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July 27, 2016 / 21 Tammuz, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘WikiLeaks’

WikiLeaks Tries to Wreck the DNC

Tuesday, July 26th, 2016

Following a Republican nominating convention that was marred by bizarre scheduling, leaks to Democratic operatives, chaos, and disunion, the bar for relative success at the Democratic convention the following week was set pretty low. With the wounds from the primary process appearing, at least superficially, to have healed, Democrats were set to strike a favorable contrast to the GOP with a largely uneventful coronation and a display of common purpose. That would have been an illusion. As WikiLeaks demonstrated this week with the release of a series of covertly obtained emails from the Democratic National Committee, the appearance of party unity was only ever just that: appearance.

Of the nearly 20,000 emails released by WikiLeaks, many of them contain delicate communications from seven key DNC employees. The emails contradict Democratic claims that no sensitive information was exposed by the initial hack in June—several donors’ personal information and credit card numbers were exposed by the leak. That is surely creating tensions just beneath the surface of the Democratic coalition, but one particular email communication has already ignited a full-scale scandal.

The email from a DNC staffer in mid-April, as Sanders was in the middle of a streak of primary victories, revealed how threatened the party’s brass was by the surging self-described socialist. In it, DNC CFO Brad Marshall floated the prospect of the Clinton campaign using Sanders’ faith, or lack thereof, to damage his brand among Southern Democrats.

“It might may no difference, but for KY and WVA can we get someone to ask his belief,” the email read. “Does he believe in a God. He had skated on saying he has a Jewish heritage. I think I read he is an atheist. This could make several points difference with my peeps.”

The revelation threatens to shatter the fragile peace between Clinton backers and Sanders supporters. Marshall has already apologized for his “insensitive, emotional emails.” In a display of penance, DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz announced she would not speak at her party’s nominating convention. Not good enough, said Sanders. Wasserman Schultz “should not be the chair of the DNC,” he said.

The Sanders camp is making the most of the kerfuffle by insisting that someone in the party’s central committee should be “held accountable” for the mess. To the extent that Sanders supporters are hoping to leverage their candidate’s support in the primaries to make substantial changes to the party’s platform, the appearance of bias against them will create sympathy and give them a boost.

Those are the politics of this episode, but much of that is also a contrivance. These leaked emails also have a lot of potential to backfire and, counterintuitively, create as much party unity as they destroyed.

The prospect of a ranking Democratic National Committee staffer using his perch to advise a candidate in the presidential primaries is a genuinely disturbing ethical breach. The revelation, however, that the Democratic National Committee was suspicious of a fringe candidate whose politics are well to the left of the country who was not even a member of their party until last autumn should surprise no one. The fact that a committeeman thought it was smart politics to impugn Sanders’ religious beliefs is ugly indeed. “We’re better than this,” Clinton said of the Republican nominee’s baiting and xenophobic politics. Guess not. But while these sentiments were untoward, they came to nothing and amounted to little more than an errant thought on the part of the party’s financial risk manager.

Finally, the source of these email leaks should disturb all Americans of every political stripe. These emails, laundered through WikiLeaks, were likely obtained by Russian intelligence operatives in June. “The networks of presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump were also targeted by Russian spies, as were the computers of some Republican political action committees, U.S. officials said,” the Washington Post reported at the time. It is no coincidence that only a handful of these communications specifically related to Democrats were released on the eve of a Democratic nominating convention. This has the appearance of a foreign power directly interfering in an American election, and that’s not something to take lightly.

Today, Democrats are reliving the bitterly contested primaries, but that won’t last. The primaries are over, and the party will nominate Clinton to the presidency early next week. The candidates do not seem as inclined as their voters to refight past battles. What may have a more lasting political impact is the appearance that the Russian government is intervening in the presidential election. Rather than applaud and leverage this development, as he has, Donald Trump would be much better served by condemning it. If the Russians are set on undermining the Democratic Party in this election, it won’t be long before the public is asked to consider why that might be.

Noah Rothman

Debbie Wasserman Schultz Kicked Out of Democratic National Convention Leadership Role

Sunday, July 24th, 2016

Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz has been kicked out from leading the Democratic National Convention, the traditional role for the DNC chair, Fox News reported Sunday.

The move came after emails leaked by WikiLeaks revealed a bias in the party’s leadership during the primaries — which was supposed to be neutral — against Senator Bernie Sanders. The revelation prompted some 40 percent of his supporters to vow not to vote for Hillary Clinton at the polls in November.

The leaked emails supported earlier claims by Sanders and his supporters that the system was rigged in favor of Clinton.

GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump has maintained as well that the system was “rigged” against Sanders, and said so from the podium of the Republican National Convention during his speech accepting the nomination of his party last Thursday night.

The news was confirmed publicly shortly after noon on Sunday. She had not appeared at a rules committee meeting on Saturday, though she was slated to speak, nor did her name appear on a list of speakers for the convention.

Hana Levi Julian

WikiLeaks Reveals Saudi Cable: ‘Iran Sent Nukes to Sudan’

Tuesday, June 23rd, 2015

Iran may have sent advanced nuclear equipment to Sudan in 2012, according to a cable from the Saudi Arabian embassy in Khartoum revealed by WikiLeaks.

“The embassy’s sources advise that Iranian containers arrived this week at Khartoum airport containing sensitive technical equipment in the form of fast centrifuges for enriching uranium, and a second shipment is expected to arrive this week,” the document was quoted by Reuters as saying. It was allegedly marked “TOP SECRET” and dated February 2012.

More than 60,000 cables and documents released by WikiLeaks were alleged to be official Saudi communications. Riyadh has not commented on the specific documents, and has said they are “probably faked.”

The international watchdog organization publishes news leaks of secret and classified information; it said it will eventually publish up to 500,000 Saudi documents but did not reveal the source.

There were no details about the source of the information, nor was any further evidence made available. The international community is not aware of any nuclear program existent in Sudan, and there have been no previous public reports of Iran having sent any nuclear equipment to the African nation.

However, Iran has in the past used Sudan as a conduit through which to ship weapons to terrorist groups in Gaza and its warships have made the Port of Sudan a routine stopping place in the region.

A Sudanese munitions factory was mysteriously destroyed in October 2012. The government of Sudan claimed the Khartoum factory was blown up in an air strike by Israeli fighter pilots.

Israel declined to comment about the accusation. But senior officials did not hesitate to mention Sudan’s role in serving as a transit point for weapons being shipped from Iran via the Sinai Peninsula to terror groups in Gaza and elsewhere.

In March 2014, Israel intercepted the Klos-C off the shores of Sudan as it was headed to Gaza, laden with long-range M-302 missiles and other weapons shipped from Iran.

Tehran is the second-biggest supplier of arms to the African nation, according to a Small Arms Survey report issued last year. However, until this point, there has been no mention that any of the materials, equipment or weapons were nuclear.

Hana Levi Julian

WikiLeaks: CIA Prepares Agents to Avoid Ben Gurion Airport Screenings

Tuesday, December 23rd, 2014

The Central Intelligence Agency offers guidelines for its operatives using false identities to get through a “secondary screening” at Israel’s Ben Gurion International Airport, according to a secret CIA document uploaded to WikiLeaks.

The document, which is titled “CIA Assessment on Surviving Secondary Screening at Airports While Maintaining Cover” and dated September 2011, was uploaded to WikiLeaks this week, Haaretz reported.

It says Ben Gurion Airport is very thorough at screening international travelers. The guidelines on the secondary screening — what the document calls “a potentially lengthy and detailed look by airport officials at passengers not passing initial scrutiny” — helps the CIA operatives maintain their alias.

The report reveals several details about the security procedures at the airport.

“Security personnel at Ben Gurion Airport in Tel Aviv, Israel, commonly refer military-aged males traveling alone with backpacks to secondary screening, regardless of their nationality or skin color,” the document reads.

It continues, “At Ben Gurion airport in Israel, the secondary screening room contains trace-detection equipment for explosive residue; tools for dismantling passengers’ personal items for inspection, particularly items unfamiliar to security officers; and a disrobing area, divided by privacy curtains, to conduct strip searches of individuals, if necessary.”

The document also singles out Ben Gurion Airport for its particularly stringent background checks.

“With the exception of Israel’s Ben Gurion airport and a few others, immigration inspectors conducting primary screenings generally lack the time and tools to conduct in-depth examination of travelers’ bona fides.”

 

JTA

Denmark’s Boycott Bank Linked to North Korea-Iran Ballistic Missiles Sales

Sunday, February 2nd, 2014

When JewishPress.com reported on Denmark’s Danske Bank’s “boycott” of Israel’s Bank HaPoalim, we pointed out the curious fact that Danske Bank actually doesn’t do any business at all with any Israeli bank, leading one to wonder about the motivations for their announced boycott.

You may now stop wondering.

David Goldman of Pajamas Media uncovered a 2009 Wikileaks cable in which it exposes that Danske Bank provided financial services to Tanchon, a North Korean company that sold ballistic missiles to Iran.

FOR DENMARK ONLY: — We previously raised with you in March 2006 our concern (REF L) that Tanchon Commercial Bank maintained a correspondent account with Den Danske Bank AS- Copenhagen. According to April 2009 Bankers Almanac information, Tanchon still maintains that account.

The US State Department had warned Danske Bank about their providing services to Tachnon in 2006, and the bank apparently chose to ignore it, despite the “legal and ethical” issues it raised.

Only in 2010, did Danske Bank state that it finally stopped doing business with Iran.

Nothing we’re aware of, about them not doing business anymore with North Korea.

Either way, so much for that moral high ground they were claiming.

Shalom Bear

Next Secretary of State Kerry Was ‘Shocked’ by Gaza

Sunday, December 16th, 2012

According to ABC News, President Obama has decided to nominate Sen. John Kerry to be his next secretary of state, replacing Hillary Clinton.

The news will not be announced in the next few days for a variety of reasons, including the conclusion of the nomination process, and other, more pressing cabinet decisions. Also, the White House will want to wait until the national reaction to the tragic shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School subsides.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who is recovering from an illness and a concussion she suffered when she fainted because of that illness, will retire from office in the next few weeks.

Massachusetts Senator and former presidential candidate John Kerry spoke at the Democratic convention about President Obama’s relationship with Israel, saying he “promised always to stand with Israel, to tighten sanctions on Iran – and take nothing off the table.” He also cited PM Netanyahu’s praise for American policy regarding Israel, adding his now famous zinger: “When it comes to Israel, I’ll take the word of Israel’s prime minister over Mitt Romney any day.”

But according to WikiLeaks (as spotted by breitbart.com), on a February, 2010 trip to the Middle East, Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman John Kerry told Qatari leaders that the Golan Heights should be returned to Syria, that a Palestinian capital should be established in East Jerusalem as part of the Arab-Israeli peace process, and that he was “shocked” by what he saw on a visit to Gaza.

WikiLeaks revealed that Kerry discussed the Israeli-Palestinian “peace process” in a visit to Qatar during separate meetings with Prime Minister Hamad bin Jassim Al Thani and the Emir of Qatar, Hamad bin Khalifa.

Now, here’s a bit of un-prophecy (The opposite of prophecy? Complete misreading of the map by someone who should know better?): During that 2010 get-together, the emir told Kerry to focus on Syria as the… path toward resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict.

And listen to this: Kerry agreed with the emir that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is a man who wants change.

OK, he also pointed Assad’s arming of Hezbollah and interference in Lebanese politics, saying those were unhelpful. But Kerry said that Assad “needs to make a bolder move and take risks” for peace, and that he should be “more statesman-like.”

Kerry also agreed with the emir that the Golan Heights should be given back to Syria at some point. “The Chairman added that Netanyahu also needs to compromise and work the return of the Golan Heights into a formula for peace,” the diplomatic cable reported.

Yes, let’s take advice on our fate from this man. Remember, the bloodshed in Syria began about one year after that call for reliance on Assad for Middle East peace.

In a separate meeting the day before with the prime minister, Kerry resisted the Qatari leader’s assertion that Hamas was ready to accept the existence of the State of Israel, but he agreed that urgent action was needed to rebuild Gaza.

According to the leaked diplomatic cable, the prime minister told Kerry, “We need to broker a quick reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah and move forward quickly on rebuilding Gaza… Senator Kerry asserted that HBJ [Prime Minister Hamad bin Jassim Al Thani] was preaching to the converted and told the PM he was ‘shocked by what I saw in Gaza.'”

In other words, our next Secretary of State was in favor of the Hamas-Fatah reconciliation which is happening right before our eyes – “You’re preaching to the converted,” he told the Qatari leader.

Anyone here wishing we’d have said yes to Susan Rice?

Yori Yanover

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/95902/2012/12/16/

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