The mainstream media is working overtime to make sure their – cough, cough – trusted reputations don’t take a hit over the revelations about the FBI’s surveillance of Paul Manafort. They know that it seems…SEEMS…like President Trump was right back in March when he said that the Obama administration was wiretapping Trump Tower. It seems that way because it IS that way. But since the media spent much of the spring and summer deriding Trump for making such a wild and reckless allegation about our beloved former president, they can’t very well turn around and say, “Whoops!” That would take a degree of integrity they simply don’t have.
So now we’re left with journalists and pundits parsing words in an effort to make it sound like Trump’s claim about Obama was still just as false as it ever was. Even though it wasn’t. It’s been quite the show, though we’re beyond the point where we can be even slightly surprised by any of the media’s lies. Once you go beyond a certain point – and they went WAY beyond it in the 2016 election – all hope for redemption is lost.
But really, all of this focus on Manafort and Trump misses the bigger picture. Yes, it’s vitally important that we delve into the extent to which President Obama authorized surveillance of an “enemy” political campaign, but we should also remember that this wasn’t the Obama administration’s first foray into state-sponsored eavesdropping. Not by a long shot.
Journalist Sharyl Attkisson was a victim of that eavesdropping, and she took this occasion to remind America of that in a clarifying op-ed for The Hill this week:
Intel agencies secretly monitored conversations of members of Congress while the Obama administration negotiated the Iran nuclear deal.
In 2014, the CIA got caught spying on Senate Intelligence Committee staffers, though CIA Director John Brennan had explicitly denied that.
There were also wiretaps on then-Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) in 2011 under Obama. The same happened under President George W. Bush to former Congresswoman Jane Harman (D-Calif.).
Journalists have been targeted, too. This internal email, exposed by WikiLeaks, should give everyone chills. It did me.
Dated Sept. 21, 2010, the “global intelligence” firm Stratfor wrote:
[John] Brennan [then an Obama Homeland Security adviser] is behind the witch hunts of investigative journalists learning information from inside the beltway sources.
Note — There is specific tasker from the WH to go after anyone printing materials negative to the Obama agenda (oh my.) Even the FBI is shocked. The Wonder Boys must be in meltdown mode…
Attkisson is currently embroiled in a lawsuit against the Justice Department in her ongoing attempts to uncover exactly who cracked into her computers while she was busy investigating the Obama administration. But as she points out, Obama’s sins weren’t unique to Obama. He was perhaps the worst of the violators, but he wasn’t the first.
And unless the media – and the American people – get serious about protecting citizen rights from the long arm of the U.S. intelligence community, he won’t be the last.