Monday, March 20, 2017

Comey: Russians Unusually Loud

There was a joint hearing today before the House Intelligence Committee with the FBI and NSA directors. A lot of people are analyzing this, but there are a couple things I noticed that don't seem to be getting picked up much.

First, both men - Admiral Rogers in particular - casually asserted the significance of Russia taking the unprecedented step of releasing so much unaltered information during the election. Clearly they're talking about the Wikileaks, so have I missed something? Last I knew there was no public evidence to support the claim that Russia was the culprit, and Wikileaks broke it's typical silence on such matter to refute it. So how do they know? Did some investigation conclude that it was Russia? Clearly it's not some ongoing investigation, otherwise Comey would defer like he did on all other questions pertaining to specific investigations. (And he certainly wouldn't be logically inconsistent, would he?)

Second, Comey offered the interesting observation that the Russians had been uncharacteristically noisy in their cyber activities. He expressed that it seemed they didn't even seem to be making an attempt at discretion, and offered a couple of hypotheses as to why they would be so brazen.

So wait a minute. Two weeks ago we learned that the CIA not only possess a vast arsenal of cyber tools which they can use to frame Russian hackers for their actions, but they lost control of that arsenal. And in the same timeframe, he is surprised that the Russians suddenly started to act unusually imprudent? This brings us back to the same question: how is he so confident Russia was the culprit?

Also a reminder that what's being accused here is that Russia acted to rig the election by revealing proof that the Democrats rigged their own primary. It's an interesting timeline to say the least.

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