Ignoring the Samantha Power bombshell
One of the challenges of Spygate is that it's such a sprawling, complicated tale, filled with competing narratives and motives open to interpretation. We understand that this is a serious situation – possibly the biggest scandal in U.S. history. But how can one get the message across to the average American without his eyes glazing over?
To cut through the complexity, it helps to focus on specific actions by individuals that we all can agree are suspect. This brings us to Samantha Power.
Of all the political stories from 2017, surely the most curious is this: why is everyone ignoring the bombshell revelations from Samantha Power?
As you recall, Power was caught using her security clearance as a U.N. ambassador to review private conversations by U.S. citizens. According to official records, she requested the unmasking of these private citizens over 260 times in 2016 (this was an election year). She was brought before the House Intelligence Committee to explain her actions.
Her defense? It wasn't me. Someone else in the Obama White House did this, using her security clearance.
There are two possibilities: that she is telling the truth, in which case someone else in the Obama administration is lying. Or she is lying herself.
Let's consider the implications if she's lying. Power, a supposed human rights activist and darling of the left, came into her office every day – Monday through Friday, 52 weeks a year – and did some reading. But instead of the New York Times, or her favorite blog, she was reading the transcripts of private conversations of her fellow Americans, wiretapped by federal agents. And not only that, but she made a request each day on average to unmask a U.S. citizen in those transcripts.
Why are our supposed human rights activists not horrified? Why is this not a daily banner headline in every major newspaper in the country? I could see the MSM attempting to hide this damning evidence of Obama administration malfeasance, but why are the conservative news outlets not clamoring for answers?
Perhaps 2017 just saw too many revelations of government abuse? But this one does not deserve to be forgotten. And if we don't act soon, it will go down the memory hole.
Here's how Power's Wiki page spins it: "On May 31, 2017, Power's testimony and relevant records were subpoenaed by the House Intelligence Committee as part of its investigation into the unmasking of Americans whose conversations were inadvertently captured during intelligence surveillance."
There is nothing "inadvertent" about a White House official making over 260 unmasking requests during an election year. And lying about it.
No one, it seems, is asking even the most basic questions: who was this mysterious, nameless Obama administration official? Why would he use Samantha Power's security clearance to unmask U.S. citizens? What did he have to hide? And if he was researching something that was purely legal, why the necessity for such subterfuge and deceit?
The only answer that makes sense is that this official was using Power's security clearance for reasons that would not stand up to legal scrutiny, most likely for political or possibly illegal ends – such as spying on the Trump campaign.
A final thought: Why is Samantha Power herself so seemingly unconcerned about this violation of public trust? Wouldn't you expect this brave journalist, the winner of the Pulitzer Prize, the champion of the people, to be at least a little bit curious as to exactly who it was in the Obama administration who stole her passwords and used her security clearance in such a blatantly undemocratic and unlawful manner?
And wouldn't you expect her to speak up about it?
Jay Latimer is an international businessman, writer, and investor who has worked in investment banking for several multinational banks in New York, Hong Kong, and Beijing.
Photo credit: Flickr.