“If I did this, I’d be prosecuted.” That was the keen observation of FBI employees as they also questioned the preferential treatment afforded to Hillary Clinton’s mishandling of classified information in contrast to the fate of David Petraeus, Victor Berger, and Lewis “Sccoter” Libby, according to a Peter Strzok email obtained by Fox News.
It’s truly astonishing that level of transparency has not been forthcoming from the beginning of the email investigation.
As you can read below from the email originally sent to James Rybicki (former chief of staff for James Comey) and captured in the response from Bill Priestap (assistant director of Counter Intelligence), Mr. Strzok specifically addressed the need to “counter the continuous characterization by Hillary Clinton describing the emails involved in this investigation as having been classified after the fact.” Going so far as to correct former Director Comey, he states, “…we may want to include some final numbers to draw the distinction between her narrative and the [now] 45 email chains that we can say were classified when they hit the system.”381798258-Peter-Strzok-email-about-Clinton-emails
Please note the tone of Mr. Strzok’s criticism as he offered a suggestion for how Mr. Comey should frame the importance of the classified materials Hillary mishandled, emphasizing “that the classified emails weren’t simply State foreign policy deliberations or Information. The TS [Top Secret] emails and most of the Secret emails were classified by the USIC [United States Intelligence Community] because they contained USIC equities. The mishandling of those emails put USIC sources and methods – not State equities – at risk.”
That’s a powerful indictment of fact against someone who has yet to be charged and convicted of a crime. The tone implied the classified emails weren’t marginally significant (“simply State foreign policy deliberations and information”), they were highly significant (“those emails put USIC sources and methods – not State equities – at risk”).
In a Washington Post article dated February 24, 2016, author Michelle Ye Hee Lee scores the comparison of David Petraeus to Hillary Clinton as Three Pinocchios. As of the time this piece was posted, neither the author nor the Washington Post responded to an inquiry asking if they would revisit the article. Part of her rationale is below.
… there clearly are fundamental differences between the two cases that make it an illogical comparison, based on what we know of the Clinton case so far. At the most basic level, there is dispute over whether Clinton’s emails contained “classified” information. An array of experts we consulted all told us that as long as the dispute exists, it will be difficult to bring the same charge of mishandling classified information to which Petraeus pleaded guilty. ~ Michelle Ye Hee Lee, Washington Post
Based on the Strzok email above, any fair-minded individual must admit there is no dispute regarding the classified nature of Hillary’s emails, when they were classified, or the seriousness of the mishandling itself. Hillary’s mishandling put USIC sources and methods at risk. Period. Hard stop.
How is it possible for the FBI to reconcile that level of candor from Mr. Strzok regarding Hillary Clinton’s breach of protocol with allowing her to walk free after “the FBI and Department officials who attended Clinton’s interview found that her claim that she did not understand the significance of the ‘(C)’ marking strained credulity” (page 137 below)?OIG Report - 2016 Election Final Report 06-14-18
Ignorantia legis neminem excusat: Even if Hillary was telling the truth when she claimed ignorance, ignorance of the law excuses no one.
Ignorantia juris non excusat or Ignorantia legis neminem excusat is a Latin maxim which means “ignorance of the law does not excuse” or “ignorance of the law excuses no one.” The rationale of this maxim is that if ignorance of law was an excuse then any person charged with a criminal offense or subject of a civil suit can claim that he or she was unaware of the law in question and avoid liability. The law imputes knowledge of all laws to all persons within its jurisdiction. ~ USLegal.com
18 U.S. Code § 793(f) states:
Whoever, being entrusted with or having lawful possession or control of any document, writing, code book, signal book, sketch, photograph, photographic negative, blueprint, plan, map, model, instrument, appliance, note, or information, relating to the national defense, (1) through gross negligence permits the same to be removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of his trust, or to be lost, stolen, abstracted, or destroyed, or (2) having knowledge that the same has been illegally removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of its trust, or lost, or stolen, abstracted, or destroyed, and fails to make prompt report of such loss, theft, abstraction, or destruction to his superior officer—Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both.
So, even if (former lawyer) Hillary Clinton was genuinely ignorant of the laws governing her role as Secretary of State, she should be held accountable if her conduct was classified as gross negligence. That is probably why the early drafts of Comey’s statement closing out the investigation were changed from “grossly negligent” to “extremely careless.”
How can the FBI claim her actions did not rise to the level of gross negligence or that she acted out of ignorance when over 30,000 emails and hardware were destroyed after being subpoenaed? Clinton’s excuse amounted to “It wasn’t my fault!”
The FD-302 and contemporaneous notes indicate that the interviewers asked Clinton about her understanding of her record keeping obligations, the culling process that was used to provide her work-related emails to the State Department, and the deletion of emails from her server. According to the FD-302, Clinton told the FBI, among other things, that she did not recall being asked to turn over her email records upon her departure from State and that she believed her workrelated emails were “captured by her practice of sending them to state.gov email addresses of her staff.” She stated that, upon receiving a request from the State Department in 2014, she “expected” her attorneys to turn over any emails that were “work-related or arguably work-related,” but she did not otherwise participate in developing the culling process. Agent 1 told us, consistent with the FD-302, that he pressed her on her lack of involvement in the State Department production, by showing her a work-related email that was not produced as part of the 30,490. Clinton responded that she agreed that the email was work-related and did not know why it was not included in the State Department production. Clinton told the FBI that in December 2014, after the production of her work-related emails to the State Department, her staff asked her what she wanted to do with her personal emails and she responded that she “did not need them anymore.” The FD-302 states that “Clinton never deleted, nor did she instruct anyone to delete, her email to avoid complying with Federal Records Act, FOIA, or State or FBI requests for information” and that she “trusted her legal team” would comply with the March 3, 2015 Congressional preservation request. ~ Page 136 of OIG Report (above)
The FBI acknowledges (in the summary report below) that (1) Cheryl Mills gave the order to destroy Clinton’s emails, (2) Platt River Networks employee Paul Combetta failed to delete them until after he was made aware of the subpoena by Cheryl Mills, which he initially denied seeing.FBI_clinton-email-summary
Unfortunately, both Cheryl Mills and Paul Combetta were granted immunity in exchange for their testimony.
According to a letter submitted to Comey by Senator Chuck Grassley, Mr. Combetta was granted immunity on May 3, 2016 (the day of his third testimony), and although his testimony changed to include the admission that he was aware of the email sent by Cheryl Mills regarding the subpoena, the FBI never addressed a primary driver for the immunity deal, which was his original conversation with Cheryl Mills in 2014.2016-09-28 CEG to FBI (Combetta)
Well, that settles it. Nothing to see here… If there is any way Hillary Clinton is truly innocent, the only individuals who may have been charged with a crime were given immunity. How convenient…