. Did the DNC quickly conjure Guccifer from thin air to create a cyber-saboteur whose fingers point to Russia? There is no evidence of this one way or the other, but emphatically it is legitimate to pose the question in the context of the VIPS chronology. WikiLeaks began publishing on July 22. By that time, the case alleging Russian interference in the 2016 elections process was taking firm root. In short order Assange would be written down as a “Russian agent.”

By any balanced reckoning, the official case purporting to assign a systematic hacking effort to Russia, the events of mid-June and July 5 last year being the foundation of this case, is shabby to the point taxpayers should ask for their money back. The Intelligence Community Assessment, the supposedly definitive report featuring the “high confidence” dodge, was greeted as farcically flimsy when issued January 6. Ray McGovern calls it a disgrace to the intelligence profession. It is spotlessly free of evidence, front to back, pertaining to any events in which Russia is implicated. James Clapper, the former director of national intelligence, admitted in May that “hand-picked” analysts from three agencies (not the 17 previously reported) drafted the ICA. There is a way to understand “hand-picked” that is less obvious than meets the eye: The report was sequestered from rigorous agency-wide reviews. This is the way these people have spoken to us for the past year.

Behind the ICA lie other indefensible realities. The FBI has never examined the DNC’s computer servers—an omission that is beyond preposterous. It has instead relied on the reports produced by Crowdstrike, a firm that drips with conflicting interests well beyond the fact that it is in the DNC’s employ. Dmitri Alperovitch, its co-founder and chief technology officer, is on the record as vigorously anti-Russian. He is a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council, which suffers the same prejudice. Problems such as this are many.

“We continue to stand by our report,” CrowdStrike said, upon seeing the VIPS blueprint of the investigation. CrowdStrike argues that by July 5 all malware had been removed from the DNC’s computers. But the presence or absence of malware by that time is entirely immaterial, because the event of July 5 is proven to have been a leak and not a hack. Given that malware has nothing to do with leaks, CrowdStrike’s logic appears to be circular.

In effect, the new forensic evidence considered here lands in a vacuum. We now enter a period when an official reply should be forthcoming. What the forensic people are now producing constitutes evidence, however one may view it, and it is the first scientifically derived evidence we have into any of the events in which Russia has been implicated. The investigators deserve a response, the betrayed professionals who formed VIPS as the WMD scandal unfolded in 2003 deserve it, and so do the rest of us. The cost of duplicity has rarely been so high.

I concluded each of the interviews conducted for this column by asking for a degree of confidence in the new findings. These are careful, exacting people as a matter of professional training and standards, and I got careful, exacting replies.

All those interviewed came in between 90 percent and 100 percent certain that the forensics prove out. I have already quoted Skip Folden’s answer: impossible based on the data. “The laws of physics don’t lie,” Ray McGovern volunteered at one point. “It’s QED, theorem demonstrated,” William Binney said in response to my question. “There’s no evidence out there to get me to change my mind.” When I asked Edward Loomis, a 90 percent man, about the 10 percent he held out, he replied, “I’ve looked at the work and it shows there was no Russian hack. But I didn’t do the work. That’s the 10 percent. I’m a scientist.”

Editor’s note: In its chronology, VIPS mistakenly gave the wrong date for CrowdStrike’s announcement of its claim to have found malware on DNC servers. It said June 15, when it should have said June 14. VIPS has acknowledged the error, and we have made the correction.

Editor’s note: After publication, the Democratic National Committee contacted The Nation with a response, writing, “U.S. intelligence agencies have concluded the Russian government hacked the DNC in an attempt to interfere in the election. Any suggestion otherwise is false and is just another conspiracy theory like those pushed by Trump and his administration. It’s unfortunate that The Nation has decided to join the conspiracy theorists to push this narrative.”



Patrick LawrenceTWITTERPatrick Lawrence is a longtime columnist, essayist, critic, and lecturer, whose most recent books are Somebody Else’s Century: East and West in a Post-Western World and Time No Longer: America After the American Century. His website is patricklawrence.us.


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